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Another sad pet story

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Z-Corn
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Z-Corn »

Ah jeez. At least you know you did all you could. Make sure to give Beery some extra love tonight.

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Xmann
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Xmann »

Man I hate these things. Can't begin to tell you how sorry I am for you and the wife.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Lassr »

Oh man, this is not the update I wanted to see, so sorry. :(
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Holman
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Holman »

I remember when we had to put down our cat of 15 years. (I was 20 and had grown up with him in the house.)

He was suffering, it was obvious. We would have loved to keep him, but that couldn't possibly have been good for him. The vet was gentle and kind, but she made it clear that what the cat needed most was to leave behind the pain and confusion.

RIP.
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Kraken
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Kraken »

We had decided on euthanasia last night, barring unexpected improvement, so his dying before we had to actually give the order was a weird sort of relief. I also take comfort in knowing that he wasn't aware of his surroundings, because a medical death surrounded by strangers is not an end I would wish on anyone.

Maybe later tonight I'll write up a paragraph or two by way of eulogy. That might help give me (and this thread) closure. I keep looking out the window, expecting to see him in the yard.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by dbt1949 »

Do you bury you pets?
Usually I do but I'm starting to get too olde.
They should be out there digging a hole for me.
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Kraken
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Kraken »

No, we have them cremated. Wife insisted on burying Iggy's ashes so he would have a grave. I didn't like that idea because Iggy was such a free spirit that scattering them felt more appropriate, but...whatever. It mattered more to her than it did to me. I don't have strong feelings about ashes and dust. I did talk her into scattering Gus, though.

I also scattered both of my parents' remains, and hope someone will eventually do the same for mine. Burial creeps me out.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Zenn7 »

I buried our cat that died in 2017. Stickers. Kid took it really hard - we got the cat for her 3rd birthday when we moved into the house. Old owners suggested we get a cat unless we wanted to have a mouse problem.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Kraken »

Augustus was the neighborhood badass (a neighbor's name for him): climbing trees, stalking across rooftops, taking on all challengers. He killed garden pests ranging from moles to hares and made our yard a rodent no-go zone. Black and silent as a ninja, he could materialize from and disappear into thin air. He came and went as he pleased, but he always let me know when he was going to stay out overnight. He knew that I didn't like that and he did me the courtesy of telling me not to worry. Then he did it anyway. In return, I knew how he hated the rain and always offered him door service when it started coming down. He was a fair-weather cat. He often showed up at the door just in time for "last call," my bedtime around 1 a.m. A couple of times he woke me up banging on my second-floor window. Getting up there took some serious gymnastics. We couldn't figure out how he did it until a neighbor told us where she'd watched him jump and climb.

I was his emotional support animal. Our relationship was founded on mutual respect and understanding as equals. Wife compliments me on training the cats well, but it was always a two-way street -- I let Gus know what I wanted, he let me know what he was willing to do, and we both compromised. (That's the real art of the deal, btw, and why I am the cat whisperer.) His kryptonite was brushing. Whenever I plopped down in my easy chair, or even just walked toward it, Gus came running and jumped up on the arm, demanding the brush. If I started to walk away he'd demean himself with a creaky meow, and I would always find 5 minutes to sit and deliver. If he felt especially loving he would climb hesitantly, cautiously, onto my lap, like he didn't want to impose or trust me not to restrain him. He liked to be close...but not *too* close, and rarely for more than 10 minutes. Arm's length was his comfort zone...close enough to touch but not to grab. Neither of us are cuddlers -- being picked up was an indignity and a hug could ruin his whole day -- but we were bonded. Yet the only being on this earth that he loved unconditionally was his brother Tiberius. Those two were an unshakable team, from the womb through their hardscrabble kittenhood and into their lives with us. They ALWAYS had each other's backs. We were just supporting players.

Gaius Octavius Augustus (his Roman name), or Auguste Piccard (his Star Trek name), got barely one-fifth of the 16-17 years that he should have had, but he honored his august name (and ultimately died in August, how weird is that?). With his live-fast, die-young spirit I figured that one day he just wouldn't come home, because he lived fearlessly on his own terms and he would die the same way. Being stricken down indoors by an invisible enemy within, and then dying in a cage, was not the right ending for him. But he packed more living into his 3.5 years than an ordinary cat gets from a full lifespan, and I salute him as one of a kind. Everyone thinks that their pet is special, of course, but Gus was genuinely unique among the many cats I have known.

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Xmann
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Xmann »

What a great companion you had my friend. I enjoyed getting to know him. Again, I'm sorry in your loss.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Daehawk »

What a great write up and send off. Goodbye Gus. Too young too fast.
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Zitterbacke
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Zitterbacke »



RIP Gus
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Kraken
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Kraken »

And now Tiberius is dead. He was only a little over 4 years old.

Next-door neighbor found his body, already stiff, under their swing set -- a place he liked to hang out. There was dried blood coming from his mouth and on one of his forelegs. I was too distraught to examine his body carefully, but I didn't see any obvious signs of trauma. His corpse is in a box in the garage now. I was going to bury it but Wife wants to have him cremated.

