Gone too Soon

tippi in my bed

Five years ago, under a rural grocery store, I trapped a kitten I named Tippi. That day, I helped her escape living a feral life. At midnight on New Year’s Day, I brought Tippi to pet emergency where I was with her when, 13 hours later, she left this life.

This outcome is hard for me to comprehend because Tippi didn’t appear to be ill and just weeks ago had her yearly well-check. She was prone to upper respiratory infections but that was nothing new, having come from a sickly colony. So her passing was unexpected.

tippi on my lap2

Her favorite nappng place

Not even a week ago Tippi attempted, for the 100th time, to climb the tree in the family room. As usual, I yelled at her to get down and as usual, she obliged. That same day, she sunned herself on the bench in my backyard. A couple days later she was a different cat; not eating, throwing up, barely able to walk, hiding…

tippi on counter 2

Wishing she had something to knock off the counter

Our trip to the vet revealed Tippi in kidney failure. They ran every test imaginable but were dumbfounded as to the cause. The ultra sound was fine but her creatinine levels were off the charts. You might be asking yourself how Tippi’s death fits into a humor blog. You’re right, it doesn’t. So to remedy that, let me tell you how Tippi lived.

tippi on laptop

She helped me write my blog

As you know from previous posts, that cat adored me. Oliver kind of likes me, Savannah (also from Tippi’s colony) tolerates me, and Fat Jack loves me when I’m feeding him. But I was Tippi’s person and I soaked up that unabashed love.tippi posing

Tippi was the runt of the group, weighing no more than 7 pounds, nearly half Fat Jack’s weight, yet she ruled the roost. Toothless from an inherited gum disease, she none-the-less carried herself with confidence and the others knew it.

tippi on floor

Don’t mess with me

Tippi was an expert swatter. Even my 4 dogs weren’t immune when she was in a mood. What a scene to see each of them take a wide berth around this scrawny, feisty little thing who stared them down. But although easily irked, she never held a grudge. As you can see, she also slept around quite a bit.

I don’t own a cabinet Tippi didn’t climb into. I’d discover this only when I’d hear pots rattling or glasses clinking. More than once I found her contentedly curled up in a casserole dish. She also loved shredding crepe paper upon sneaking into the hall closet.tippi in closet

Tippi was a feral-turned-excessively-loving domestic who shadowed my every move, even watching me shower.tippi on toilet 2

Because she was always cold, Tippi had a penchant for staking her spot in front of the fireplace. She was an expert cheek to cheek hugger, rubbing her face back and forth across mine every chance she got.tippi and fireplace

But all that seemed so long ago. At pet emergency, Tippi’s body continued to shut down. Told there was no chance of recovery, I knew I needed to let her go. Alone with her in a dimly lit room with a convenient box of Kleenex nearby, I told her she was my favorite. I know we aren’t supposed to have favorites but…

tippi at the end

Saying goodbye

Until the doctor arrived to euthanize her, I talked to Tippi, telling her how much I’d miss her body draped across my neck when I slept, soothed by the rise and fall of her chest. I reached out to pet her head and she instinctively put her arm out as if to swat me. So instead, I laid my hand beside her and whispered, “I love you, Tippi Toes.” But I wasn’t sure if she still recognized me.

Then, she slowly lowered her arm and placed her paw on top of my hand. She kept it there while I finished saying goodbye.tippi taking in the sun

 

26 thoughts on “Gone too Soon

  1. Life can be so unfair sometimes….I knew Tippi would be your topic this week. Now I am the one who has to go get my Kleenex. She was such a sweet, loving kitty! You and she were so lucky to have found each other!

  2. Thanks, Janet- I commiserate after seeing our Truman to heaven this past Friday after 13.5 years with him by my side. It was a tonic I needed to read. Glad I happened on your blog! 🐾💕

  3. Rest In Peace Tippi. Janet I believe she was grateful to you, so she was gonna be your girl. I’m sorry, it’s so hard to lose them.

    • We had a nice connection I’ve never had with another of my semi ferals, which doesn’t make the others any less special. It just made Tippi extra special!

  4. I just read your post and got all choked up…so sorry to hear about Tippi…they’re all family. Take care Laurie

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

  5. So sorry to hear, from your wonderful words about her she was definitely one in a billion, so glad she found you and enjoyed her life with you❤

  6. My heart goes out to you, Janet. So very hard to lose one of our fur babies. Tippi was lucky to have you as a friend, would say owner, but thinking Tippi was actually the one in charge.

  7. I’m teary eyed reading your story. What a special feral cat. The love of our furry friends is like no other.
    You were both blessed to have each other and to share so many special memories.
    Patty

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