I found Annabelle at the Boulder, CO Humane Society some 6 years ago. I’d asked which cat was there the longest and they presented a HUGE, sweet, black cat with a white mustache, in a solo cage. I was sold.
Belle adopted me, I think, molding me into a doting and compliant human.
Last weekend she showed me she wasn’t feeling well by not eating, drinking or peeing. The real tip-off was her silence, preferring to lay on a blanket rather than the usual routine of begging for meals and seeking out my lap.
She was a noisy cat, with more meows for more purposes (including no purpose, I was sure) than I could keep track of. Anyone who met her can attest.
A trip to the vet Monday confirmed she was really sick. A temp of 105.5 (101.5 is normal) and telling lab values prompted the vet’s concern and a “gray” prognosis. She suspected a nasty, infected liver lesion, probably cancer, was causing systemic infection.
Knowing I wouldn’t subject an old girl (14?) to exploratory surgery or cancer treatment, I did the unthinkable and chose to have her put to sleep. It was the most emotionally charged decision I’ve ever made. I knew it was the right thing to do. Still, I hated every minute. We had cuddle time (though she was burning up and unhappy), I took off her collar and let her go.
And I miss her horribly.
No more wet nose kisses. No more hugs. She used to drape over my shoulders. No more lap warming. No more coming to a slobbered-up chewed off working end of the yarn I knit with. No sharing popcorn on the couch or in bed. (She loved it!) No more pre-out-of-bed AM whining for breakfast. No more greets at the at the door after work.
I’ve put her collar on the stick shift of my truck for now so I hear the familiar jingle of her tags.
She was a good little car camper (en route to travel nurse assignments) making nests in the sleeping bag I gave her for a bed.
She loved playing with a ratty old purple climbing shoe lace and ignored any toy or cat bed I ever purchased.
Such a pretty face. Never really knew how attached I was to her.