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belated and sad Friday catblogging

ContentmentOne of the reasons I was needing a pick-me-up on Wednesday, when the Open Source radio show was on, was that Karen and I had to put Bette, our beloved cat, to sleep.

She'd developed a thyroid condition some time ago that had caused her to lose weight, so when she started losing weight again recently, we weren't worried; we just figured that her medication needed adjusting. We dropped her off at the vet's on Tuesday for a checkup and some blood work, and she stayed overnight while we were waiting for results, as she was somewhat dehydrated.

On Wednesday morning, the vet called to say that it wasn't her thyroid, but her kidneys, which just weren't functioning any more, due solely to old age. With aggressive treatment (including a four-day hospital stay, and then subcutaneous fluids every day for as long as she lived), she might have lived six months more at best, if the treatment helped at all. She would have been in increasing discomfort. We decided that trying to extend her life would have been a selfish decision, forcing her to live solely because we didn't want to say goodbye.

So we went in to the vet's for one last visit with her, and then we held her as the vet injected her with sedative, and as it took effect over about ten minutes. She was purring before she went to sleep peacefully, and the vet took her into another room to administer one more injection.

ScritchmyheadBette was a real character. I'm convinced that if there's such a thing as reincarnation, one of her past lives was as Bessie Smith. She was a "woman of substance," and she loved to sing the blues with her very, very powerful pipes. And though she was less social in her later years -- I think she didn't like going up and down stairs so much as she got older and her joints got stiffer -- she was very affectionate, sleeping with us every night (and, of course, "singing the blues" if we moved around too much). It feels strange to see Karen reading in bed without Bette lying on her chest.Bettedavis_2

Bette Davis (the calico -- she was named before she came to live with Karen) joins our equally beloved and still greatly missed Myrna Loy (the black and white kitty) in the hereafter. Goodbye, sweet girl.



June 4, 2005 in Cats | Permalink


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Tracked on Jun 22, 2005 12:11:25 PM


So sorry . . .losing pets, in whatever way, is very hard, especially if they have become like family. i applaud you both for your unselfishness. Pax, Adele

Posted by: Existential Punk | Jun 4, 2005 4:01:12 PM

So sorry to hear about Bette. No doubt she's frolicking happily in Cat Heaven, but for us human companions left behind the loss really stings. My prayers are with you and the family.

Posted by: Karen | Jun 4, 2005 4:35:49 PM

I had a calico cat, autumn, our first cat.
She died some years ago but she sometimes reappears in my dreams. When a creature of God is named and loved there is a special soul that is created. A part of that mysterious ,enduring love that touches us
and sustains us in many ways. When we do "visions of heaven" exercises with our church school children there are almost always pets there...of course.

Posted by: Steven Hagerman | Jun 4, 2005 7:21:37 PM

I guess 'tis the season for cats to die. You're the third person I know of in as many weeks to have this happen to them.

Posted by: James | Jun 5, 2005 9:41:01 AM

That is terrible - so sorry to hear you had such a thing on your heart while having to speak on radio ---- Leah

Posted by: Leah | Jun 5, 2005 2:51:47 PM

I'm sorry about Bette. The little furpeople can certainly wind their way around one's heart just like they do one's ankles when its dinnertime.

I lost my beloved calico, Dammit, nearly 15 years ago. I still miss her.

Posted by: Mumcat | Jun 5, 2005 3:21:56 PM

I'm sorry you had to say good-bye to Bette. I'm glad the last you heard of her was a purr.

Posted by: Pascale Soleil | Jun 7, 2005 12:12:37 PM

Sorry to hear of your loss, having suffered the recent loss of our beloved dogs Sidney and Matty, I am comforted by the words of John Wesley below:

From John Wesley on General Deliverance:

"God regards his meanest creatures much; but he regards man much more. He does not equally regard a hero and a sparrow; the best of men and the lowest of brutes. "How much more does your heavenly Father care for you!" says He "who is in the bosom of his Father." Those who thus strain the point, are clearly confuted by his question, "Are not ye much better than they?" Let it suffice, that God regards everything that he hath made, in its own order, and in proportion to that measure of his own image which he has stamped upon it.

May I be permitted to mention here a conjecture concerning the brute creation? What, if it should then please the all-wise, the all-gracious Creator to raise them higher in the scale of beings? What, if it should please him, when he makes us "equal to angels," to make them what we are now, -- creatures capable of God; capable of knowing and loving and enjoying the Author of their being? If it should be so, ought our eye to be evil because he is good? However this be, he will certainly do what will be most for his own glory.

If it be objected to all this, (as very probably it will,) "But of what use will those creatures be in that future state?" I answer this by another question, What use are they of now? If there be (as has commonly been supposed) eight thousand species of insects, who is able to inform us of what use seven thousand of them are? If there are four thousand species of fishes, who can tell us of what use are more than three thousand of them? If there are six hundred sorts of birds, who can tell of what use five hundred of those species are? If there be four hundred sorts of beasts, to what use do three hundred of them serve? Consider this; consider how little we know of even the present designs of God; and then you will not wonder that we know still less of what he designs to do in the new heavens and the new earth."

Until the day when God fulfills his promise,

"Look, I am making all things new"

Posted by: JR | Jun 7, 2005 3:03:43 PM

I'm so sorry about your kitty. It also is amazing how accustomed we get to their presence -- and what a void they leave behind. Prayers to you tonight.

Posted by: rev mommy | Jun 7, 2005 11:32:21 PM

Belated but sympathetic hugs from here too. So relieved you have Foster about the place...it can feel horribly empty at first.
As a side issue, I do love the way you call cats we'd describe as tortoiseshell "callico cats"..it sounds so friendly and homely :-)
Take care
K x

Posted by: Kathryn | Jun 11, 2005 4:52:40 AM

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