Skittles
I sent this in PM to a few who'd shown care to me.  I feel now that this is a safe place.  So here's why I asked if it is judgement-free here.

If you don't want to read this, please don't. It is sad and depressing. I warn you - you might be affected.

We are moving to California, leaving Maryland on May 11. We could only move two of our cats. We sent the ones with special needs ahead of us; my niece is caring for them. I searched five states for four months to find the others homes. Only one found a home. One became a barn cat. The others, to my intense bitterness and sadness, went to a no-kill shelter.

But because she was feral, Skittles was unadoptable - so we'd learned from several shelters, rescues, vets, and other sources. We wanted to take her, but the landlord in CA was firm: two cats only.

We took her in, from a feral mother and litter, 12 years ago, when she was 5-6 weeks old. She never lost her wildness. She came to trust us enough to pet her a little bit, as long as she was on the couch and we didn't sit down. She remained feral, yet was a housecat who never went out.

It was impossible for us to catch her. Fortunately Skittles had perfect health; we never had a need to take her to the vet. Since she never went out, and all of our other cats were kept up to date on their shots, we didn't worry too much.

When we'd tried every other way to get her into a carrier, it was time for the last resort. With my sister's help, I got poor Skittles into the small bathroom, and I went in and closed the door. I felt I could catch her with patience, but I could not. I know she was terrified. I pushed away my anguish and kept trying, but couldn't get her. My sister said through the door, "I have a suggestion, but you're not gonna like it." Call animal control.

She spent the night in the bathroom. They came the next morning. Two weeks later I got a letter from animal control: "The animal was alive at the end of the quarantine period." That's when she was euthanized.

My grief is not only for the loss of all my cats (and I do grieve, deeply, for each of them individually), and not only for Skittles's death. My grief is for Skittles - the terror she must've felt as I tried to catch her, as she spent the night alone and scared, as the man from animal control moved in to take her, on the ride to the shelter, and waiting for ten long days in a cage, only to die.

If you've made it this far, thank you for reading. Do you see why I fear judgement? Every other time I've tried to talk online about having to get rid of my kids (for lack of a better phrase), I've faced judgement: "why didn't you try this?" or "you didn't try hard enough" or "b*tch!" and more. So I've internalized it all until now.

Courage is the price that life exacts for granting peace. - Amelia Earhart
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Beaglemomma
You will NOT get judgment from ME.  It is obvious you did everything humanly possible to save and move ALL of your kitties.  What happened is unthinkable, BUT NOT YOUR FAULT. 

As much as our lives revolve around our animals and as much as we love them, there comes times that human lives have to do what they must----as horrible and insensitive as that might sound. 

None of us can say what we will actually DO until we are faced with the situation ourselves.  It is easy to say----do this, try that-----but what do we know we will really DO until we ourselves are faced with it.  I know you are beating yourself up over this, know I would be too.  Since I don't know the reasons for your move who can say what they would do.

We face these types of decisions all the time.  Would we do chemo ourselves if we are old and don't have children to raise?  Just one example.  I don't know.  Right now I think NO, but then I am NOT faced with that decision and it is quite another thing when you yourself face these decisions.

The old Indian saying comes to mind here---------"don't judge till you have walked a mile in my shoes".  There is a reason for old sayings.

