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My cat died unexpectedly and I'm feeling so empty inside.


iwouldhireme

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iwouldhireme

I don't even know where to start, so I suppose I'll start at the beginning.

16 years ago I was rollerblading on a bike trail... tells ya how long ago this really was right?? As I'm rolling down the trail this beautiful black cat literally crosses my path. She walks out of the woods, and sits down and just stares at me with these big yellow saucer eyes. She meows at me, and it's love at first site. I picked her up and rolled back to my car with her. Let me tell you, roller blading with no arm balance is no easy feat, but I'd do it all over again a million times if it'd bring her back.

I wasn't allowed to have pets, and I told myself that I'd take her to the animal shelter in a few days. She ended up with a name right away (Mitsu) and a box of toys that would go along with her, whenever I would get around to taking her there... Well, needless to say 16 years later I'm writing on a forum grieving over her. She was an amazing cat from the start, and she always looked excited with those wide eyes of hers. In all these years together she has watched me make a million mistakes, and rejoice over several great accomplishments. She was by my side without fail, and when ever the hardships of my life would occur, she didn't mind that I got those salty tears caught up in her fur. She just stared at me lovingly and let me pet her and hug her.

I used to joke around that moving was a hobby of mine, and although she didn't enjoy it she came right along for every move I've ever made. When the world would spin out of control and everything would change at a rapid pace, she was the one constant. She was always there, loving me, and man I loved her right back. 6 years ago I brought her a furry friend and I didn't know how she'd take it. She'd had a couple other pets join her along the way when I'd had a roommate or boyfriend who'd bring theirs along, and she was never very thrilled about it. She wanted me all to herself.

When I brought Zombie home, he was smaller than her which cracked me up. She was only 6 pounds her whole life, and Zombie is all of 4 pounds and shorter than her. He is a Yorkie Chihuahua pound puppy and I'll admit, it took her a short amount of time to love him. But then I'd catch them snuggled up together. When I met my boyfriend she fell in love for the first time. She loved him in the same way that she loved me, and he treated her as if she had always been in his life. We were a happy little family. I'd had her checked out at the vet less than 2 years ago, and he was amazed at how healthy she was for her age.

I guess this is why I'm so devastated now. I realize she was getting old but there was just no warning. She was fine last Wednesday before I left for work. She followed me around like normal and even played with her favorite mouse toy. When I got home a few hours later I couldn't find her and I knew something was instantly wrong. I called for her, and she made the most horrific meowing sound that I'd ever heard. I scooped her up and we got her to the ER vet as quickly as we could. They took her from us as soon as we rushed in, and hooked her up to an IV.

Thursday morning I called to check on her, and they weren't having much success finding out exactly what was wrong with her. When we went to see her Thursday night I knew we were going to lose her. It took my breath away seeing her nearly lifeless body. The only way I could tell she was alive was by the rise and fall of her breath in her body. She was unresponsive and her eyes seemed to stare at nothing. The vet tech said she had been like that all day. When I talked to the vet earlier in the day, he said she was still feeling dumpy, but I had no idea she was like this. After about an hour us talking to her and petting her, she did headbutt my boyfriend's hand for some more affection. She always did this, and it was very uplifting. I got up to sit down behind her, and she actually got up and turned around to face me. I just pulled her close to me and hugged her and kissed her so many times, as my tears dripped onto her and silently slid onto the blanket she was laying on. I told her how much I loved her and told her that if she was suffering to let go, that we would understand and in time be ok.

The vet came in to check on her, and I told him that I didn't want her to suffer and asked if we should euthanize her. He assured me that he was still working on treating her, and he still had some hope that he could get her better if she would hold on for a little longer. It was after midnight, and I told him I'd give him until the next morning. A few hours later we got the call that she had stopped breathing. We went to see her one final time to say goodbye. I know that we were lucky because we got that chance, but it was so sudden, and she died the day before my birthday.

Tomorrow it will be a week, and I have not been able to eat, and there is a ragged feeling in my body. I am just destroyed over this and I don't know what to do. I just watched 16 years fade away. I don't feel like talking to anyone I know because they just don't get it. I have been told that this is life, and everyone dies...etc. My boss told me to smile, and that I just needed to get another cat. Smiling is the last thing I feel like doing. Zombie is beside himself, and he keeps going to look for her. I put the blanket that she slept on next to me and he finally stopped and laid down on it. I don't know where to go from here. Any advice? Sorry for the long post, I'd heard that writing about them and their loss would help. So thank you for reading and for any help you can offer.

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iwouldhireme

Aww Greg, I'm SO sorry for your loss and that you have such an insensitive friend!! I would hug you as well, and you're right... our feelings are very real and valid. I feel the same way, I hate coming home right now. I try to keep myself busy, and I have two jobs, but I just don't feel like being at either one. I know exactly what you mean, it's like people just don't get it. Cats are special creatures, and  unless one touches your heart,  you just don't understand. Your kitty was a beauty, and I'm so sorry you are going through this horrible feeling as well. Hugs and feel free to reach out to me as well. iwouldhireme@gmail.com

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iwouldhireme

I am incredibly thankful that we were able to hold her and love on her as well. We are very lucky in that sense. And yes, I think it's definitely a minute by minute situation. I hate that you had to find yours the way that you did. I haven't thought of getting another cat as of yet. I'm just not there yet. I know there are many others out there that need love though and I've read where many people have gotten another one right away to take away some of the pain. We are lucky because we have Zombie still so it's not completely empty here. If we didn't have him, I don't know if I'd feel differently though. If she was your only pet, I'd say just go and visit other cats and see how you feel. I saw a black cat that resembled Mitsu on Pet Smarts page, and I fell apart. I told my boyfriend that I wanted to go see it just to hug it and love on it, but I was afraid I'd get tears and snot all over the poor thing... haha And of course you can email me, I understand completely.

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Iwouldhireme,

I am so sorry for the loss of your Mitsu.  It never fails to amaze me the inappropriate things people say.  As if you feel like smiling!  As if another cat could replace Mitsu!  You need time to process your grief, and it's not easy. :(  And to tell you that this is life, everyone dies, it seems so callous and insensitive.  People shouldn't say anything if they don't know what to say!  (Sorry, that's a pet peeve of mine.)  Your little Zombie understands and is grieving along with you.

