Monday, October 24, 2011
"Say Goodnight Gracie"
We got Grace as a pre-owned cat from a girl who was going to college and could no longer care for her. She had gotten her as a used cat about 4 years earlier. We had Grace in our lives for 17 years. That makes her at least 21 years old that we know of and probably a year or three older. Grace was neutered before we got her but we were told she raised many litters of kittens. Gracie was my cat from the time she arrived here and today was the last day of her life. She died sleeping in the warm sunshine with all of the dignity she deserved.
For the past 2 years, age had finally caught up to poor old Gracie-Girl. She slept more and did less. No longer were there her shared gifts of partially eaten meals of birds and mice underfoot on the back doorstep. The birds could finally eat at the bird feeder in peace. Last winter she started having seizures, she stopped climbing into my lap to be petted and sleeping in my bed, and late in the spring she started loosing bladder control when she had them. Grace seemed embarrassed by her seizures.
Grace then started staying outside except for meal time. It got to be a chore to find her and get her to come in during the night or in the rain. Many late nights were spent calling and looking for her. Her hearing and eyesight were going. She even started using the pet door to sneak outside at night. She had lost weight and was getting rather scruffy because she could no longer clean herself thoroughly.
Last night she again went outside even though the temperature was near freezing. This morning I saw her laying in the sunshine near the asparagus patch not far from the pine tree the chickens roost in. As the goaty girls neared she woke up and hissed at Fern when she got too close, although she did accept a goaty kiss from both goat girls.
A couple of hours later I again went out to check on her and she was dead.
So in the words used by George Burns to close his TV show:
"Say Goodnight Gracie...."