Friday, December 10, 2010

A MESSAGE FROM OSCAR'S DADDY

It is with great sorrow and regret that I must announce Oscar's passing. One week ago, a chest x-ray at the Carlton Vet revealed the severe building up of fluids in his lungs, most likely as a result of the tumor in his abdomen growing and causing some obstruction. (For those of you who are medically minded, you may like to know that Oscar's heavy breathing over the last few weeks does not appear to have been a side-effect of the mirtazapine after all.) Oscar had difficulty breathing, so much so that his respiratory rate was 80 breaths per minute.

Some palliative care was given, with the knowledge that it could only be a temporary measure; Dr Miller from the Carlton Vet drained some of the fluid from Oscar's lungs with a needle last Friday, and on Monday (the day after Pussy Galore II went back to her mother), he prescribed a diuretic medication called Frudix to help drain the fluid from the lungs. This improved Oscar's condition somewhat, to the point that
by Wednesday his respiratory rate was about 40 (more comfortable, but still awfully fast). But Oscar lost his appetite, grew weaker and even thinner, had difficulty maintaining his balance when jumping and injured one of his paws, and continued to vomit whenever he strained in his litter box. I finally made the difficult decision that his quality of life had been too compromised and that euthanasia was the humane action.

This morning (Friday, December 10 in Australia) I called the Carlton Vet. Oscar spent a quiet and happy morning at home with myself and my partner Kevin; the sun was shining and we had just decorated the room for Christmas. Oscar slept a little in his basket, sat with us for a while on the couch and then on the floor and purred a little for us while we stroked him.
Around midday Dr Craig Miller and nurse Melissa Horwood of the Carlton Vet kindly came to our house to administer euthanasia to Oscar. He was in familiar surroundings, on the couch where he spent most of his days, and was I at his side the whole time; I also held him in my arms as he fell asleep from the initial sedative. He was fifteen years and nine months old.

Oscar will be cremated, and his ashes will rest next to those of his brother Gerald on a shelf in our living room.

These are some of the last pictures I took of him (including his last couple days, when I let him outside in the backyard for the first time):

And this is the very last picture I was able to take of him:

When I first adopted Oscar at the Toledo Humane Society in May 1995, when he was only two months old, he had been raised by human hands after a woman in Ohio had found him and his litter-mates behind a Meijer's department store, after their cat mother had died giving birth. I spoke to the woman who had saved Oscar; all of Oscar's siblings had already been adopted, but nobody wanted Oscar because he was black. The woman begged me to adopt Oscar because she had promised her two kids (who were with her) that if Oscar didn't get adopted that day, then she would adopt him herself. And she begged me to please adopt this black cat, since she already have five pets! And I assured the woman that I wanted a black cat, and I promised that I would give Oscar a good life. And I really hope that I have.

I want to express my gratitude to everyone, human and animal, who followed Oscar's blog these past few years. I have always found great comfort in the kind words of strangers who love and care for animals. I also want to thank Oscar himself for being my beautiful and beloved companion for the past decade and a half. I loved him unconditionally, and he did the same for me. He will be sorely missed.


58 comments:

Kaz's Cats said...

Our hearts are breaking - we're so very sorry for your loss. Sending gentle purrs and headbumps to everyone who knew and loved Oscar, especially his beloved family.

{{{hugs}}}

Gypsy & Tasha & Karen (Mum)

AFSS said...

Our hearts are breaking for you. Oscar touched us greatly in the short time we knew him through his blog. Comforting purrs & hugs, ~Artemisia, Fenris, Socks, Scylla & Alasandra

Parker said...

We are so very sorry for your loss of such a wonderful kitty.

Kea said...

We're so sorry for you...The mom is crying as she's tying this. It's not a surprise, but that doesn't make it easier. And she knows what it's like to lose a beloved four-legged family member. We know you gave Oscar the very best gift possible--freedom from suffering, peace at last.

Please know we are keeping you in our thoughts and purrayers and sending you and Kevin healing Light, to help ease your grief.

(((Hugs)))

-Kim with Annie, Nicki, Derry and "angel" Chumley

Tom, Tama-Chan, Sei-Chan and Bibi-Chan said...

We did not know Oscar but read about his going to the Bridge, and wanted to offer our condolences. WE can imagine your pain.

