My cat Ossie is very sick; so sick that the advice from my vet is that the cut-off point for a decision which I can not face is Friday. So what do Ossie and I do today? How do we watch this painful day tick away? The day which looks like being our last together. And how can I ever find a way to say goodbye?

Saying goodbye to someone we love whether it is a person or a cherished animal is a heartbreaking test which I so do not feel up to facing. I have loved this dear little cat and cared for him through so many illnesses. He has been my comfort and delight and I seem to have been his. His brother, Josef and I will miss him terribly.

But I must let him go, so that there will be no suffering and that will happen tomorrow. He will rest forever in my garden and he will go knowing that I loved him so.

 But for today, he is still beside me. Perhaps tomorrow will not come.

Ossie’s food saucer


65 thoughts on “Heartbroken……

  1. I am soo sorry sweetie. My heart aches for you during these dark hours. I think losing a pet is unbearable enough in itself. When we have to make the decision to put them out of their misery is one of the most difficult thing I have ever had to do. We put down our beloved dogs Daisey a year and a half ago. I took comfort in the fact that it was painless and she would be spared a painfull death. I was heart broken and devestated.

    I know Ossie was a stray that you adopted. He is loved and cherished by you and has had a great life thanks to you. I know that you are cuddling him and showering him with love right now. That is the best goodbye any of us can have in this life. Give him a hug and kiss from me. I am sooo sorry there was nothing more that the vet could do to prolong his life. There is no easy way through the loss of a loved one. I am praying for you. I am sending you lots of hugs right now.

    • Thank you so much Honey. Ossie was not a stray, that was Otto. It is my fault for giving them such similar names, everyone gets them muddled up.
      I have had Ossie and his brother, Josef for 13 years, from being kittens. They were not from a good home and were sick when I took them on and they both had some kind of virus which almost killed Ossie. Josef was less affected. Ossie has had bad health all his life and I have nursed him through thick and thin. It is hard to give up on him. I don’t know how to. The vet will help me, but there can only be one ending to this story.
      I am so bad at dealing with this heartache.

      • I didn’t realize that you have had Josef and Ossie for 13 years. That is a long good life in Cat years. I know it doesn’t matter if we have had a pet a short while or 13 years once you given them your heart you are bonded with them for life.

        I wish I could say some magical words to ease your pain of losing him.You are in my thoughts and prayers

  2. Heartfelt thoughts are with you. I know how hard it is to say goodbye to a beloved animal. He will feel great comfort knowing he is sharing his last hours in your care and I hope you will take comfort knowing what a good life he had had with you.

  3. Dear Karen..it’s all been said..just thinking of you and understanding how hard tomorrow may be….I’m around if you needa human. M x

  4. I’m so sorry Karen. I do know exactly how your pain feels having been in this position more times than I would ever want. I feel that the biggest thing for you and Ossie is the love that flows between you. He will leave knowing that. Many blessings my dear. He is having a safe journey.

    • I have so much invested in my cats; they are my security. I also dedicated myself to caring for them and I have run out of ways to do this now for Ossie.
      I am sorry that you too have had this pain. Every time it just brings me to my knees.

      • It is simply Ossie’s time to return home. You have done your job perfectly. His gift to you and yours to him is love forever and ever. Be here today with Ossie and you. Bring yourself back to the love when you drift into sorrow about tomorrow. Allow peace to surround you both as well as your other cat.

      • Love and light is a wonderful way of describing what is happening. The vet agreed it was not time for Ossie to leave. I have spent the most incredible two days with him where the love between us has been very present. Something has settled in him and we have connected on such a deep level. He is in no pain and we are sharing the journey. When it ends, it will be as it should be and all will be well.
        Thank you so much for thinking of us. He is such a dear cat.

      • Thank you Gretchen. Something very special is happening here with Ossie and we are walking the path of his journey together. He is no longer so stressed and I have accepted that he is different and can not be how he was and am easing his path. This is a gentle departure with him knowing that I am there for him in this last part of his life. Beautiful. I feel very lucky to be part of it.

  5. My heart goes out to you Karen. I know how incredibly difficult it is having had to do the same thing with my cat Hobbes several months ago after 18 years. Your kitty will always be with you in spirit and will be waiting for you at the Rainbow Bridge! big hugs

  6. You might meet again in heaven, I hope. Your story is very sad and reminds me that I had to do the same with my cat some 3 years ago. It was really hard and still think of her all the time. Wish you that you can manage this allright. Regards Mitza

    • Thank you dear Mitzia. I don’t think I am managing too well, but I am trying to help him to know he is loved as he goes on this final journey. I am so sorry that you too know this pain. I so long to see all my lost cats again one day.
      Kind regards,

  7. Dear Karen, I am so sorry. Ossie is your good and faithful friend. He had a very, very good life with you and you had lots of love and friendship from him. Letting go is so hard. Take your time sweety, that is all you can do. My thoughts will be with you tomorrow.Take Care, xoxox Johanna.
    ps: Ossie is a cat with taste,may I add!

