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a Cat among cats

April 17, 2019

As we await the release of the Mueller report and the quite likely shit storm of response, Jude and I have been searching for distractions.  Regrettably, we got a huge one yesterday when Ollie, our beloved cat, took his last laboured breath with Jude by his side.

We think he might have had cancer.  He’d lost a lot of weight from his 18-pound frame.  But he was about 15 years old.  He faced his death as he lived his life: calmly.

He lived on our farm almost as long as we have.  He was literally dumped in our laps.  A client Jude was seeing on a home visit wanted to get rid of him.  She called me from there and asked if she could bring him home.

“Well, we’re not landed yet and things are really up in the air for us,” I said.  “Please,” she said.  “Okay,” I said.  “You’re so easy,” she said.  I really couldn’t mount a cogent counter- argument because we had just acquired our soon-to-be-beloved dog Slinkee from the rescue shelter.

Thusly, Oliver Purr Twist came to our farm.  Though just a kitten, he immediately secured a valued place in the family constellation by going on a rampage, hunting mice day and night until he had the rodent population down to a manageable number.

He was hell on birds, too.  When the weather started warming up, he would often come to the door with one in his mouth.  His muffled meowing would give him away, so we’d say “Step away from the door and show us what you have.”  He wouldn’t, being a cat and all.

From Ollie’s viewpoint, there was no object that couldn’t be a toy, and no time that couldn’t be playtime.  Gravity was of no interest to him.  He once jumped six feet nearly straight up.

He lived life fully, all nine of them.  He got a serious infection from a stick that penetrated his skin.  He got poisoned, probably from eating a shrew (they’re venomous) and twice one night I thought he had died in my arms.  He got a sizable hole chewed in his backside by a raccoon which probably would have killed him if Slinkee hadn’t intervened.

He would usually disappear when we had visitors, but would usually take to the visitors who became friends.  He seemed to have a knack of sensing the pain of others.  When I had my hip replaced he laid on that side of my body.  When I had my hernia surgery recently, he laid on that side.

About six months ago, the dog of some dear friends was nearing the end of his illustrious life.  We were baby-sitting him his last full day on earth.  He could barely walk.  Ollie lay down with him on a floor pillow and we got a great photo of them.  That photo just doubled in value, if you can multiply pricelessness.

So, Ollie, old chum, good luck wherever you are.  I hope it’s rodent-abundant and raccoon-free.  The only thing about you I won’t miss is your practice of leaving the livers of your night kills on the floor for Jude or I to find in the morning.  Usually barefoot.



  1. Anonymous permalink
    April 18, 2019 8:51 am

    What a great obit; you did the cat proud… IT

  2. Linda Lee permalink
    April 18, 2019 9:11 pm

    I love reading eulogies for beloved pets. This was lovely.

    • April 21, 2019 12:24 pm

      Thank you. He now rests in our garden, surrounded by birds and mice.

  3. Brother Brown permalink
    April 20, 2019 5:04 pm

    Sorry to hear about your cat crossing ‘The Rainbow Bridge’…though some say “it’s only a pet”, I know the pain is real.
    “preserve your memories, there all that’s left you”

    • April 21, 2019 12:28 pm

      Thanks, BB. I can’t think of any pet I’ve ever had longer.

  4. ALBERT MCCLARAN permalink
    April 24, 2019 11:27 am


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