Giving Back – Musings on Our Animal Family Members

I have had cats in my life most of my life. Only a few were picked out of a litter and had me as part of their forever family.  The rest came to me, and my husband, as a second home, or, in some cases, as a last chance alternative to the pound.  Each was unique and had their distinctive personality and brought love and companionship to my family and me.  Each is missed.  Where else would we get the perfect cocktail party story if it weren’t for them?

Raider2

Here is to Claude, Djinn, Tonic, Slim, Gordo, Belle, Sarah, Punt, Chessie, and Raider (aka Bubba). Of all the cats I have had in my life, some have left us too soon and others lived a good, long life.  They have had various maladies, but I had never lost one of my guys to cancer, until Raider.  It was a tough journey for all concerned and I would not wish it on anyone.  Raider’s Vet and his staff were wonderful, supportive, and gratefully honest and pragmatic.  I know some choose chemo, but by the time it was diagnosed, combined with his age, it seemed the least kind option.  Sadly cats hide illness and pain very well, so it is often too late to do anything other than make them comfortable and make sure they have the best quality of life for the time they have left.

When the time came, it was not during regular hours so I brought Raider to a 24/7 Vet that had recently opened close by. All I can say is these were some of the kindest people I have encountered, ever.  They made an intolerable situation bearable and were loving and gentle with Raider.  I will be forever grateful.

Why am revisiting this? I attend at least three events each year where I set up a booth and try, like many artists, to get commissions and expose my work to as many people as possible.  One of the events is sponsored by http://www.morrisanimalfoundation.org/  .  The Morris Animal Foundation sponsors research to cure cancer in animals, domestic and wild.  They are a good organization.  I am happy to know my booth fees are going to a good cause and I encourage everyone to look for a local event in which to participate.  One day hopefully no one will lose their cat, dog, or other beloved pet, to anything other than old age.

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