View Full Version : So this is what happened

11-15-2007, 09:21 PM
Shadow Cat died.

She had been missing a week and came home last night. She was holding her head at a weird angle and dragging her back legs.

She was a feral cat. She lived in our shed for the first 2 - 3 years of her life. I saw her around, but she never came close...just looked at me.

Then, in 2001, when we brought home Clyde James as a kitten, she decided to come closer. She and Clyde got along well.

Over the years we were able to tame her a bit, and she'd come for food and water and petting.

She learned her name.

Unable to catch her to spay her, I managed to catch, tame and find homes for 3 litters of her kittens.

Earlier this year I was finally able to convince her I wasn't going to kill her, and I got her spayed and her shots.

She still hated the inside of my house.

So, last night when she came right inside and lay down, I knew something was wrong.

Nothing was broken. She had little feeling in her back legs and was unable to pee or poop.

I took her to the vet. Her thyroid was very enlarged and basically, the doc told me it was going to be over $500.00 to start the treatment, and there was no guarantee that she'd survive it.

It was either a stroke related to the thyroid condition, or a stroke related to something else...on top of other problems.

So I had to decide to let her go.

I feel like shit.

My kids don't know.

11-15-2007, 09:25 PM
I'm so sorry! Hugs for you and your family.

11-15-2007, 09:26 PM
I'm terribly sorry to hear the news.

11-15-2007, 09:27 PM
So sorry Jaycinth. I hope it brings you peace of mind to know that you made her life so much better and longer by being such a loving person.

11-15-2007, 09:28 PM
Sorry, Jay. :Hug2:

You did the right thing. But it's okay to feel crappy right now.

When you're ready to feel better, go eat something full of calories. That always does the trick.

11-15-2007, 09:30 PM
Oh no. Poor kitty. :cry: :Hug2:

You did the right thing, and you were her angel.

11-15-2007, 09:31 PM
I'm so sorry. Letting your pet go is the right thing to do, but it doesn't mean it's easy. In fact, it's very difficult. :Hug2:

11-15-2007, 09:35 PM
So very sorry, Jay. You did the right thing, completely. And that is why she came inside--to not be in pain any longer.

11-15-2007, 09:38 PM
I'm so sorry. :Hug2:

You absolutely did the right thing, from the very start. Where I live, most people won't glance twice at a feral cat, let alone love and care for one. It won't make you feel better now, but I hope knowing you gave her the rarity of a good life gives you some comfort down the line. :Hug2:

11-15-2007, 09:38 PM
I love you guys.

11-15-2007, 09:42 PM
I'm sorry, honey. :(

Backward Masking
11-15-2007, 09:52 PM
Sorry to hear of the death of Shadow Cat. Know this though, her offspring live on.

11-15-2007, 09:56 PM
My dear lady, I am sorry for your cat.

Oddly enough, our family cat, Oksana (Sox) Row******* died this week. She was 19 years old.

She was a good cat.

11-15-2007, 10:08 PM
Wow. That sucks.

The same thing might have happened to my cat, Dave. He also dragged himself into the house one day, under my roommate's bed, and died. We were students and couldn't afford to get him examined but we thought he might have been poisoned. Some people really have it in for cats. Maybe it was some kind of thyroid thing like your little Shadow cat.

I'm sorry. I was devastated when Dave died, so I understand.

11-15-2007, 10:10 PM
Thatís tough, Jaycinth. Sorry. :cry:

11-15-2007, 10:11 PM
You definitely did the right thing: she came to you for help and you gave it; she came to you when she was dying and you gave her the chance to do so in peace and without pain, with someone who loved her.

Doesn't necessarily make it easier, I know. :Hug2:

11-15-2007, 10:15 PM
she was saying goodbye. and thank you. cats do that. i don't care how insane it sounds, they have spirits and their spirits walk in and out of that big door in the sky much more easily than our spirits do. she will be back. ---s6

11-15-2007, 10:20 PM
So sorry, Jay.

