Tuesday, July 27, 2010

4 Cats, Part 2

THE BIG THING:  Keep in mind this is not about us doing these posts, but about "them" for their lives.  And about the loss Ann and Dan feel for the kitties that were part of their lives for so many years... 
Pestilence was born along with Plague in March, 1993, and came to the same Ann and Dan Forever Home with her. Pestilence started out as "Donder."  Pestilence and Donder have related meanings.  Ann is a linguist, so I’m not surprised at these connections.
Pestilence had a hard life.  For the first four months of her life, she was the sweetest, most laid-back cat ever.  Then they found her unconscious on the floor near an outside door. 
They called the vet late in the day.  He wanted to put it off, but they told him they were seriously worried about the cat.  She swelled up all over.  That's why her ears are wrinkled.  She had a furless ring on her tail.  She survived, but it changed her body chemistry.  Her fur was always rough after that.  

She went into heat at four months and became very territorial and aggressive.  Once she pushed out a screen to go after a dog that was trotting along the sidewalk, minding his own business.  After they moved to the country, she had a stroke.  When she came back from the vet's they had to keep her separated from the other cats.  They did "jump and pounce" exercises with her every day.  They called the vet each day to report on her progress.  Finally she got to the point where no one would ask  "What's wrong with your cat?" 
Nothing was wrong, finally...

Their favorite story about Pestilence is that one night Ann went to bed early because she had to get up early the next morning.  Pestilence had a fuzzy multi-colored ball that was HER ball.  She was playing with it on the bed, keeping Ann awake.  She threw it off the bed and composed herself for sleep.  Feeling a soft pat, pat, pat, Ann opened her eyes to see Pesty was sitting about six inches from her face with the ball at her feet.  She threw the ball again.  Pesty went after it.  Composed herself for sleep again.  Pat, pat again.  Ann thought, "This is worth waking up for!"  She threw that ball for Pesty for about 15 minutes.  Dan didn't believe it until she did it for him too.  Unfortunately, when they moved, that ball was lost, and Pesty never really got into fetching another ball.  But up until just before she died, they could get her going by saying, "Where's your ball?  Go get your ball!"  And she'd look around for it.
Pestilence loved to get up in trees.

Her nicknames were “Baby” and “Doorstop”.

Pestilence died June 3, 2010 after a slow decline with a sudden worsening.  She was 17 years old.