The Poupounette Gang
in France

The Taylor CatSSSSS said...

We are so very sorry for the loss of your beloved family member.

Big Piney Woods Cats said...

I am so sorry for your loss of Oscar. It is so hard..........I know, I just lost my Patches 3 weeks ago. I miss her every single minute of every single day.

CalicoMom Toni

The Island Cats said...

Oh we are so very sorry to hear about Oscar's passing. We send you comforting purrs and headbutts to help during this sad time...

Wally, Ernie & Zoey (and mom Sue)

Jan's Funny Farm said...

We are very sad for your loss. Oscar was a handsome black cat and he obviously had a very good life. Purrs and tail wags.

Punapippuri said...

So very sad for your loss, but so inspired by the way you write about Oscar and what he meant to you. He was so loved, and gave so much.

With purrs for you and Kevin, and a candle burning away here in Oscar's memory.

Mango said...

I am only meeting you now on this sad day. Your post was so moving. It seems that he had a good life and was dearly loved and he had those who mattered most around him as he made his journey over the Rainbow Bridge. He is running free now. His breathing is right. He is full of energy and joy. Only those left behind are sad.

Mango Momma

Brian said...

My sisters and I are so very sorry to hear about your sweet Oscar. Purrs and hugs to you.

Old Kitty said...

Hello. Me and my cat Charlie came over from Alesandra, the Cats&the Dog's blog. We are truly sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing a little bit about Oscare. He was such a special sweet and lovely kitty. We are sending you all lots of hugs and purrs. We know that the Rainbow Bridge is a better place now that angel Oscar is there.

Please accept our deepest condolences. Take care
x

ML said...

I's so sorry to hear that Oscar runned off to tha Rainbow Bridge.
That's tha same fing that ours Charlie Taylor had. It is heart breaking.
We's got three black-cat brofurs here, so we loves ours black cats.
Run free, sweet Oscar.
I'll be posting a tribute to Oscar on the Cat Blogosphere in a few minutes.
Love & Purrs,
KC

meowmeowmans said...

We are so very sorry for your loss. Thank you for loving Oscar so much and so well.

(((Purrs, prayers and hugs)))

ABBY said...

We are all so sorry to hear of your loss. You gave Oscar a warm loving and caring home for all of his years and he in turn gave you all of his love back 100 fold. We will keep you in our purrs.
Abby,Boo,Ping,Jinx,Gracie
& Mom Debra

Ikaika said...

We are so very sorry to learn of Oscar's passing. We send you gentle purrs and comforting thoughts. Oscar was loved and you were very fortunate to have found each other. He couldn't have had a better caregiver.

Run free at the Bridge, sweet Oscar ...

'Kaika and his mom

Teri and the cats of Furrydance said...

We did not have the pleasure of meeting you and Oscar before today, but read on the CB that you had to help him cross the bridge and we wanted to send our purrs of healing and condolence to you, his beloved family.

We know your hearts are heavy, during a time where the season should be joyous...but if you remember that the love Oscar gave to you over the years, is reflected in your tender care, and that as time passes, may your sorrow soften into gentle memories...

Marg said...

What a wonderful tribute to Oscar. Mom's eyes are full of water. It is so sad to lose an animal. It sure sounds like you did absolutely the right thing to send Oscar to the bridge. We are sending you lots of purrs and prayers and a huge hug. Take care.

Eric and Flynn said...

We are very sorry to hear your sad news. You gave Oscar a loving home and in return he has given you many happy memories. We send you comforting purrs.

Junior and Orion said...

We are so very sorry to read this, but we know that you truly did give Oscar a wonderful life. We hope you can find some peace in that fact that he is healthy and roaming in a nice meadow across the bridge now.

We are sending out purrs and gentle headbutts to comfort you in your sorrow.

Junior, Orion and Meowm

Roni said...

We are so sorry to hear the loss of your sweet Oscar. Sending soft purrs Baby Lucky & Rhonda

Ayla and Iza, said...

Ayla, Iza, and I wish to offer you our condolences on your loss. I know how hard this day must be. Today is the 2nd anniversary of the loss of MY "best cat" Skeeter. So we will both remember this day of the year forever with sadness for the loss, but joy in the lifetime of love and companionship of our own special friends.

