Last year my neighbor lost her two dogs within three months of each other. I know how difficult the loss of a pet is, I could not imagine the loss of two. Now I know.
Kimmi, my longish-haired calico died yesterday. The most difficult part for me is that I didn’t get to say goodbye. She died at the vet’s while being prepped for surgery. She was 13 years old, and her death comes on the heels of Gigi’s death just before Christmas.
Kimmi wasn’t particularly affectionate, but then calicos and long-hairs generally aren’t. Most of the time, she’d spend the day sleeping on my bed. Our “special time” occurred when I’d come to bed and read before going to sleep. The initial moments were spent with me rubbing her neck and head. (When I’d momentarily stop, she’d paw at my hand to continue.) Then she’d curl up on my lap for awhile. (She didn’t spend the night with me because my male cat usurped the bed. But Kimmi had her own plush and cozy bed in a corner of the bedroom which she regularly used.)
About a month ago, I’d noticed a dark discharge from her eyes. During our nightly “rubbins,” I noticed a swelling in her neck area. Thinking it might be a thyroid problem, we visited the vet. Her thyroid was fine, but the neck swelling was filled with blood and lymphocytes. The vet extracted a lot of fluid, but the next week, the swelling was back and she took out even more fluid.
Kimmi began sleeping on a chair under the dining room table, not coming to my bed at all. (Even when I brought her into the bedroom, she’d get down immediately and go back to the dining room.) Though her behavior had changed, she still ate and drank normally.
Earlier this week, she showed signs of deteriorating, finding confined areas to sleep. She ate a little bit (which I brought to her), but never used the litter box.
Thursday I took her to a specialist for an ultrasound, per her regular vet’s recommendation. After examining her, that vet said either an MRI or surgery was recommend. Both required anesthesia, so I opted for the surgery, wanting to know what was causing the swelling. That night I was horribly restless, wishing I’d brought her home after having the fluid drained one more time. My plan was to have her euthenized at home after we’d had a few days of quality time.
When I went to bed, I worried she might not tolerate the anethesia, being she was so thin and small. My fears were confirmed. She died the next morning while being given the anesthesia for the surgery.
I knew her time on earth was limited, but I desperately wanted her to spend it with me, in a familiar environment. Instead. she died alone and scared, and it’s tearing me to pieces.
I desperately needed some human contact. I called and texted my best friend several times during the day but never received a call in return. The good that’s come out of Kimmi’s death is that I realize it’s time to make some new friends.
P.S. Thank you, Natalie, for you words of encouragement at SciFi Chicks. They mean the world to me. ❤
11 thoughts on “Two Too Many”
I send many hugs to you, Gail — I share (as best I can, I’m a dog gal) your sorrow …
I fear I was insensitive with “dog gal” — PLEASE FORGIVE ME and let me try again: I want to share your sorrow in any way that I can, I don’t know much aobut cats, being a dog gal, but I know how much dogs and cats connect with us humans. I could really relate to your description of what happened.
Teresa, you have NOTHING to apologize for! I know your heart, and know what a wonderfully kind soul you are. I didn’t take your first reply as anything but loving. Thank you! (I’ll send you an email in the next few days.)
She was a beautiful girl! And she had 13 wonderful loving years with you. I’m so sorry for your loss.
I always called it “Survival of the Cutest” because she certainly wasn’t equipped to survive in the wild. She’d lost all her teeth but one, was extremely timid. Sadly, she was the “gamma cat” of the household, so I question how wonderful her life really was. But she was warm and dry and well fed, all those things that are important to a cat.
I wish you were here so I could just hug you.
Nothing can fix the pain you feel, but please try not to let guilt join it. You did all you could for Kimmi, and animals (especially cats) are incredibly intuitive. She knew. There are blessings in the fact that she wasn’t suffering when it happened, so hold that to your heart.
You always know the right words to help me. Thanks.
I’m so sorry to hear about Kimmi and Gigi before that. (I saw how you stayed up watching Orphan Black) while worried about Kimmi.) It’s devastating to lose a beloved pet no matter what their age.
Oh, thank you, Madame Vauquer, for your kind thoughts. I’m off to read what you have to say about Orphan Black. 🙂