Tag Archive | cats

Goodbye Patch ! R.I.P April 2000 – November 2013.


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I had to have my beautiful cat, Patch, put to sleep this morning! Yesterday we took her in for a check-up at the vet’s office. He diagnosed a crumbling tooth so we took her back this morning for the extraction, but while she was under the anaesthetic, he found a lump in her bowel. He phoned me from the operating theatre and told me the bad news and I made the decision, which no pet lover likes to make. She was nearly fourteen years old – a good age for a cat.

We had suspected for a while that all was not well with Patch. Her tummy had been making some very odd noises and she had been sick more often and had ‘other’ problems of a dietary nature. I wondered if it was getting used to Millie being here that had upset her tummy, but now we know better. Millie and Patch tolerated each other, but they weren’t exactly friends. Patch just wanted to lie about sleeping most of the time, but Millie, being younger, liked to chase and play much more. Patch just wasn’t interested.

I think the vet had his suspicions! Perhaps he got Patch in for the tooth extraction so he could do some more in-depth investigations under the anaesthetic.

I feel bereft. That cat has been part of my life for fourteen years nearly and she will be sorely missed. When I was in America she kept J company, but she was always pleased to see me back. She was very loyal. I had her from a kitten, together with her mum and four brothers and sisters so I knew the history of her. For a while she lived next door because my neighbour wanted her and in those days she was called ‘Taz’, but then they bought a large collie dog and then another. The first dog was kind to cats, but the second one wasn’t and bit Patch’s leg quite badly. She, remembering where her life started off, shot through our cat-flap in the back door and never returned next door again! I nursed her back to health on that occasion.

Patch lost another of her nine lives a couple of years ago when the cat across the road, I call him ‘The Ghost’ bit a chunk out of her ear, necessitating an operation. You can see that clearly on the photo above.

She always used to sit on my suitcase when I was getting ready to go to America. It was as if she was saying ‘Please don’t go…’ now this morning, I found myself saying to her ‘Please don’t go, not yet…’

I have cleaned her chair and put away her dirt box and told Millie not to expect her playmate today.

I am left with my tears and a rather large hankie…

Millie has an argument with The Ghost!


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This has been a slightly worrying week with Millie because she had an ‘argument’ with The Ghost – a large Tom cat who lives across the road.

The Ghost has always been a source of annoyance to me because he is ever-present and determined to live here, even though he has a perfectly good home of his own.  I say perfect, but perhaps he thinks otherwise. Some of the problem has been my own fault because I have tolerated his presence to a certain extent. Here’s what happened …

About four years ago, we noticed that we had a ‘stowaway’. We first saw him making a dash through the cat-flap after stealing Patch’s food one evening. We didn’t hear him come in. We only heard him going out! Then we started finding him under beds, hiding. It seemed like he wanted to stay, perhaps to keep warm, perhaps for other reasons. He was very sneaky. He used to hide and stay the night. We didn’t even know he was in here most of the time. That was when he was a kitten. As he reached adulthood he became more noticeable. When he started to spray, we shut the catflap and kept him out. He wasn’t welcome!!

I made some enquiries as to who he belonged to. My friend around the corner told me he belonged to a lady in my street. She never had The Ghost neutered. I wish she had. The older he got, the more of a nuisance he became. Finally he started chasing Patch into the house and frightened her. She is an old lady and likes a quiet life.

Then Millie arrived. I was a bit worried that he would ‘have a go at her’ and sure enough he did – last week. She came indoors looking very sorry for herself and started licking her tale. I knew something was up. Luckily the bite  didn’t turn into an abscess but she was a poor thing for a day or two. I think her pride was hurt. She didn’t expect to be set upon by the neighbours.  After all she had been through to get here, she didn’t deserve that.

Now she is better (thankfully). I wasn’t looking forward to a trip to the vet’s office. She will have to learn to live with The Ghost. That will not be easy. There’s always one, isn’t there.

Come to think of it, there’s always one in the human world too, isn’t there.  Always someone to ‘get along with’. Someone you don’t really like very much or who picks on you or bullies you or makes your life unbearable.

Is there someone in your life that gives you a hard time? Can you ‘shut up the catflap’ or must you endure?

When we were deciding how to handle this situation with Millie, we had discussions. My house partner suggested we shoo him away. I wasn’t in favour of that. I asked myself, ‘what would St. Francis do?’ The equivalent of Jesus’s ‘turn the other cheek’ scenario perhaps.

In the end I decided to let the cats sort it out for themselves. I have enough problems.

Here he is, the devil, alias The Ghost. For the moment peace reigns!

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Can I take my cat abroad with me? – Millie looks forward to her adventure!


This is my American cat Millie.  Soon she will be travelling back to England with me to begin a new life in a colder climate. Hope she likes it!

Back at the beginning of the year I happened to notice that quarantine isn’t necessary any more for some countries. In the U.K. we have no rabies. It has been so for many years and we are not keen to have it either, thank you very much! However nowadays pets can have passports and injections for rabies and other nasties so we have decided to move Millie to England complete with her very own passport, chip in her neck and all the necessary jabs. It will mean an inconvenience for her for 24 hours but if we permanently locate to the U.K. eventually, the Millie has to come to. I couldn’t bear to leave her behind. Even if we don’t move entirely, at least Larry will be able to come and stay without worrying about Millie stateside.

Quarantine would have meant six months in a cage with me visiting her as and when I could. It is a long way to Heathrow from where I live and it would be expensive and inconvenient not even counting the cost of boarding a cat in quarantine kennels. It has always been a no no. Millie wouldn’t like it and nor would we, but this way, one day of inconvenience and it’s over.

Millie started her life with someone else. When we first saw her she was about one year old.  She was sitting in a cage in Petsmart and we chose her specially. When we brought her home she zoomed about all over the apartment, obviously glad to have so much space. She is an outdoor cat, preferring to run free up the banks next to the apartment block, in and out of the hedges and trees.

She has her very own cat-door, which Larry made for her and her own special basket, see above.

She is a very special lady, six years old now and in her prime.

When she gets to England she will meet my other cat Patch, who is an old lady of 12 years.

and the Ghost, who belongs to someone else, but lives mostly with me, inside if he can sneak in or outside mostly:

It will not be easy…. there will be tense moments…. but fingers crossed we will all be happy family one day!