Copper would have been 5 years old tomorrow. He was a BIG orange, talkative male Tabby cat, with a big long striped tail, and the love of my life. I adopted him from a no kill shelter on May 25, 2012. He was just hours from being put down when he was taken in by the shelter. He came to me with no name, but a date of birth. How odd is that? Anyway, I tried a total of 27 names for male orange cats and he answered to none of them, so he became "Copper"
After only 2 days of "owning" him, I would have turned over heaven and earth had he gotten lost. He was so loveable and cuddly and he managed to weave himself into every aspect of my life. He loved to "back cuddle" when I was on the computer. He'd hop up behind me and warm my back while I stroked him and he purred. He loved to be held like a baby. I used to tell him that I was sure some little girl had spoiled him rotten when he was a kitten. He loved to supervise when I cooked. He'd strut into the kitchen and talk to me till I showed him what I was making. Sometimes he'd be interested, other times he'd turn up his nose and walk away. He loved canned whipped cream. He's hear the familiar swoosh and come running for a lick from my finger.
He really loved my other cat, Sweetie. Ashes, whose place Copper took, really held Sweetie in contempt. She's lick her head then bash her in the face. Copper just loved Sweetie and the feeling was mutual. They'd groom each other and sleep curled up together all the time.
A few weeks ago, I noticed Copper was getting thin. Almost like he was when I brought him home from the shelter. When you have more than one cat and they self feed you don't notice when one is off their food as readily as if I had been feeding them canned food. I did notice he was turning up his nose at treats though. A week ago Tuesday I brought him into the vet's He was dehydrated and just not himself. The vet kept him for 30 hours and re-hydrated him with IV's They got him to eat a bit of some special canned food and sent him home with me. He looked like a pregnant elephant! His belly was so distended, but I was told that was the result of the fluids they pumped into him. He ate a bit of food Wednesday night, and I began weighing him every morning. By the weekend he was going downhill pretty quickly. I wasn't sure he's make it through the night Sunday night. He didn't have the strength to even jump up on the bed or jump down the next morning. I slept with my hand on his paw or his tail all night long and each time I woke up to check on him, Sweetie was licking his head. His stomach was so distended. He looked like those pictures of starving children from Sudan. I took him to the vet first thing Monday morning. By 8:20 they'd called and said he had rapidly growing a mass in his stomach and gently suggested that he needed to be put down. I just could not believe it. He was so big and strong and healthy 2 weeks earlier and suddenly he was so frail, and I was being told he needed to be put to sleep. He wasn't even 5 years old yet! All of my cats have lived to their late teens. I figured I had at least another 10 years of loving him, but it didn't work out that way this time. He died in my arms with me whispering to him how much we all loved him, and he was gone. There is still an indent in the back of the couch where he used to lay and I'd pet him on my way past him. It's just so hard when you see them deteriorate in front of your eyes and can do nothing to stop it.
Sweetie has become very needy and she's not an affectionate cat. She too was a rescue and I think she may have been a bit feral in her younger days. She hates to be held and will only sleep at the foot of the bed. And the only way I can show her affection is to hold her head between my hands and rub my chin on her head. She loves that, but nothing else. After Copper's big loveable warmth, neither Sweetie nor I are getting what we both crave from him. I promised him a new house. Even had the builder put in a cat door to the screen porch so he could go in and out just like he has here. (Sweetie, not the sharpest knife in the drawer, only knows how to come IN the door, not go out!) With the impending move and 2 rather lengthy trips coming up, I probably won't (shouldn't) bring another cat into the family till after the first of the year. I did look at the website of the shelter where I got Copper and they had several BIG orange male tabby cats for adoption, so I probably won't have trouble finding one. I just hope Copper guides me to the right one.
Lisa, my financial adviser called when she heard of Coppers passing and incredibly, she told me that one of her clients had given her a gift. It was a "reading" from a pet medium. The reading was done the very day that Copper died. Lisa had to put down a very special dog in June. There were other animals in the house and all were affected by Jake's passing. I have the link to the medium and will probably call upon her to do a reading for me. It was amazing what she told my FA about her pets. She even mentioned 2 cats that Lisa had not mentioned to the reader. Lisa gave her very little information about the animals other than their breed, age and if they were still with us or had been put down. The details were amazing. There were facts that the reader had no way of knowing, like the layout of the house and the fact that one of the cats (that had not been named in the reading request) preferred the food that she had previously been given because of the "creamy texture" and could they go back to feeding her that instead of the new stuff Lisa had changed to about 2 weeks earlier! Anyway, I think I want to use her to tell Copper just how much we all loved him and miss him and to ask him to come to the new house with us. Apparently Lisa's Jake is still there and "talks" to the new Golden Retriever that they rescued. (But he doesn't like the name they chose and would prefer to call her "Boo" instead of Ginger!) I'd love it if Copper would do the same to whoever I end up bringing into the family! There is a huge void in my life right now. He was such a sweet boy. I'll miss him always.