bluesilverkdg: (Default)
I REALLY hate that my first entry in two months (wow...it has been that long) has to be a sad one, but alas..

January 1997 ~ August 2010

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Yesterday morning, my precious General passed away. It was a little unexpected, but not totally. I had noticed in the last few weeks, that he'd dropped a bit of weight. Not enough to see casually, but I thought he was looking a bit thinner than usual. I made homemade cat food to try and get some weight back on him, and he ate everything in the house voraciously. But he was still just sort of maintaining a slightly lower weight than I was used to seeing. I'd also noticed him sneezing sometimes. However, the last bit, as you can imagine has been hectic, and getting him to a vet unfortunately took a back seat. (Mom fell last week, and that resulted in another trip to the hospital.) Plus, he just didn't *seem* sick. Up until just a few days ago, he was the same frisky, playful kitty I've always known and loved. In fact, just last week, he was chasing the laser pointer around the living room, plowing head-first into furniture, then coming right back for more. But Sunday night, he seemed off. Yesterday morning, he seemed REALLY off, and I'd determined he definitely needed to see the doctor. His breathing seemed labored and his purr was raspy and that really, really concerned me. I actually was planning to go to an oncology appointment with mom, so my intention was to take him to the vet right after.

We never made it that far. When I came in from mom's appointment, he was lying in my bedroom, in a pile of my clothes that needed to be washed. He looked like he was taking a nap. It saddens me that even in his dying moment, he wanted to be near something of mine that smelled like me, but it also warms my heart. People might say that animals can't feel love, but I beg to differ on this. General loved me. I know it as well as I know the sky is blue. He loved me, and I loved him. And yesterday, I knew, just intuitively knew, that he was a lot sicker than I'd originally thought, but it was too late by that time. I had a bad feeling as I was driving home from the doctor's office to get him, but I don't think I realized it was THAT bad.

My world lost a little (OK, a lot) of its light yesterday morning. While mom has been sick, he has been a constant source of comfort. The girls and Trouble are always around, and yes, sometimes they pick me up when I'm feeling sad. But General was always, always, always there for me. When I would cry, which I've done a lot of lately, he would curl up right under my chin and bop his head against my face. He gave me kitty kisses on the nose every time he climbed on my lap. He was truly my baby and he was extremely special to me. Cats are often aloof and independent, and while they like having their humans around, they can do without them. I think General needed me, and my God, I needed him. I still do and I have to say, it will be tough making it through the coming months and years without him next to me. We've been through it all together...my divorce, job loss, moves, mom's illness, deaths of other family members, both human and animal... My constant companion for 13 years. We had a bond that words fail to describe.

My title comes from the fact that, for as long as I can remember, General slept on the pillow to the right-hand side of me. It was "his" side of the bed, and I rarely used that pillow to sleep on. At night, if I'd been reading or watching TV in bed, and had all the pillows propped up behind my back, he would wait patiently for me to put his pillow down, then he'd climb up on it and go to sleep next to me. Seeing that empty pillow this morning was really hard to take.

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Someone said yesterday that they wondered if he waited until after I was gone to die. And I think that may have been the case, or maybe it was just coincidental timing. But I have a suspicion he laid down for that final nap right after I left the house. Even then, he didn't want me to see him struggling. He was truly a special boy, and there shall never be another like him.


(And it just struck me yesterday, that the two-year anniversary of Sabrina's death was last week, the 18th. They were best friends from the day I brought her home, and while he bonded with Trouble, and obviously loved my two remaining girls, I don't think he ever stopped missing Sabrina. One of the few things that comforts me through this is the hope that maybe the two of them have finally been reunited.)

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bluesilverkdg: (Default)
*****WARNING*****
This post concerns cat poo.
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Might not want to read if you're eating. Or don't care about cat poo.
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General has been walking around the house meowing all day, pitifully. He would scratch at the carpet, like a bull getting ready to charge. And he just seemed miserable and angry. I think I now know why. He kept going to the litterbox, then jumping out, getting in, jumping out. Finally he squatted on the rug that I keep under the box, which I would normally discourage, but didn't today, because I wanted to see what was going on with him. So I watched. He strained and strained and just looked really annoyed for what seemed like forever. When he got up, I went over to examine. One teeny little spot of poo about the size of a pea, if that. So I'm thinking he's constipated.

I did some reading online, and I've heard recommendations from cod liver oil (which cats supposedly like the taste of), to Vaseline on their paw to flax seed, to cooked boiled chicken (not sure what this would do?) If I use cod liver oil, where do I get it? I don't think I've ever noticed it in a store, although it's not like I've been looking for it.

Have any of you had a constipated kitty, and if so, what did you do about it? He seems so utterly miserable, and I want to help him. I'm wondering if things will just "break free" on their own, or do I need to help him out? Poor baby.
bluesilverkdg: (Default)
I can't resist. Is this not the sweetest thing you've ever seen?

