It is with broken heart that I announce that Jacob, my dearest friend of 13 years and icon cat of 5, passed away the morning of September 29 2008. He was 15 years old.
He first came into my life from a friend of my sister who could no longer keep him because of a new apartment residence. I had another cat at the time and he was first welcomed by loud hissing and growling. I remember his response of simply ignoring the other cat, walking past and immediately claiming my house his own. His was definitely a quirky nonchalant persona which often resulted in me messing with him to break past this stoic demeanor to provoke reaction.
In 1998 or so, he somehow escaped the house and went missing. I searched everywhere but after one month, I considered him lost forever. I still remember vividly the summer day two months after he disappeared when a mangy black cat scurried past my house on the street...a somewhat familiar one. I called out his name and he stopped, staring for a long moment before running up to me meowing loudly. Since then, he never left my side.
In the recent months, he was diagnosed with hyperactive thyroidism with possible heart disease and was prone to heavy fluid buildup in his lungs. He fought hard to stay with us, dealing with countless tests, lung stints, minor operations and bothersome medications. His final days were difficult to witness as he was no longer was the spirited feline he once was, mostly laying still unmoving with hindered breathing with no appetite. I weighed heavily the guilty thought of taking his fate into my own hands. On his final morning, he raised his head to greet me from his favored sleeping spot and I spent an extra long personal moment with him before I left for work. Within a few hours afterwards, I received a call that he went peacefully in his sleep...as I prayed he would within his home and amongst those who loved him most.
I already miss him dearly. I miss seeing his head in the window waiting for me to come home. I miss him greeting me at the door. I miss his shadowing me everywhere I went in the house. I miss him taking over my lap as soon as I sat in front of the computer. I miss him fetching me his favorite crinkle ball when he decided he wanted to play. I miss him purring contently next to me when I layed in bed to sleep. And I know I'll miss him being nosey while I'm shooting my art.
But I also know he is at peace.
He was cremated later that evening and part of his ashes will be spread amongst the flower bed he always overlooked outside his favorite window.
Be happy, free and forever loved, my dear friend...
(My first photo and thus my first model with my first digital camera in 2004)
Edit 05/01/09: Though this thread is now 8 months old, I do read the occasional thread bumps and deeply appreciate all the words left here. If you come across this tribute and have thoughts to contribute regarding your own loss or in general, always feel free to share . I'll keep reading...and thank you...
Oct 01 08 02:38 pm Link
Langley, British Columbia, Canada
oh no:( very sorry to hear that!
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
well, that made me bawl.
Your cat seemed like a lovely friend and i'm sorry for your loss.
I loved that cat... I'm so sorry honey.
Oct 01 08 02:42 pm Link
I'm so sorry.
That made me tear up.
Oct 01 08 02:43 pm Link
Madison, Wisconsin, US
I'm so sorry
Losing pets is so hard.
Downers Grove, Illinois, US
That just made me pick up my cat and hug him.
San Antonio, Texas, US
I'm so sorry to hear this!
Winchester, Virginia, US
I need to go hug mine when I get home. He looks a lot like Jacob!
Thank you all for your kind words and thoughts...
Oct 01 08 02:47 pm Link
Fort Lauderdale, Florida, US
Sorry to hear this. Been there, done that. It hurts.
Oct 01 08 02:48 pm Link
Sacramento, California, US
That made me cry, at work.
Sounds just like my Mickey He had a gum disease and later a tumour, went under countless operations, took daily pills... but was still the sweetest cat that ever lived.
We had to put him down, I had him from age 5 to age 20. He passed away in my arms.
I also had him cremated, but I couldn't bear to part with the ashes. So I spent the extra $600 so I could keep him in my bookshelf. Kind of creepy I know, I just couldn't part with him completely.
I'm so sorry for your loss, I understand deeply.
Oct 01 08 02:57 pm Link
Sabrina Maree wrote:
Not creepy at all...note I wrote "part of his ashes"...the other half will be in a small memorial statue on my shelf as well. I just need to find a cat statue that looks like him a bit.
Oct 01 08 02:59 pm Link
Los Angeles, California, US
aww im sorry...hes a cute little man. I feel your pain...
--Rest in kitty heaven!!--
Oct 01 08 03:15 pm Link
I know a girl who could make you one.
Oct 01 08 03:17 pm Link
Howell, Michigan, US
I'm so sorry for your loss. I too lost my beloved kitty (two, actually) this year. I is definitely hard losing a pet.
I do have a couple websites on my home computer that I will PM you that have urns shaped like kitties if you want me to send them to you I will.
Rest in Peace Jacob.
Oct 01 08 03:19 pm Link
Greenville, North Carolina, US
*fighting back tears*
I cannot imagine the day that my oldest kitty goes. He is attached at my hip and is so close to me.
I'm sorry for your loss.
