Tuesday, February 7, 2012
Warning - graphic post
I'm very sorry. I am pretty sure this post will upset some people, but it is rattling around in my head and I need to get it out. I will completely understand if you abandon reading this post and move on to happier cuddlier posts..
Cause I saw a dead cat on the side of the road. (if you didn't leave at the warning, you can leave now)
Every time. Every time I feel a crack in my heart.. I know I really should pull over and stop driving because it really isn't all that safe for me to drive in such an emotional state, and often if the kitty isn't too mangled I do pull over and get the kitty off the road. But then again the last time I did that it really wasn't pretty and it had an affect on me for quite some time.
This one was mangled. Really mangled. I wasn't even sure was a cat, but the rear foot sticking up definitely said cat to me. It was a healthy looking tuxie. Looked like there was a beauty spot on his white sock too..That foot is going to haunt me for quite some time. I know people actually enjoy running over dead animals, so as soon as I got to work I contacted the city and hope they are able to get that kitty off the road before he ends up.... well lets just not go there. I feel horrible for the owners too. I probably shouldn't, they most likely knew this was a very real possibility. But.. a loss is a loss even if you know it is coming.
Just as I knew it was a real possibility when I lived way too close to the highway for my tastes.. There was an animal fence between us and the road, and I like to think that Tig never bothered to cross the fence but I knew he could. We adopted him from the shelter when I was first married. He had been abandoned outside and once he came to live with us, he would beg and beg and beg to be let out.. but once we shut the door he would beg and beg and beg to be let back in. (sigh, even now after all these years as I type that I can see him and feel his emotion at NEEDING to be outside) He wanted to be out but have the door open. It was November, that wasn't going to happen... so I spent several afternoons with him outside letting him get used to the fact that I was going to continue to let him back in. We then moved to another apartment that was on a busy street in town. Fortunately there were some over grown areas behind the house and he spent his time in there when we let him out. It was kind of cool in the fact we lived on the second floor and had to go downstairs to let him in or out, but he learned that he could climb the tree on the side of the garage, walk over the garage across the roof and smack on our living room window to be let in or out. He earned the nickname SuperKitty there, because of this ability and his love of sitting above the window and jumping down so he looked like he was flying. Tig then moved with us to another apartment in the not so nice part of a different town, fortunately no major roads, and the now street smart boy was able to hold his own. We moved in with the in-laws out in the sticks for a while and my boy brought me home mice and moles.. When we got on our own feet we moved into a house we rented for a while. Our home was the high ground of the neighborhood and our boy felt the need to defend it quite vigorously. Many a trip to the vet for abscesses ensued. We then moved into our first home out in a safe neighborhood and on a quite road... yet one day shortly there after our boy did not come home. He was five years old.
From then all of our kitties have been indoor only. The weeks and months spent waiting for him were killer. Harder then putting any of my cats down - at least to me. Even trying to convince myself he found another home because he and Em never really did get along didn't work.
I was lucky, Em transitioned very easily to being an indoor only cat. Keeping Tig indoors would have been very difficult physically and emotionally (for both of us) and except for a few months while Em was dying, none of my cats have shown an interest in being outside.
I know some people believe being an indoor only cat is cruel, but I would love to show those people that kitty that I saw today (or any of the others), and ask them which is crueler..