• Dawn Ford

When it comes to the death of our pet there is no such thing as 'just a ....'


On Monday 4th May 2020 we took our dear cat Monty to the vets to see if anything could be done for his poorly eye. We knew he wasn't well, he was getting thin and slept a lot but his sore eye was a recent concern. We were not aware of just how ill he really was.

He was 3months off 16years old and he had been our faithful and loyal black & white cat for all that time. He was a play mate for Archie our beloved black lab and in more recent years the boss over our sproodle Alfie. Until we moved house last summer Monty would be sat waiting at the kitchen door only to be met by an over enthusiastic greeting from Alfie.

He was born on a small farm in the depths of Wales and I knew he was the 'one' when he came over to me and curled his tail around my leg. Archie was a keen to get acquainted, Monty was less so.


I named him Monty after Monty Don and like most cats he loved nothing more than to seek out a sunny spot and more often than not he could be spotted fast asleep semi-hidden amongst one of the many flower beds. After dear Archie died we noticed a change in Monty. He began to seek out a dining chair and with great determination he would climb up and sit proudly at the table! He had never done this when Archie was alive!

Over the years we noted his preference for a certain armchair and sofa, and invariably in the evening he would sleep on my husband's lap as we watched tv.

The last few years saw Monty and Alfie sat patiently at the foot of the fridge, every morning, looking up at my husband as he treated them both to a small piece of cooked chicken. Seeing only Alfie there now is a constant reminder that Monty has died. It's The Boy now, when before we always referred to them as The Boys.


So on 4th May 2020 this lovely vet told us, that with all his different ailments and old age, it would be kinder to put him down, euthanasia was offered. Even though this was at the back of my mind, I still wasn't prepared for the tears, we were both there with him. She was unbelievably kind, thoughtful to us and very importantly to Monty too. She left us alone with him, and at other times she asked if we wanted her to leave or to stay. When our much loved pet dies or is 'put to sleep' we need that tenderness, consideration, compassion.

Last week, I collected dear Monty's ashes... another 'hurdle' to jump over.... And it was something that someone said when I collected them that resonated with me. She said that she didn't have a cat, just mice, and I thought about that reply and realised that there is never a "Just a ....".


We love our pets, whatever they are; mice, rabbits, guinea pigs, birds, fish, cat, dog, horse etc. We love them for a myriad of reasons; their curiosity, their personality, their companionship, their loyalty, their desire to be hugged, stroked, brushed, played with and of course their unconditional love.

So Last night when the sun went down and the birds were quietening for the night we plucked up the courage to scatter dear Monty's ashes in our garden. Dear Monty, though we can no longer see or touch you, you will always have a place in our hearts. Good night, God Bless X

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