It's not much consolation now, but rest assured you did the right thing.
And there's not too many people would have looked after her and her kittens the way you did.

You're a good person.

11-15-2007, 10:27 PM
Oh, Jay, I'm so sorry. :( That's such a testament to your love and care that Shadow Cat came "home" to die--even though she didn't love being inside, she obviously loved and trusted you. And you gave her a safe place to come back to, when it was time for her to pass on. I hope you can find comfort in that. :Hug2:

11-15-2007, 10:28 PM
Wow, thyroids can cause strokes? Glad my doctor figured that one out.

Sorry about Shadow Cat. I never knew him and yet I feel we shared something.

Jersey Chick
11-15-2007, 10:33 PM
I'm so sorry, Jaycinth :Hug2:

It sucks no matter what, but at least she was with family. Especially considering she was feral.

Here, more hugs - :Hug2:

11-15-2007, 10:37 PM
Yes, Jay--take comfort in the fact that she began to love and trust you as much as she possibly could. She knew you would understand everything without her having to mew a word.

Old Hack
11-15-2007, 11:14 PM
I had a gorgeous semi-feral cat called Tim, who became a dear friend. He used to jump on my bed at night, then rub his head all up one side of me, over the top, then down the other side, purring like a train. I had to let him go just over a year ago, and I still miss him. It was the right thing to do for him, but still... it was terribly hard.

I love my cats. I feel for you. Much love is sent your way in this difficult time.

11-16-2007, 12:35 AM
Shadow Cat got to have the joy and peace of being loved. When she was hurting she came to you for peace -- you absolutely did the right thing. Prolonging her suffering with thyroid treatments that would or would not have worked would have been for the family's benefit. It was hard choice but you made the right one.
You're a good person and Shadow Cat was lucky to have you! It's okay to be sad...


Soccer Mom
11-16-2007, 12:43 AM
I feel for you. THis actually made me cry. I went through the same thing on Sunday. My barn cat, Tiger, took a sudden bad turn. His kidneys had shut down. He dragged himself up to my garage and laid there. I put him down that day. It was the ultimate sign of faith and trust in you that she took herself to the only home she had known to die.

Hugs and love.

11-16-2007, 12:50 AM
Strays have always adopted me.
It's how I have my current 16 year old cat.
His mother moved in during her pregnancy.
His father hung around the house, but it took forever to get him to come to me.
And don't make the mistake of thinking you were going to touch him, just because he rubbed against you.

With my daughter seeking a career in Zoology...I know our house will fill up with all her 'friends' in need of a home.

Already, we have a few strays hanging around.
I SWEAR, they know.
And I know, I'm going to be known, in my old age, as The Cat Lady.

What I'm trying to say is that I know how much we come to love these critters; how much they come to love us.
You did the right thing by releasing her from pain. Cats are a dignified creature. Haughty, if you will. She came to you because she knew in her final hour, you would give her comfort and peace.
THAT should be what you take with you, not the guilt.
You were 'momma'.
There is no higher compliment from an animal, especially one that had been feral.

11-16-2007, 12:53 AM
Oh...SoccerMom....I just dried my eyes....to you as well, I'm deeply hurt by what you had to experience.
I'm so sorry. So, so sorry.

11-16-2007, 12:56 AM
:Hug2: Hugs and comfort for m'Lady Jay.

Jean Marie
11-16-2007, 01:27 AM
Lady Jay :Hug2:

Soccer Mom :Hug2:

11-16-2007, 07:05 PM
I really, REALLY, love you guys.

11-16-2007, 07:43 PM
Aw, that's OK. It's undeserved. What I actually wanted to say I held back because I didn't want to get labeled insensitive.

I was going to simply mention that our state has actually considered having a hunting season for feral cats.

But that would have been in bad taste, so I left it alone.


11-16-2007, 08:35 PM
Aw, that's OK. It's undeserved. What I actually wanted to say I held back because I didn't want to get labeled insensitive.

