My Geffen... in The Town of Llareggub

Revised: 11/19/2015 6:47 a.m.

  • Nov. 18, 2015, 5:32 p.m.
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I don’t know if I should even write about this tonight, because I can barely even mention or think about it without freaking out hardcore, but my kitty cat Geffen doesn’t seem to be doing well at all. She’s been getting around a little slower than before for a few years now, but that’s to be expected at her age. She’s 16 years old. She was my ex-husband’s cat, given to him as a birthday present in ‘99. He wasn’t all that interested in the little black kitten, so he let his roommate have her, basically. The roommate was nice to her while she was very little. He said she used to sleep next to him and he’d pull the covers up to her neck every night. She’d run to him excitedly whenever he opened a bag of potato chips, and he’d give her one chip and she loved it. Then, when she was fully grown, the roommate started to take his aggression out on her. He was a very large and angry guy. I think he was additionally a closeted homosexual. Perpetually at odds with himself. He began punching and kicking Geffen on a regular basis, and doing things like trapping her inside the toilet and flushing it repeatedly. She became a very emotionally tormented kitty cat.

That’s when I came in. I moved here in winter of 2002, at age 20, and I’d owned severely abused cats before. Geffen showed all the signs, and without much pressing, the roommate told me what he’d been doing to her. He didn’t seem to think there was anything wrong with his behavior. I took over all duties and ownership of her, after he tried to take her to the shelter because he said he didn’t want her anymore because she was stupid and scared of him, he said. I knew it was unlikely that anyone would want an obese black cat who was terrified of everyone and scratched anyone who tried to touch her. She had ballooned up when he’d started to abuse her, not sure if there is a connection or not. It took me a year and a half, and more than a little bit of my own blood was lost, but I managed to get her to tolerate and enjoy being petted. She seemed to want to be near me a lot, but if I touched her, she’d scratch me very hard. Slowly, I earned her trust enough to touch her for brief periods without her scratching me, and then those time periods gradually lengthened. She was never especially snuggly, as she does have pretty severe emotional disorders, but she and I have always had a mutual understanding. Her emotional distress did worsen in other ways over time, and since I couldn’t take her to therapy, I started her on kitty Prozac. I’ve been pilling her with my bare hands for a number of years now. The Prozac really calmed her down a lot. A few years ago, I also managed to get her weight from 21 pounds down to a healthy 10 or 11 pounds. She seemed to get around a lot better after that, and began grooming herself at that point too, so I was able to stop shaving certain parts of her fur that always clumped and tangled.

I’ve noticed for a few days that she keeps stepping into her litter box, stepping out, and then stepping back in again, etc. I wondered if it was just senility, as she has had some of that going on for some time now. But today, she’s been laying curled up by her water bowls for much of the day. Doesn’t seem to want to move much. Tonight, when I served the cats their dinner, I noticed that a minute into them all eating, her included, she wasn’t in the kitchen anymore. Her bowl only had a couple of bites taken from it. It was mostly still full. I looked for her and found her in her litter box, trying to go to the bathroom. Nothing came out. She stepped out and I moved her food into the dining room with her, and she refused to eat. She went into another litter box and tried to use it, but nothing came out. Then she hid under a cabinet and tried to go to the bathroom there. Nothing came out, lucky for the carpet. She then kept touching her backside to any surface she could find, pushing, and nothing came out. I was going crazy with worry and didn’t know what to do. I didn’t want her using the restroom on any of those things, but it seemed she couldn’t anyway, and I didn’t want to scream at her when she’s obviously not feeling well. I put her food bowl in front of her many times, but she refused every time. After a couple of hours, she stopped and curled up next to her water bowl in the hallway and fell asleep.

I’ve cuddled her a little bit when I’ve found her awake, and she’s purred every time I’ve touched her. I end those sessions by giving her a kiss on her forehead and walking off. I don’t want to bother her for too long. She seems to need rest and when she’s been sleeping, I haven’t wanted to wake her up. Poor Geffen. I’ve never had the same kind of bond with her as I’ve had with all of my other cats, since she likes to be left alone more and may be kind of mentally challenged along with having so many emotional problems. But I’ve always loved her and taken special care for her needs. Tomorrow morning, I’ll make an appointment for her with her vet. I’ll follow whatever advice he recommends. He is the best vet I’ve ever known, and always knows what is best for the animals. I’m beside myself with worry right now. And I don’t know if tonight is my last night with her, or not. I want to keep hugging her, but I don’t want to disturb her. The only time she’s seemed peaceful today at all is during her sleep.

Thanks for all your kind words! My Geffen is no longer suffering. It turned out she had a tumor in her bladder literally the size of a grapefruit. She couldn’t pass urine at all and her condition was poisoning her as well. She was in so much pain, so we let her go early this afternoon. I am beside myself with grief.

Last updated November 19, 2015

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