Thursday, March 04, 2010
This morning we had our cat, Rosie, put down.
I've spoken about Rosie before. As I said in that post Nathan and I got her from the RSPCA just before the 2003 Canberra Bushfires. We found a little cat, about 6-12 months old who was likely to be put down because she wasn't a cute little kitten anymore and decided to take her home. She was a big-looking cat, but was actually just really furry. We called her Rosie.
Rosie loved being with us. She used to sit beside us all night. She sat on my belly when I was pregnant with Lil. But she had been absent more since the children arrived - primarily to escape too much loving. 'Rosie' was one of the first words Lily ever said. She crawled so that she could catch Rosie. Lily used to eat her food. She was often found sleeping under Paterson's cot. Paddy used to try to copy me whistling for her, cupping his hands around his mouth and calling 'who hoo'. She taught Paddy a valuable lesson about problem solving; one day he was trying to hit her with a plastic golf club and she hid under the sideboard. He notice the golf club wasn't long enough for him to be able to reach her, so he dropped it and went and found something longer... (clever, and slightly sociopathic...)
When I got home yesterday i knew something wasn't quite right. She seemed to have a problem with her back leg. I made a vet appointment, and then went to get her to bring her in the house so I'd know where to find her in time for the appointment. She sat quietly on the couch between me and Paddy; Paddy still and very gentle with her for a change. Lily and I took her to the vet and he when she got up to walk he noticed she was walking in circles, and only turning to the left. Apparently it was indicative of brain trauma, or infection. He dosed her up on antibiotics and kept her overnight, saying that if it were infection then we should see a big improvement by morning. And if not, then the kindest thing to do would be to put her down.
She didn't improve overnight.
So this morning I went in to see her in her little cage. She was quiet; she never was one to meow much. I patted her and talked to her about all the other noisy animals in the room, tears dropping slowly onto my shirt. She began to purr quietly. She rested her head in my hand and let me rub under her neck. The vet came then, and I picked her up to take her into the consulting room. They shaved her forearm, and I rubbed her neck. She started to purr again. Then meowed as the needle went in. She purred. Then stopped.
And now I'm at home I see her shadow everywhere she should be. I can feel my self prepare to see her, then the disappointment and sadness when I don't.
The worst thing is that this is not a pain that I'll experience alone. We haven't told Lily yet. We plan to pick her and her brother up, and go to the garden centre together to find a Rose to plant to remember her. I hope that helps her, because I don't really know how else to approach it.
So, bye bye Rose. Thanks for the cuddles and purrs and scratches and friendly bites, and putting up with the kids and their attempts to love you. We'll miss you.