Mark

Boots, Ozzie and Brenda said...

We are so sorry for you loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with you in this sad time.

Brenda, Boots & Ozzie

Sweet Praline said...

I am so sorry to hear about Oscar. I'm sending comforting purrs for you during your sorrow.

♥♥♥ The OP Pack ♥♥♥ said...

We are so sorry for your loss, we didn't know Oscar but we can see how much you loved him. Fenris, Scylla, Socks, and Artemisia sent us.

Woos ~ Phantom, Thunder, and Ciara

Raymond and Busby said...

What a lovely tribute to a handsome boy. We send our purrs and love to your household. We know Oscar is running free now. You two obviously shared a wonderful life together and we thank you for sharing Oscar with us here on the blogosphere. xoxo

Charlemagne and Tamar said...

We're so sad. Oscar fought the good fight for so long, we kept hoping that he'd have longer.

Thank you for sharing him with us. He was a great kitty and we know that you and Kevin will miss him terribly.

Sending purrs from a sad Charlemagne, Tamar, little brother Mal and Momma Colleen

House of the Discarded said...

I wish every cat could be loved like Oscar had been loved.

Thinking of you -

Beth

Laila and Minchie said...

We are so very sorry for your loss. Oscar was a gorgeous mancat. (((HUGS)))

Kat's Kats said...

Hugs, Purrs, Head Butts & Prayers from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Kitty Horde (which has always included at least one black cat & are all rescues) and their Feeders.

May the many memories of love outweigh the grief of loss.

Carolina Cats said...

Oh no, we are so sorry to hear that Oscar had to leave you. Be absolutely assured that you gave him the best life possible. We kno he was furry happy wif you all. Owr big brofur Jasper was from near Toledo, he came from Adrian, Mishigan! He is at the Bridge now too, so tell Oscar to look for a big, all white kitty. He'll show Oscar around and teach him all he needs to kno to watch ofur you and send you lots of love.

Purrs & hugs,
Finnegan, Buddy & Princess Jazzy
(with brofur Jasper and sisfur Daisy at the Bridge)

Admiral Hestorb said...

I am so sorry. I know that exquisite pain as do most of us.

We love our fur children so much and they love us just as much.

He knew you loved him and that is a comfort. He was fortunate to have you both as his family. You were lucky to be loved by so pure a love.

pbgmomof5 said...

Daddy and Uncle Kevin, we are so sorry to hear that Oscar ran off to the Bridge. Momma went through some of the same struggles you did with a kitty named Pepper who had Lymphoma. oscar is probably trading stories with her at the Bridge right now! You two were amazing with all you did for your sweet boy.

Purrs and Hugs with love from the Califorrrrrnia 5

Butchy, Katie, Ruby, Sylvester, Scuby, Hootie, Zeek said...

We are so very sorry for your loss. Oscar was a beautiful cat.
Wirey Hugs, Purrz & Licks,
Butchy, Katie, Ruby, Sylvester, Scuby, Hootie & Zeek

Harry Spotter said...

We are heart broken for you and your family. How loved Oscar was, what a beautiful tribute. Please accept our purrs and paryers.

Lacy said...

sad woofs, we read about Oscar's crossing the bridge at JFF...We are soo sorry..RIP Oscar, run with the wind.

a sad,
rock n bear
jodee and angel lacy,
and mama..

Team Tabby said...

we are to sorry to hear about your loss of Oscar. We hope that your wonderful memories of him will help you at this very sad time.

Kari said...

We so sorry to hear of Oscar's passing. What a lovely boy he was. How we wish we could have known him. You gave Oscar the ultimate gift of selfless love: freedom from his suffering. You allowed him to lay down his heavy burden in his own home surrounded by his loved ones . His last memory was the loving comfort of your arms. He was blessed to have your love as he was to have had yours. When one of us passes , mum lights a special candle . She will light this candle for Oscar.

cats of wildcat woods said...

Sending warm purrs for you from all of us. We know what you are feeling and hope that memories of beloved Oscar will sweeten your days. Black cats are very special! With deep sympathy.

MoMo said...

Although we didn't know Oscar, we are sorry for your loss. It's always hard to lose a long time furriend and companion, even you know it's coming.

