Registered: 1212253372 Posts: 25
On Memorial Day I noticed that my sweet little Romeo seemed to be despondent. In the ten years I've had him he has slept at my side almost every night. He hadn't slept with me for several nights & as I was busy with a training I am in, I was gratefull for the break from the constant meowing to wake me up early in the morning to play with him. He did not want food or water. The week before he had been his usual self, meowing, wanting to be with me as I worked on the computer, etc. The sudden change of behavior was alarming when I noticed it. He had a little bit of drool coming from his mouth & his breaht smelled bad. I'm not working right now, so a trip to the emergency room was not possible as I didn't have any cash. I took him to the vet the next morning & they told me that his right kidney was enlarged & his left kidney was very small. He deteriorated quickly and they put him to sleep the next morning after my dog, Max, my ex-partner, Mario & I had all said goodbye to him.
I have felt such guilt. Why didn't I see the signs sooner? Why didn't I love him more? Why, why, why? I felt so much guilt. When I first got him I already had one cat, Erica. I had one friend pushing me to get her a playmate & another one discouraging me from doing it. I really wanted a second cat. When I got word that someone had rescued a male kitten who was born in the wild & who had been separated from his mother, I was very excited. I'd raised a kitten like this when I was young & I knew this would be a special friend, as my other cat, Mouse, was very human from being raised with an eye dropper. I was nervous & listened to what other people told me about introducing him to Erica. They instantly bonded and became great friends. Many people told me that I should always give Erica more attention & let Romeo assume a submissive role. This broke my heart & went against my instincts, but I did this for much of his first few years. When Romeo was three I accidentally put the wrong flea medication on both of them. Romeo almost died. I then completely opened my heart to Romeo (which was my first instinct), we then bonded very deeplly. From that moment on, he was inseparable from me when I was home. Hew was part Maine Coon & behaved a lot like a dog, greeting me at the door, following me around, etc. I felt such guilt over the past few years when I have been on a sense of overwhelm over not working, being depressed, stressed, personal problems, etc, a few times the thought briefly going through my mind mind that I was weighted down by my pets and wanted to be free from them and felt like I was not giving them a good home. Romeo had always had a problem with throwing up. When I'd ask vets about it, they said it was just that he overate. He would throw up in the weirdest of places, including my armpit one night when I was sleeping. Now I have learned that he probably had kidney problems from the start and the vomiting may have been a sign of that. At times I would grow impatient with him for throwing up, for waking me up in the middle of the night, for pushing Max & Erica out of the way, for chasing Erica when she didnt' want to play. His spot in bed was always right next to me or above my head. No one else was allowed there. He didn't growl or hiss, it was just understood that he slept right next to Daddy & he did just about every night for ten years. He was the most gentle of souls. I feel like I lost my child. I loved him so much. My guilt is that I didn't show that love to him in the way that I felt it when I first got him (as a tiny, tiny kitten) as I was listening to the advice of others. I just want to know that he knew how much I loved him. At times I wished I could had another kitten so I could re-do things with him show him how much I loved him from the first time I saw him. There is such a big hole in my heart now. Erica seems to be very angry and not very friendly right now. Max seems to understand it better as he was with me at the vet's office. I spoke with an animal communicator who worked with him several times over the past seven years. She said that he did know how much I loved him & that he considered me to be his parent as he was abandoned by his mother. I just think about what miracle he was. Born in the wild, what a miracle it was that he found his way to me. We were meant to be together. The last night that he spent with me, I put him into bed with me & held him. His tal was wagging, but he seemed to be in pain. I just wanted him to know how much I loved him. At the time, I didn't know that would be the last night he would sleep with me. I fed him water with electrolytes with an eye dropper. After his passing I realized how complete his circle of life was. He was fed with an eye dropper to begin his life & he was fed with an eye dropper to end his life. I got him right around Memorial Day of 1998 & he died right after Memorial Day 2008. I'd love to be in contact with others who have been through this. It is my first time. You can respond to my post, or e-mail me at email@example.com. Just put Romeo in the subject line. I'd like to post a tribute & picture of him on this website, but I need some help doing it at this time. Thanks, Kevin (Romeo's Dad)
Registered: 1205963166 Posts: 205
I'm sorry about the loss of your Romeo....don't let the what ifs get to you...Romeo knew how much you loved him...I finally got a pic on the boards myself, if you write to Ed( the moderator of this site) he can make a nice memorial page for you......Tai-Chi's mom Lisa
Registered: 1198872932 Posts: 1,205
Dear Kevin, I am so sorry.
