Monday, 15 October 2012

One Cat Two Cats

When people say dogs are man's best friend, they don't lie. In my case, a cat is a man's best friend.

I never knew how painful it is to lose someone you love dearly until it happened to you. Our male cat, Tikka, passed away about a week ago. He was my faithful companion all these years. Even though he's a cat, he's not just A cat. He was family.

It all happened in Saudi Arabia about 12 years ago. My husband and I just got married and we moved to Saudi Arabia shortly after. We had been talking about getting a cat as a pet and I suggested that we got two instead of just one so that they can play with each other. Cut the story short, went to a pet store in Al-Jubail (that's where we got posted for several years) and saw these two cuties! They were so tiny and fit just nicely on the palm of my hands. After we left the pet store about US$600 poorer, these two cats of mixed Persian breeds came home with us. Had to gave them a bath as soon as we got home as their butt were stuck with lots of poo and they had so much fleas on them. Needless to say, the whole car stunk all the way home! We also thought we had two sisters but apparently, while cleaning them up, i "accidentally" felt something funny down there that definately told us that we had one brother and one sister! Their names derived from a food signboard that we saw on the roads. Yes, they were named after food! Seika and Tikka.

We still have Seika with us but she knows that something was missing. I know she knows that her brother's gone. She had been hissing at him for a few days before he died eversince he became sick. Tikka was in pain. Few months ago, we noticed that he had been making these crunching noises with his mouth/jaw. We didn't know what was going on and didn't think much about it. The week before he died, his jaw couldn't close up and he was drooling lots of saliva. He couldn't eat and drink. I had to spoon-fed him. He was struggling. We knew we had to find a vet quick. Now, being in Nigeria, we couldn't get hold of any vet that was available to come immediately. I was cursing and really frustrated with the way things turned out.  Finally we managed to find a local vet to come the next day. Two days later, Tikka had to be in a surgery. His rotten molar was taken out. For a few days, he seemed fine. I noticed the last two days before he died, his tongue was sticking out and he was breathing quite heavily. I know he was suffering and in pain. He refused water and food.

Then, last Sunday, we went down to the pool to hang out with a neighbor and our boys swam with a couple of kids from our building. As soon as we came up, I went over to Tikka who had been under a table the whole day and patted him. He was still breathing very heavily through his mouth. He got up, walked towards me, made some noises as if he was talking to me and right then it happened. He collapsed, half choking half crying. Then, all of a sudden, he was gone but I did managed to "say goodbye". We all did. I went berserk. I couldn't believe that Tikka passed away. It was so sudden. He waited till I come up from the pool to say goodbye to me. I was a wreck for a few days after that. I still am really. It feels like a piece of me was gone. It really does. I just broke down last night thinking about Tikka.

It have been one week since he died. I know he's in a better place and he's not suffering anymore. We buried Tikka downstairs at the compound. I get to "visit" him now and then. He crossed that rainbow bridge and went to kitty heaven. We love you, Tikka and we miss you. Mama miss you. BIGTIME! You will be in our hearts forever.

Tikka 2001-2012

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