I was going to simply mention that our state has actually considered having a hunting season for feral cats.

But that would have been in bad taste, so I left it alone.


Actually, Ed, I am glad you brought that up. That is an excellent direction for this thread to take, if it is going in a direction.

I was going to paste in a link to the Feral Cat Society, but my cookies seem to have been erased.

Anyway, they have a petiton out to find humane ways to take care of the feral population.

As far as my neighborhood goes we have always been of the opinion that we'd rather have a dozen feral cats than a thousand dozen feral rats.

Have I told everybody that I love them???

I Repeat:


11-16-2007, 08:49 PM
To be honest, I have no problem with feral cats in the city, they can stand guard by our disgusting neighbors across the alley who pile their trash cans in the alley high with all sorts of garbage, half eaten food, pizza boxes, and dirty paper plates, etc. that all gets tipped over in the wind and flies around. I was actually thinking of giving them a couple of boxes of garbage bags for Christmas. I'm next expecting rats any day now, so the feral cats would be a welcome site, although they'd drive my dogs nuts.

The Wisconsin thing is for feral cats in the WILD that are killing all the song birds. There they are a not only a nuisance but a (brain fart!) oh, invasive species that is damaging the environment. If the Feral Cat Society wants to capture them and try to rehabilitate them, more power to them.

11-16-2007, 08:54 PM
Gee, Jaycinth, I'm very sorry that happened. Mary, very sorry that happened with your cat too. Man, life's tough sometimes.

11-16-2007, 10:30 PM
:Hug2:Jay, so sorry to hear about Shadow Cat. She was so lucky to have found you and for the love that you gave her. I'm sure she will be waiting for you on the other side. My heart goes out to you and I hope the great memories erase the pain really soon.

11-16-2007, 10:33 PM

I'm a cat person, and this makes me :(.

11-16-2007, 10:55 PM
Unable to catch her to spay her, I managed to catch, tame and find homes for 3 litters of her kittens.

I know it won't help much but think about all the happiness you gave the adoptive homes of her babies. She lives on through her legacy.

HUGS, Judy

11-16-2007, 11:58 PM
Very sad. I put my 16-year-old cat to sleep last February - she had kidney disease and had dropped 5 pounds. Sure there were drugs that maybe could have helped her but there was no guarantee.

There was no question but to put her to sleep and out of her pain - I saw the quality of her cat life go slowly downhill for about a month. At 16, she was 80 in human years. She had had a good life (I'd had her since she was a kitten).

So you did the right thing. My heartfelt condolensces.

11-17-2007, 12:12 AM
I'm so sorry for your loss, Jay. :Hug2:

11-17-2007, 12:56 AM
I'm sorry to hear about your cat. You did the right thing and made her life better. Losing a pet (even one that doesn't come inside!) is hard. My heart goes out to you.

11-17-2007, 06:16 PM
I'm sorry to hear about everyone's losses. It's hard to lose a favorite pet.

We keep three dogs in the house, and the husband's allergic to cats, but I feed probably 20 or so outside. His aunt left a pair of intact females outside when she moved, and I fed them. But they had kittens, and then some other strays showed up.

What kept us from increasing numbers of cats to feed was the CatNippers program that runs in our county. There use a Trap Neuter Release (TNR) program where they put out traps for the cats, fix them, and return them to where they were caught. It doesn't create immediate relief to the population problem, but it works with an eye to the future.

Since the vet that helped them the most has closed up shop, I'm not sure what they do anymore. I'd like to contact one of the people involved. They were always so helpful and nice. They used some of the smaller donations they received to provide bags of food to those that feed strays and ferals. I have some of the healthiest cats around. Thick and healthy for the winter.

There are several programs that use the TNR method. You can search for them on the web.

ETA: I forgot to mention that some of my favorite cats have disappeared. Momma Chloe most recently. I don't know if they have left because of overcrowding for the territory or if they've passed. I've not seen any signs of violence, which is what I fear the most.