Animals give us such unconditional love, which is why it is so special. Because of the way they love us, they dont hold grudges as a person would do. I have shouted at and got cross and irritated with all of my animals, and they have just slunk away and waited until I deign to be nice to them again..........how bad am I. I would give anything to be able to tell them how sorry I am, but, I know that they love me just the same. I have had a rescue dog since January, and because of hard lessons learned from my other babies, I am much more laid back with him, he gets away with loads, but is still very well behaved. What I am trying to say is, forgive yourself, life just gets in the way at times, and I know the stress of not having any money. You did your best and Romeo loves you with all of his heart. Lots of love, Di xxx
Registered: 1206744372 Posts: 174
Your post broke my heart. I feel as if I was reading about what happened to me 2 months ago when I lost Sherry suddenly to kidney disease. I missed all the signs until it was too late to save her and she suffered horribly before she had to be pts. I feel enormous guilt that I spent so much money and time on all my other sick cats and didn't help her when she needed me the most. This will haunt me forever. I'm so sorry for your horrible loss. I know you Romeo was a very special kitty. If you get a chance later, take a look at some of my earlier posts where I go into a lot more detail about what happened and I think you'll see how similar our situations are. My thoughts and prayers are with you. My email is
firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to share. Hugs, Rena (Sherry and Daisy's mom)
Registered: 1197081544 Posts: 686
I am so sorry about the loss of your Romeo. I can tell he was a very special kitty. Sometimes we are lucky enough to be blessed with a very special furbaby. Your Romeo had a wonderful life with you. He had your love. Please try not to blame yourself for not noticing he was sick. Cats are very good at hiding their illness. I lost my Gus in December after a very short 1 week illness. I went through all of the "What if's", but in the end I know that I loved Gus with all of my heart and even if I had noticed earlier that he was sick, there was really nothing that could have been done. Be kind to yourself and try to remember the wonderful times you had with Romeo. Hugs Kate (Gus' mom)
Registered: 1211823351 Posts: 1,569
So sorry for your loss. At the home page for the message board the second message explains how to post photos also on the pet loss home page there is tribute section you can go to. Rest assured there are many here that will help you get through this difficult time. The guilt phase, we all have had it, is to me the worst but the one we need to remove first in order to let the healing process start. We all cope with our loss in different ways but the support you get from others here is by far the best medicine to ease your pain.------------Jerry in Oklahoma
Registered: 1211298031 Posts: 95
I am so sorry for your loss. I lost my Bennie last Sunday and I know all too well the guilt. You are not alone. Please be good to yourself and realize that you saved Romeo from an unknown fate, you took him in and loved him as best you could. That is more than I can say for many unwanted animals that end up dying and suffering on the street. Hugs and prayers for your healing.
Registered: 1157161163 Posts: 1,821
i am so very sorry for your loss - Romeo sounds like a special soul. i do a fair amount of work with feral cats (ones born, raised, and who live in the wild) and have cried over many of them. When a feral momma has a kitten who is sick or frail she will abandon it to have more resources for her healthy offspring - allowing the weak one to die sooner rather than later. So you see - he was blessed with 10 beautiful years filled with love, and he knows it and he loves you. Your hearts are connected by a silver cord nothing can sever. ghattenwolf
Registered: 1212283814 Posts: 25
Kevin, I am so sorry for your loss. I too know the pain of guilt over beloved animals. Just know that even though you may have not followed your own instincts or gut at first, Romeo was always in tune with his. Its what animals run on and he knew perfectly well how much you loved him and that at first you were holding back. He loved you enough to wait for you to come around which you certainly did (please give yourself credit for that at least) and he was there to give and receive all that unconditional love. Perhaps your self forgiveness is his true gift to you. I know it will take time. But what a perfect way to honor him and his life. Jennifer ( Yyngwie's mom)
Registered: 1182807878 Posts: 536
Dear Kevin, I'm so very sorry for your loss of Romeo. I can tell that your Romeo was a very special kitty. Its so amazing what these precious souls do to us. Your Romeo is now watching over you. I too lost my NIKKI kitty to lymphoma cancer and kidney failure, she was 16+yrs. old when she went to the RB. Romeo knows how much you loved him too. My thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time. I was given this poem when I went to the petloss group support meeting at the Humane Society. Here it is: Miss Me But Let Me Go When I come to the end of the road And the sun has set for me, I want no rites in a gloom-filled room, Why cry for a soul set free? Miss me a little-but not to long, And not with your head bowed low. Remember the love that we once shared, Miss me, but let me go. For this is a journey we all must take And each must go alone. It's all a part of the Master's Plan, A step on the road to home. When you are lonely and sick of heart Go to the friends we know And bury your sorrows in doing good deeds. Miss me, but let me go. Author Unknown ((((((Hugs))))) Terri(NIKKI'S MOM)
Registered: 1164162392 Posts: 1,910
Kevin, I am so sorry for your loss of Romeo. i didn't read every other post to your thread in detail, but want to assure you that you should not feel guilty about not noticing Romeo's change in health.
Cats are beyond notorious for "masking symptoms", as my vet with 30 years practice says. It is known nationally that cats have worse outcomes than dogs for identical conditions because cats are so much worse off before their humans bring them in. This is not a nation of uncaring cat owners: our kitties have hidden everything from us until they pretty much collapse. You didn't notice because there wasn't much at all to see, and what you did observe didn't look urgent at all. All that you wrote about the early days with Romeo so much resonated with me. Cats are so incredibly loving and accepting, and they quietly adapt to whatever we humans think is best at the time. All they want to do is shower us with love, and you will never forget that blessing. Romeo loves you forever, just as you do him, and that bond is unbreakable. May your pain soon begin to ease. Come here often as you need to, everyone here understands.