A couple weeks ago, we reached that awful point in a pet’s life when we had to make the decision which they are unable to make themselves. After 18 and a half years of friendship, we had to say goodbye to our beloved cat, Cappio.
She was originally rescued from the Greenhill Humane Society just West of Eugene, Oregon in the late summer of 1992. We figured that everyone else would pick the long hairs, the chubby ones, the much cuter ones. Instead, we’d choose the one that looked like it needed the most help, the one that couldn’t compete with the others.
While trying to pick a name for our new little feline friend, an animated commercial campaign for a new bottled coffee drink was periodically playing on the television. So, Cappio it was. Small and short like her size and round on both ends, we felt it a perfect fit.
She lived mostly in the background of our experiences for the next dozen years. Small, she crested at a mere five pounds. She was a silent friend that was there for both the good and the painful.
In the last few years, Cappio became much more integrated in our lives. She was with us everyday and almost always with us while we worked. More often than not, she would even be an active conference call participant, tucked into her own chair while we’d tussle with the speaker phone. Not everybody self labels as a ‘cat person’, but if you’ve enjoyed or at least found interesting any of our motion, audio, or still work in the last few years, then you are a ‘cat-person’ by proxy as she has been a sizable inspiration for most every project.
In her later years, she required much more care which we were happy to be able to provide her. Cappio was cursed with hyperthyroidism, kidney failure, and arthritis among other ailments, but we were able to treat her in a way where her quality of life was maintained up until the end.
Our home is much too quiet now and we miss her dearly. But, in an effort to keep things positive we’ve looked for ways to do good for other cats that could use a little bit of help. So, to that end we decided to make a 100 pound food donation to the Cat Adoption Team in Sherwood, Oregon for use in their food bank program. It helps pet owners that may have hit a rough patch financially continue to care for their pets rather than have to give them up or neglect their needs. You can learn more about it here. Such an easy thing to do that directly helps pets and their owners that may be in trouble, we’re sure we’ll be making more food runs in the future.
We’re better people for having lived with and cared for little Cappio and will never forget her. She was a true family member. Our pain is a testament to how large a part of our life she had become and how much we loved her.
Thank you to everyone who sent their condolences and relayed their own elderly cat stories. They made us both smile and cry.
If you’re in the Portland area and are faced with a similar end of life care situation, let us know as we were fortunate to find a fantastic veterinarian for compassionate in-home euthanasia and we would be happy to pass along their contact information.
Also, if you’re looking for a pet yourself, please consider adopting an animal at a rescue center or the humane society rather than encouraging the monetizing and needless overproduction of animals by breeders. You’ll feel like a hero, because you’ll be a hero. Cappio would thank you.