150303 - baby mits

Mittens – Our very best friend

Gone across the Rainbow Bridge but never forgotten.  We gave you love but you can only imagine the happiness you gave us

I first met Mittens back in 1996 when I started dating my husband.   She was his cat, I had never ever owned a pet (unless goldfish count?) and trust me when I say that it was most definitely not love at first sight as far as she was concerned.  When David went away for two weeks over the christmas holidays, she made my life a living hell as I attempted to look after her. She even reduced me to tears!  However, 12 months later, we were best friends and I was completely under her spell and her adoring slave.

Mittens was the funniest and cleverest cat I have ever known.  She knew how to open doors, would give us attitude if she didn’t get her way and no matter how bad your day at work was, the moment you got home and picked her up for a cuddle, she instantly made everything better.

Her favourite past times were sitting in her special place in the garden….

…. “hoovering” the grass…

… stalking, although thankfully, she never ever brought anything dead or alive into the house…

… getting high on catnip…

… and sleeping

On 24 December 2004, Mittens was diagnosed with diabetes. We thought it was the end of the world.  But thanks to amazing vets Robert and Raymond of Companion Care in Crayford, we got the disease under the control.  We were lucky in that Mittens only required a single shot of insulin every day plus a change of food.  All in all, with Robert and Raymond’s help, the condition was very easily managed.

Sadly, we lost Mittens on 22 November 2005 to cancer. In those last, dark days, we shed many tears, struggling to decide what would be best for our little girl. In the end, she took the decision into her own hands.  I will never ever forget that day.  We woke up at 7am on 22nd November and rushed downstairs to see how our little girl was.  She had gone blind overnight but she heard us and turned to look at us. In her face, we saw that it was time and she was ready to go.  Taking her to the vets would have been too stressful for her so David picked her up and together, the three of us went back to bed.  We tucked Mittens in the duvet with us, she gave us a little meow as if to say good-bye and then she was gone.

It’s been almost 5 years since she left us and not a single day passes where I don’t miss her.  Looking at photos and videos of her are guaranteed to make me weepy.  I don’t think I will ever get over losing her.   The pain eases but never really goes away.

A lovely lady called Carol wrote a lovely poem for us about Mittens.  I’d like to share this with you…

Dear Mum and Dad,

I’m just about to take a nap, for I’ve been running free.
I was chasing butterflies, and one small bumble bee.

I’ve rolled around in catnip, I’ve climbed high in a tree
And now I’ll rest all cuddled up with others just like me.

I’m in a truly lovely place, it’s right by Heaven’s gate.
I’m not alone, and I am told this is the place to wait.

I’ve told everyone about you, they said you won’t be late.
That though on earth long years will pass, I’ll meet you by the gate.

There’s a bridge we’ll cross together, it has a rainbow hue
And really it’s so pretty here, that all I miss is you.

So please don’t think about the things you did or didn’t do
It was my time to find the bridge, so please do not feel blue.

I’m sorry that I left so fast, with just a kiss good-bye.
But I’ve enclosed a “head butt” and a slow blink of my eye.

Take care of all my family and tell them that I’ll try
To be the one that greets them first, when they come, by and by.

Love and thanks for being such a wonderful Mom and Dad,

Your “Sweet” Mittens

Kittens looking up

Bella and Cindy – the Kitten Years

On 1st December 2005, I brought home two tiny little balls of fluff.  They were 3 month old british short hair kittens.  The black one, we named Bella and the Black Smoke, we called Cinders, Cindy for short.  These two little sisters swiftly wormed their way into our hearts and even today, we will allow them to manipulate us in a way that we would never allow another human being to do so.

This is Bella. Isn’t she just beautiful?

Bella Big Head

This is Cinders, better known as Cindy. We’ve called this picture “Little Miss Grumpy”.  Cindy isn’t really grumpy – it’s just the white markings above her eyes that make her look like she is.

Little Miss Grumpy

Two little sisters.

Two little sisters

Did you know that the Cheshire Cat was based on the British Short Hair Cat? If you need further evidence, take a look at this picture of Cindy.

Cinders Cheshire Cat looking up

As for Bella.  Well, all I can say is that she is truly named.  She’s only 3 months old in this picture, but already, you can see she has a pout fit for a supermodel.

Beautiful Bella looking up

Being cute is hard work!

Sleepy Cindy Kitten

As a kitten, Bella always looked exhausted when she was asleep. Maybe it’s because she was always full of joie de vivre.

Sleepy Bella Kitten

Inquisitive kitten…

Curious kitten

Look how tiny Belle is!

Little Bella Kitten

At 6 months, we had the girls spayed. A friend of mine told me that I should have let them have at least one litter as it would help them mature.  Now I have no idea whether this is true or not, however, I personally had and still have no intention of adding to the number of unwanted litters of kittens that are born every year.

Cindy with cone

The operation itself went well.  However, keeping the girls calm and chilled to aid in their recovery was a whole another matter.  Being confined to the kitchen and being forced to wear elizabethan collars until their stitches healed, did not stop them from running around like loons.  In Bella’s case, her refusal to take things easy resulted in her having a sarcoma.  Cue another visit to see Robert and Raymond who drained the sarcoma and then bound her midriff tightly with a bandage to help her with the healing process.

Bella with cone

If you would like to see more photos of our beautiful furbabies, please visit the Our Cats page of my blog which is dedicated to all our girls.