Studies have shown that people feel the loss of a pet more deeply and for a longer period than when they lose a human family member. Those who have never owned a pet don’t understand this, but those who not only have a pet but have lost them know this fact all too well.
Two days ago, I took my kitty to the vet. She stopped eating and there was nothing we could do. They ran their tests, gave her pills to increase her appetite and told us they would get back to us with the results.
Now I’ve had my Ninja for 17 years 6 months. She came into my life when I was suffering from depression and loneliness. She has been my constant companion for these 17 years and was with me when my husband was away with work. I’ve spent more time with her than my husband. She’s sweet, gentle and so so smart. I haven’t met a person yet who doesn’t love her to pieces.
To look at her you would think that she was in perfect health. But over the last few years she has lost her hearing, started having kidney issues, developed arthritis in her hips and shoulders, and has lost a great deal of muscle mass. In the last few months her ability to move around has become more difficult, until we discovered heating pads for her. When she spent time on the heating pads her mobility increased greatly. But there was still nothing we could do about the loss of her muscle so her back legs tend to be a little less stable.
Aside from this the vet felt that she was in good health, especially given her age. This was about six months ago.
Yesterday I got the call from the vet, her results were in and they were not good. I knew when we took her into the vet the day before that this was different. That this time there wasn’t going to be a happy ending. But it didn’t prepare me for the words when the vet spoke them.
My beautiful Ninja girl, her kidneys are in the final stages of failure. We have run out of options to help her. The vet has given her six months. They’ve assured me that she is in no pain. To look at her she is bright eyed, responsive, active, and just as loving as ever.
I am not ready. I am not ready to live a day, an hour, a minute without her. I already miss her and she is sitting in front of me.
I have been through loss, too much of it. I’ve lost family and friends. I’ve watched family fight and lose the battle with cancer, ALS, and heart attacks. I know loss. I’ve lived through and with it, I survived it because I knew I could.
I don’t know if I can survive this. This loss, this loss I am not ready for.