The following comes with gracious permission from Gigi‘s adopter, Dave.
I could not possibly add to the power of his words, so I gratefully reprint them here in full.
“It is with a very heavy heart that I have to report that Gigi had to be put to sleep.
“I came home from work and saw Gigi sitting in the dining room unable to move her legs. I picked her up without thinking she could have sprained or broke a leg, but she didn’t react at all. I called the vet’s office to get the number for the emergency vet and took her there. They examined and X-rayed her. There were no bones broken, but they believed it to be neurological and dealing with the spine. According to the doctor, she was numb from the waist down and couldn’t urinate or defecate. There was also an issue with her heart, and even with surgery, she might not have had much time, or still been in pain.
“At about 2 AM, I made the fateful decision to have her euthanized. I brought her home and buried her in the yard.
“I will say that she was incredibly happy these last 6 months and was very loving, friendly, appreciative, a character, and very easy to like. Everybody that came in contact with her really loved her personality and disposition. I want to thank you for giving me the opportunity to have her and really enjoy these last 6 months.
“The last day and a half has been very tough. I really love her and will greatly miss her. Even though it was only 6 months, it was worth every moment to be with her. Lots of tears and anguish have occurred (my jaw is sore, I guess from clenching in pain), but will pass with time. When the school year ends I think my grieving will have subsided and would love the opportunity to look into another cat.
“Even with her health issues, I know 100% that Gigi was the right choice. I’m glad I was able to take her from an ‘apartment’ to a ‘mansion’ in her eyes.
“As I end this sad letter, I will leave you with a happy thought of Gigi. When she would get her nose clogged up, I would run the shower on hot and steam up the bathroom, which seemed to help her a lot. She would get very happy and loving and would sit on the toilet seat. I think because of that, when I would shower in the morning, I would leave my towel on the toilet, and, when finished I would open the curtain to see Gigi laying on the towel. Again, spoiling her, I would get out of the shower and grab the other towel to let her be.
“On another note, did you know that she howled? When she was attacking her toys, she would do these howls. Eventually I would howl back and it was like we were having a conversation. Hilarious! Such a trip. Tons of stories for her to remember.
“I do hope to meet her again so that she can once again wait for me to change out of my work clothes so she would be picked up by me and hug me for about 20-30 minutes. She actually would grab onto my sweatshirt and pull herself up to me rubbing her head on my neck. It’s been easier since I buried her out back and placed 2 large stones over her spot. I’ll always have that reminder and again look forward to seeing her again.”
Dave, this is love in all its splendor. The strength of the ache is equal only to the depth of the love you shared — and it’s clear that you and Gigi shared an extraordinary bond. You filled her last six months with more love than many creatures — humans included — know in a lifetime. It takes tremendous courage to let oneself love a cat so wholeheartedly. You gave Gigi that brave gift. Thank you. Thank you.