mellowtigger: (T'Reese)
[personal profile] mellowtigger
I think T'Reese was 16.5 years old when she died today. She was unable to eat or drink, so I called a veterinarian for a home visit for euthanasia. The vet arrived a few minutes before noon. After T'Reese died, I took her body to AHS for cremation.

T'Reese 2013 on bedI first saw this cat at my workplace, the Texas Workers' Compensation Commission. A coworker brought her to the office so I could meet her. He was worried that he would not be able to find a home for this last kitten of the litter because she appeared almost solid black in those early days. He thought that people were avoiding her because of the old story that black cats are bad luck. I liked her, though, so I kept her in my cubicle until the end of the workday when I could bring her home. I'm pretty sure my boss wasn't thrilled with her there, but what could he do? Send me home early with a new kitten? (Oh, the horror and shame.)

I was unable to think of a good name for her right away. I kept thinking "Reese", because her color was black and brown like Reese's Peanut Butter Cups. Someone suggested feminizing that word, so I went with "T'Reese" instead. Her personality didn't make her much of a lap cat. She enjoyed petting, but only under her own control. She would be the one to rub her head and body against my hand. She knew that sleeping within arm's reach meant that I would pet her, so she crawled into bed with me only down by my ankles, safely out of petting range. She tried to avoid all contact with strangers, so she lived well as an indoor housecat where she was sheltered from the busy civilization of noisy humans.

T'Reese 2013 on pcShe drove up I-35 with me from Austin to Minneapolis, along with a ferret and a 10-gallon bucket of small aquarium fish. She disliked car rides because they usually meant a trip to the veterinarian, but at least she didn't get car sick. She was quite well mannered. She would frequently hiss at approaching cats (or at Hope when that young cat frequently pounced at the older T'Reese) but never struck out at them that I saw.

T'Reese enjoyed playing with the ferret while he was amongst our little household.  She never took much interest, though, in the computer games that I played.  Nevertheless, I funded a Kickstarter campaign back in 2012, and I bought the opportunity to name one of their stars: T'Reese.  Soon, you can look for her name among the stars of the space exploration game Predestination.

She was always picky about food. She seemed to have an allergy to seafood, throwing up most of the seafood meals that I gave to her. For the last year of her life, the problem became worse and she was throwing up frequently. I kept trying different foods from the store. Non-grain foods seemed to be easier for her to tolerate, but she started refusing all meals in her last days. I didn't realize until too late that she was also refusing all water. She would go to her many sources of water, dip her chin down to the water surface... and then freeze. Only with close observation did I notice that she was not actually drinking. She would finally give up her effort then move on to another water source or go back to her bed to lay down. I had only marginal success using cat formula with a syringe and tubing. I think I got only a few milliliters of fluid into her during the whole weekend. Most of it went everywhere else. It was demotivating for us both. She and I were both helpless to do much for her thirst.

T'Reese 2005 on staircaseT'Reese 2014 licking condensation

I should have let the vet euthanize her on Friday, but I didn't realize her health condition was so severe. Watching her unquenchable thirst this weekend was unsettling, since there was nothing actually to be done for it. The vet and I assume it was a slow growing cancer in her liver that was affecting her health this past year. It finally became too much for her body to endure.

T'Reese 2014 ill

T'Reese will be missed.
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