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The cuteness factor is simply unbearable. Now if I could just get him to stop chasing Oreo every time she breathes.
bluesilverkdg: (Default)
By popular request (OK, like 3 or 4 people have asked), here are some updated kitty pictures. New Kitty On the Block isn't so new anymore. I've now had him for over four months, and he's approximately seven months old. When I brought him home from the shelter, he was a paltry three pounds. He now tips the scale at almost nine pounds and is still growing like a weed. He's very lean and muscular and has the most gigantic feet and ears I've ever seen. If he grows into them, he's going to be the size of a tiger.

I was trying to get a good picture of him and General together, for comparison. General has actually lost a bit of weight, down from 17 pounds, to about 15. I've had them on a higher protein diet, and that seems to be helping the pudge. Still, he's a big boy, and Trouble is rapidly gaining on him.

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Moar. )
bluesilverkdg: (General paw)
The other day, General threw up in their food bowl. I wasn't sure whether to praise him for being efficient and helping me with cleanup, or fuss at him, because I had to dump the entire thing out. He used to upchuck his dinner all the time, but thankfully that has been cut down considerably. I've been feeding them Iams Digestive Health cat food for a while, and it's seemingly helped a good bit. Still, I'd kinda prefer it if maybe he threw up his food, oh...never? The girls don't. Well, hardly ever. I don't even remember the last time one of them yorked up their dinner. But General gobbles his food as if every meal is his last on this earth. I don't know why he feels the need to do this. I keep food out for them in two different bowls at all times. So it's not like he has one feeding time, and has to hoarde his food to keep the girls from getting it all. It's there constantly. They can nibble and snack whenever they want. But apparently he is just a piggy and can't seem to get this through his head. You know how men are.

I've taken him to the vet and they can't find any medical reason why he throws up so much. And I've gotta say, the frequency HAS decreased from almost every day to maybe once a week or so. Still, like I said, I'd kinda prefer that it decreased even more.

Do any of you have issues with food gobblers? And do they throw up after doing this? (I'm talking more of the feline variety, not human, because I know some of you have family members who inhale their dinner, too.) If so, what have you done for it? I'd be willing to try a different food, or any sort of natural remedy, what have you. I just want to save my flooring from the Vomit Of Doom. Plus, I can't tell you how appetizing it is to be sitting at the table eating MY dinner and hear that familiar "urk...urk...urk...bluuurrrrrp" in the background. Yum.

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I've gotta say though, at least he is hitting the litterbox now, so maybe some progress has been made. I don't know that I ever want another male animal. Boys are just trouble.
bluesilverkdg: (tiger.)
I just poured General out some treats, and noticed that they're shaped like little fish. Now of course, General is VERY observant and also noticed that they were shaped like fish. He appreciates the effort that I put into choosing treats that are appealing to his sensibilities (the reason I use "he" in this post, is that the girls couldn't care less about treats, so they rarely partake.)

These treats are also multi-colored. One side is brown, the other side is yellow, which is very important. Cats also like their food to be color-coordinated.
I have to wonder, exactly who are the cat fud makers targeting when they do stuff like this? Certainly not the cats. I'm actually pretty confident that I could throw down a gray lump of slime, and if it tasted appealing, they'd eat it.

I heard a stand-up comedian talking about cat fud flavors one time. He was laughing about how we have chicken and turkey and tuna flavored cat fuds. Of course, those are all made to appeal to the owners, not the cats. He observed that if the cats had a say in it, cat fud would be mouse flavored. And it's probably true. But would anyone buy it? And I guess in order to MAKE mouse flavored cat fud, someone would have to know what mice taste like. Well, there probably are people who know what mice taste like. And those people are insane. But most everyone knows what tuna or salmon or beef tastes like, so if we have human taste-testers at pet food places, they can say "yeah, this tastes like chicken." Which makes me wonder, DO they have human taste-testers working for pet food makers? When Purina says "now more flavor than ever!", do they really KNOW that it has more flavor than ever? Why were we denied more flavor in the past? And who decides this? It's not like Fluffy can say "wow, I'm really enjoying this bag much more than the last. I mean, the other was OK, but now this? THIS has so much more flavor. I'm picking up a hint of bacon, with some undertones of mahi mahi. And I have noticed that the morsels are decidedly more crispy. Excellent choice this week!" oooooooooooooop;olllllllllllllllllllll

OK. Sabrina put that last part in there. I'm not kidding. She actually spelled "poll." I think she was trying to say "lol", but she got a little excited. She's telling all of you in Kentucky to get out and vote today. Or perhaps she wants me to post a poll about whether or not people would buy mouse flavored cat fud. And she also thought this entry was funny/entertaining/observant, and said "ooooo, lol!"

I think perhaps I'm lacking some brain cells at the moment. Someone please help me.

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