I'm not a cat person. And I grew up in those remote days when guys weren't supposed to show feelings. But we've had four cats over the past fourteen years because Donna is a cat person and loves them. Two adopted us and eventually lived inside (they're both gone). The other two were rescued. This past Friday we had to send one of them to that cat place in the sky.

Donna has a lot of supportive girl friends at work and can cry as needed, which she is doing. Me, I can only do so much 'cause I'm a guy.  I think it's absolute and total nonsense, but it seems to be hardwired in my head. :-)   So here goes.

Burt was here for twelve years (he was our first one) and at first I sorta accepted him because I like animals. Eventually he grew on me. He was an orange tabby: friendly, curious, playful, the whole bit. He and Donna were bonded something fierce, but he hung around me a lot when she was out. He did all the stuff cat people like to talk about.

So it hurts like hell he's gone. But what bothers me more than anything is that I didn't see his illness coming until it was too late. Our long-time vet told us several times that cats are very good at hiding illness and injury, and this time he did one heck of a job. It really bothers me, and I need to let it out, which is what I'm doing right now. It also bothers me that I was the one to take him to the vet that last time, because Donna was at work. I know I did the right thing for him, but I also feel like I took him out of his home for the last time.

We have another cat and are trying to pay more attention to him, but the house just feels empty.

There, I let it out.
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Dear notcatperson,

I'm very sorry you lost your precious kitty.  You would be surprised how many men come to this site saying the same thing about emotions and all the absolute and total nonsense that you call it.  You are human. You loved the cat, he loved you, and now he is gone and yes, it hurts, and it feels empty and lonely and quiet.  It's absolutely awful.  I lost my precious Siamese cat of 15 years, Mitookie, on January 27th.  It took many weeks before I finally stopped opening the front door and calling his name out of habit.  The silence was, and still is deafening.  I still have another kitty, but it will never be the same here without Mitookie.  I think there are two things going on here; one is that you aren't supposed to be emotional because you are a guy, and the other is that you are emotional over the loss of cat, and not a dog.  Men tend to be dog people.  You should look up the posts from "Lamont, the man who loved cats." That is how he signs his name.  I have the utmost respect for him because he posted many times about how he was struggling with the loss of his cat. His wife left on vacation soon after the cat had to be put down, so he found himself alone with his feelings.  So he came here and got a whole lot of needed support.  I think the forum here is great for that.  I don't think Lamont will mind me telling you about him.  He came to mind because your words are so similar to those he first posted.  Loss is loss and no one is immune to the pain.  I'm glad you got out what you needed to and I hope you return should you feel like sharing.  No judgement here, that's for sure!  Take care of yourself and I hope you begin to find a little peace amidst the pain. 

Marina ~ Mitookie's Mom
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I'm a man; an old one.  Was originally a dog person, but have been a cat daddy for over 30 years. (BTW, my name is Burt, too!) Much as it seems difficult for you to cop to it, you're an official cat daddy, too. 

You're vet's right.  Cats are incredibly tough and resilient. I've seen over and over how they can compensate for illness and aging.  Until they can't. 

You're right, too; you did take him out of his home for the last time. Thank god it was you. I know it sucks now, but as time passes, I believe you'll come to appreciate that you were there, and that you had the honor of doing your final duty for Burt. 

As a guy and a cat daddy, I can vouch for the value of a good cry for your departed buddy. Maybe you can sneak one in when nobody's watching. 

I wish you all the best. 

B Weinstein
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I totally get what you are saying we lost our cat Scampi of almost 18 years a few weeks back. She had cancer and gave us no clue she was getting sick and when we saw something was off there was nothing that could be done. Our house is so empty and changed forever I still keep looking to see her laying somewhere in a favorite spot. I have cry so much I would have never thought possible for a man. keep strong I guess time will make the loss somewhat more tolerant.
Bill roberts
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Thanks so much to all of you. It doesn't make it any easier, but it does help tremendously. And unfortunately it all comes from other people who have lost pets.

We're still pretty much in zombie mode but doing okay. I think the hardest time will be when get his ashes back in a few days. It was really hard the last two times, and we only had those cats for a few years each. I'm guessing Donna will probably want to have some time alone with him.

We'll see how it goes. And thank you again.
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