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4.9.11

The One We Don't Talk About

Last year, January to be exact, we decided to introduce a new furry friend to our house. Following the death of our much loved cat Harry who was run over in November 2009.
We chose to rescue a cat although we had three specific requirements:
1: It had to be a boy
2: It had to be young
3: It mustn't be tabby [Harry was a tabby cat]

We thought with it being after Christmas that rescue centres would be inundated with kittens and unwanted presents.
We really struggled to find what we wanted. Cats either came in pairs, were old or were feral, or female.

Visiting websites there was one cat which caught my eye, I made a note of him on a piece of paper and searched other sites. Then, lost that piece of paper.
One day we decided to visit some rescue centres. We fell for one cat, Stanley. He was amazing but when we went to enquire about him they informed us that he was given up because he was spraying everywhere. With a 6 and a half month old baby and a cat already we were broken hearted that we couldn't take him on. We left feeling deflated and so guilty.

On the way home I had a quick Google and realised we were near another rescue centre. I called them up and we visited.
On arrival I remember it smelling, a lot. And there were A LOT of cats, all in together. Some not so friendly.
We were there already so we still looked.
This is when I noticed a black and white cat around my feet. He gave me a lot of attention and when they told me his name I realised, this was the cat I had seen on the website and whose name I had written down.
Dominic.
We decided that we would like to give him a home and two weeks later he was with us.
We were slightly put off by the fact that they didn't know where he was from or how old he was. They thought he could've been around 1. We were never given any paperwork for him as the lady "forgot". 
He settled in really well, got on well with Charles but Jasmine, our other cat, wasn't so keen. It resulted in her visiting neighbours houses which was annoying but understandable I guess.

Within time though we noticed how much of a handful Dominic was. He wanted to constantly be around us, would beg for our food and constantly sit on the kitchen worktop [something Jasmine has never done!] he also pooed and wee'd everywhere.
It eventually came to it that I couldn't take it anymore. We phoned the rescue centre and asked if we could take him back. We felt so guilty to do this but couldn't face another day of a cat poo filled house and with a baby, we just didn't have the time or patience to keep getting him off the worktops, stop him from climbing all over us and begging for our dinner. 
I felt so guilty, really really guilty and like a failure. I couldn't look at him and kept crying.

The following day my feelings of guilt remained and although I knew we were doing the right thing part of me felt like calling the rescue centre and changing our minds. But things took a different turn altogether.
My mum was in the conservatory with Charles and Dominic. Dominic was laying on the sofa, got up and seemed to collapse from the sofa, walk out of the back door and collapse on the grass. By the time I got to him he was ok, or seemed ok at least. We decided to keep an eye on him in case it was just something simple like his legs falling asleep like ours do.
Except the next day things had got worse. All of a sudden his tummy had swollen, he looked pregnant. His tummy was huge.
We took him to the vets and they informed us that they'd have to perform a blood test, X Ray and some other tests. They kept him in overnight. The next day the vets phoned my husband, he came in to me and said it was bad news. Dominic had a condition which meant his tummy was swelling and filling with fluid. It was our choice as to whether or not to bring him home or, as they put it, do the right thing for him. (Why is it so hard to write it down?)

We made the decision to put him down. It was hard because although we were going to give him back to the rescue centre there was no way we wanted him to be put down.
He was diagnosed with Feline Infectious Peritonitis.
We were told that it was highly likely that he was given to us with this condition rather than developing it since being with us. When we asked about our other cat, Jasmine, we were told that she should be ok but obviously to keep an eye on her.

When we went to collect Dominic it was really hard anyway. Guilt was eating me up anyway and now I was incredibly sad but also very angry that we were having to pay £400 vet bills for a cat we'd had for around 2 months and was given to us poorly. I was shocked when a veterinary nurse came into the waiting room carrying a box and shouted in a happy voice "Dominic". I just broke down.

We had to phone the rescue centre to inform them that Dominic was no longer with us. I did so through tears and at the same time had to tell them of his condition. They made me feel even worse by implying, through their tone, that we'd had him put down because we know longer wanted him and didn't want to take him back.I ended the phone call pretty sharpish before I shouted at them, because not only was this not the case, but they gave us a poorly cat.

My mother in law was aware of this rescue centre as she used to be friendly with the owner.She told us that years ago the lady lost a few cats to FIP. We were obviously very angry but sadly there's nothing we can do about it.

Dominic was a gorgeous cat and I'm still devastated with what happened. But, on a positive note, we gave him a really  good home, even if it was just for two months. And Charles adored him.

We never talk about Dominic like we do Harry. Mainly because we didn't get enough time to get to know him and love him and create happy memories.