My heart goes out to you, I've lost many dogs and cats over the years (I'm in my 60s) and it's never easy.  My last loss was nine months ago, the cat I'd had for 10 1/2 years, I don't know how old she was because she showed up here as an adult.  16 years is a good long life, but it's never long enough for us, we wish we could have them with us always.  It's going to take a while to get used to her not being part of your everyday life and routine, and even then, you will miss her.  I slept with Miss Mocha and I still miss her all these months later.  I've quit looking to the door, I know she's not coming back, but...I will always miss her.  I have another cat and a dog, but my other cat was opposite of Miss Mocha, so it really doesn't fill that void.  Besides, they're all so different and you don't know how they are until you get them.  It helps that I have other animals, it doesn't take the place of her, but it helps to have interaction.
 

Mitsu was lucky to have you...just as you were lucky to have her.

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iwouldhireme

Kay C, THANK YOU so much for you kind words!!! Oh my gosh your video made me cry!!! I had a day where I felt ok, not great and the vet called to tell us they had her ashes. I fell apart all over again. Bringing her home yesterday I just clutched the bag and cried. I don't know if cremation is better or worse to have them with us. I guess in time I will know. We live in an apartment so we couldn't bury her. I guess I naively have lived picturing my life with her always in it. Now that she's gone there is just a hole left there. Zombie is amazing and I do love him very much, but Mitsu was with me through SO much. I have been giving Zombie extra love and treats and whatever else his little heart could want right now. He started looking for her and it broke my heart for him.

I am so sorry that you recently lost another one of yours. Now I understand what people are going through. I was always empathetic and the thought of losing one of mine brought tears to my eyes, but until it happened, I could never truly realize what someone else was going through. I hope you are healing, and it makes me feel encouraged to know that you have been able to have other pets after your initial losses. I really do appreciate that you reached out and left me such a thoughtful post. I hope you are doing better now even though I know how much you are missing your Miss Mocha!!! Hugs!

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I lost my grandparents, most of my aunts and uncles, parents, friends, and hardest of all, my sweet husband.  I lost a niece, a nephew, and lots of cats and dogs over the years.  Grief is no stranger to me.

I've learned you carry your grief, you coexist with it.  You continue to miss them but little by little you adjust until it's a little more manageable, and then you just carry the rest with you, it's like its always there, lurking underneath the surface.  You reach a point where the tears are cried out and it's more of a sadness you carry, even while you're having a good moment or enjoying something.  Seemingly contradictory emotions can be felt at the same time.  

It's hard going through the early days when your old routines are upset, until you get used to new ones.  When you hear a noise at the door, you look up expecting to see them, only to remember again.  I'm glad when those startling reminders fade and you get more used to it.  You still remember, your mind still goes there, and you still have those moments when the anguish is compelling.  

Such is the cost of having loved.

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I'm glad you're doing a little better.  I've usually given myself a little time before getting another pet, although I usually have more than one at a time, but everyone is different and must do what they feel brings them the most comfort.  One never replaces another, they're all so unique, but it does seem to help some of that void. 

I like the idea of the wind chimes, I hadn't thought of that as a memorial.

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iwouldhireme

Hey Kay C,

I'm so sorry to hear of all the loss in  your life. I saw that you had lost your husband in 2005. I hate to hear that, and all the other loss as well. I have lost close family members, and this feels just like that type of a loss. Mitsu was there every day for 16 years, it's been a jarring experience that I wake up and she is no longer here. I still look for her, and then I have to quickly avert my gaze to her normal sunny spots somewhere else. I know it will become more normal in time, just as it did when my family members passed away. But, this is different in a way too. Maybe it was because she was there every day for so long. I feel that the losses you have experienced have made you incredibly wise. You know just the things to say, and I know that doesn't help to ease your heart, but the fact that you care enough to reach out to strangers says so much. I hope you are doing ok. I know we are all here for a short ride ourselves anyhow but having kind hearted people makes the harder times a little more bearable.

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iwouldhireme

Hey Greg, I was going to check on you! I thought to myself this morning that I should email you today to see how you are doing. I am doing ok, still not great, but not crying as often, and I have been trying to make myself eat. There is just such an emptiness there without her. Anger hasn't caught up to me yet, but I'd take it over the tears. As far as getting another, I think when you meet the right one, you will know. I started to browse cats, just to see how I'd feel and there is one who made my heart swell like my Mitsu did when I first found her. I wrote to them to see if I could meet him... kicker is, he's in Canada!!! Leave it to me to find a kitty in another country.. haha But, if they allow me to adopt him, I think I would at least take the trip to meet him and see how I feel then. If you don't feel ready yet, then don't do it. I think it will take a very special kitty to replace Mitsu, and sometimes when you meet one that is down on their luck you just fall in love. I don't think people realize the magnitude that pet loss has on a person. Your baby has only been gone for a short time, of course you are still hurting. My days are the stormy days. It's like the sky knows how I'm feeling inside.

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iwouldhireme,

Thank you for your kind words.  The hardest loss, incomparable to any other, was my husband, but definitely the second hardest would be losing my pets.  I think our grief is in proportion to our love and interaction/daily life involvement.  Our pets are part of our everyday existence and routine and so they greatly affect our lives, and losing them is very hard.  I think I'm going to be beyond inconsolable when I lose my Arlie (my soul dog) and Kitty (she's 21 and grumpy, but I've gotten very attached to her).

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I came looking for a support forum, because we lost our beloved, ex-feral kitty four days ago. I just wanted to say I know exactly how you feel, and I'm so, so sorry you're going through what you are, and grieving for your beloved Mitsu. (And for everyone else who has so far replied on this thread, the same goes). I wouldn't wish this horrible, consuming grief on anyone. I don't like coming home without my darling in it; it just doesn't feel like home right now - my husband and I have two other kitties, and while I love them very much, my Harvey was special. We were very tightly bonded (because she was tamed from a completely wild, frightened kitty) and it's like a piece of my soul has gone. Her passing was sudden and she was only seven. She appeared in reasonably good health, though she'd always been susceptible to infections, which we were told was due to her being a feral cat before we rescued her. It was just a horrific, sudden shock and I keep catching myself thinking 'what? this can't be real'. I've been hit by the full gamut of shock, guilt, despair, and numbing pain. I, too, haven't been able to eat properly until today. That's my one suggestion to you - a gentle one. Make yourself eat something. I know it's very hard. I forced an evening meal down my throat the last few nights, even though it was utterly tasteless and unwanted.

