R.I.P., Toonces

We lost our cat today. I would have to say that this sucks.

Toonces, who came into our lives about 21 years ago, used up all of her nine lives down to the very end. One day we were walking in the park near our house in KS and this scruffy black kitten walked up to Meghan. She was two at the time, and said “Can we make her mine?”. She was kinda cute as kittens usually are – that is what makes them so damned addictive. She must have figured “my job here is done and I now have a place to live so screw the hygiene!”. She never really grooming herself much. Ever. You could brush her and she just didn’t look that way for very long.

She was a good cat, but with an attitude… never really friendly until my cat Bob died a few years back. After that she seemed to come out of her shell since she was then the only cat in the house. She would sleep next to me after he died, seemingly trying to fill that void as best as she could.

Like most pets, she asked for little in return – a sunny place on the carpet to stretch out, a butt-scratch here and there, some food, water, and the occasional treat. She had lost some hearing and vision the last few years but was still the same scruffy, loveable cat who wanted attention… albeit on her own terms.

She and Kona (the dog) went to live with Meghan a couple of years ago after she was settled in and I was moving out of CO. She was doing okay, but starting to show signs of age. Recently, she started to decline rapidly, and “The Decision” had to be made. It is a tough decision to make knowing what the final outcome is; it has to be not only what is best but also the least selfish, and that is a tough line to unblur.

They say you should never have to bury your kids. Our pets are, for the most part, our “kids” and we usually see them through from start to finish. They are also a link to the past… of old times, tying us to certain events or people in our lives. It is so hard to not see them and know that they are now gone, yet we now know that their suffering has gone away. Not only have we lost someone we love, but a little bit of our past is lost, too. Our previous pets that we lost had been around for quite a stay as well. Bob the Cat was about 15 when we lost him, and our dog Lakota was 16. Toonces was the last one of that era of our lives.

It is with a very heavy heart I bid you farewell, Toonces.

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