Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.
— Anatole France
Pet Loss Library
by Karin Baltzell, Ph.dDear Karin,
I am writing because I just lost my beloved, beautiful marmalade kitty, my companion of 22 years, 3 days ago. I am ABSOLUTELY devastated. He had been a VERY healthy and active older cat for many years, but last year,he showed signs of kidney failure.After the vet treated him with a short series of IV meds, he returned almost fully, to his healthy status of before. But, the Vet, kindly told me that Marmalade's only problem was 'old age', and as they did not have a 'pill' for that, he was able to prolong his life for '3-6 months, maybe a bit more'. Well, I was blessed to share another 14+ months, and just the last week or so, he began to show the same signs as previously. He lost his ability to walk and was pulling himself around. He had lost his appetite and was eating almost nothing, as well as drinking constantly, again signs of kidney failure.
It just broke my heart. In his prime, he was 26 pounds, a gorgeous, muscular beautiful specimen as well as the sweetest and most genteel of cats. To see him lose this ability to ambulate with such coordination and precision, as well as dignity ...... it was VERY hard to see. And, the way he looked at me ...... I knew it was time to let him go. He could not have been happy, AND he had lost the will to eat, and I'm sure was full of poison, related to his failing kidneys. You could just see he did not feel well and could not understand what was happening. I called a number of Vets in the area, and found one who would make a house call. She came and I held my precious Angel once more, along with my husband - nearby, and we told him how MUCH we loved him and appreciated being allowed the privilage to share our lives with him for all these years.
Of course, I was crying and my heart was just breaking. The Vet gave him the shot, and he left me so peacefully. But, I have not been able to hardly even think since those moments of 3 days ago. I am absolutely heart-broken. EVERYTHING I have done in the past 22 years, has included Marmalade and his needs, his joys, his desires, his LIFE. I cannot believe he is really gone. Both my husband and I have seen his 'shadow' and heard him descend the stairs to be with us each evening since he left. I have cried and cried, and am reminiscing almost constantly about the many, many multitudes of memories I have shared with my dear SWEET Kitty. I am writing to ask ..... when does this pain leave? Will I see him again? How can I deal with my loss so that it doesn't devastate me until I am no longer able to do anything else?