Will write more later; I'll probably do a post about her story, because I have a warning for feral cat owners given my own experience, and I know writing helps.

As much as it hurts...I'm sharing a picture of my wee little girl.

Harvey - Adorable.jpg

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Your Harvey was very lucky that you took her in, very few feral cats become homed.  I'm sorry you lost her, still so young.  She's very beautiful!  I tried to help a feral cat once that I named Peek-a-boo but he was way feral and was not adoptable.  Bringing him in the house was a huge mistake, he felt trapped and went crazy, literally climbing the walls, had a hard time getting him back outside.  He didn't go for petting either, but would accept food.

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Holly0316

My sweet baby I had to let go Thursday, looks similar to Mitsu.  I relate to the not eating, feeling ragged and destroyed.  I’m sorry for everyone’s loss.  Syrah was 16, it’s never long enough.  I lost her birth brother, Shiraz Nov. 2014.  Almost 2 weeks ago she wasn’t eating as much, but still seems to want food, so of course I thought she was just being picky.  She started eating a bit better, and then last week she really wasn’t eating.  In desperation I tried 12 different kind of food.  I was waiting for my vet appointment, so why not.  My vet came to the house last Friday and felt what seemed like a lot of fluid in her system.  Last Saturday (not yesterday)the doctor who treated Shiraz at a hospital came over and gave Syrah an ultrasound.  He was seeing the same thing and was not very hopeful about what all the fluid could be.  Sunday my vet came back to give her pain meds and a steroid shot.  She wanted to be aggressive at this point.  She wasn’t going to get better, but can we get her comfortable to live longer, was her thinking.  Monday I picked up 4 different meds.  By Monday night my vet told me it was cancer that spread throughout her body.  As you all know this was so painful to watch.  For almost a week my sweet girl was half in half under the bed, so I slept on the floor for a week with her.  Barely sleeping or eating.  By Tuesday it was clear the meds weren’t working and it was time.  The vet came Thursday afternoon to let her go.

I didn’t think the pain could be any worse than when Shiraz died, but I did have Syrah.  I have never had pain like this.  There is deafening silence in my apartment.  The feeling is unbearable and gut-wrenching.  She was my rock.  She always made me feel better. She never did a thing ‘wrong.’ She was the sweetest little cat.  I was so lucky to have her.  I would always lay my head on her (not full force of course) and she would start purring.  Now, every little thing I do is the first time as a person without cats.  I feel like I’m being punched in the stomach over and over.  I haven’t left the house or done anything since the vet left with her Thursday.  She died in my arms.  I didn’t feel this angry last time.  I’m so angry and can’t bear not hugging her ever again.  It’s so empty, but, I don’t know if I’ll ever be ready for another cat.

My heart goes out to all of you who only have people around who don’t get it.  I am so lucky my boss didn’t expect me at work all last week, so I got to take care of her 24/7.  I got the sweetest messages from my closest co-workers.  I’m going back to work tomorrow.  It’s so hard to believe that life just goes on as normal.  I have anxiety and feel sick to my stomach.  I can’t believe I can never lie my head on her, hug & kiss her ever again.

Wow, I didn’t think I would write this much, thanks for reading.

holly

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Holly,

I'm so sorry, I know how hard it is, I've been there, I hate losing them.  After my husband died 12 years ago, his cat Tigger left, then the next year our (cat) King George died of cancer.  I'd gotten Chappy (cat) and a year after King George, I lost Chappy too.  I got Miss Mocha and Kitty and ten years later, I lost Miss Mocha.  Our dog Lucky died 8 1/2 years ago and a few months ago I got Arlie (dog), so now I just have Arlie and Kitty...Kitty is 21 and Arlie is nine.  His life expectancy?  Nine to twelve years (he's big).  So I realize I'm on borrowed time and I can't imagine life without them.  I'm 64 and I have only been without pets once about 40 years ago for a year, I got my first one when I was five.  People tell me to get another dog now, but I can't do that, I feel these two are my family and I want to give them everything I have within me while they are alive.  

Your cat is beautiful.  I had a black cat once, Midnight.  We never forget them, they are always still with us...waiting to join them someday.

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Holly0316

Thank you, Kay!  We know they won't live our lifetime, yet we agree to this over and over. The pleasure our furkids give us cannot be replaced.  I'm sorry for all your loss too.

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My heart breaks for all of you.  I told my story about out orange tabby that we were blessed to have for almost 16 years.  It has almost been six months.  My heart still aches when i think about him but it has slowly gotten better.  I can still see him in the places he spent most of his time.  They really are family and because they love so unconditionally(unlike people) losing them does leave a gaping hole in a person's life.  I will pray for you all and know that it will get better over time.

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On 02/03/2017 at 9:43 PM, iwouldhireme said:

I don't even know where to start, so I suppose I'll start at the beginning.

16 years ago I was rollerblading on a bike trail... tells ya how long ago this really was right?? As I'm rolling down the trail this beautiful black cat literally crosses my path. She walks out of the woods, and sits down and just stares at me with these big yellow saucer eyes. She meows at me, and it's love at first site. I picked her up and rolled back to my car with her. Let me tell you, roller blading with no arm balance is no easy feat, but I'd do it all over again a million times if it'd bring her back.

I wasn't allowed to have pets, and I told myself that I'd take her to the animal shelter in a few days. She ended up with a name right away (Mitsu) and a box of toys that would go along with her, whenever I would get around to taking her there... Well, needless to say 16 years later I'm writing on a forum grieving over her. She was an amazing cat from the start, and she always looked excited with those wide eyes of hers. In all these years together she has watched me make a million mistakes, and rejoice over several great accomplishments. She was by my side without fail, and when ever the hardships of my life would occur, she didn't mind that I got those salty tears caught up in her fur. She just stared at me lovingly and let me pet her and hug her.

