Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Lucky's Rose

Back in the fall of 1991, I was a young newlywed, living away from home for the first time. We'd had cats at my parents' house since I was in grade school, and I really wanted to get a kitten. Being the logical, anal-retentive that I am, I started calling local vet's offices, trying to get an idea how much the "start-up fees" would be for a kitten (shots, spay/neuter, etc).

I called one vet's office and they said they had a young cat who was already spayed and had her shots. She was free to a good home, if we wanted to come see her. We decided to go see if we all got along. We got to the vet's office and saw this little face.

They opened the cage and she rubbed her little head against our hands. I think we slept on it, and decided to adopt her. When I went to pick her up, they asked if I was aware of her story. It seems the guy who brought her in to be fixed was a real piece of work. He called just after they put her under for the surgery and asked them not to do the surgery. Instead, he wanted them to put her to sleep and then tell his family she died during surgery. Nice guy, huh? Didn't even have the spine to tell his family he didn't want the cat. Of course the vet refused on both counts. She finished the surgery and kept the cat till she could find a home for her. We named her Lucky.

Lucky quickly made herself at home.

She had some unusual tastes in food (for a cat). She liked green peas, but her favorite was corn. But only fresh or frozen corn. Canned wasn't acceptable.

After a few months we decided she needed a playmate, so we adopted another kitten.

After they got used to each other, she and Ripley became good friends.

A couple of years after that, the marriage broke up and I got custody of the furry kids.

Lucky was a great cat. She and Ripley would both sleep with me at night, one on each side, pretty much ensuring that I couldn't move. After we moved to the house, Lucky would sit on the table in the front window and wait for me to come home.

She wasn't a terribly healthy cat, though. In 2001, I was traveling a lot and she stopped eating. She got really sick and spent a couple of days in the emergency animal hospital. They said she probably had liver cancer, but they wouldn't know for sure without doing surgery. If she did have cancer, they said they could give her chemotherapy, which might give her an extra 3-4 months. I decided against putting her through all that and said I'd just take her home.

She lived up to her name and bounced back after that. She did really well for another year and half, but in the spring of 2003 it became obvious that she wasn't enjoying life anymore. I let her go on April 1. I brought her home, buried her in the back yard and planted a little rose bush over her grave.

Today is Ripley's 17th birthday, and today.....

Lucky's rose bloomed. Miss you, kitty girl.

No comments: