Last Monday, I made the heart wrenching decision to put to sleep my dearest friend, a little black cat called Shadow.  I had her for 15 years.  She was suffering from arthritis and had been losing weight and not responding well to vet prescribed thyroid pills.  She had her good and bad days but in the weeks before having to make the decision to put her to sleep she had not been eating much, and Monday morning she was falling down every couple of steps.  She was obviously in a lot of pain and it was a horrible day as I thought about whether or not it was time to do what was kindest for her all day at work.  I called the vet and made an appointment for that afternoon and after they told me the difficulty walking was likely from her arthritis and then weighed her and I saw she had lost weight since her last visit (down to 5 lbs and she was once a 7-8 lb kitty) I decided it was time to end her suffering.  I could not bear to see her fall any more.  I hated having to put her to sleep at the vets as she didn't like it there and was scared.  I held her head and comforted her as best as I could and it was over quickly.
I cant begin to describe the pain and emptiness I am feeling, how much I am second guessing my decision and wondering if I really did the right thing. Then the next minute I am wondering if I waited too long to do it.  shadow2.jpg
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I am terribly sorry to hear about the loss of Shadow; she is such a beautiful little thing. We all go through the what ifs, buts, maybes, hows, whys, whens. It is part and parcel of that monstrous, cruel, relentless condition called grieving. I have been there myself this year with the loss of my beautiful tabby cat, Gonzo, on 17th July then, on 22nd September, I had to say farewell to my gorgeous German Shepherd, Solly. Two gone in less than ten weeks of one another. The pain for me is still unbearable at times.

All I can say to you is take each day as it comes. Remember the good times you had with Shadow, the joy she brought into your life and the love you both shared. She may send signs that she is still around, only in a different form. The bond you had can never be broken.

I try to think of the separation from my babies as only a fond farewell for the time being, and not a final goodbye as I will see them again one day. I will also see my other four fur babies I have lost over the years. This forum is a wonderful place to meet people in a similar situation. We all understand, because we are all grieving our precious friends.

Take care of yourself. Hugs to you and to your wonderful little Shadow. Her light will never fade.


“Death ends a life, not a relationship.” – Jack Lemmon

Solly, Gonzo, Daisy-Mae, Ebony, Jerry, Tigger, Bonnie, Suzy, Cleo, Spike, Sooty, and Tibby – dazzling lights that will never fade. Adored, cherished, I was privileged to know you all. Until we meet again, my beautiful babies. Bowls of love and cuddles, your ever-loving, devoted Mummy xxxxxxxxxx

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Shadow - what a beautiful creature and loving companion. It really is hard, that day, and many days after. You are used to your feline being there, and they are gone from sight, feel, smell, but never our minds and hearts. Precious beings, they love us and we love them, so that bond will never be broken, even in death, we will always think of them and they will always be watching us, waiting for us on the Rainbow Bridge.
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It's been a week, I am still waiting to get her ashes back.  And I'm not sure how I will be able to take that.  I'm not sure if I should keep them in an urn, scatter them somewhere, or what.  I'm trying to decide what would be a good way to memorialize her.  It's just too hard to think about.  But I feel I should do something, go find a really nice urn, or plant a tree, or something.
The link below is to the submission I put in the "stories" section about her, BTW

My Little Shadow

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It's still so hard to accept she's gone.  
When I got home every day from work she used to be sitting in the window watching for me.  She would see my car and come running to the door.When I opened the door she used to run outside.  She would go to the exact same place every time she got out, down the porch steps to a patch of grass she would nibble on. I learned to be kind of careful opening the door and I still expect her to run out and then I remember she's gone.  
I have been dreading coming home to the empty house. I'm still blaming myself for not spending more time with her.  I took her so for granted when she was here.  She was just always there, such a constant presence in my life and it is so hard to be in this house without her here now.
I called the vet and they still don't have her ashes back yet :(
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The vet called me yesterday around noon and I have her back.  It's so hard to say that.  I have her ashes back, it's all that's left of her.  I got so depressed when I got home.  I just didn't know what to do with a little tin of ashes that's all that's left of my beautiful girl.  So I put a blanket on her favorite chair and just set them there and started crying...  I have been trying to make a plan,  to do a nice memorial for her, maybe bury them near the window she liked to sit in and put a little piece of garden statuary with some plants, that kind of thing.  I miss her so much.

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Shadow is indeed a beauty, and will remain so forever in your memory.  I feel your pain... lost my little Mardi Gras 25 days ago and not a day goes by that I don't grieve for her.  I had a ceramic urn made for her with her picture and name on top, and also am wearing a tiny locket that contains a bit of her ashes.  That keeps her right next to my heart, and I find it comforting.  If I got up from bed in the middle of the night, when I returned she was inevitably lying in my spot where it was warm.  I like to think that she would like to be next to my heart where I can keep her warm. 
Love My Feline Friends
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Calif Cat Lady thanks for the post.  I'm very sorry about Mardi Gras.  
I finally was able to handle thinking about what to do with her ashes, I have found a little wooden box for her, which I am decorating and it has her pictures and name on it. I put a couple of her favorite toys in there with her, I can't find her very favorite one though.  It's shaped like a fish but missing eyes, fins,  she wore it out playing with it.  
I also shopped for some winter blooming flowers so I am going to plant a little garden in her memory.  I found a white hellebore, some cyclamen and primroses, and a pretty dragonfly yard stake, and a little memorial stone which reads "Every garden needs an angel.  In loving memory."  On my shopping trip I held it together until I was in line paying for that stone and that's when I started to cry.  

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Shadow was a truly beautiful baby.  It sounds like you have made up a lovely spot for her
to rest in.  Don't upset yourself more by thinking you took her for granted as you loved
her dearly, that was evident, and she knew it as all our furbabies do. She was always near you and feeling your love.  You were there with her at the end and your voice would have been the last
she heard so she felt safe as she drifted off. I have had to euthanize two beloveds in the past few months and I truly can't imagine a much worse experience, letting our little ones go, but at the same time knowing it is the only choice to give them peace, though we are left to suffer. . 
Guilt, anger, confusion is all a part of mourning.  We think of all the If Onlys. It is a mark of our true love.

Thinking of you, and wishing you peace, some day.

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