I used to joke around that moving was a hobby of mine, and although she didn't enjoy it she came right along for every move I've ever made. When the world would spin out of control and everything would change at a rapid pace, she was the one constant. She was always there, loving me, and man I loved her right back. 6 years ago I brought her a furry friend and I didn't know how she'd take it. She'd had a couple other pets join her along the way when I'd had a roommate or boyfriend who'd bring theirs along, and she was never very thrilled about it. She wanted me all to herself.

When I brought Zombie home, he was smaller than her which cracked me up. She was only 6 pounds her whole life, and Zombie is all of 4 pounds and shorter than her. He is a Yorkie Chihuahua pound puppy and I'll admit, it took her a short amount of time to love him. But then I'd catch them snuggled up together. When I met my boyfriend she fell in love for the first time. She loved him in the same way that she loved me, and he treated her as if she had always been in his life. We were a happy little family. I'd had her checked out at the vet less than 2 years ago, and he was amazed at how healthy she was for her age.

I guess this is why I'm so devastated now. I realize she was getting old but there was just no warning. She was fine last Wednesday before I left for work. She followed me around like normal and even played with her favorite mouse toy. When I got home a few hours later I couldn't find her and I knew something was instantly wrong. I called for her, and she made the most horrific meowing sound that I'd ever heard. I scooped her up and we got her to the ER vet as quickly as we could. They took her from us as soon as we rushed in, and hooked her up to an IV.

Thursday morning I called to check on her, and they weren't having much success finding out exactly what was wrong with her. When we went to see her Thursday night I knew we were going to lose her. It took my breath away seeing her nearly lifeless body. The only way I could tell she was alive was by the rise and fall of her breath in her body. She was unresponsive and her eyes seemed to stare at nothing. The vet tech said she had been like that all day. When I talked to the vet earlier in the day, he said she was still feeling dumpy, but I had no idea she was like this. After about an hour us talking to her and petting her, she did headbutt my boyfriend's hand for some more affection. She always did this, and it was very uplifting. I got up to sit down behind her, and she actually got up and turned around to face me. I just pulled her close to me and hugged her and kissed her so many times, as my tears dripped onto her and silently slid onto the blanket she was laying on. I told her how much I loved her and told her that if she was suffering to let go, that we would understand and in time be ok.

The vet came in to check on her, and I told him that I didn't want her to suffer and asked if we should euthanize her. He assured me that he was still working on treating her, and he still had some hope that he could get her better if she would hold on for a little longer. It was after midnight, and I told him I'd give him until the next morning. A few hours later we got the call that she had stopped breathing. We went to see her one final time to say goodbye. I know that we were lucky because we got that chance, but it was so sudden, and she died the day before my birthday.

Tomorrow it will be a week, and I have not been able to eat, and there is a ragged feeling in my body. I am just destroyed over this and I don't know what to do. I just watched 16 years fade away. I don't feel like talking to anyone I know because they just don't get it. I have been told that this is life, and everyone dies...etc. My boss told me to smile, and that I just needed to get another cat. Smiling is the last thing I feel like doing. Zombie is beside himself, and he keeps going to look for her. I put the blanket that she slept on next to me and he finally stopped and laid down on it. I don't know where to go from here. Any advice? Sorry for the long post, I'd heard that writing about them and their loss would help. So thank you for reading and for any help you can offer.

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I also lost my furry friend the day before my birthday in October this year. 

Hoping it gets easier. 15 years and I just can't get used to live without her. 

I miss her so much. 

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When I was just 8 years old I found a cat wondering the roads. She was frail and lifeless looking and I begged my parents to let me keep him. He wasn't getting any better and upon visiting the vet a few days later they broke the news that the cat had been involved in a serious accident and they had him put down. As a child this was heartbreaking and I felt bad that there was nothing we could do to help the poor fella. 

Later that day my dad could still tell that I was feeling bad about the situation and decided it was best to take me to get a new cat out of town somewhere. He hopped in the car and he took me to a house with cats roaming freely in the back garden and told me to choose anyone that I wanted. 

I saw this beautiful shiny black kitten and I had to have her. She was so special to me. She made me happy from that day until 15 years later when she suddenly passed away.

She had disappeared for long periods of time leading up to her death and I thought nothing of it as we had just moved house and I thought she was just trying to find her way around. I went to bed that night without her and expected her to be sitting on the windowsill in the morning waiting for me as she normally would if she was hunting through the night and hadn't come home before bed time. 

But instead my boyfriend found her laying in our dark garage- lifeless. 

I feel guilty that I didn't pick up on the fact that she wasn't eating as much and that the typical signs of a dying cat were present such as disappearing for long periods and I just wish I had known so I could've been there for her when she passed or at least took her to see a vet so her suffering could be eased.

it hurts that I'll never know what exactly happened to her or whether there's anything I could've done to prevent her death. I feel guilty and a month later, nothing  has changed. 

after spending every day for 15 years together I honestly would've thought I would've been there when she passed away and that I would get to say good- bye. My heart breaks for her and I miss her every day. 

I just wish I didn't feel so guilty. She was so beautiful Inside and out and I feel I should've given her more. She was the most kind and patient pet with my 10 month old daughter and she too misses her so much. 

Rest in peace, Rolo 

I wish we could've said goodbye.

Esmé and I miss you and love you beyond words. 

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Edited by LisaM
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Hi @LisaM, I am so sorry about your sweet kitty. Please do not feel guilty! It sounds like it was her time. :( I know you don't really know what happened but at least she passed at home - near you all, rather than somewhere in the neighborhood. We always think we can do more - should have done more. (Believe me I get it. I am working on this myself.) Guilt and grief seem to go hand in hand. She was not young anymore, so whatever happened was most likely not going to be cured at least for very long.

Maybe write her a letter? It could make you feel better to say everything you would have said to her if you could have. 

I know how very hard it is to not have your cat with you anymore. She was a big part of your life for a long time. It is a very slow process to learn to live without them. There is no easy way to solve it. It gets a little better day by day. And sometimes, at least for me, I have a big wave that hits me and I grieve all over again. So, you just have to be patient. 

 I am sorry you are going through this. It is heartbreaking. 

