Dealing with Pet Deaths

So anyone who knows me well (which is quite few), knows I have had two genuine best friends in my life. The first is a man named Branson whom I grew up with, went to high school, police academy and have worked with in many jobs. I usually refer to this amazing man as my brother, not because we were cops together, but because in my heart that is how I feel. He is not a friend but the only real family I had for many years.

My second best friend’s name was George. George was a feline, whom I raised from birth. George was another example of the evolution of my personality. When George and I crossed paths I kinda hated cats. My previous wife and I were in the process of buying a house and a friend of ours had a cat who had just gotten pregnant. My wife convinced me to take a cat when she had them. I wasn’t thrilled. I told her she was cleaning up after it and feeding it.

Well the cat went into labor and we went over for the birth. She had two… guess what? I got talked in to taking a brother and sister. We watched Greys Anatomy at the time back in 2007 and ended up naming them George and Izzy. Within a month George melted my heart. Over the years he was with me through the hardest times I ever had, and I was with him through some of his. Izzy is a very special girl too and now is the only cat we have. George was so different. He really thought he was human. I never treated him as a cat and as a result I don’t think he believed he was one. He tried so hard to actually verbally communicate with me. We really understood each other.

Last summer George got really sick. We took him to the hospital and discovered he had diabetes really bad. They kept him a week and a half and he recovered. He was at deaths door when we dropped him off. He couldn’t walk or lift his head. They made him feel so much better, but by fall the medicine was no longer working. Lets be clear, I have been through some tough stuff in my life; I wont go into it here, but it will be on my blog at some point. The day George went downhill for the second time was the worst day of my life. I have never had to go through anything that broke me like that did. It literally makes me cry right now just thinking about it. People who have pets know what it’s like to be close to a pet. That isn’t what this was. George was my friend. He wasn’t a pet. Losing him ate me up inside for a very long time.

All this brings me to the real point of this post. We have had many cats over the years that were pets. A week ago we had two cats living in our house, Izzy, as we mentioned above, was George’s sister and is still my little angel. The other, was Lexi. She was another story entirely. She was antisocial from the day we got her. She was a true cat, never human like at all. She didn’t really like people. She preferred cats. She would never leave Izzy alone, always wanting attention and love. She would never let a human even get close enough to pet her. We got Lexi in 2011 with her brother Mark. By 2012 she was as big as a barn. She had a real eating problem. She was white with black spots. She looked like a cow, so we called her cowcat.

Apparently for some time she had heart disease. All the weight had put a lot of strain on her heart. Yesterday I heard some weird thumping under the loveseat where she pretty much lives. I waited to see her squeeze her fat butt out from under there as usual, but just more thumping. I wasn’t about to put my hand in there, as the last time I had to “capture” her she bit me harder than I have ever been bit by a cat before. A couple of minutes passed and here she came. It was different though, she was dragging her legs. Like they were broken. She drug herself around the kitchen then back to the living room. She laid in her other favorite spot (in front of the patio door) for 15 minutes or so, then the weirdest thing ever happened. She drug herself over to my recliner where I was looking down at her, and she reached out to my feet and pawed at them and made a whimper. I reached down and petted her and she seemed quite pleased.

I knew at this time something weird was going on, and after a lot of research, I am pretty sure she had a stroke by this point. I had discovered by this time that the issue with her legs was a blood clot. Cats often come back from blood clots, but just like George her days would be numbered. I had to decide if it was worth spending a fortune on this cat who hated me, only for her to die anyway very soon. I put her in our spare bathroom as I knew what was coming if she was out and couldn’t stand. I didn’t want to clean that up around the whole house. I checked on her at least hourly. We had to go out last night. I checked on her before leaving and she was laying there. I pet her and she gave me a sweet little meow.

3 hours later, upon returning home and checking on her, she had slipped away. I think if George hadn’t died last year, this would have been a small blip in my life, but I have a fair amount of guilt for not doing more for this poor pitiful creature who was my responsibility.

I am about to go clean the bathroom which is absolutely horrible. After that I have to figure out how to explain what happened to Lexi to my 2 1/2 year old little boy.

Parenting is always an adventure, but things like this really test your abilities.

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