We had to put our girl cat Squeaky down this evening. We came home and she was throwing up. That’s not that unusual. But she was also doing little diarrhea poops on the floor and all over the house. And she just wasn’t acting herself.
We called the vet. They couldn’t see her but recommended taking her to an emergency place in Leesburg. My daughter Rosie and my wife Terri took her there. They did lab work and X-rays and it wasn’t good. Her liver was enlarged and her bowels were badly inflamed. The lab tests suggested cancer. She wouldn’t get any better and was in pain. So we reluctantly had her put down.
Squeaky wasn’t the same either. She didn’t protest being put in the pet container. I guess she knew something was terribly wrong. I didn’t expect it to be so quick though. I figured she’d come home. This is a cat that was still jumping up on counters, overturning trash cans regularly, watching every morsel of food we consumed and continually howling in our face. She seemed a bit deaf and perhaps had a case of kitty Alzheimers. But I didn’t think she was dying.
We all often felt like bad pet owners to Squeaky. She was a bottomless well of need. Only rarely could she seem content. In her final weeks she got to spend plenty of time on the screened in deck and there she found some peace from hearing the screaming cicadas.
This was a cat constantly underfoot and when not sleeping always into trouble or throwing up. She probably needed Kitty Prozac for the last five years of her life. Only problem was there was no way we could get it into her. She was unique, independent and a totally in your face kind of cat.
She almost made it to 18. They were 10 weeks when we got them, so we celebrated their birthday on Halloween which was about right. I thought for sure Sprite would go first. He is pretty deaf, fat and has a hard time jumping on my lap these days. But he has one thing Squeaky always lacked: the ability to feel love and contentment.
Life will be different around here. It will probably seem a lot more pleasant, but it will also lack that certain nervous energy that kept this place from feeling like a spot in the doldrums. I loved Squeaky, sort of, and I am glad to see her out of pain. I hope she is in kitty heaven and I hope if she has nine lives the next one is a happy one.
Her sibling cat Sprite seems to be blissfully mindless. I’m not sure it will sink in. We may see changed in behavior in time. As you know Sprite is the cuddly cat. I will miss and certainly always remember Squeaky. But it is far more likely that when Sprite passes I will be grieving a whole lot more.