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ayrton88

Help...just lost my little cat

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I just had my little girl cat Joy put to sleep.   I feel so alone.   I am a 68 year old man and never had kids so Joy was very important to me to say the least.   I can honestly say I don't know if I ever loved anything so much.   I feel horrible saying it,  but even my girlfriend.   I know I'll feel different later,   but living everyday for the last 12 years with just Joy for company, most days,   the closeness was that special.   I have a sister in a nearby town and a 96 year old mother but I don't interact with them everyday like I did with Joy. 

I do take some comfort in the fact that she was so sick.   She has had  renal failure and thyroid problems for a few years.   She was on 4 or 5 different medications and I had to give her subcutaneous fluids every couple days.    Recently she stopped eating so I had to force feed her .   Over the weekend she stopped drinking so I knew the time was close.   Yesterday she was so weak she could barely walk so I made the call I was dreading.   Thank God for in home euthanasia.   My heart is broken but mixed with some relief because I knew she was suffering.   Now I kind of kick myself for maybe her suffering too long.   I just couldn't let go.   I'd like to rush right out and adopt another cat but feel like maybe I better wait a little.   The house seems so empty.  

 

 

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50 minutes ago, ayrton88 said:

I have a sister in a nearby town and a 96 year old mother but I don't interact with them everyday like I did with Joy. 

Exactly, my friend. This is one of the main reasons that loss of a cherished animal companion hits us so hard. When we love someone the way you love your Joy, we bring that being into every aspect of our lives. It is an incredibly intimate relationship, and we cannot help but notice such an enormous absence. The emptiness  is powerful, and the silence is deafening. I am so sorry for your loss. I hope you will allow yourself ample time to mourn this loss of your Joy, and find some ways to honor her memory. You will know when you feel ready and able to give your heart to another cat, and you can thank your Joy for teaching you how to truly love an animal. ♥️

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I’m truly sorry you lost your little girl, don’t feel bad about your girlfriend, I’ve lost my sweetheart, a little dog who means the world to me, I understand how you feel and I’ll tell you right now, my baby means just as much as my husband and my family and not just because im hurting,it’s because it’s the truth.

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Thanks for your replies.    I noticed in one of the articles you sent Marty,  that nursing a pet through a serious illness gets you even closer to them and I think that is the case for me.   So much of my day was given to treating her many illnesses.   Thank God I was retired and had the time.    Now,  I don't know what to do with myself.   I am feeling some relief though.   I didn't realize how much Joy's illness was affecting my well being.  The constant anxiety couldn't have been good for me.  Still,  the pain I'm feeling now is much worse. 

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13 hours ago, ayrton88 said:

I just had my little girl cat Joy put to sleep.   I feel so alone.   I am a 68 year old man and never had kids so Joy was very important to me to say the least.   I can honestly say I don't know if I ever loved anything so much.   I feel horrible saying it,  but even my girlfriend.   I know I'll feel different later,   but living everyday for the last 12 years with just Joy for company, most days,   the closeness was that special.   I have a sister in a nearby town and a 96 year old mother but I don't interact with them everyday like I did with Joy. 

I do take some comfort in the fact that she was so sick.   She has had  renal failure and thyroid problems for a few years.   She was on 4 or 5 different medications and I had to give her subcutaneous fluids every couple days.    Recently she stopped eating so I had to force feed her .   Over the weekend she stopped drinking so I knew the time was close.   Yesterday she was so weak she could barely walk so I made the call I was dreading.   Thank God for in home euthanasia.   My heart is broken but mixed with some relief because I knew she was suffering.   Now I kind of kick myself for maybe her suffering too long.   I just couldn't let go.   I'd like to rush right out and adopt another cat but feel like maybe I better wait a little.   The house seems so empty.  

 

 

We here are animal lovers and get it...they are with us all the time at home so it's different than our other relationships where you see someone once a week or so.  Plus animals are so loving, they seem to love us unconditionally and are so affectionate.  I'm sorry for your loss, I know it had to be very hard for you.  I hope the pain lessens in the days ahead.

 

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On 2/4/2019 at 3:08 PM, ayrton88 said:

I just had my little girl cat Joy put to sleep... I'd like to rush right out and adopt another cat but feel like maybe I better wait a little.   The house seems so empty.  

 

It is so hard to lose a pet, and I totally understand what you mean when it is just you and her really. For me it has been like that with my cat Lena. We used to me a little family of me, my dad, and Lena. Now it is just me and Lena. I hope she lives as long as I do, but that is unlikely. Getting another pet is a very personal decision and no one can tell you what to do.  I believe you can never replace a person or a pet and every relationship is a new one. No one could ever replace Joy, but a new pet could help ease your suffering. Joy helped you to cope with whatever you were dealing with before, and a new pet would help you with your life now and you wouldn't be alone. Lena has helped me to cope with the loss of my father. She can't replace him, but her presence in my life has given me love, comfort and solace. Chances are good that I will live longer than my beloved Lena, and there will probably be another cat who will help me cope with that heartbreak, even though no cat could ever replace her. And there is no shortage of cats who are desperately in need of love and a good home. I wish you the best.