Neighbor thinks it was a coyote. They've found more than one dead rabbit recently. With all the humans sheltering in place, wildlife is bolder than usual. It's also possible he was hit by a car and dragged himself over there...although that's barely 50 yards from home, so I'd think he would've come here instead. Also, he knew how cars work and never ventured into the busy street. He was a very cautious cat. Still, the only blood I saw indicated internal injury. I guess it doesn't matter how he died.

We never let him out before 8 a.m., when humans are active, and he always came in well before dark. Whatever got him happened in broad daylight, probably this morning, judging by rigor mortis.

So now only Warren is left. We were grooming him to go outdoors, but now he's going to remain an indoor cat. Beery was supposed to be his guide to the great outdoors.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Zenn7 »

Sorry for you and your family Kraken.

Sometimes, just seems like other issues like pets dying could be nice and take a break while we are enduring this other hell with the COVID epidemic. Doesn't work that way, but it would be nice if it did. :(

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Isgrimnur »

I’m sorry for your loss. At least he had a loving family for those years. That’s a better lot than many get.

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Holman
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Holman »

So sorry to hear this news, Kraken.

RIP.
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by naednek »

Almost a sad day for Toby, as he pooped inside the house and the roomba found it... Toby almost didn't make it...

Sorry Kraken, that sucks big time. We live near a field with nothing between us and the mountains. Coyotes and mountain lions have been spotted in surrounding neighborhoods lately.
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Lassr »

:cry:
I'm so sorry about Tiberius.
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Kraken
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Kraken »

Zenn7 wrote:
Sun Apr 05, 2020 3:02 pm
Sorry for you and your family Kraken.

Sometimes, just seems like other issues like pets dying could be nice and take a break while we are enduring this other hell with the COVID epidemic. Doesn't work that way, but it would be nice if it did. :(
Yeah, it feels like the world is ending on so many fronts. This is the third death in our family since last August.
naednek wrote:
Sun Apr 05, 2020 4:10 pm
Sorry Kraken, that sucks big time. We live near a field with nothing between us and the mountains. Coyotes and mountain lions have been spotted in surrounding neighborhoods lately.
We live in a suburban/small town kind of neighborhood. There are pockets of wilderness but it's thickly settled. It's always been a safe neighborhood for cats...until Covid came along and scared everybody inside.

I'm still having trouble processing this.

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Unagi
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Unagi »

Man I’m so sorry to hear this Kraken.

:(

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Z-Corn
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Z-Corn »

Sorry to hear this. Please accept our condolences and pass them on to Ms. Kraken.

I wouldn't blame you if you went around killing coyotes for a while.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Jeff V »

Sorry to hear it, Kraken. The life of outdoor cats is a violent one, and they seldom have t he long lives indoor cats enjoy. I've had a number of cats over the years that were killed in the line of their duty.

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Re: Another sad pet story

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I am very sorry for your loss. I'm still thinking of my favorite little dog that died 2 1/2 years ago.
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Kraken
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Kraken »

If they can avoid the hazards, outdoor cats are mentally and physically stronger than indoor cats. Even our vet agreed with that, even as she admitted that she wasn't supposed to say it. We've only lost one cat to violence in the past 40 years. That changed today.

Warren was just days away from going out for the first time. We got him microchipped. I've been carrying him out onto the porch with me to get the paper every morning, letting him look around and taste the breeze. Beery clearly wanted Warren to come out with him, and Warren was ready to go. So many chipmunks.

Suddenly, Warren's an only cat, and now he's going to spend the rest of his life indoors (unless we try going the leash route). The neighborhood isn't safe anymore. That makes me almost as sad as losing my friend.

At some point in the next week I'll write a eulogy for Tiberius.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Unagi »

Are you sure it wasn’t a car ?
An animal that’s wounded will often run and hide

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Kraken
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Kraken »

It might have been a car. His remains looked consistent with internal injuries. He had a healthy fear of cars, but traffic is so negligible that he might have gotten careless. But if he was mobile, I think he'd have come to the door. It was less than 50 yards from where they found him. I know injured animals want to hide, though, so who knows? We never will.

If I could muster the dispassion, I'd have another good look at his corpse. But I can't handle that, especially after it's had a day to stew. Carrying him home and boxing him up is about all the trauma I can handle for one death.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by RunningMn9 »

I'm so sorry Kraken. :(
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Kraken »

Just got back from taking his body to the crematorium, 45 minutes away. They wanted $100 to pick up. I feel a *little* better for getting that box out of my garage.

And the more we talk this over, the more we convince ourselves that he was hit by a car.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Dramatist »

Poor kitty. Sorry Kraken, it sucks to lose a furry family member.


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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Alefroth »

So sorry, Kraken :cry:

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by AWS260 »

Oh, I'm sorry, Kraken.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Hrdina »

Sincere condolences for your loss, Kraken.
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Re: Another sad pet story

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I'm so sorry. Life is fragile.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Kraken »

It's been a week; I wrote his eulogy.