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Lisa,

I'm so sorry for your loss, they really wrangle their way into our hearts, don't they!  Cats usually choose to die alone, something about their nature, so it's quite alright, she died the way she chose to.  I've had cats since I was grown, and I think there's only one I got to take to the vet and have put to sleep.  A couple we had to have shot instantly, I know that sounds horrible but there's only a vet here one day a week and they were in immense pain and suffering so it was the kindest thing to do as they would have suffered greatly at making a 60 mile trip to the nearest vet, they died instantly with no pain from it.  But all of the others have gone off to die or died from a predator.  It sounds like your cat went quickly and that is a blessing.

I personally believe we'll get to be with them again.  I like to post this video because it has brought me much comfort as I've lost cats and dogs over the years.

 

 

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On 30/11/2017 at 11:42 AM, AJWCat said:

Hi @LisaM, I am so sorry about your sweet kitty. Please do not feel guilty! It sounds like it was her time. :( I know you don't really know what happened but at least she passed at home - near you all, rather than somewhere in the neighborhood. We always think we can do more - should have done more. (Believe me I get it. I am working on this myself.) Guilt and grief seem to go hand in hand. She was not young anymore, so whatever happened was most likely not going to be cured at least for very long.

Maybe write her a letter? It could make you feel better to say everything you would have said to her if you could have. 

I know how very hard it is to not have your cat with you anymore. She was a big part of your life for a long time. It is a very slow process to learn to live without them. There is no easy way to solve it. It gets a little better day by day. And sometimes, at least for me, I have a big wave that hits me and I grieve all over again. So, you just have to be patient. 

 I am sorry you are going through this. It is heartbreaking. 

Thank you so much. 

I guess it was her time!. I just spent her whole life thinking that I'd know exactly when it was going to be her time. I couldn't accept the fact that she was old and I denied the very thought of her leaving me. 

I still get those waves too, especially when I'm suddenly reminded of her in some way. The hardest part was watching my daughter look for her every morning, expecting her to be there. 

It's nice to be assured it gets easier. 

It happened on my birthday, so she will be remembered every year for sure. It was a terrible day to lose her but I have to accept that it was her right time. 

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On 30/11/2017 at 4:32 PM, KayC said:

Lisa,

I'm so sorry for your loss, they really wrangle their way into our hearts, don't they!  Cats usually choose to die alone, something about their nature, so it's quite alright, she died the way she chose to.  I've had cats since I was grown, and I think there's only one I got to take to the vet and have put to sleep.  A couple we had to have shot instantly, I know that sounds horrible but there's only a vet here one day a week and they were in immense pain and suffering so it was the kindest thing to do as they would have suffered greatly at making a 60 mile trip to the nearest vet, they died instantly with no pain from it.  But all of the others have gone off to die or died from a predator.  It sounds like your cat went quickly and that is a blessing.

I personally believe we'll get to be with them again.  I like to post this video because it has brought me much comfort as I've lost cats and dogs over the years.

 

 

Thank you! That is so comforting. I'm hanging on to the hope that I'll be reunited with her again someday. 

I hope that she died in peace. I'll never know for sure, but at least she's at peace now. 

It just isn't the same without her. I remember her every day. But she's somewhere better now, I guess. 

Thanks again for the video!!

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Wow, it happened on your birthday, that must have been very tough.  I hope a year from now that the pain will have eased and you can remember the good memories with her.

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Spitfire

I know it’s been awhile since this was first posted but I came across it during a google search and feel the need to add my experience. I have worked in the veterinary field for over 15 years and have felt my fair share of the grief losing your beloved pet from my own to the many, many I have had the chance to meet whether brief or after long fought illness, etc. Earlier this year I lost my sweet little box turtle Pixie who I had shared my life with for 25 years, she had been with me since my early teens and had been through EVERYTHING with me. It hurt more then I ever could have imagined to have to say goodbye to her and now just a few short months later I sit here completely devastated after losing my “cat dog” Spitfire last night. I can fully relate to the feelings of not wanting to be home but having no place else I want to go, I don’t want to eat or otherwise function in general and I don’t know how I’m going to be able to move on with my life and actually go through the motions. 

When I first brought Spitfire home it was on a “trial” basis per my husband. Of course he instantly fell in love with him too and so began the next ten years of my life. Spitfire had originally been relinquished to the Veterinary office I was working at after having been drug under a motorcycle. His condition initially was horrific and his chance for survival minimal. He immediately underwent surgery in which his face was sewn back on, he lost an ear that was just too mangled but 6 months of hospitalization with intensive care later he emerged my baby boy one eared and sporting one heck of a combover which hid most of the huge bald spot on his back... He definitely favored my husband right from the start but quickly learned to settle for me when the husband and I split five years ago. He literally followed me everywhere, I used to joke he’d one day be the death of me since he was always underfoot and I’m far from graceful on my own. He ALWAYS ran to greet me as I walked through the door, he loved to sleep on my face the most but usually was okay with just sleeping on me since the face thing wasn’t cool with me. He was the softest cat I’ve ever felt and only ever wanted love. I used to always tell him he was a give him an inch he’d take a mile cat because if I even said his name that was an invitation to force his way all up in my business. Sometimes he drove me crazy but it only made me love him even more for his totally one of a kind personality.

