Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Bestest kitty.

   I adopted my lil' man, Atom, from a home with an out-of-control pet population & deplorable conditions nearly 13 years ago. He was 6 weeks old, barely old enough to leave his mother, but I knew I had to get him out of that situation. He was the tiniest, fastest little black blur, who fit into my palm with room to spare. "Atom" seemed to fit.
   Maybe because I adopted him at such a young age? He has always been incredibly sweet & cuddly. To the point where he wants to be right up in my face whether I'm working, eating, or sleeping--and he's super-persistent. Often to the point where it makes me crazy. But I always remind myself that he adores me, & that I should appreciate it, because he won't be around forever.
   Unfortunately that time may be near: he has seemed ill to me for months, though regular tests uncovered nothing. Tonight his blood levels confirmed kidney disease. And the levels of toxins in his blood are so high—LITERALLY off the charts—that my vet said most cats would be having seizures or be in a coma at this point. Atom seems miraculously normal. The only tip-offs are his horrible breath (from the toxins his kidneys aren't processing) and his constant use of the litterbox—just tiny spots of urine.
   I've been coaxing him to eat chicken baby food this week, & so far he gobbles it down. I'll take him to the vet every morning for the next 3 days for fluid therapy to see if the levels can be normalized. There is a chance that he will bounce back; I'll do everything I can within reason, with his comfort being my #1 priority.
   I just went downstairs to check on him, & he was in the basement—and SO excited to show me that he had just caught a mouse, which wasn't quite dead yet. (Ick.) Atom was over the moon. He turned up the sweetness and rolled all over, purring like crazy and doing his unique half-purr, half-meow. I disposed of it and came back upstairs.
Awesome kitty, Exhibit A
***15 minutes pass***
   I just went down to the basement to check on Atom again, and he caught ANOTHER mousie. And this one wasn't even a LITTLE bit dead yet!!! I wanted Atom to sleep curled up next to me, but he prefers to make sure I'm in good shape, rodent-wise, before he leaves me. Which is good, because Queen Gypsy is no mouser. No one can fill Mr. Atom's place.
Awesome kitty, Exhibit B
   Atom has been a good kitty for nearly 13 years and is proving that he will be a good kitty to the very end. It makes me profoundly sad to think about losing his bright spirit (and his superior hunting skills!). Pets are with us such a short time, perhaps to teach us to live in the moment. It's tough, but I've been blessed to have him and will treasure him always.