Our Family Cat, Puss

You know, we never named our cat. I like to think it’s because cats are always half wild and you’re never sure what they’ll do. That’s certainly true for Puss. One moment you’re rubbing her soft fur, or scratching behind her ear, she’s purring and you’re relaxed. The next moment she has her claws into your wrist and her jaws are going for the flesh between your thumb and first finger.. ah.
Come to think of it, that pain doesn’t compare to the time she got caught up a tree in a gale. Yours truely had to go up fetch her down. As I dropped her down to my brother on the ground she did not want to let go of my hand at all!
She was a damn lucky cat too. While holidaying with my aunt, my brother and sister found her in Co. Cork up the side of mountain trail. She was meowing and thin and looking for food. For some reason they took her the many miles home to Cork. In the late Summer of 1989 we didn’t have a pet, never had one, and weren’t going to have one. However despite that, it was clear from the start that she adopted us.
“I want food!” “Give me attention!” “Go away, I’m tired!”
Such is the life of a cat.
Did I say she was lucky? She’s had her scrapes. On St. Stephen’s Day (Boxing Day) 1990 she jumped out of her box late at night. Unfortunately there was a fishing hook hanging down from the shelf above. She got caught in it and raced up the garden in great pain. When I heard the commotion, the meowing and the crying, I raced outside in pijamas, picked her up and cradled her as I took her indoors. The hook had lodged in her belly and her paw had stuck in the briars at the other end of the hook. I cradled her for what seemed like ages while my father rang a vet. I’m not sure at this stage did he call out to us, or did we call to his surgery, but he sorted her out. We continued to bring both Spring and Puss to the same vet for the last 14 years.
I rang home last Saturday to hear bad news. Unfortunately, Puss hadn’t been too well of late, she wasn’t eating, and was very lethargic. When I left for Chicago I guessed there might not be too much time left for her. I was right.
She was put to sleep last Wednesday. It must have been very hard on my father and brother to bring her to the vet, but it was the only humane thing to do.
Cats are known to be solitary creatures, they like their own company and shy away from human contact. Maybe that’s true in the wild, but I wouldn’t believe it for a moment when it comes to domesticated cats. Puss was part of the family, as was Spring.

Author: Donncha

Donncha Ó Caoimh is a software developer at Automattic and WordPress plugin developer. He posts photos at In Photos and can also be found on Google+ and Twitter.

6 thoughts on “Our Family Cat, Puss”

  1. Awww Donncha, that’s such a sweet tribute! 🙂 I can imagine you must feel terrible being away from home at the moment..I know people will say “but it’s only a cat” but that’s a load of crap, animals become so much a part of your life it’s scary!

  2. Sorry about your cat. We too have a cat named Puss who found us. She was pregnant and showed my wife to the litter. We kept one Kitten, TOOTIE, the runt of the litter. They both stay inside now.

  3. It looks as though Puss had her share of cat problems. She also looks exactly like my cat Gracie, also a tuxedo, who is now 8 years old. She was rescued when a friend of mine opened her car door to bring her cat to the vet. Gracie stepped in and decided she wanted a new home.
    Hopefully Gracie can live a long and adventure ridden life like Puss.

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