i’d noticed he’d lost a lot of weight about a month ago and kind of let myself believe my attempts to get some weight off him and his even bigger “little brother” had just been successful but deep down I knew it was more. I knew he hated the vets more then most probably because of all the time he’d had to spend at the one before. I had one of my friends an RVT where I work now (and one I stole from the previous vet hospital) come over after work one night to draw some blood we’d then send out and the next morning at least have a starting point prior to him coming in. Well that was the plan but between my less then perfect set up here at home, terrible lighting and overall lack of desire to make him miserable we gave up after just two attempts with my resolution he’d just need to come in. Today is Monday, it was less then one week ago she tried to get his blood and at that time his weight loss was my only concern. On Friday I came home and he wasn’t at the door so I knew immediately something was wrong. When I called his name he came around the corner from the kitchen where he’s never been known to hangout. He walked a few more steps and then laid down next to his water bowl not terribly weird but completely out of character for him. I was off the next day so had decided I’d take him in then, no sooner had I hung up the phone from calling to let them know I would be coming in the next day when I saw him stand up and kinda try to walk in a circle but was too weak to really hold himself up. I immediately scooped him up and drove him to my work where he was immediately treated/hospitalized and although I knew he wasn’t in great shape I fully expected him to make it through. Saturday I spent the entire day sitting with him only leaving as it was nearing closing time. I’d barely gotten home when the Dr called to tell me he’d taken a turn for the worse and it was up to me to decide what I wanted to do. I rushed back down and held him while waiting alone for my ex husband to arrive. He was still technically his cat too and I’ve always known he was Spitfire’s human. We decided to transfer him to the 24 hour hospital so he’d at least be able to have someone there throughout the night just in case something went wrong. I knew by this time how much worse his condition actually was but when he made it through the night my hope was reborn and as I transferred him back to my work yesterday morning I was truly optimistic. I spent as much time as I could with him throughout the day while on the clock and then stayed hours with him after my shift was done. I then returned to visit with him when my ex was available to do the same and left with the plan to return in about an hour or two. I had been given updates throughout the time I wasn’t there thanks to my amazing co-workers and then all of a sudden at about the same time I was going to head out to visit him again (around 9pm) I get another call stating he’d taken another turn so I rushed there having told my ex to do the same. I got to hold him another ten minutes or so when he started with the agonal breathing just as my ex arrived. We rushed him to oxygen and his breathing returned to normal, his heartbeat was going 90 bpm and then with both his mom and dad there holding/loving on him he just passed. It wasn’t even 10 pm and he was gone forever.

The last few days were already hard since he wasn’t here. His little “brother” has never been alone a day in his life so he’s been all out of sorts and I know doesn’t understand. I kept promising him his big brother would be back and last night had to come home knowing he will never be home again. I am torturing myself with guilt and despite knowing how lucky I was to have the time at the end I did with him it still will never be enough. I can’t stop thinking about him and the tears just keep coming. I don’t know how I’ll ever get past this horrible grief and am grateful to have been given the day off but am dreading tomorrow when I have to return to work and the constant reminders of his final days. I can’t believe how deep this hurt is.

98106E81-491D-4624-A9D8-4773A698E802.jpeg

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AJWCat

Hi @Spitfire I just read your story. So horrible how quickly the end comes.  

I lost my amazing cat getting close to a year ago. I know your pain. It was so all encompassing and unlike anything my logical mind was prepared for. I won't drag you through my story except to say that after having our cat for 10 years (got him when he was 5) he was like our child. We were on vacation and he got suddenly deathly sick. Two hours later on a Saturday night at an emergency vet, we put him to sleep although he was slowly dying anyway. From what exactly we still don't know.

I know some people would scoff, but for me it was the single hardest loss I have ever had. I was an emotional zombie, could barely eat. And replayed the last hours over and over until I was exhausted on every level.  

Please don't have the guilt - we all do it and it never helps, it is just more torture as if you need more! You are grieving and deserve compassion. You did everything you could. There is a lot that is out of our hands. Even Dr's can only do so much. Like you said, try to find gratitude in the time you did have and being there for him at the very end. So many people do not get that. 

I wish there was something I could say to ease your pain... there is nothing. It is just such a heartbreaking loss. Somehow, day by day, you just grieve and you cry and you ache. No way around, only through but I know you get that. I am so sorry for your loss of such a wonderful sweet kitty.   

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KayC

@Spitfire  I am so sorry, words are not adequate for this.  You have nothing to feel guilty about, you were a wonderful dedicated mom, thinking what is best for her cat, even sharing custody with your ex, few do that.  We do feel guilt, it's part of grief, it has nothing to do with rationalization, it's feelings based...my personal take on it is that it's our way of going through all the what-ifs in an effort to come up with a different ending...in reality, there is no different ending than the one we got.  We'd have done anything for them, they were our babies.

I hope these articles will be of help to you in understanding grief's guilt a bit:

http://media.wix.com/ugd/0dd4a5_e934e7f92d104d31bcb334d6c6d63974.pdf

http://www.pet-loss.net/guilt.shtml

it's the hardest thing in the world to get used to "life without" when we've lost someone, furry or otherwise.  It takes much time to adjust, be patient with yourself, understanding, knowing you're going through trauma.  It does help to express yourself and this is a good place for that...just knowing we're heard and understood makes such a difference.  We've all suffered such losses, we get your attachment, we get your pain.  (((hugs to you)))

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Spitfire

AJWCat and KayC thank you so much for your kind words and for being here for me. It’s amazing how much comfort comes from feeling not so alone and for some reason coming from strangers makes it feel more genuine to me right now. I made it through my first day back at work and the whole new set of people asking how I’m doing, etc. and I really held it together but still find returning home the hardest part. What a blessing it was to have come back to this sight with no expectation of a reply (mainly based on how much time has passed between the previously listed posts and mine) only to find words of comfort and encouragement, I truly cannot thank you both enough!

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KayC

I imagine home would be harder, it is there you shared your life, there the triggers are, but in time, there also that the good memories reside.  I wish we didn't have to go through the pain to get there.  Even now, two years later, I think of Miss Mocha and comes with it a pang inside, how I long for her!  I did not expect to lose her for years yet, my sweet beautiful cat, I wish I could tell her how much she means to me, I hope she knew.  She was my cuddler, the one that would sidle up to me at night and sleep pressed against me.  She loved being held.

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Spitfire

Spitfire was my little love bug too, he just wanted to be loved and gave nothing but love back, sometimes with a little love bite thrown in but he did have a name to live up to... I’ve had pets my whole life and have even lost 3 much beloved cats before him but gosh this one has torn my heart right out of my chest. Maybe it has something to do with knowing less then a week ago he was chasing his brand new toy around like a kitten, absolutely no real reason for me to ever expect him to be gone so suddenly. Like you I too thought I still had years with him and it just doesn’t make any sense... I loved him so much and miss him more then I ever would have thought I could. He  was truly one of a kind and I was blessed to have shared these past ten years with him in my life!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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KayC

He has a beautiful look to his face, he's really thinking!  Gorgeous color too.

