Saturday, July 15, 2017

R.I.P. Zeus

Mister Zeus, my little tuxedo cat, hasn't been doing well lately.  His digestive system wasn't working the way it should; he'd eat, but there would be no weight gain.  He'd be hungry all the time, but feeding him whenever he felt hungry was a bad idea, as he'd end up regurgitating the food.  He also had trouble getting around.  His joints were too stiff and sore to allow him to groom himself.  He negotiated the stairs on step at a time, pausing to rest about halfway up.  Although he hated being picked up and carried, he enjoyed it when I carried him up the stairs.  He'd lost so much weight that he was little more than fur and bones.  And he could no longer play with Danté, his buddy cat.  Danté would offer to play with him, and Zeus couldn't.

And so, after considering his physical condition over the last three days, I made an appointment with the veterinarian for Friday at 10:30 AM to have Zeus put to sleep, or put down if you will.  Euthanized is the technical term.  I was literally sick about the situation, but I see no good reason to allow my dependent animal to suffer because of my tender feelings.  Feelings that would be cured by time, companionship from other men, and a glass or two of gin.

Promptly on Friday at 10:15 AM, I stuffed Zeus into his cat carrier and off we went.  His lack of mobility is such that he was unable to turn around inside the carrier.

The Vet was young.  Just out of Veterinary College if I were to guess.  I'm an old, fat, ill-tempered Ex-Hippie type Flower Child, who is still capable of expression sentiments of peace, socialism, love and obscure philosophers if I think it will get me laid.  Needless to say, as a support system this Vet was useless.  Her assistant, also female, is middle-aged and equally useless.  I stayed with Mister Zeus until the moment he died.  Then the vet's assistant wrapped his remains up in a towel, taped it closed, and returned him to the cat carrier.

I put my car under me and drove back to the old homestead, where I buried Zeus out by the barn, deep enough so his remains won't be disturbed.

Mister Zeus started out life as someone else's cat, and they got rid of him.  His hind legs were somewhat crippled up, the vet suspected rickets, but who knows?  Anyway, he came to live with my brother, Shotgun Bob, in the year 2000.  Bob had just bought a house and needed a mouser.

Bob sold the house and took off for Northern Wisconsin, and so dropped Zeus off with Mom so she would care for Zeus until Bob got settled.  Zeus liked Mom, and would sit on her lap every night.  He would also beg food from her, climbing all over her until he got a small portion of whatever Mom was eating.  Some nights I'd go out and bring back a strawberry milkshake for Mom, which she liked, and which she would share with Zeus.  He used to beg at the breakfast table, demanding that I shared some of that delicious bacon or sausage he smelled.  Usually I gave in, and his antics were rewarded.

Zeus was a very good cat otherwise, and never got up on the counter or sharpened his claws on the furniture or the woodwork.  Christmas was another matter, though.

Zeus Eyeing His Newest Toy

It Seems A Decoration Has Fallen

Fallen Decoration

At Least It's Unbroken

Who, Me?
And that is Mister Zeus.

As I say, I took him up to the old homestead and buried him, then I did a few errands and ultimately went out to the underground club in Temperance, where I could associate with such friends as old JD, Guitar Jeff, and Chris (who showed up after a 40 year absence).  I felt better afterwards, and drove back to Columbus right after breakfast.

But I'm heare to tell you that once I hit my condo in Columbus, the first thing I did was mix myself a strong martini and hack this post out.  I'm taking the rest of the day off.


looper said...

I am deeply sorry for your loss

Old NFO said...

So sorry to hear that.

Mad Jack said...

Thanks gents.

Unknown said...

So sorry for your loss. Our pets are FAMILY. I know putting down our schnauzer, Kobbie, 17 ears ago was the hardest thing I've ever had to do. We got a new schnauzer mix about 4 years ago and look forward to many years with him.

CWMartin said...

I would tell you about putting down our last dog, but I still have too much PTSD over it. I know where you're at.

Tewshooz said...

Our old cat had the same symptoms. He had overactive thyroid in old age. The treatment was as bad if not worse than the disease....we could not let him suffer. He had a good long life with us and we with him. His pain is over, ours isn't. Sorry for your loss.

Bob G. said...

Mad Jack:
I know exactly what you're going through.
A couple years back we had our one cat (Penelope) put to sleep. She was 17 years old and could barely get around and didn't eat.
That was rough.
Our other cat (her litter mate) Rassie lasted another three years. He left us at the age of 20.
I found him behind a chair, passed away in October last year. We took him to the vet and they cremated him and both he and his "sister" had their ashes scattered at a pet cemetery not that far away.
I had some REALLY rough times dealing with that.
My post from 19 October 2016 said it all.
We have two new kids (since Nov 2016) but I'm still not completely over Rassie leaving.
He was with me a THIRD of my life.
At least people like us will have The Rainbow Bridge to look forward to.

You can always create an online memorial to Zeus:
(We have our cats here)

Hang in there. You're not alone.
Stay safe out there.

Mad Jack said...

Thank you, Gentlemen. I had Zeus for quite a while, but I wouldn't want to live the kind of life that Zeus was living. I think it gets a little easier over time.