    • Thank you so much for your kind words. I have just spoken to the vet who is so good and calls me all the time. He understands, like you about allowing time to say goodbye. Ossie is calmer today and so I have had time to be close to him. And we ill see what happens tomorrow when the time comes.
      Thank you so much Johanna.x x x P.S Ossie is glad that you like his little saucer!

  8. Oh, Karen–I’m so, so sorry. The heartbreak is the price we pay for loving them. He was very lucky to have you. You were very lucky to have him.

    • I dread this day coming. I never want it to come, ever. Thank you so much for your understanding. I know, that like me you have cats who are very important to you.

      • I do have cats, and I do worry all the time about their age and physical problems. But I would never give up the joy of having them (and them having me) to avoid the heartbreak of losing them. They, and the ones who’ve come before them, have added so much to the quality of my life and made me a better person. I’m sorry for what you’re going through.

  9. Karen I am so sorry. I have had to part with many beloved kitties so I know how hard this is. I have only come through by hanging onto the memories of times together. I hope you can find peace and comfort in the shared life you’ve had with Ossie. You have given him a good home.

    • Thank you so, so much for your message. Ossie seems calmer now and is enabling us to say our goodbyes. The vet said that if he ate today, the deadline would be extended. But he can not eat.
      I can never, ever deal with this and I always dread its coming. He has been part of my little family and yes’ you are right, I do have lots of memories.

  10. Hi Karen .. I’m so sad reading this but I think you have realised there is nothing more you or your vet can do. I also read you brought him in as a stray; so you should be proud of yourself for extending and giving him a good life too. We’ve had 2 cats in our married time (both strays) our first “Moppsy” lived to the grand old age of 16 the second “Ziggy” was 17 I did ask my wife to promise no more because it was so upsetting when we lost them but then someone came along with a little ferrell when Ziggy was ill. Our daughter called him Draco; He was the only survivor of a litter pulled from a turbine in a Scunthorpe powerstation. After his first few weeks of riding round in Gail’s dressing gown pocket he won me over. You still have a companion with his brother Josef and I hope he lives to a ripe old age around your home and garden.

    • Thank you so much for your lovely message. I love the story of Draco; of his rescue and how he snuggled in Gail’s pocket. They do work their way into our hearts don’t they? And then parting is so painful.
      Josef is fit and strong. He and Ossie are brothers and were not strays. But they came from a bad start and both nearly died as kittens, I have been saving their lives every step of the way. It looks like I can not do it this last time.

    • Thank you Robert. Ossie is calmer and together we are travelling down a road which I do not want to take, but we are doing it in peace and with love.

  11. I’m so sorry for your loss. We lost one of our cats a couple of months ago. We got to take him home for the weekend before the vet came on the Monday morning and it was a very bittersweet weekend. I wanted time to stand still. I’ve chosen an iris with his name to plant on his grave to remember him by. Ossie looks like such a happy cat, he must be very loved.

    • Thank you so much for writing. I too am sorry for your loss of what was a very beloved cat. It is precious to have these last days together, but also so painful and distressing. I so know what you mean when you say you “wanted time to stand still”. I think the Iris is such a lovely idea. I have 3 cats buried in my garden already. And it is always the same unbearable pain when I face losing another one. I never forget any of my cats, they live in my heart forever.
      Ossie is still here and I am sending him on his way with love.

  12. Oh, Karen. I am so sorry to hear this. I hardly know what to say that can make it better. Except that, you have helped Ossie to live a good life, and you have been a good friend, and that counts for a lot. And when we love anyone, we risk the pain that comes with loss. But how blessed we are to have loved.
    I’m sending you a hug. I will be thinking of you and Ossie tomorrow.

    • I am on an emotional roller coaster. Ossie has rallied a little so the vet and I agreed to see what happened today. He has eaten a little, which is amazing. He has some form of dementia or something affecting his brain and it no longer sends the message to eat.
      Ossie has a brother, Josef and I do not think he would accept a new cat. I would take on every cat in the world if I could. they are such gentle, loving creatures. But I do not seem to have the stamina required to cope with the heartache of their loss. Silly, I know. It’s just the way I am.
      Thank you so much for writing and for your care and concern. x

      • Wait and see does not bring closure but it gives you more time to love Ossie and say your good byes. I thank God for this mercy and kindness for you both. Then next chapter of your life will be after the good byes and you will be the richer for the time you have shared and all you have learned in the caring and giving. I pray the Lord will open your eyes and heart for new loves and grant you a life filled with joy in anticipation and purpose.

