The Passing of Poo the Cat

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The Passing of Poo the Cat

So this months blog I wanted to talk about my recent experience with the euthanasia of my beloved cat of 18 ½ years, Poo. Please do not read further if you feel this may cause upset but I wanted to relay my experiences in a very candid way and explain the practicalities that you might experience in the hope it would help other owners who haven’t yet been through this difficult time and a very difficult decision.

Sadly there are no leaflets to tell you what to do and how best to do it at this time so I wanted to share my very positive experience.

I had spoken to the local crematorium to make arrangements when I felt he was deteriorating and so had arranged to have a vet come out and euthanise him in the morning then I would take him straight to the crematorium. Everything was booked in and I had chosen the crematorium package that I wanted. Unfortunately Poo deteriorated quicker than my plan so I had to take him to the out of hours vets myself three days before I had everything organised.

When is the right time to make the decision? I had many friends and colleagues who told me ‘I would know’ and they were right! As hard as it was when it came down to it he almost told me himself. Have faith in that you will know and that your decision is right. I had no guilt after the event that it had been the right time.

What’s it like when they are actually put to sleep? Peaceful and very calm and if their health is failing and they are not 100% you can physically see them relax. It wasn’t the horrific and distressing experience I thought it would be. Some vets use sedation first, others like mine, there was no need. She explained that she would give him a lethal injection of anaesthetic and that I may hear him groan or judder and that this was the body shutting down but that he wasn’t in any pain. As it happened he just relaxed a little more in my arms and then he was at peace. His eyes were open, his ears pricked and his tail fluffed up. Other than that he was finally at rest which he hadn’t been for the past few days.

I asked the vet what to expect when I got him back. She said he would be in a sealed bag and wrapped in a blanket. He was being stored in their cold storage and I had opted to have him thawed out when I collected him a couple of days later and then I would take him myself to the crematorium.

To thaw or not to thaw? This is very personal but having him almost thawed out meant that when he was unwrapped at the crematorium his fur was soft and silky. Vets have cold storage facilities so if like me you have your pet euthanised on a hot Saturday afternoon but they aren’t booked in at the crematorium until Tuesday this gives you a very practical option

Was it distressing to see him in the bag? No not at all what I thought! I had it in my mind that he would be in a vacuum sealed, zip lock bag and would be all squashed up. No such thing at all! The vet had carefully wrapped him in his fleece bed and had tucked his front paws together with his back leg (he only had the one!) tucked in between and she had closed his eyes. His fur was gleaming and he looked as if he was just asleep. So my last memory of him at the crematorium was the best.

Old Flatts Farm did an amazing job and knew just what to do. They had separate rooms for saying goodbye and for collecting his ashes. I couldn’t have asked for a better death for my pet Poo and that is what it’s all about. It’ such a distressing time and I would not berate anyone for not making the decision easily but I had a positive experience that I wasn’t expecting. I can now remember Poo without an horrific memories and I have some lovely momentos to cherish.

I do hope you, the reader, have gained some comfort from reading this and that when the time comes you will take some comfort in knowing that it is possible to have a positive passing of your pet. From Angel Poo and to all those who have gone, are going or are about to go through this, best wishes and big hugs to you all.

Our thoughts are with you at this sad time.

Jane Hackett and Poo the cat. xxx