It is with a heavy heart that I share today the news that I believe my almost-15-year-old cat, Giles, is readying himself to leave this plane of existence. In the past couple of days, he’s scarcely eaten anything and is starkly skeletal and weak. He doesn’t appear to be in actual pain and his sassy meow is still strong, but he has stopped coming upstairs to greet me and is, instead, remaining in his basement cubby hole apartment. It’s been a hard year on him with the arrival of our latest adopted Westie, Oliver, who has made Giles’ annihilation his life’s duty and necessitated our keeping them permanently separated.

I am using the advice I’ve given others about knowing when it’s time to let our pets cross over, namely, looking to see how many of the things our pets loved doing when they were well they are still capable of. I will be keeping a close eye on my sweet, handsome, eccentric boy and ask him with my whole heart to let me know his wishes.

Despite having a good relationship with death and knowing Giles will take the actual passing over in stride and be free of any pain or suffering, I nevertheless am already dealing with a heavy, aching heart at the thought of no longer have his loud, rather obnoxious, incessant sassing whenever he and I were together. It is both what makes me cry and what will eventually make me smile when I think of him.

You’ve been a much-beloved part of my life for 14 years, Giles. Thank you so much for choosing me as your human mom. I adore you and will love you always, sweet kitty cat.

Xander, L, and Giles

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