Oct 01 08 03:20 pm Link
Santa Cruz, California, US
I'm very sorry for your loss. I am grateful that you and he lived a long and happy life together. May his spirit, and his inspiration to love, be with you forever.
PS... I lost one of my two cats last week. We don't know for sure, but we suspect he was killed by coyotes. My heart is aching too.
Oct 01 08 03:26 pm Link
Rochester, New York, US
My old kitty went the same way.
They are at peace now.
A very inspiring piece of literature by author unknown:
Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.
When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge.
There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together.
There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.
All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by.
The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.
They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent; His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.
You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.
Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together....
Makes me cry every time.
Oct 01 08 03:32 pm Link
Fenton, Michigan, US
Rest In Peace Jacob!
I'm sorry for your loss Anthony!
Kansas City, Missouri, US
He can has cheezeburgers forever now
New York, New York, US
I'm so sorry to hear this...I'm trying with all my strength to choke back my tears at the moment, as I'm in the same boat--My cat that's been with me for 16 years just went to take her final nap last week.
But if there's any remote shred of a silver lining here: At least sweet Jacob will have old Hoots (my kitty--aka 'Orange Buddy') and both Skydancer and Rika Rave's babies to keep him company in kitty heaven.
:hugs, hugs, and more hugs:
Oct 01 08 03:37 pm Link
Why animals don't live as long as people
by Robin Downing, DVM
Being a veterinarian, I had been called to examine a ten-year-old Irish Wolfhound named Belker. The dog's owner, his wife, and their little boy were all very attached to Belker and they were hoping for a miracle. I examined Belker and found he was dying of cancer. I told the family there were no miracles left for Belker, and offered to perform the euthanasia procedure for the old dog in their home.
As we made arrangements, the owners told me they thought it would be good for the four-year-old boy to observe the procedure. They felt he could learn something from the experience.
The next day, I felt the familiar catch in my throat as Belker's family surrounded him. The little boy seemed so calm, petting the old dog for the last time, that I wondered if he understood what was going on.
Within a few minutes, Belker slipped peacefully away. The little boy seemed to accept Belker's transition without any difficulty or confusion.
We sat together for a while after Belker's death, wondering aloud about the sad fact that animal lives are shorter than human lives.
The little boy, who had been listening quietly, piped up, "I know why."
Startled, we all turned to him. What came out of his mouth next stunned me. I'd never heard a more comforting explanation. He said, "Everybody is born so that they can learn how to live a good life - like loving everybody and being nice, right?" The four-year- old continued, "Well, animals already know how to do that, so they don't have to stay as long."
Oct 01 08 03:38 pm Link
Indianapolis, Indiana, US
Oct 01 08 03:39 pm Link
Ed Stringbourne wrote:
That made me LOLz in a sad way. =\
Thank you all for your wonderful words and thoughts...â¥
Chicago, Illinois, US
Very sorry. I lost my cat after 17 years three years ago. I know its very
soon but consider adopting another cat or kitten. So many need loving homes
and people like you. Hell the world needs more loving and caring people.
Again, I'm sorry for your loss.
Oct 01 08 04:47 pm Link
Gibraltar, Michigan, US
I'm so sorry my friend.....
Oct 01 08 04:51 pm Link
Thank you my friends...
Oct 04 08 12:14 am Link
Another cat lover who is very sorry for the loss of your friend.
Oct 04 08 12:17 am Link
Houston, Arkansas, US
Oct 04 08 12:32 am Link
Los Angeles, California, US
It's okay to grieve but, just remember he is waiting for you to go to him at Rainbow Bridge.
My dog went through acute liver failure last year but, I was able to save him. The close brush with losing a close friend had me going for weeks until we pulled him out of it. I think I'll go home and give him a special big hug in honour of Jacob.
Oct 04 08 12:34 am Link
Swoyersville, Pennsylvania, US
you were (and are) a good pet parent.
Oct 04 08 01:41 am Link
San Diego, California, US
I am very sorry for your pain and loss
Oct 04 08 01:42 am Link
Venice, Florida, US
Damn, Im crying right now. Im very sorry you lost your best friend.
Oct 04 08 02:47 am Link
Riverside, California, US
I am sooooo sorry. It is so hard to lose our best friends especially when they are our pets.
Oct 04 08 02:57 am Link
im so sorry for you loss...
Oct 04 08 08:45 am Link
Miami Beach, Florida, US
Oct 04 08 08:50 am Link
Rochester, Michigan, US
I am so sorry Anthony. I have a cat for the past 8 years called ollie...a gray tabby. I so feel for you....Lee.
Phoenix, Arizona, US
Sorry for your loss.
I have had cats in my life since before I was born, I love them and it's always sad when it's their time to go. We adopted 4 kittens last year and they are amazing, especially Charlie, as he reminds me of Roger, but Squirty plays fetch with is little catnip socks, I've never seen a cat play fetch before.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/cooganphot … 949740663/
Roger passed away in 2002, he was my favorite of all time
Little Miss passed away earlier this year.