Thursday, May 05, 2016

Goodbye Buster


I am profoundly sad, yesterday I had our cat of 15 years put down. He wasn't eating or drinking and was obviously in distress. This was a recurrent problem with his kidneys. A condition that went back several years and I remember several emergency runs to clinics.

Buster was a pain in the ass, but he was our pain in the ass. He was my daughter's college cat, with cow markings and the voice of a Siamese. He was the loudest cat I have ever heard. He used that to his advantage to awaken me at 4 AM for food.

14 years ago he managed to climb about 35 feet up a tree and learned that he had no idea how to come down. His solution was to caterwaul all night. The next day I borrowed a 35 ladder and risked life and limb standing on the top rung to peel him off the tree.  He never repeated that mistake again.

He had an encounter with a car which paralyzed his paw. When he walked he would drag it along the ground and the vets mentioned it might have to be amputated. But Buster soon learned by flipping it forward he could avoid dragging it. Later the nerve damage healed which is pretty amazing and it never troubled him again. He learned to avoid the street and spent most of the time inside after that.

Buster loved people and was the most gentle cat I know (with people). However he hated other cats with the exception of Twinkie, an orange Tabby who was our family cat. He managed to cause Sam, a male cat that we briefly had to run away.

We tried everything to chill him out, Feliway pheromone spray, female hormone injections, and my attempts at cat whispering. He responded by spraying everything in sight, walls, furniture, electronics. He was a pain in the ass (but our pain in the ass).

He spent his last years tormenting our female orange cat Paris and I'm trying to assess how she is taking his passing. She lived in stark terror, yet she would parade in front of  a window when he was outside. I think he was obsessed with him.

Last night while watching the X-Files I looked at the spot on the couch where he would have been and felt very, very sad
Alpha Cat

Loving the sunshine

The one and only time I've ever seen Buster catch prey. However after a while the chipmunk scampered off, unscathed. Buster wanted his food in a can.

Keeping watch

Afternoon sunshine

Buster was obsessed with Paris and would spend every waking hour stalking and attacking her. She would torment him by sauntering in front of the door knowing that the glass would save her.

This is how I'll most remember Buster, sleeping on the amplifier in my office while I work