As he got older, he had very bad gingivitis -- despite his interest in oral
hygiene -- and had to get all of his teeth removed. I thought he
would never be able to eat kibble again, but he surprised me by
"gumming" it. As he became weaker and weaker, and thinner and
thinner with age, I started feeding him a can of Fancy Feast in
my room (away from the other kitties) and then later, some very
expensive, high calorie food we bought from our veterinarian.
His eye was looking a little odd, and we had our house call vet come over
and look at him. She advised us to see a veterinary
opthamologist at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary
Medicine and we took him. He told us that Albert had a rare form of
cancer in his eye and that if we wanted to save him, we would have to
get it removed. He was 17 years old and I was so afraid we might
lose him on the operating table, but he survived and lived four
more months. Apparently, the cancer had spread to his brain
and he began to lose control of his bodily functions, and soon
his little body just gave out, and on May 2, 2002 he died in my arms.
We buried him in our backyard, and after we moved, we dug him up and
brought him with us (I know this may sound odd to some, but we
loved this boy and didn't want anyone unceremoniously disposing
of his precious body after we were gone).
Wait for me, my beloved, at the Rainbow Bridge until it is my time
to take you home one last time. Enjoy your time there
with your many friends, eating and playing and rolling
in catnip by the milky stream. But when you see me
coming for you, please run into my open arms and I will
hold you again and you will be young and beautiful and
strong and healthy, and there will be no more tears of
longing and sadness for me for we will be together again at last.
In the darkness of the night when all the light is gone
and I fear will never see the light of the sun, I hear your heart
beat. Then I see a silver glow. Within that glow a path appears.
Showing me one day I will follow.
I see you always near. Just around the corner,
where my heart dwells.
ŠJ.C. Stewart~*~October 31, 2006