I've lost pets before, and it's never easy.  But this time it's different. In the past I've tragically lost pets from being hit by a car etc. It's sad, but at least they die instantly without suffering. I know that may sound cruel, but I'm trying to draw a comparison between dying instantly and the way Miss Kitty suffered and died. 

I did some research on what happens when a cat leaves home to hide and die.
I didn't like what I learned. And I can already see that the healing process for me to overcome my grief in the passing of Miss Kitty is going to take much longer than in the past when I've suffered through the death of a loved pet.

Here's why.

When a cat leaves home to die, they don't just walk away and drop dead.
Dying for a cat is a lengthy process. They search for a place that will protect them from predators. Once they find a place to die they curl up into a ball and lay down and slowly die from dehydration and starvation. This means that my sweetheart Miss Kitty didn't die instantly and suffered no more. She died an agonizingly slow and painful death. And now this memory of her painful death is on my shoulders for eternity. I should have recognized that she desperately needed medical attention. The signs of her needing help were all around me. She lost weight, her fur was constantly wet and her fur stained whatever she laid down on. How could I have been so blind and not grabbed her into my arms and rushed her to the nearest Vet for help??!! I am the reason why she died. There's no other reason, but me. Her strong appetite fooled me into thinking she would be ok as time passed. But she never got better. And now she's gone forever. 

In times past when a pet died it was the result of someone else's actions. This time when Miss Kitty died it's solely the fault of mine, and it doubles and triples the pain that I'm enduring. There is no excuse for me not doing more to help poor Miss Kitty. God please forgive me. Miss Kitty I know you're in a better place now. A place where you will always be cared for, unlike me who you loved and trusted and I did nothing to help you. Please forgive me Miss Kitty. I'm sorry. I truly am. 

Miss Kitty's friend
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Oh, David, your words are utterly, completely, absolutely breaking my heart.  Please, oh, please don't do this to yourself.  You didn't know.  You took care of her the best you knew how.  Even us older people could have easily missed signs like that.  You don't really know that it happened as you are imagining.  You speak as if you believe in God so please put her in God's arms now and focus on that.  There is a good chance that she did not suffer and I pray for that.  She is with God now and I know she does not remember any pain or suffering.  She would not want you to suffer or blame yourself.  God isn't holding anything against you and neither is Miss Kitty. 
I know you need to cry and grieve and I want you to do that as long as you need to...and it will take a while.  But, you gave Miss Kitty love, a good home,  and a wonderful life and that is worth so much.   You are such a good person.  I'm praying for you to have peace with this.    Watch for Miss Kitty to send you a sign letting you know that she is happy and doing fine!  If you see a sign, you'll know she wants you to forgive yourself!  
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