Yesterday was one of those days that all pet owners dread. Our pets bring us so much joy and pleasure yet they also break our hearts. We knew this day would come ever since Smokey was diagnosed with a spinal tumour about 2.5 years ago. He was wobbly for quite a while but with medication he eventually recovered and last year was almost back to normal during the summer, able to jump up on the windowsills again and run around. Then he started to go downhill again and despite upping the medication it was looking pretty grim.
Whilst we were away the housesitters let us know that he'd got diarrhoea so they took him to the vet and got some medicine for him, which did work. They also said he seemed more wobbly. We think he caught an infection from our new kitten (an abandoned kitten adopted us a week before we went away - will tell all about her in another post!) and in his present state his immune system was very low. However he made a good recovery from that .... and then the kitten got diarrhoea.
When we got home Friday morning it was plain to see he'd gone downhill some more but the main change was that he wasn't a happy bunny any more. You just know when there is a change in your pet and the only thing that seemed to interest him was food (didn't think that cat would ever lose his appetite!) although he did attempt to play with the kitten once or twice but not for very long. He didn't even want to be stroked.
The main problem though was the accidents - he no longer would go to the toilet outside even though he'd go outside for a wobbly walk, but he couldn't get into the litter tray easily, or just missed it completely and got cross if we tried to help him into it. After a number of accidents we had made our minds up. Cats are fastidious and he could no longer groom himself and I'm quite sure he was not happy about not being able to go to the loo in the right place either. He may well have been in some pain too but it's hard to know that.
So the deed has been done and and we are heaving sighs of relief as we'd pretty much decided this had to happen by Saturday afternoon, so spent a horrible two days before taking him to the vet yesterday afternoon. He's been buried in the garden and in the spring I will be buying a Smokebush 'Grace' to plant on his grave. Having the kitten helps enormously and she really appeared at the right time, so we do not have an empty house which is what we dreaded.
RIP old fella, we've had 13 years with you and we miss you.
And in his younger days, photos scanned.