Thursday, May 11, 2006


May ??, 1997 - May 11, 2006


This is my cat, Calin. I had to take her in this morning and have her put to sleep. My heart is breaking.

My sister gave her to me for my birthday 9 years ago. She was a very sick little kitten. She had respiratory issues and was covered in fleas. I spent hundreds of dollars at the vet getting her well.

But she was also the bravest kitten I'd ever seen - she wasn't scared of jumping off high places like most kittens (her favorite feat was jumping from the top of the dresser to the bed), and she stood her ground even when faced with the vacuum cleaner. When I got her fixed, and they told me to keep her still for a few days, she wasn't having it. I set up some "stairs" for her to climb onto the bed, but she jumped right up like she always had, the first day I brought her home. There was no keeping her still.

When she was new, she wouldn't sleep through the night; she would curl up under my chin and chew on my hair, and the only way I could get her to calm down so I could get any sleep was to sing to her.

"If I had words to make a day for you
I'd sing you a morning golden and true.
I would make this day last for all time
Then fill the night deep in moonshine."

Fast forward two years, and she is diagnosed with renal failure. She spent a week in kitty ICU, with them giving her fluids and trying to stabilize her. Then I had to take her in 2-3 times a week for fluid injections. They told me she had a year or two to live, at most. She became very depressed and dropped a lot of weight, bottoming out at 6 lbs. That's when I stopped her treatment. I figured if she were dying, she should at least be happy and not be stuck with needles every other day.

She gained back all her weight and thrived. She loved cantaloupe, strawberries, bananas, and eating banana bread oatmeal from a spoon. She loved eating popcorn and watching Babe and nature shows. When I got home from work every day she would curl up on my chest and we'd nap on the couch. She'd crawl up and drape herself over my shoulder and ride along as I walked through the house.

Fast forward another 7 years, and here she is. We've moved 5 times together, living in 3 states, and she's come through each time with flying colors. She's tough. The only thing she can't adjust to - the most important thing - is other people.

She's hostile to just about everyone but me. Especially to my kids. She bites and scratches with little to no provocation. That and the fact that it seems her kidneys may be having trouble again, leading her to use everything in the house but her litterbox, are what brought me to the very, very, very difficult decision I had to make last night.

She would not be happy spending the rest of her life shut away from the family to protect everyone from each other. Also we are not happy letting her pee all over every piece of furniture we have. I talked to a few vets and considered adopting her out, but I don't think she would be happy with anyone else but me, given her history of biting and scratching people who aren't me.

So that was that. I took her in, and they gave me back my carrier, like I'm going to need it anymore. I've gotten rid of the litter box.

But I think I'll keep her dish. I'm not ready yet to part with it.

Thank you, Calin, for nine wonderful years. I love you.


Snickle said...


I'm so sorry. I've had to put our family pet to sleep, so I've felt the pain. Nothing but time will heal the sorrow but don't ever regret the decision. You are looking out for your family and that is very important.

Stacie said...

Oh, I am so sorry... I had to put our beloved dalmation who I had for 16 years, long before my husband and any of my kids, to sleep last year. It nearly killed me, so I know what a difficult time you are going through. Take care, and know that your kitty is in a better place, and waiting for you.



Gina Cobb said...

Bless you for taking such good care of her all those years.

You were both blessed, weren't you, in spite of all the difficulties?