Yesterday I made the decision to end the life of my beautiful, loving cat Firefly.
Fifteen months ago the vet found a soft mass in her abdominal region. Given her age (over fourteen years), I made the decision back then that I would not put her through invasive tests or surgery but would monitor her condition and provide euthanasia when I felt it was time. The mass continued to grow but her appetite was excellent (lots of scolding on her part if her dinner wasn't on time!) and her activity level and behaviour remained normal.
But yesterday I finally felt that I had to take action before the tumour created an emergency situation (they can burst and lead to internal bleeding and death) or any loss of quality of life. It was, thankfully, a gentle death at the competent hands of a caring veterinarian.
Firefly came to live with me in 2001 and despite her life as an abandoned cat out on the streets for at least three years, she was one of the sweetest tempered cats I have had the privilege to know. Firefly and Micha both lived on the streets and were great friends.
When Micha disappeared I knew it was only a matter of time before Firefly would likely come to a bad end as well and I then brought her in to live with me. We had twelve happy years together. She always was a gentle creature who would get my attention by either "twanging" the door stop or by sitting on the table behind the couch and putting her nose in my ear. Her soft breath and bristly whiskers would get me up to fill her food dish.
She leaves a space in my life that can not be filled. There are many of these spaces left empty by other cats that once graced my life. Yet despite the sorrow, my life has been enriched immeasurably by having known and loved, and been loved by, these wonderful, perfect creatures.