A sad weekend this one. My Mum and I had to make the difficult decision to have our beloved Alexander (Boyo) put to sleep. He had developed cancer in the roof of his mouth which was spreading to his nasal passage and sinus area, and behind his eyes. He also had a newly-diagnosed thyroid problem and a heart murmur. It broke our hearts. He has been such a special little man, seeing us through times of sorrow and stress, never bad-tempered or spiteful and always loving and gentle. He has lived with my Mum for the past 7 years so, although he is technically “mine”, she is devastated to have lost her companion. She stayed with me all weekend so she didn’t have to go home to an “empty” house.
Boyo’s health had declined quite rapidly over a short space of time and, although he was not depressed or miserable in himself, he had lost all his energy and “zest”. He slept a lot and wasn’t eating, despite us buying him every tempting treat we could think of. He had lost a lot of weight and, we believe, was starting to feel uncomfortable with the cancer (we imagine he was getting little feline headaches and at least feeling a pressure in his head and sinus). Although we couldn’t bear to lose him, we couldn’t stand to see him suffer and would not allow that to happen. We made the decision to say Goodbye to him on Friday night. The vet was so good, quick and efficient but caring too. She gave him a quick sedation to relax him and he basically fell asleep in our arms while she administered the fatal dose. There was no pain or fear, no struggling or distress. It all happened so quickly and quietly that it was almost a lovely experience. I think it helped my Mum a lot, though she was absolutely distraught and guilt-ridden. We stayed in the room with him, crying and cuddling him until we were ready to say Goodbye forever. He looked so peaceful and serene and beautiful. I am glad we chose to do it now, rather than allow him to carry on getting sicker and weaker, out of selfishness and inability to let go. He had given us so much joy and love over his (almost) 18 years of life, the least we could do was release him from any further pain or suffering, allowing him to go peacefully and while he was still “himself”.
I will miss him so much – he was a truly special cat. I had hand-reared him from a 4 day old kitten who had lost his mother, so I really do think of him as my baby.
We used to say he had invisible angel wings (because he was so graceful when he leapt and jumped) – now he has them for real.
RIP Boyo – we love you and will miss you forever, until we get to see you again x