        Much love and prayers, your friend!

  13. Dear Jan, your message touched me very deeply. And you are so right about what is happening. Ossie is still with me and this time together has brought some of the old Ossie back; the Ossie who had to be close to me. The love has been flowing between us and it is beautiful. We are sharing this journey together. Your prayers mean so much.
    Your friend,

  14. Karen, I’ve been thinking about you a lot.
    Sending you a big hug from Ontario.
    Love and loss – they go together, of course – but knowing it doesn’t make it easier.
    How are you? What is the situation now?

    • Much has changed Cynthia. Something is affecting Ossie’s brain and it no longer sends the messages to trigger eating or drinking. But I realised that he has no pain, that all his organs are functioning correctly and I felt that if I was able to feed him by hand then he could live out the rest of his time naturally. Once he took food from my fingers he started to recognise me again and we are sharing such a precious time together. He is very frail, but every day he walks to the garden, I put a parasol up there to shade him from the sun and we just take it day by day.
      I will of course do what ever needs to be done to keep him from suffering. But that time has not come yet.
      Thank you so much for the hug. You are right about the love and loss going together, like many others I have invested so much in the love and care of my dear animal friends and am totally devastated by the thought of their departure.
      I hope that you too are well and that all is well with the vegetable AND flowers.

      • This is so uplifting, Karen.
        I’m really pleased to hear it.

        We have had three pets die – one before his time, two others of old age. In every case, we were devastated. And we know that this time with Ossie is precious.

        Another big hug to you.

      • It helps so much to know that you too understand this pain. The world can sometimes be insensitive to grief felt for what some describe as ‘just an animal’.
        And you are right, each step Ossie takes in his journey is being weighed and measured and placed in my heart.
        It is the last thing I can do for him. When I take on an animal I do so with total commitment and love.
        It sounds as if you do just the same. My heart is gladdened just knowing that.

  15. Thank you so much Theadora. All the things I like doing are all made better by having a cat around. It is just so sad when they get sick. I am old enough to have had to say goodbye to 3 other cats. Sergei and Nina, my tabbies would go for a walk with me, but always stopping at the edge of the stream for me to carry them over. And if I laid a blanket on the ground in the meadow they would find me and sit on it there as the sun went down. Those moments are beyond special.
    Ossie is still with me, frail, but with no pain.- Karen.

  16. That is so kind of you.
    I find myself in such a difficult situation, watching Ossie deteriorate mentally and trying to see if I can support him as he gently takes his last steps. It is a real moral maze, because it is his brain which is malfunctioning. I could not have him put to sleep simply because he would not eat. But feeding him by hand is very difficult. I was thinking that I wanted to give him the chance of life that a person would have, but today, a friend told me that their Mother, who had Dementia, died because of organ failure because she refused to eat.
    The vet is visiting Ossie and I on Thursday to see him and help us both. I find this situation very hard because I committed to do my best for all my animals and I am not sure what the best thing is…………x

    • Thank you so much for your kind message. This is the hardest thing I ever had to face. I have had to have other beloved animals put to sleep, but they all had organ failure. But Ossie is different because he has a kind of dementia. I can only do my best for him. The vet was due to come today and has just cancelled, so we have another day together.

    • Dear Cynthia, thank you so much for your message. Ossie is not going to get better, but Mark, my lovely vet has been many times and agreed that he is in no pain. Something has deteriorated in his brain. I feed him by hand and am helping him to live out the time he has left surrounded by love. The minute he is in pain, we will help his journey to end. It is not easy watching him. But Mark said some people go to him asking him to put to sleep perfectly well animals who perhaps have just a little arthritis, because they want a new puppy! I will help Ossie all I can until I can help him no more. The love I feel is very strong,
      I am so sorry to have been absent. I have been doing a pop-up vintage shop ( more of that later this week). I am actually publishing a post today and will start then to catch up on all the wonderful things you will have posted!

      • Never mind catching up on my posts, Karen. You’re dealing with more important stuff right now. I so support your approach with Ossie. We took the same approach with our beloved pet dog.

        Hugs from Ontario,

      • Thank you so much for the hug and kind words. Of course I am so sorry to hear that you too have walked the same path with your beloved dog as I am doing with Ossie. But there is comfort in knowing that I am not alone in honouring my cat with the same respect and care which some would only offer to humans.
        It is a sad time.
        Karen x

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