Pet Talk

12 years ago

By Cathy Davis
    I would like to share a story with you about a family who, in their 31st year of marriage, acquired a new kitty, much to the chagrin of the husband. “We don’t need any cats”, he says, and his wife rolls her eyes and the cat moves in. A little fur ball kitten she was, and the husband, who we’ll call Ken for the sake of the story, tried to convince his wife, who we’ll call Barbie, that the cat had to go.
    I should pause here for a moment and let you know that this is a real story and it comes from a letter that I received personally. The names have been changed to protect the privacy of the family.
    Not long after the kitten moved in, Barbie could smell her husband’s after shave when he wasn’t in the room and realized it was the cat that smelled of Ken. He had been secretly cuddling the kitty. Ken named the cat, and Ken became the cat’s best friend.
    Ken’s heart melted with affection over the years for kitty and every night his new best friend would wait for Ken to get home from work. She would stand patiently while he changed his clothes so she could go outdoors. At times she would even have her harness in her mouth, giving him a gentle hint that she was ready to go.
    Ken would harness up his kitty and out the back door they went, exploring the yard for hours, watching the birds, butterflies, dragonflies or bugs. Sometimes the two of them would just curl up in the hammock together and take a nap, rocking in the gentle breeze.
    When kitty turned 7, she got very sick and the vet was unable to save her. Ken’s heart was broken. He was never the same after he lost his kitty.
    Recently Ken passed away. One of his wishes was when he passed, he wanted his ashes to be put with kitty’s ashes. Today they are together, free of all diseases, pain and suffering, enjoying their walks and time together with peace and sunshine surrounding them every day.
    In honor of Ken’s memory, friends were asked to make donations to their favorite animal shelter. Barbie’s thank you included the following, “I so know how your contribution pleased Ken so very much. Our furry friends do make us learn a new perspective of the word love and all need to be cared for even in shelters and in hopes that folks like Ken and I will bring them into homes”.
    On behalf of all shelters and rescues, I would like to thank the families of loved ones who remember us in their time of grief. The memorial donations help so much, I don’t know of a non-profit that could exist without these generous contributions. Last year the Houlton Humane Society received over $5,000 in memorial donations and a $20,000 bequest from an estate. Over the years, gifts such as these from estates of Isabel Hess, Richard Lawlis, Evelyn Lawry, Mrs. Callnan and others have made the difference between continuing in operation or closing the doors, between existing in a ratty old building or constructing a new one, the difference between adequate care and excellent care, and we are forever grateful.
    When I pass, I’ll leave very little other than a mountain of debt, so my contribution might just be organizing some fund raisers, saving my used shampoo bottles and ink cartridges, or baking some brownies for a bake sale. Most of you are like me. But I am hoping that when my time comes, my family will honor my passion and ask for donations in my memory to Houlton Humane Society so that my last act on earth, even after I’m gone, will be to help save just one more life.
    God bless all of you who support animal welfare and other causes. Nonprofits are struggling in this economy and whether it’s walking for cancer research, MS research, helping to raise funds for the Houlton Regional Hospital Health Services Foundation, or Houlton Humane, whatever your passion, whatever your cause, may you receive great joy and blessing from your loving gifts.