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Sorry for your loss and that you had to watch your buddy suffer.

I don't think you should feel weird about loving her so much. I've been just as sad losing my cat as I was when my mom died. In some ways, I think I also loved old Stinky a little more than my boyfriend. (He always joked that the only reason he ever came to my apartment was to hang out with Stinky, too. She was the best!)

The only advice I've heard about adopting so soon is just that you have to make sure you're not getting another cat hoping it'll be like the one you lost. I've heard people suggest that you look for a different breed and a kitty with a different personality so that you don't find yourself expecting your new furry friend to be like your old one. That can make things even more difficult.

Hugs your way. ❤️

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Well,  I did adopt a new kitty Friday.   I'm so glad I did.   Living alone the house just seemed so empty and I missed having something to take car of.  My new cat was a stray and was really skittish the first day or so.   Today she started exploring and that makes me feel better.  She is extremely affectionate which is exactly what I need.   I will say it is so nice to have a cat with , knock wood,  no special needs.   I didn't realize how much of my day was spent dealing with Joy's health issues.   That said,  if I could have done more to save her I would have.    I still miss Joy but my new kitty Emmie is just what I needed.  

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Congratulations on the new addition to your family!  I know you will miss and grieve Joy yet I pray Emmy is a bright spot in your day too, lifting your spirits.

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She is such a little darling I'm so glad I didn't wait.   It was so lonely in this empty house.   My girlfriend live 60 miles away and I usually visit every weekend but this midwest winter has been so bad I've only seen her once since Christmas.    The cat have been my only companion.  

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I'm so sorry, I understand.

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On 2/11/2019 at 8:51 AM, ayrton88 said:

She is such a little darling I'm so glad I didn't wait.  

That is wonderful - I am so happy for you! Send us a pic, if you want to, so we can see her. How old is she? What color? It is exciting news...and good for you. I had a long period once when I could not have a pet (extreme allergies, which improved). It was 15 years with no pet, and once I got Lena I was ecstatic and just wanted to share her with the world. A pet makes such a difference, being happy to see you when you come home, interested in every little thing you do, and being a loving companion. And sharing love with them is a gift...food, treats, toys, playing games, and so on. I love spending time with my cat, buying her things, feeding her, taking pictures of her...

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I'm tying to get pics from phone to computer but I'm kind of tech challenged and having no luck.  Anyway she is a year old and kind of a grey tuxedo cat.   Since she was abandoned and ended up a stray she is pretty skittish,   but loves to cuddle. Gradually she is getting braver.  

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Can you access this website from your phone to upload the picture here?  I connect my phone or device to my computer with the cable and it pops up with choices, then I open the folder and find the picture, you can drag it onto your desktop, it will copy it, not move it.  Then you come here, click on attachment, find your picture on your desktop, open, when it's uploaded you save.

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That first picture really gets to my heart, what a little sweetie!  I hope you have many years together, enjoy you new little one!

And I'm with you on the cellphones...they don't work at my house so I only turn it on when I go someplace, but because of that I haven't gotten accustomed to it the way everyone else is with them glued to their hip.  To me they're just a tool to use...or not.  ;)

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 I’m so very sorry...I lost my best friend, my 12 year old dog, 42 hours ago. It’s a living nightmare. I’m trying to get from minute to minute. I can totally understand and I wish peace for you. 

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Oh,   I'm so sorry.   I felt like someone was kicking me in the gut.   I tried everything I could to distract myself but nothing seemed to work.   In my case adopting another really helped.   I know that is an individual decision.   You have to be ready.  Being retired and living alone I just had to do something.   Too much time on my hands and loneliness were more than I could take alone.

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I lost my husband 14 years ago this coming Father's Day.  I was in shock, anxious, didn't see how I could survive, etc, you know all the emotions.  I've read countless books, articles, been on this forum all that time, reading all of the posts every day...over the years some things have presented as helpful to me, and I want to share an article I wrote.  Loss is loss, regardless of relationship, when you are close to someone, be it husband, child, dog, cat, it is hard, all the more so when it's someone in our everyday life that we come to depend on for love and interaction.  I hope even one of these tips is helpful to you at this point or somewhere down the road...

TIPS TO MAKE YOUR WAY THROUGH GRIEF

There's no way to sum up how to go on in a simple easy answer, but I encourage you to read the other threads here, little by little you will learn how to make your way through this.  I do want to give you some pointers though, of some things I've learned on my journey.

