Dr. Douglas Schar and Dr. Anatoly Vinokur
Something for People that Just lost Kitty
I hear from folks almost everyday that have lost a Burmese or Thai descent cat. They are consistently devastated. It is a terrible loss and one that is hard to comprehend….. unless you have lost a one of these cats. Its agony.
To be perfectly frank, there was a day when I would raise an eyebrow at folks that were immobilized with grief when their cat died. I was like, “oh for goodness sake, its a cat”. It does not pay to raise an eyebrow in judgement, because, that eyebrow will come back to haunt you.
There I was, all judgementally raising eyebrows and Bruce Lee 1 came into my life. He was the most perfect cat in the history of the world. He came running when I called his name, went on walks with no leash, rode in a basket on my bike, slept next to me without moving a paw, sat on my lap while I wrote my books and articles. Liked to get in the hot tub with me. He also knew how to open locks, both on doors and windows. I had to have all doors and windows double locked. He didn’t want to get out to go run around with cat friends, he wanted to get out to find me. He was obsessed with me. It was like his little cat brain tuned into my brain. If I was gone, he went looking. The relationship was super weird.
Then the unthinkable happened. The cleaning crew did not lock a window when they came to clean the house. He waited til they left, opened the window, and came out looking for me. He went where I parked my car and took a seat, waiting. While waiting for me, he got side swiped. He was the victim of vehicular cat-i-cide.
When I found his lifeless body, it was like all the air in the room got sucked out. I had kind of an out of body experience. I swear I could not think for months. I became that pathetic sad person whose cat had died.
Some say its like loosing a member of of the family. For me it was worse. Some family members are missable, other family members, not so much. When it comes to my Burmese companions, they have all been 100% missable. Because, they are a 100% fun to have around. They are always happy to see you, they instinctively know when you need a hug, their antics are endlessly entertaining, and they are reliably good company. Two key phrases here. Uniquely weird and dependable good company. So, when they go, they leave a big hole in your life.
I think the worst part of the Bruce Lee 1 murder, was this deep seated fear that I had had the best cat in the world, and, there would never be another one like him. He was gone and the space that was created with his passing would be forever empty. He could not be replaced.
What I hear, over and over again from kitten buyers, is the same fear. There will never be another cat like Kitty. That hole they feel is a perm-hole and that they will feel the loss forever. When it happened to me, I felt like I had had the best cat in the world, and, would never have that type of companionship again.
Breaking News. I was wrong. I contacted the breeder from whence Bruce Lee 1 came, paid for another male, waited 9 months, and in due course, I drove 8 hours and picked up Bruce Lee 2. When I got him home, he plopped down on the floor, with his belly up, and yelled at me to rub his stomach. Bruce Lee 1 was back in the house. Perhaps it speaks to a defective nature, but, all my kitty loss agony flew out the window, and I was returned to normal human status. As it turns out, the breeder had no blues, so I took a platinum instead. I realized the color did not matter, it was the personality that I was missing. That very night he watched TV with me and slept the night through. All better.
Not to besmirch the memory of Kitty, but, the truth is, all you have to do is get another Burmese and you will feel better. There is another Kitty out there for you. When your new Burmese Kitty walks in the door, and yells at you to be picked up, and displays a new array of bizarre behaviors, you will suddenly you feel better. The hole will be filled.
I can say this with absolute certainty because having bred these cats since 1982, I know one thing for certain. The personality is genetic. Its in their DNA. Literally. I have been studying them intensely for 10 years now, and, make no mistake, they are born as you find them. The fear that you will never have the deluxe pet services again is unfounded. Get a new dog-cat, and you will feel better.