I am truly sorry for you and your kitty, I am sure you tried everything you could.  Several solutions come to MY mind but then I don't know the whole story and even then, I am NOT in your place.
janice
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JerseyNonna
I see no reason that you hear judgment of any negativity from anyone who has ever tried to deal with a feral cat.  you gave skittles a life of love as much as any human can offer to a feral and it's just a shame that you had to give skittles up because of a landlord's rule of "only two" because I know for a fact that you would have moved mountains to take her with you had you been allowed to.  it also says something to your character that a feral cat such as skittles allowed you into her area and life so please try not to be so hard on yourself because it sounds to me as if she trusted you more than anyone she has ever come across and she would tell you that same thing were she able to.  it is unfortunate that we seem to have more ferals out there who have been dumped by humans at some point, some still intact to create more ferals and my God were I in the same situation i'm very sure i'd be very leary of any sort of human until they proved themselves to me - and my heart tells me that you certainly proved yourself to skittles so well done to a loving cat guardian.  please be kind to yourself and realize that you did the best you could and the outcome was not what you wished it to be.  many many hugs to you and prayers to help you come to terms with the only fact that matters - you loved skittles and did a real good thing in taking her in.  never berate yourself for things that are beyond your control (such as the new landlord's rule).  i'm also sure that skittles' spirit is still with you because in her own feral way she loved you and your kindness to her will always be with you.  try to be good to yourself, you deserve it!
JerseyNonna
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KatiesMom
I am so sorry for what you are going thru and totally agree with Janice. Who are we to judge not having walked in your shoes?

Your story brought tears to my eyes reminding me of some of my own decisions, which later caused me to doubt and caused emotional pain. Some I have to live with forever and the memories hurt. Some of my stories are related to previous pets, when I just did not know better. And one is related to family, when I should have known and out of pure fear to loose my job, made a wrong decision to work instead of hopping into a plane to see my dying father, which still hurts me ...... a lot.

Where I want to go with this is, to ask you to allow and forgive yourself over time. Your Skittie was so lucky, you loved her for many years. So many times we have to realize, we are just humans and go thru lifelong learning and many regrets and changes over a life time.

It touches me deeply, that you feel what you feel. Your Skittie would want you to move forward, maybe reflect on everything and see things so much clearer in future situations. For me, it took my sweet Katie's love to realize, bow much I actually had to learn about love and how to live, how to forgive.... and ultimately move forward, becoming a better human being along the way. And boy, the way is long and sometimes hard. Trust yourself for being so kind to reflect and grieve - you will grow in your heart with the knowledge, you now found. And please, just have to say it one more time, please forgive yourself to turn this whole ordeal into something more powerful than you can see or feel right now.




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Chase
No judgement here. We all have lost a beloved pet. We All feel greife here. It's not your fault first of all. You had no other options. I could barley give my kitten a bath without her trying to destroy my hands. And claws are SHARP! You didn't want it to happen. I think that animal control should of CALLED you and told you BEFORE euthanizeing skittles. From what I understand is you didn't want them to send skittles to the letterboxes of heaven where skittles is playing and on the hunt. You just simply wanted them to catch her and keep her there for a day or two until everything was settled. You did all your could do. Skittles is in a better place
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Evie123
Sweetheart, i understand why you are in so much turmoil. The fact you are so upset shows you cared deeply for skittles and tried every other option you could. If you hadn't taken her in and given her an experience of love and looked after her she probably would not have lived as long as she did. You helped her quality of life but she was clearly so feral and past the stage of being domesticated that she would have been put to sleep. I know spending her last few days in a cage was not ideal but she was better off there being kept safe and fed rather than the dangers faced in the street and being prey to a horrible attack or abuse? I know it must be so hard for you to try to accept this is all you could do but you had two choices; to leave her to roam and vulnerable to goodness knows what or try to keep her safe and go peacefully. I so wish you hadn't been put in such an awful position in the first place, such a shame you were restricted to two cats only. You are a kind and compassionate person to have let so many fur babies into your heart but we all dwell on things we wished we had done. Please try to be kinder to yourself, I'm so sorry for the pain you are in. No judgement, just sympathy and compassion. Xxx
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Oscarmeyer
I think Skittles was very lucky. We have a feral friend too and try as I might, I can't get within 3 feet of her yet she lets me feed and water her on the back porch. While it is tragic what happened, it would have been much worse had you just turned her loose to fend for herself and maybe starved to death? No...Skittles was a very lucky kitty. Try to take solace in the fact that you gave her a wonderful life
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