  • Take one day at a time.  The Bible says each day has enough trouble of it's own, I've found that to be true, so don't bite off more than you can chew.  It can be challenging enough just to tackle today.  I tell myself, I only have to get through today.  Then I get up tomorrow and do it all over again.  To think about the "rest of my life" invites anxiety.
  • Don't be afraid, grief may not end but it evolves.  The intensity lessens eventually.
  • Visit your doctor.  Tell them about your loss, any troubles sleeping, suicidal thoughts, anxiety attacks.  They need to know these things in order to help you through it...this is all part of grief.
  • Suicidal thoughts are common in early grief.  If they're reoccurring, call a suicide hotline.  I felt that way early on, but then realized it wasn't that I wanted to die so much as I didn't want to go through what I'd have to face if I lived.  Back to taking a day at a time.  Suicide Hotline - Call 1-800-273-8255
  • Give yourself permission to smile.  It is not our grief that binds us to them, but our love, and that continues still.
  • Try not to isolate too much.  
  • There's a balance to reach between taking time to process our grief, and avoiding it...it's good to find that balance for yourself.  We can't keep so busy as to avoid our grief, it has a way of haunting us, finding us, and demanding we pay attention to it!  Some people set aside time every day to grieve.  I didn't have to, it searched and found me!
  • Self-care is extremely important, more so than ever.  That person that would have cared for you is gone, now you're it...learn to be your own best friend, your own advocate, practice self-care.  You'll need it more than ever.
  • Recognize that your doctor isn't trained in grief, find a professional grief counselor that is.  We need help finding ourselves through this maze of grief, knowing where to start, etc.  They have not only the knowledge, but the resources.
  • In time, consider a grief support group.  If your friends have not been through it themselves, they may not understand what you're going through, it helps to find someone somewhere who DOES "get it". 
  • Be patient, give yourself time.  There's no hurry or timetable about cleaning out belongings, etc.  They can wait, you can take a year, ten years, or never deal with it.  It's okay, it's what YOU are comfortable with that matters.  
  • Know that what we are comfortable with may change from time to time.  That first couple of years I put his pictures up, took them down, up, down, depending on whether it made me feel better or worse.  Finally, they were up to stay.
  • Consider a pet.  Not everyone is a pet fan, but I've found that my dog helps immensely.  It's someone to love, someone to come home to, someone happy to see me, someone that gives me a purpose...I have to come home and feed him.  Besides, they're known to relieve stress.  Well maybe not in the puppy stage when they're chewing up everything, but there's older ones to adopt if you don't relish that stage.
  • Make yourself get out now and then.  You may not feel interest in anything, things that interested you before seem to feel flat now.  That's normal.  Push yourself out of your comfort zone just a wee bit now and then.  Eating out alone, going to a movie alone or church alone, all of these things are hard to do at first.  You may feel you flunked at it, cried throughout, that's okay, you did it, you tried, and eventually you get a little better at it.  If I waited until I had someone to do things with I'd be stuck at home a lot.
  • Keep coming here.  We've been through it and we're all going through this together.
  • Look for joy in every day.  It will be hard to find at first, but in practicing this, it will change your focus so you can embrace what IS rather than merely focusing on what ISN'T.  It teaches you to live in the present and appreciate fully.  You have lost your big joy in life, and all other small joys may seem insignificant in comparison, but rather than compare what used to be to what is, learn the ability to appreciate each and every small thing that comes your way...a rainbow, a phone call from a friend, unexpected money, a stranger smiling at you, whatever the small joy, embrace it.  It's an art that takes practice and is life changing if you continue it.
  • Eventually consider volunteering.  It helps us when we're outward focused, it's a win/win.

(((hugs))) Praying for you today.

 

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23 hours ago, ayrton88 said:

Yeah,  she's a real cutie.   I received Joy's ashes yesterday which made me sad.   I was doubly glad Emmie was here.

I'm glad you have Emmie too.  The getting the ashes back can be jolting as it's a stark reminder that this is all too real.  Some people find comfort having their ashes back with them, I hope you can feel some comfort in that too.

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Ayrton88, 

Your original post was very poignant for me to read. I’m in my late 40’s with a husband and baby. I married late and had my child mid 40’s. My rescue dogs have always been my family throughout my life.

I thought that losing my dog would be different this time, with a husband and child in tow, but it wasn’t. It was just as hard, maybe harder because it was made more complicated by the new husband and child that didn’t seem to make the loss any easier.

I still feel completely alone, scared, crushed, etc., and on top of it completely guilty because I don’t want anything to do with them right now. How crazy is that ? I just want to retreat inside myself and mourn my little dog. He was my anchor. He was my solace. He made me feel safe and loved. 

It’s complicated I guess. But please don’t feel alone. 

Wishing peace for you...

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