Marchingo
Dear all, 

I am new to this forum. Over the weekend my wife and I experienced the most excruciating loss. We lost our cat of 17 years (5 years for me since I met my wife). Unfortunately to make matters worse, we were in Austin Texas for the long weekend when our little man fell ill. We were powerless to be there for him as our landlords who live above us and were feeding our pets said he had become lame in his back left leg. We called an emergency vet and our best friend to find out he needed to go to Emergency Vet. 

Our worst fears were realized when tests concluded he had Saddle Thrombus - a blood clot had split from his heart to his left. He was in a lot of pain and despite my wife and I begging the Vet to keep him alive as we fly back from Austin. Unfortunately the Vet did not want to do this and we had to farewell our little Tigger via FaceTime via our best friend. We arrived back last night to say farewell to Tigger but he was obviously a cold frame of his former bubbly self. 

The guilt my wife and I have for being away and not being with him in the final day(s) is immense and we cannot stop crying for our loss of a man we've had for so long (half my wife's life) is just ripping our hearts out. 

He was the most beautiful albiet grumpy and set in his ways cat but he was the love of our lives. How do you overcome such grief?


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shantismom
You overcome one day at a time and remind yourself that you gave Tigger a loving home for many years.  
It is especially difficult when you are away, this happened to me in 2008 when my cat died while I was on a trip.  But remember your precious kitty is no longer having any pain or problems.
The pain we feel is the price we pay for the years of love and they are worth it.
Marlene Wagner
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CarerQuie
You bremember how much love was shared between you all. Your cat loved you for many years and it is so hard when they go. In time, the good memories will help.xx
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catperson
I am new here too, and the same thing happened to me - this past weekend! We were on vacation and our housesitter found our beloved cat dead the morning we were coming home; he called us while we were en route and we found out as we were making our connecting flight. Ours was 12 years old and a really special guy; although he had some health problems it was totally unexpected. I posted more about this under the post title "guilt and grief" - because the guilt over not being there, not paying more attention before we left, is making this even harder than the loss. We had a fabulous, much-needed vacation in Cancun away from the frozen northeast but now I feel really bad about it and think we should have spent it on veterinary care instead.

You are not alone.
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Marchingo
I am so sorry about your loss too - certainly tough stuff to deal with 
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