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Thursday, 7 May 2009

The Cat is Dead, Long Live the Cat.

After eighteen and a half years' sterling service, No. 2 Cat has passed away. He has expired, turned up his toes, snuffed it, shuffled off this mortal coil, gone to a better place. He is dead, deceased, stiff-as-a-board, in short, he is an ex-cat.

No. 2 Cat belonged to my wonderful wife, who got him from our local animal shelter. They said he was at least eight weeks old, our vet said four so we split the difference and said he was six weeks old. And when my wonderful wife brought him home, she neglected to mention he came with 'extras' - cat flu, ear mites, an eye infection and a very healthy population of the biggest fleas I'd ever seen. If we hadn't, at that time, qualified for free veterinary care he could have quickly become a 'Money Pit' of a cat, as it was our vet said the only treatment for his cat flu was a dose of full-strength medicine which would either kill or cure him, and could ultimately leave him with brain damage.

It was touch and go for a while, but he pulled through, the fleas, mites and infection were soon dealt with, though the cat flu medicine did have a lasting effect - for his entire life, No. 2 Cat thought he was a kitten. He just never grew up, he was the Peter Pan of cats.

No. 2 Cat's first meal with us was good old-fashioned British fish 'n' chips - I found him sitting on my plate, happily devouring my portion of cod. He ate the lot, which was no mean feat because he could fit in the palm of your hand at that stage. I didn't have the heart to stop him. After his tea, No. 2 Cat set off diagonally across the room looking like a furry tennis ball with a leg at each corner; it was only now we realised he couldn't walk properly, he used to go sideways while looking at where he wanted to go.

From those humble beginnings grew a wonderful cat who will forever be remembered with much fondness.



pat said...

This is probably the best cat memorial I've ever read.

Sam said...

Thank you for those kind words. No. 2 Cat was my best friend and I still miss him very much.

Julie (Okami) said...

I love this. You really have a way with words.

Sam said...

Julie (Okami) - Thanks. He really was a one-of-a-kind sort of a cat. :)

Anne Tyler Lord said...

Oh my, I missed this post! Poor kitty, and poor you, with your fav kitty gone.

I am such a cat lover, actually, that is how we met. I posted something about losing my cat and you replied and showed me a post about your old cat who died, last year. So is this the second to go in a year?

You are clearly a cat lover of monumental proportion. I think I am too. You honor your sweet kitties on your website and tell such intimate details about them. That is so sweet how you let the baby kitty eat your cod fish - I would too, just sit and watch the cuteness.

Anne Tyler Lord said...

I just looked at the date again and saw it was 2009 - this IS the post you showed me last year when we first met!

Sam said...

Anne - Thanks so much for such a lovely comment (both of them!). Yes, I well remember how we met and I agree, we are both cat lovers of monumental proportions. I hope the loss of your kitty is becoming easier to bear with time; I think we've come to terms with the loss of No. 2 Cat (named "Button" BTW), though we still have very fond memories of him. I really wish digital photography had been around when Button was a kitten, he was the cutest thing you've ever seen, but sadly no pics exist of that time in his life.

Laura Eno said...

I had the same reaction as Anne - wondering how I missed this...then I realized I didn't know you then!

What wonderful memories of him. I laughed out loud (luckily not drinking a hot beverage) as I pictured him sitting in your plate dining on fish and chips.

This is an awesome testiment to your love.

Sam said...

Laura - Thanks for your lovely comment. I'm sure you would have fallen in love with No. 2 Cat (named Button) too, everyone who met him did. He was the most wonderful cat, who could have known on that first evening, that he'd be a huge part of my life for so long. He never lost his love of fish and chips.

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