kitty considerations

It’s been four months since Leonard died. I remem­ber going to bed that night, con­stant­ly turn­ing over my pil­low to find a dry spot, sob­bing so much I could­n’t fall asleep.

The necrop­sy showed that he had a mas­sive liv­er and kid­ney infec­tion. My vet excused his lan­guage and said, “Shit hap­pens” when I asked (per­haps with a quiver in my voice) what I could have done to pre­vent it.

Soon after, he sent me a card offer­ing his con­do­lences, and said it was a plea­sure deal­ing with some­one who cares so much. It was prob­a­bly the best thing any­one could have done to assuage any feel­ings of guilt. That fact that Leonard had a stub tail with no signs of scar­ring makes me sus­pect that he was the runt of the lit­ter, like­ly born with a weak con­sti­tu­tion, but that does­n’t stop me from always feel­ing like I could have done more.

He was always so affec­tion­ate, almost to the point of being over­ly so. Every morn­ing he’d rub his nose on my face until I stirred, which would be extreme­ly aggra­vat­ing if it weren’t one of the most seraph­ic ways to be wok­en up.

I remem­ber him sleep­ing with me one bright after­noon. Dolly decid­ed to nes­tle her­self in the crook of my arm under the blan­ket, and Leonard soon joined us, though he decid­ed to curl up on my neck instead. It was the per­fect nap con­fig­u­ra­tion.

I’m still glad I had him, as short as our time was. It sad­dens me most to think that I nev­er got to know what he’d be like as a mature cat, whether he’d keep his play­ful­ness and extro­ver­sion into adult­hood. At the very least, Heather G and Sergey, Aaron and Trolley, Darren and ____ all got to meet him before he died.

Leonard at the Humane Society

I took this pic­ture of his Humane Society pro­file before head­ing over to meet him. They named him, “Elvis”.

I’ve been check­ing the Humane Society web­site for male kit­tens avail­able for adop­tion ever since. I recent­ly found one with the right details and a goofy face too, but I don’t think I’m ready for anoth­er cat yet. I’m not sure I could han­dle it if the next one hap­pened to die so sud­den­ly as well. But I know that soon enough I’ll be itch­ing to adopt again, and that the idea of hav­ing anoth­er cat in my life will pre­vail over any wor­ries.


  1. Wow.… too sweet, he real­ly seems to have treat­ed you like a mom­cat. Not just a food-giv­er.

    • The thing that wor­ries me is that I’ll nev­er find anoth­er cat like him again. Now that I know how affec­tion­ate cats can be, it’ll be hard to accept that they’re not all like that.

      • I know, I get that same feel­ing about my dog now — he’s super­cud­dly, more than any I’ve met.

        But as a small-pet own­er over many years I can tell you every ani­mal, while dif­fer­ent, nev­er dis­ap­points. They are all indi­vid­u­als and I’ve nev­er regret­ted mov­ing on and find­ing and help­ing yet anoth­er lit­tle crea­ture. You find dif­fer­ent joys with each one, and save a life.

  2. Get a kit­ty! You can give such a good home … and com­pa­ny is so good to the life of you present cat! Just my 2 cents. :)

    • I’ve decid­ed to hold off for a while until my life set­tles down and I’m fin­ished trav­el­ing, just because I don’t want to be away while I have a kit­ten grow­ing up (and poten­tial­ly destroy­ing my house). But I don’t know how long I’ll be able to hold out!

  3. Awh. I’m sor­ry to hear about this. I could­n’t even imag­ine if one of my kit­tums passed away, they’re such a huge part of my dai­ly life. I have three cats, and they’re all dif­fer­ent, but they all have pret­ty fan­tas­tic qual­i­ties. I think the cats we brand as anti-social are only so when an own­er ignores them or some­thing. Otherwise all the ones I’ve known that had qual­i­ty time with their own­ers were def­i­nite­ly affec­tion­ate to some degree.

    but it’s good that you gave him the best life you could while he was around.

Leave a Reply