colleenm
Hello.  Last night I came home and noticed this smell in my front area.  I live in a townhouse.  When I looked behind this tarp I had set up, I found this dead cat that I had been leaving food for.   This started about maybe 2 weeks ago.  I had been leaving cat food out int his little area where I had put down some straw and a tarp to protect from the elements.  Since last winter I had done this for a few neighbor cats.  Well, about 2 wks ago, as I usually do in the morning, I went outside and looked inside the tarp.  To my surprise , there sat this black and white cat.  He kind of meowed at me.  so I went and filled up the food dish, but he would not eat until I left.  Came back later and the cat hopped out on 3 legs and went under this other area I had tarp over.  the poor things back leg had a wound on it, like some animal had bitten it.  I was afraid to try to even touch the cat, so I continued leaving food out for him and always talked to him.   After about 5 days, I did not see the cat at all, until last night when I came home and found him dead.  I forgot to mention that I had called this lady who rescues cats the first Sunday I had noticed this cat and she advised I trap it and bring to the vets.  I was willing to pay someone to please come and trap the cat.  I only saw the cat for maybe 1/2 hour that same night and was not able to trap it.  I know I am rambling.  But I was so upset last night when I saw this poor cat had died.  I keep crying.  I have 2 cats of my own but this cat's death has me so upset.  My neighbor came down and picked up the cat and put in a bag.  He was going to put in his freezer and then bury it later where he has some of his cats buried.  I just feel so bad and wanted to get this out.  I blame myself for not trying hard enough to get the cat to a vet.  It may have survived.  The one thing I take comfort in is that the cat came back to me to die.  Does that sound sick?? 6
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kerynm
It does not sound sick at all.  That baby was coming back to the one place where he felt some love and caring.  He chose you and he was probably sick anyway, the wound could have been infected.  You were able to give him something he probably never had....someone who cared.  You should be proud, and, it is okay to be sad about this cat.  His life was most likely filled with pain and hunger.  You showed him that, in his last moments, that not all humans are bad.

You are brave and sweet, hang in there and keep doing what you do.

Keryn
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colleenm
Keryn, thank you so much for responding to my post.  I am in tears again after reading your response.  I think I may be as upset over this poor cat as I was when I had to put my other cat to sleep 7 years ago. I now have 2 cats, whom I have been extra loving to since last night.  I feel bad because I did have a few opportunities where I should have gone and bought one of those humane traps and maybe gotten the cat in it so I could take him/her to the vet.  I feel like I let him/her down.   Today I went outside a few times and just sat and looked at that tarp where this poor baby laid down and died.  I was gone all day yesterday so I am now wondering was he/she there during the day and crying out for help?   I know one thing, I will contribute more to animal rescuers, etc.  I do donate occasionally, but I want to do more now.  Wish I had it in me to rescue cats, but it is too heartbreaking.  Thanks again for replying.  You made me feel better..  God bless you..
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colleenm
I thought of a name to call this poor furbaby who died on my property.  I have no idea if it was a she or a he, so I call her/him Bailey.  I think my husband thinks I am nuts.  But I prayed for a long time last night and prayed for Bailey to forgive me for not trying harder to save her..   My husband said the neighbor who took the cat for me asked if I wanted a name put on his grave and I said the poor thing did not even have a name.  I wish I had come up with a name so he could have done this.  Haven't seen the neighbor since, so do not even know if he buried Bailey yet..  I need to go and remove the tarp and the straw I had for any cat to use.  I just can't do it yet..
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Kashkas_Person
What is so sad, and so moving about your story is that Bailey represents how many other abandoned, lost, unwanted and unloved kitties in this world.  Its just too overwhelming to think of - so many of us try not to think about it.  To care about one is to care about them all, and that is a courageous thing.  Thank you for being a human being with feelings and a heart - not nuts at all! 
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colleenm
I cannot even begin to imagine how many unloved, feral animals are out there in this world.  There are so many in the small town I live in.  I just cannot fathom how people can not neuter/spay their pets, etc.. Or let them outside.  Posting here and reading replies does make me feel better.  But I know that I could have done more to get this baby rescued.  I had the time but just did not do it..  I hate thinking how long the baby suffered, etc.. 
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colleenm
I was not going to post this because I know it may sound (I don't even know what to call it) strange..  But sunday night when my neighbor was removing the dead cat from under my tarp, I swear I heard a cat cry.  Now, my front door was open so it could have been ( but I don't think it sounded like my cats) one of my cats.  so now I have been thinking, what if that poor cat was not dead and when he placed him in the bag, etc, that killed him??  My husband keeps telling me, that cat was dead.  I know there was a smell, but could it be possible that the smell was from the cats wound?    Am I just being crazy??   I wanted to ask my neighbor today when I saw him, but was afraid to.  I did not even ask him anything about the cat. 
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Kashkas_Person
Hello
A similar thing that happened to me in my grief.  I was soooo overwhelmed with how Kashka's euthanasia went (I had the sense that she did not want to go at that moment - I have reasons for thinking this which I wont get into here).  The morning after I put her in the ground, I heard the saddest cat cry coming from the direction of the woods in the back yard - so defeated sounding, my first thought was -what if ts Kashka, her spirit communicating with me.  Not that I go around believing in things like that, but I dont disbelieve either - anything's possible and I think I was just so distraught, and overwhelmed by grief, I just latched on to that as a possibility...for lack of any other explanation.

