Our cat died yesterday. When we returned from taking our daughter to college in Savannah, her hindquarters weren’t working properly — her gait was rather sideways, but she could get around. A trip to the vet only revealed some minor loss of kidney function, not uncommon in older cats, something to monitor rather than treat. The gait improved somewhat, but she stopped eating, although she’d lap up a little food mixed with her water, a brothy slurry. Days passed, and the vet suggested some other foods, which we tried, but she got thinner and thinner. At the last we did some force-feeding, but that didn’t miraculously jump-start her appetite.
During all this she enjoyed patrolling the perimeter of the yard, sitting in the sun, lapping water from flower pot saucers, stretching out on laps during tv time, and sleeping at the foot of the bed, although it got harder for her to clamber up there and she eventually needed to be lifted.
On her last evening with us, we happened to have a family dinner here, so she was gently petted by little Mary, snuggled by our son, and left resting in a favorite corner of the living room. She didn’t try to come upstairs to the bed, and died during the night.
I took this picture on her last stroll to the lake. Named Kachiko by our son, she was mostly called Cat, or perhaps Kat. She excelled at catching dragonflies, and was a quiet companion. She is buried under the Douglas fir in the backyard, in a spot of earth that catches the morning light, a good place for a cat to rest.