I have to talk about Tiberius in the context of Augustus. Those two were inseparable since the womb. Gus was the daredevil, the alpha cat, the “neighborhood badass,” slayer of rabbits and squirrels. Tiberius was Gus’ goofy sidekick – the good boy who followed his brother into trouble despite his cautious nature. Gus routinely disappeared for days at a time; Ti always came back in before dark.

Beery went against his nature once. When he was around 1.5 years old, he went out one day and didn’t come back…until he showed up on the front porch, no worse for wear, four nights later. I cried tears of joy, which are something I didn’t know really existed. We’ll never know where he went or what he did on his “walkabout,” but it became a legend anyway.

The pair of them went on like that until Augustus died unexpectedly in August 2019. The vet thought his “brain event” might have been a tumor, or possibly a stroke (he did have a heart murmur). He was just 3.5 years old.

We were all devastated. Of course Beery couldn’t understand that Gus was never coming home. We lavished affection on him, but he was clearly bored and lonely. The joy was gone from his life. He didn’t play with chipmunks or climb trees anymore. As winter set in, his outings grew short, sometimes no more than an hour or two a day. He slept a lot.

We had to get Tiberius a kitten. Warren joined our family just after Christmas. Beery wasn’t sure what to make of this little ball of energy, but they became fast friends and were sleeping in the same bed within a week. Warren, who’s a force of nature, soon asserted his dominance and Beery fell back into his supporting role. Beery still showed some anxious behaviors, like dragging his toys around the house in the wee hours of the morning, or walking around and crying. He was never happy-go-lucky again. All in all, though, balance was as restored as it could be without Gus. Tiberius would sit in the window, looking inside, enticing Warren to go out. Warren was raring to go. I began acclimating him to the front porch. He was just days away from going out for the first time, waiting for a stretch of nice spring weather. Our dear, cautious, timid Tiberius would teach Warren what he needed to know.

You probably know that we lost Tiberius a week ago. He went out in the morning as he always did. He didn’t come back for breakfast, as was his habit, but that wasn’t worrisome. Our neighbor found his body in her yard that afternoon. It was not obvious how he died and I don’t want to walk through the possibilities again. Although my mind won’t leave it alone, it ultimately doesn’t matter. We’ve decided that our neighborhood just isn’t safe for cats anymore, and Warren is going to have to live indoors. Today I ordered him a harness and leash because I just can’t deny him the outdoors entirely. Now Warren wonders where his friend went.

Tiberius was a beautiful, loving, loyal cat who knew the house rules and liked routine. I never worried about him. Except for his famous walkabout, he didn’t go far, he always came when called, and he seldom stayed out for more than a few hours. I never imagined a violent death for him. He was barely over four years old, and he died just seven months after his brother did. I loved them both and will never stop missing them.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Unagi »

:|
You’ve managed to make me miss him too.
Well written.

Peace.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Lassr »

:cry:
The only reason people get lost in thought is because it's unfamiliar territory.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Daehawk »

Just saw this as Id taken a break. So sorry Kraken about your baby boy. Condolences.
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Kraken
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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Kraken »

So...our little 10-month-old Warren has been feeling out of sorts. His appetite is off, he's lethargic, he's losing weight. On our vet's advice, we took him to the urgent care clinic on Tuesday. This is what $300 worth of testing tells us: "The most significant abnormality is that Warren has an elevated globulin level in his blood. This is a protein that increased in response to inflammation/infection. When young cats have such high levels (8.1, normal is 3-5.9) it makes us very concerned for FIP (feline infectious peritonitis). This is something that can develop is kittens that are exposed to feline coronavirus (unrelated to COVID). This is a tricky disease to diagnose as there is not one specific test that can 100% diagnose it. I would recommend proceeding with the abdominal ultrasound next Wednesday as the next step. Depending of the results of the ultrasound an FIP panel could be run."

There is no treatment for FIP, and it is almost always fatal. Euthanasia is considered the humane response.

I've got a call in to our regular vet to ask her about the next step. Ultrasound is $340 at their clinic or $430 at the urgent care, so I'd like to get her advice before following through with that. Maybe it's not FIP. But this is 2020, so of course it's going to be FIP.

If Warren dies, I am done with pets forever.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by MHS »

My heart drops every time you post in this thread.

I'm really, really sorry to hear about Warren and hope that it's not FIP and that whatever it is, he recovers quickly and thoroughly.

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Re: Another sad pet story

Post by Daehawk »

MHS wrote:
Fri Jun 26, 2020 4:51 pm
My heart drops every time you post in this thread.

I'm really, really sorry to hear about Warren and hope that it's not FIP and that whatever it is, he recovers quickly and thoroughly.
All that and more for me too. I kinda hate this thread. Not for the posts or the help and comfort it can provide but just because of the nature of the reasons to post. Little animals cant talk and tell us their troubles. They cant fix themselves. And they add so much to our lives. I feel bad when little animals feel bad.
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