Purrs and prayers are heading your way.

Cats~Goats~Quotes said...

We are so sorry to learn this. Oscar had a good life with you, but it seems to never be long enough. My Mr. Nicholas had the same condition many years ago.
We are keeping you and Kevin in our prayers and our thoughts.

~ The Bunch and Mom Bobbie

Quinvale AstaLaVista Baby said...

Asta and I are sad for your loss. We remember that both Gerald and Oscar helped Asta get used to being around kitties. It was because of Oscar that we found PG.
Love, Asta and Louise

Sparkle said...

I'm so sorry. I know how much you and Kevin loved Oscar - it comes through in the blog - and I think I can say without a doubt that you gave him the best life possible - in fact, even better than a lot of us kitties because he got to travel to another country to live! Not many of us kitties get an experience like that. I am sending you soft, loving purrs because I know you are sad. But do realize that you did your best by Oscar and you gave him a wonderful gift by adopting him all those years ago.

ZOOLATRY said...

Purrs for Oscar, prayers for those who loved him so.
He had traveled the world on wings of love and now his wings have taken him over the rainbow.

Everycat said...

Beautiful, handsome Oscar, you fought so hard and you are so very loved by your Dad, your Uncle and all of us cats on the net. We will miss you very much. We are so sorry you had to leave us and we send much love and many rumbly purrs to your Dad and Uncle.

Fly free Oscar you exceedingly good cat

Whicky Wuudler
Oliver
& Gerry

Southbaygirl said...

We are so sorry to hear about Oscar. He was truly loved and will be dearly missed. Rest in Peace Oscar.

Woofs, Purrs, Hugs and prayers

Velcro, Kodak, 3 Perf, Blossom, Skye and mom Penny

Cloon said...

We are very sorry for your loss. We too understand what it's like to have to make that difficult decision. Our best wishes to you at this time and we wish Oscar tons of special blessings in kitty heaven.

Cory said...

I'm so sorry to learn of Oscar's passing. He was a handsome house panther, and like me had a hard time getting adopted as a kitten because of his fur color. I think he found the purrfect home with you. We will purr for him to link up with my guardian angels at The Bridge. There are amazing kitties there who will welcome him with open paws.

Purrs to you and your family.

Cory

The Lee County Clowder said...

We never new Oscar, but it is clear he was deeply loved, and had a good life. Sending comforting purrrrrss and gentle headbuttttss to you all.

Milo and Alfie Marshall said...

We are so very sorry to hear the news about Oscar. We weren't regular visitors to his blog ~ but we are sad just the same.
Thank you for giving him a loving and safe home for so many years. You did him proud. We know how much you will be hurting now he has gone ~ please accept our condolances.

Love Milo & Alfie, and our mom.

Tiki, Kirby, and StanLee (and Kesey) said...

We are so sorry to hear about Oscar. Sending you purrs.

The Thuglets said...

We are so sorry to hear of your sad loss of Oscar. Our thoughts are with you.

He was a very handsome chappie and clearly much loved. What a lovely tribute to him.

Big Nose Pokes
The Thugletsx

Huffle Mawson said...

Oh no! I have been away on holidays and didn't know about Oscar until now. I'm so so sorry but you know he knew he was loved right up to the last second.

Huffle and her mum Tracey

Everycat said...

We just dropped by to say we are thinking of you both and to wish you both a Happy Christmas and Happy New Year. We know your hearts will still be heavy without Oscar, but we think he'd want you to remember him and smile as you drink a toast to him on Christmas Day.

Whicky Wuudler
Oliver
Gerry
..and the ape.

Karen Jo said...

I am so very sorry that Oscar has gone to the Rainbow Bridge. You did the very best thing for him. Hugs and purrs.

Karen Jo and Herman

EFT Therapy said...

I'm very sorry to hear the awful news. All prayers will be sent up for Oscar.

Kat's Kats said...

This is always the hardest decision we ever have to make. The Teenage Mutant Ninja Kitty Horde is now 23 years old and I've had to do it three times. I believe in my heart that you made the right choice and that Oscar understood and approved.

Many purrs & prayers from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Kitty Horde (which currently has two black cats) and their Feeders for you and your partner.

May the many memories of love outweigh the grief of loss.