 I also thought it might beone of my cats so I ran downstairs, into the backyard in the direction I thought I heard it coming from, but as I was heading that way, I heard the sound again, but from behind me, in another direction entirely, and far away sounding, could barely hear it. It wasnt my cats because they were lying on the picnic table sunning themselves.

This just sent me around the bend - I had been starting to accept her death, but hearing this distressed cat sound that had no explanation just reactivated it big time.  I couldnt really say it was Kashka communicating with me from beyond the grave - but thing is, I couldnt really say it WASNT her  either.

So a few weeks passed.  I happened to be sitting in my backyard when I heard the same sad sounding cat cry.   This time I identified it - it was my neighbor's cat up on a second floor porch, stuck outside and wanting in!  A huge weight lifted- I think that feelings of guilt and grief just have a way of coloring every situation.  How you interpret the experience  is filtered through the emotion.  Had you heard that at another time  you would have probably come up with another explanation - neighbor cat, etc.

Also please note that second guessing and doubting yourself and what you thought was going on at the time seems to be a common feature of grief, part of the process.  A lot of us just havent had a lot of direct experience with death, so when it happens - its confusing and upsetting. 

I wonder if for your own sense of closure it would make sense to ask your neighbor about what happened, has the cat been buried and letting him know how much it means to you that this cat was treated respectfully in death.  You might not even have to come right out and ask the question (was the cat really dead) but maybe just by the things he says and how he talks to you about it might give you some peace around what happened. Do you know him very well?  It sounds like a kind offer.

Take care, cathy
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colleenm
Hi.  I know him a little, but not real well.  I will ask him when I see him again, though.  I know that night I asked and he said, oh yes, he's dead..  Thanks for replying..
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heartsick
You do not sound sick at all for being concerned about the kitty.
However if it had a wound and died in less than 5 days it could have had rabies-
 or the wound was so infected that al of the cat's organs and blood were infected also.
Chances are that even if you trapped the cat it may have been too late - especially if it
was rabies. There are two types of rabies - ferocious and dumb - in dumb rabies the animal
is very sedate and just sits in one spot and dies from the rabies.
I have rescued many tiny kittens ( between 3 and 5 weeks old- and found them all loving homes),
however recently they have found rabies in a feral community of cats near here so even my vet told
me to stop and I have to just no go near that colony of kitties. Thankfully I have not seen any since they found rabies
but with feral cats it is so difficult to tell what may have killed them.
Outside cats have an average lifespan of only 5 to 7 or 8 years- whereas inside cats have been known to live
well into their 20's.
That little one knew Love because of you.
He had food and a clean dry place to hide out because of you.
You did everything you could for him.
You must know that as much as we want to help that we also must look out for our own health and the health of our own personal babies.
That is the most difficult thing to do. Also with a black kitty it is very difficult to see blood or wounds on them.
You have every right to grieve- and to give the little one a name - though do not blame yourself -
You are the reason that he felt LOVE and felt safe near you in the little house you built for him.
You did a good thing.

You are in my thoughts.

Susan (heartsick)
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colleenm
Thank you, Susan.  I do feel a little better today than I did on MOnday.  the cat was pretty much sedate most of the times.  Just kind of stayed in the straw and then would eat and then go under the tarp.  Except for the 4 or 5 days I did not see him at all.  Then he came back and I guess he came back to die.  I wish I could have been there when he died, but since I had not seen him in days, I thought maybe he took off somewhere or something.  I know I did good by the kitty.  Just sad when I think of all the babies out there all alone.  And then I cry all over again..  I appreciate your comments.  You take care of yourself, too...  
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colleenm
Well, today was a better day.  But right now I am feeling sad and crying again for Bailey.  I wish she did not die all alone outside on the cement under a tarp.  I wish I could have been there and maybe talk to her and calm her.  I just keep seeing her black paws with the white at the tips.  I wish it was a week ago and I could be home all day Sunday this time and maybe be here when Bailey came and died.
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colleenm
JUst reading some of the posts again and crying over so much sadness.  We all loved our furbabies with all we had and they know it..  I just wanted to let everyone know that I am thinking of all of us who are grieving.. 
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