Remebering Fred (1996-2011)

Fred had recently been diagnosed with hyperthyroidism and was scheduled to go to the Carrboro Animal Hospital on Monday for radioactive iodine therapy. Sadly, he will not make his appt. Fred was hit by a car early this morning. We had noticed he was not home this morning, and then our neighbor called to say he saw a black cat on the side of the road near our house. Fred has never gone that far from our house, and Rahul is convinced that Fred decided it was time for him to leave this earth. I think he might be right. I was really worried about what a 2-week hospital stay was going to be like for Fred, but the treatment is 98% effective, so we decided to give it a try.

We did lots of closure activities with the kids today, which helped them process Fred’s death. Samantha was very upset and is still carrying around Fred’s red collar that I found in the road where he was hit. She drew lots of pictures, which I think is helping her make sense of it all. Aidan has been more matter of fact about it all, reminding us that Fred is in heaven with Bear, Flash and Sawyer and now he does not have to go to the hospital.

I decided to take some time this afternoon to jot down a few of my favorite Fred memories:

1) This is my all time favorite picture of Fred. I named it “attack Fred” since he was trying to attack me as I took the picture.

2) Fred galloping in front of the car as we pulled in the driveway. He had a funny little gallop that always made me smile.
3) His favorite spot on the couch (on the rare cold days he actually wanted to be inside) was right behind Rahul’s head. I think this was his way of letting Rahul know who was really in charge.
4) Young Seton and Mary Clare coming over to our house wearing rain boots so Fred could not attack their ankles when they climbed the front porch steps.
5) Our house was merely a cut-thru for Fred. He would meow to come in from the back door and go straight to the front door to be let outside. It was Fred’s house, we just lived here.
6) He was not afraid of snakes, possum, or any other creature in the woods, and he definitely preferred large kills over small ones. Some of his best catches: a fat squirrel and a bat. Mice were just too small to make the effort.
7) Fred was an excellent greeter when people came to visit. He would meow on arrival, and if you were extra special you might get a “love bite” before you left.

Aidan suggested we use one of the large rocks in the back woods as Fred’s headstone. Samantha got some Sharpies and they decorated his headstone earlier today.

It is so strange to think about Fred not being with us. He definitely used more than his share of 9 lives over the past 15 years. We will miss you Fred and will always love you.


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