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I know it's been a while since the last post, but I lost my beloved cat, Snow, yesterday and i don't know what to do...He was only 6 years old and he passed away unexpectedly. He had chronic runny nose but otherwise healthy. I feel like i failed him and should've taken him to vet for his chronic runny nose (i did a while ago)...

I came home from night shift yesterday and it took me a while to realize Snow hadn't come out and try and lead me to where the food was because he loved eating. That's when i started to look for him and found him dead on the cat tree, long gone. He was still young and was supposed to live way longer than this. He loved eating, playing, and gave me the best cuddles. He had this unique purring that was very adorable. He meows and keeps turning his head to make sure i was right behind him to feed him. He would purr while eating too. I miss him so much and i can't stop thinking about his lifeless body. 

His sister Lily is also grieving. Her tail sways side to side more than usual. She is more distant and doesn't really come out to the living room. She keeps looking around the room or staring across the hallway like she's wondering if Snow will show up. I tried to spend time with her and she is now curled up next to me in bed, which is a huge relief and comfort.

But still, lying in bed trying to sleep, I can't stop thinking about Snow. I'm hungry but also don't want to eat. I sometimes feel like i can't breathe, but then that makes me think maybe Snow suffocated to death and that thought just crushes my heart. i killed him and i wasn't even there for him when he passed. It makes me feel a little better that i kissed him twice to say goodbye before work the day prior because he was so cute. 

I'm sorry i'm rambling, but I just don't know what to do and reading your posts made me feel a little better. That i'm not alone. 

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You are not alone @Snowsifer and I am very sorry for your loss. Snow is beautiful and so very sweet. It must have been so upsetting for you to find her, such a terrible shock. We do take care of our cats each and every need and then suddenly and when they die it is out of our hands and it is difficult to come to terms with it as well. Difficult to accept that we are helpless. You certainly did not kill him. You loved him and you took care of him. This was not your fault. I am glad you have Lily by your side. 

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I'm sorry for your loss, Snow is beautiful, and I can imagine your heartbreak at finding him dead.  You didn't kill him, you found him dead, perhaps he had a heart condition or something that took him too soon, but that isn't your fault and you couldn't be expected to know.

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Thank you for the kind replies. I am glad I have Lily with me. She has been very loving, and almost back to her normal self. I try to spend more time with her so she won't be too lonely. 

I'm doing better, but I still get overwhelmed with sadness sometimes. I know that time will help, and it's probably true. But at the same time I don't want to move on. I don't want to leave him behind. I miss him dearly and I wish i can hold him and kiss him again. I hope he knew how much i loved him and how much he made my life better. 

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4 hours ago, Snowsifer said:

But at the same time I don't want to move on. I don't want to leave him behind.

We don't move on from them, we continue in the face of their death.  Try to keep in mind it's not our grief that binds us to them, but our love, and that continues still.  He knows how much you love him.

 

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Hi @Snowsifer I just wanted to add how sorry I am for your loss, and how sudden and weird for a young kitty like that at home. I know how overwhelming the grief is especially since you must have been shocked. I hope you are doing okay. I did not want to move on either but you won't forget him, if anything the sad memories fade, and you are left with the happy times. Glad you have Lily too. When we lost our guy we were all alone and it was awful. 

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Hi all, 

I know this thread is old but I am so desperately sad I need someone to understand. 9 years ago I gave birth to a beautiful baby girl, Jessica, but she was born with a lethal form of brittle bone disease so I carried her knowing she would soon die. She fought for her life for a little over 2 hours before dying in my arms. I have never felt pain like it until now... 

19 years ago I got the cutest little black fluff all kitten from a good friend who had rescued a pregnant cat  (Jet) who was dumped in a field near her home. Jet was in a very bad way and all her energy was going to keeping her litter she was expecting alive. My friend nursed her to health but unfortunately only 2 of her litter were born alive and they were extremely weak and incredibly small. I helped her nurse Jet and the 2 kittens and totally fell in love with the smallest black one, he became my little fluff ball Sphinx. 

Spninx has been with me through so many life events. My sons were 5 and 6 years old when Sphinx came home to us. They named him Sphinx (with the spelling as it is) as they loved ancient Egypt. Not long after we had allowed him to start going outside, a neighbour ran over his tail with his car and almost ripped it clean off. It was 4 days before Christmas and Sphinx was rushed to the vets where them amputated his tail and mended his ripped skin. Sphinx has always been a small cat but he had the biggest heart.

He has seen my boys grow up, leave home, get 1sts at university and start great jobs and buy their first homes. I raised my sons on my own. He was there when I struggled to be a single mum and get myself through university and qualify as a nurse.

He was there when my beautiful baby girl died and I had to come home from hospital without my baby to a house all set up for the arrival of a newborn. My arms would ache to hold my baby and sphinx always seemed to know when I needed to hold her and would come to me for a cuddle so my arms were full. He would nuzzle is cute face against mine. I swear he showed me he loved me and cared.

He saw the arrival of my daughters who are now 8 and 6. He NEVER scratched or bite us. My youngest has learning disabilities and she is also Autistic. Even in his old age he was loving and patient with her when she would pick him up and hook him over her shoulder and carry him around like he was her favourite Teddy. When my 8 year old was upset he would go sit on her knee and cuddle up to her.. 

Since the end of summer I have noticed him getting thinner and not eating as much. He started dribbling a lot and would sometimes eat with his paw rather than straight from the bowl. I had him checked and he had lost 1 tooth but nothing else was noticeable so his weight loss was put down to old age. 

I had noticed his left eye was going a bit cloudy a couple of weeks ago and figured it looked like cateracts. By mid last week it looked whiter so I made an appointment for him at the vets for yesterday (I am having a double mastectomy tomorrow so going back and forth to the hospital myself for treatment) by Sunday night his eye was completely white and by yesterday morning it looked horrendous with huge lumps of puss formed in spots over it. My sons came home to take him to the vets with me, they both live away and had taken the day off work. This time the vet found a huge tumour under the left side of his jaw and chin that had been missed at the last visit. The cancer had spread everywhere and his left eye was completely destroyed. His right eye was starting to go. We initially agreed to having bloods taken and having an operation to have his eye removed today, but then they found the cancer so we couldn't let him suffer anymore. He was put to sleep at 12 noon yesterday and I have cried so much my head hurts. 

