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A miracle followed by death
Rick Bussler, Publisher
Hot Pursuit, Rick Bussler

Let’s be honest nobody has enjoyed my house over the past 20 years more than my daughter’s cat, Ginger.

The queen cat had free reign of the house all the time. She definitely lived a life of leisure. Typical day: meow her heart out until someone finally fed her in the morning, sleep most of the day and howl for attention in the evenings.

Ginger came into our lives as a gift for my daughter’s ninth birthday. When she hit the 20-year mark earlier this year, we began to wonder if she was invincible and would live forever.

Earlier this month I did something I have often done when the weather allows. I let Ginger out on the patio. She usually stayed close to the back door. In fact, she expressed her displeasure, at times, with being let outside. I figured a little fresh air is good from time to time.

Something went horribly wrong this time around, however. Ginger never returned home. I began searching for her in the back yard and started canvassing the neighborhood in hopes of finding her. Hours soon led to days without no sign of the furry feline.

We posted some notices in the area letting neighbors know that we were missing a cat. But nothing seemed to bring her home.

Nearly two weeks after she ventured away, I received a phone call late one night. “I think we have Ginger,” the stranger told me. I was a little hesitant thinking there is no way she is around.

But I jumped up from my comfy chair to see if it really was true. The stranger pulled into our driveway with a cat wrapped up in a blanket. She said she found the cat less than a quarter mile away in the middle of the street.

Looking a little frail and frightened, the cat timidly peaked out of the blanket. And sure enough it was Ginger. I couldn’t believe she had been found. A miracle had happened, and my daughter would be thrilled to know her childhood pet had been returned home.

I quickly tried to nurture her back to civilization with the amenities she had become used to. I offered her a can of her favorite Tuna Feast. She maybe took a bite but didn't seem very interested. She drank a little water. She had lost half her body weight while making the rounds out in the wild.

We took her to the veterinarian where we received the grim prognosis. Her life was quickly coming to an end. The vet recommended she be put to sleep the next morning.

In the final hours, we cuddled with her as she laid lifeless on the couch. She let out a few deep meows every so often. But it was not good. She passed away during the night before we could get back to the vet.

It has become eerily quiet around the house not being able to enjoy her meowing frenzies and frisky moments.

It’s hard but we’re taking comfort in knowing the queen is in hot pursuit of resting in cat heaven.

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