Thursday, October 21, 2010
Today I had to do one of the hardest things a person has to do: I had to take my sweet Sammy Cat in and have her euthanized. If it's true that pets & their people are alike, there's no doubt that Sammy was definitely my girl. Bad-tempered and cranky, intolerant of stupidity, and with a love of Cheerios and impromptu naps, we were very much in tune.
She was somewhere between 19 & 20 years old, and had a very good life, complete with catnip on demand, and lots of good places to nap.
We got her from a lady Steve worked with in February of 1997, and for almost 14 years, she was my second in command. Her other family gave her up because they said that she was the reason their toddler broke his arm when he fell down the stairs going after her. My guess is that she'd had enough of the kid, and was trying to go find somewhere to hide out. Either way, I'm glad she came into our lives.
At first, she didn't like Steve at all. Perhaps the dad in her other family wasn't very nice to her. In any case, Steve finally won her over by "sharing" (read: having to give her) his chicken, shrimp, hamburger, steak, ice cream, milk, and basically whatever he was eating. I just gave her lots of treats and catnip...and I shared my Cheerios with her every morning.
Samantha Cat was not a lap cat by any stretch of the imagination; affection was to be given on her terms, and on her terms only. Sammy had no problem sleeping on my pillow (she got most of it) at night, nor did she have any problem taking over the majority of our bed. She had a rather extensive and exhausting nap schedule to maintain on a daily basis, and could be found occupying any chair that someone had momentarily vacated. She was under no illusion that we were here for any other purpose than to serve her, and if we fell down on the job, she would be very vocal in her reminders.
Sammy was one of the most beautiful cats I've ever had; her fur had so many shades of brown, I called her my "Spice Cat". Her eyes were outlined with white, her pink nose with black. She had 4 white feet that were quick as lightning when she was smacking someone (she was a lefty for sure), and one of her legs was a pretty shade of orange.
She was also one of the fiercest girls I've had. She would defend her people against all comers, even against big scary dogs. Sammy was also pretty smart. She knew how to open doors (not completely closed ones), knew where the treats were hidden, and knew where people needed to be at any given time during the day. She would sleep behind me on the floor as I did homework for the past 7 years, and would herd me up to bed when she thought I'd stayed up too long. She knew how to tell time quite well--dinnertime is at 5 sharp. If we were late, she would tell us so. Loudly.
This past month has been hard on all of us. She fell off a table (we think) and hurt her hip/leg that had already been giving her trouble. She was basically confined to the living room, where we would bring her dish and water to her. Last week she started talking to us in a different voice, so I knew our time with her was almost up.
Once the shot was given this afternoon, she went quickly and peacefully.
I'm going to miss that fuzzy girl more than words can say. I'm just so glad that I got to be her person for almost 14 years.
So, for all of you who have pets, give them extra love and treats today, and be happy that they are part of your lives and you are their people.