Remembering Cowboy (2003-2016)

I was going to write a post today about how relatively little blogging I seem to getting accomplished, even though I’m writing at a better clip than I have in some time, but I just found out this morning that one of our cats passed away, so that little trip down Obvious Lane is going to have to wait.

Cowboy was not a cat with whom I got along with at first.  That’s rare, as I’m generally a love-all-cats kind of person.  He always seemed to have it in for one of my other cats, Sirius, who like him, was a black cat, but she was smaller and less social than the other animals in the house.  Often I would hear Sirius’s shrill yowl from across the house, and I would come onto the scene to find Sirius hissing and growling at Cowboy, who would tower over her.

As time went on, I eventually got to the point where I stopped trying to protect Sirius from Cowboy and told her to get over her antisocial instincts.  This gave me the chance to get to know Cowboy on his own terms, and I’m glad for it.

Cowboy was one of the most chill cats I had ever gotten to know.  He was perfectly capable of taking care of himself–and for the most part, did–but he was also very affectionate.  Whenever I would return home, be it from work, or errands, or whatever the last couple of years, he would always be on the porch, and almost always come out silently and affectionately demand pets and rubs from the human in the car.  It got to the point where I would most refer to him as Cowbs, or even The Snuggle Beast, as he was a pretty big guy and would let you pet him for hours if you wanted.

A couple days ago, Cowboy seemed to be missing.  He hadn’t shown up for the morning feeding like our other cats, and until that evening, no one had seen him.  I was told about it, and was watching for him as I was on my way home.  I just happened to see an animal crossing the street (yay glowing animal eyes in headlights), and as I got closer, recognized it to be Cowboy.  I called out to him, and he responded, but he seemed very lethargic.  He walked under my car (in the middle of the road, the screwball) and laid there for a few minutes, until a friend who was with me coaxed him out, and we brought him home.

From that point on, I was worried about him.  He was not responding as he normally did to petting, he wasn’t eating much, and not moving around.  I knew that this was not good.

We resolved to take him to the vet this morning, but unfortunately he beat us to the punch, and passed on before we were up.

I suspect of course that he knew this was coming, as I’ve had cats that have done the running away to be alone when dying thing, but I’m glad I happened along to find him before he could do that.  I’m glad he was able to spend his remaining hours with his family, surrounded by people who loved him and offered him food, water, snuggles, and affection, even if he may not have been enthusiastic for them in his condition.  And I’m glad I got over my own initial impressions of him as a bully cat and came to know him as the Snuggle Beast.  That is how I will remember him.

Goodbye Cowbs, you wonderful Snuggle Beast.  You will be missed.

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