I never thought I would feel grief as intense as I did over the loss of my baby girl. It has always annoyed me when I heard people compare the pain of losing a cat or a dog to that of losing a human. I had lost my child! There was no way an animal can cause the same grief as losing a child... I was so wrong!! At the point of losing Jessica I hadn't experienced the loss of a pet. Sphinx was 10 and still going strong when she died. It has hit me that the grief of Sphinx is exactly as intense as the grief of Jessica. Our pets totally rely on us for everything and they never let us down, just like a baby. I have spoken to 3 other grieving mums who have also lost their pet cats after the loss of their babies and All 3 have said their grief was just as horrific for their cat as it was for their baby. 

I have asked for Sphinx to come home in a scatter box and I am going to Bury his ashes under my little angels headstone so when we can visit both out human and fur babies at the same time. 

I feel lost and empty and even when the girls and my husband were home last night, the house felt empty. I am really struggling. 

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I am so sorry...I lost my 19 year old cat King George to cancer a year after my husband died.  I can relate.  King George was around through my kids growing up, my kids' dad and I breaking up, and then my marriage to and eventual loss of my husband George.  I have a cat now (Kitty) that I came to know when she was 10 and adopted into my home a couple of years later, she's now 23.  Like you said, she's lost weight, one of the tell tale signs, my King George had done that too the last year or so.  I wanted to get Kitty's upper front teeth pulled but no one will work on a cat her age.  I worry this may be her last year.  

It sounds like your cat was a natural born therapy cat.  I understand your growing so attached to her, it's my position we can be as close if not closer to our pets than most people we know!  They are amazing and wonderful and very much an intimate part of our lives.  I know your pain is all too real, I'm so sorry for your loss.

I've learned not to compare losses as it can invalidate one when in actuality each and every loss is very real to the person suffering it.  The degree to which we love is the degree to which we grieve.  Grief has a beginning but not an ending, but it evolves, it doesn't stay in the same intensity as the beginning of it, we couldn't handle that if it did.  Little by little we adjust to the changes it means to our lives.  In time, thoughts of them bring a smile as we recall a memory, but in the beginning, oh my how hard it is!!

 

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I am so sorry about Sphinx. I know the pain of losing a cat too, and I remember the pain. I can go there again very easily. 10 is too soon as well. I am sure you never thought it would go so wrong so quickly. That adds an extra heart break to it. Please come back and keep writing, it might help. Beyond that, I wish I could give you advice but you have had tremendous loss already so I know you understand that it's something you move through. And a lot of tears. Try to take care of yourself please. 

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Tonight as I was randomly scanning through some of my “junk” emails prior to just deleting the whole lot of them (something I get around to maybe once a year at best so usually don’t get much past page one before clicking delete all) when I came across a notification to this thread. Crazy how life works as these past two days in particular have really hit me hard almost as if it was July 2nd all over again for me. My heart goes out to you both Snowsifer and Sphinx as you both shared feelings and experiences I relate to and as much as I don’t want the hurt for anyone else either just knowing there are others out there who feel what I have/do brings some sense of comfort knowing I’m not alone. I so appreciate you all for sharing your experiences which have and (even when I least expect it) continue to help me through mine. KayC your words and wisdom are a gift, thank you! I admire your strength which is reflected in your ability to offer the support and encouragement you’ve gained through your own experiences, again thank you.

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@Spitfire

Except that yesterday I made someone feel worse, unintentionally...that would never be the desire of my heart, far from it.  I come here to help people, not hurt them.  But thank you for your words.  I'm glad there is this place where we can all go and share in our journey through this, Lord knows it'd be hard to do on our own as I had to 31 years ago when my MIL and best friend died from cancer.  I took care of her for three years as she was bedridden with it...back then there was no internet, and we lived too far from the city to go to a grief support group, I had no time of my own, taking care of her and my babies, it was a time I don't know how I got through.  So when my husband passed away 13 years ago, a grief forum much like this saved my life, I didn't know how to get through it, and there were others that walked with me on my grief journey.  I'm so thankful for this place that the administrators started and keep going so that people like us don't have to walk alone.  We are the ones that get it, the ones who love our pets, the ones who have embraced them into our families and homes.  And we are the ones that shed our tears at their passing.  It's so hard to wait to be with them again, but I hold that hope...until we are together again!

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I too am so grateful places like this exist and in my opinion you only come across as sincere and big hearted. It’s clear to me (and probably most everyone else on here too) that your desire to help/comfort others is positively motivated. You’re appreciated!

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FlyingBison88

I just lost my cat Binx, my fiancé and I took him in our first Halloween together. My fiancé is out of state due to Army and I feel like we’ve lost a child. He was our baby, our everything, part of our routine and now he’s gone. I want him back, I just lost my father in December and it was suppose to be Binx and I on adventures waiting for my fiancé to come home. He just died so suddenly and seemed young. I don’t know what to do.

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KayC

I am so sorry for your losses.  It's hard esp. having multiple losses so close together and being alone to deal with it.  I lost my husband 155 1/2 years ago, suddenly, unexpectedly, way too young, I was blindsided, he was my soulmate and best friend.  This place saved me, literally.  Since then I've lost my mom and sister, a LOT of pets and friends, I'd already lost a niece and nephew, my MIL, my dad.  Then 1 1/2 years ago I lost my beloved soulmate in a dog, Arlie.  Four months later my 25 year old Kitty, her kidneys & liver shut down so I had her put to sleep as there was nothing they could do for her.  She quit eating and was suffering, lost half her weight.  Even having 2 1/3 months between diagnosis & death for my Arlie did not help me process it, it was the hardest thing in the world to take him in for a regular teeth cleaning and come home with a death diagnosis.

My heart goes out to anyone facing this.  We know, theoretically, that someday they'll precede us in death but we always hope against hope that it will not happen.  And with you, your cat being so young, it would absolutely be unexpected.  
I did some reading and found this article:
http://healingpetloss.com/coping-with-the-sudden-loss-of-a-pet/

I'm glad you found your way here, it helps to have a place to go where you can express yourself and be heard by others that "get it."
I hope this video brings some comfort to you, I totally believe we will be together again.

 

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