Dave came to pick me up from work last night. I thought he’d done it to save me the walk but it turned out he’d had a phone call an hour before, on his way home from work, from our vet. Someone had taken Luke, our boy cat there after finding him under a car where they lived. There was nothing they could do.
They think he was hit by a car, that he died quickly, and that gives us some comfort. He was always an adventurer, forever losing his collars and getting into trouble – we had a couple of phone calls from people over the years telling us he was in their gardens, looking for food or treats. He got everywhere and loved being outside. We never knew where he was but he always came home for dinner.
We got Luke and Leia when they were about 8 weeks old. Their Mum was bought to be a stable cat to keep the mice away and had got pregnant before her owners had a chance to get her spayed. We paid £20 for each cat, took them home the same day and then spent a fortune in injections, insurance, food and toys – the amount of toys we bought those bloomin’ cats!
That was in January 2008 and since then they have kept me company on so many of Dave’s night shifts, they have seen us get engaged, get married, move house and have the children. They have been there through everything. Luke used to hug my bump in pregnancy, wanting to get as close to me as possible and after LP was born he got very stressed and ended up on anti depressants to calm him down as he licked his bum and tail so much he lost all his fur.
Cats are apparently quite independent creatures. Doing what they want to do and being quite self sufficient. Luke was nothing like that. He was a baby in cat form. A gorgeous boy who would want to be with you all the time, follow you from room to room and would try to occupy the same space as you when he lay on the sofa with you in the evening. He would lay under the covers in bed and would love your warmth, putting his big paws on your face and neck so carefully but wanting to just be so close to you.
The children loved Luke and telling them that he wasn’t coming back was worse that finding out he had died. LP cried and said she wanted Luke back and it was devastating. The pain of losing a pet is massive no matter what your age.
Luke was 7 years old. He was in his prime and he was a great cat, in good health and with an amazing personality. He made us laugh, got everywhere and gave the best cuddles you could ever have from an animal. He was more than our pet, he was our friend.
The cats have annoyed the hell out of me since the kids came along. It’s no secret that they’d miaow constantly, claw our furniture and be sick all over the house but when I look back now I just remember the cuddles, his cheeky little face and the comfort he has always given us. He was very much loved and I know that he loved us too. One thing is for sure, I’d let them use the sofa as a permanent scratching post for one more day with my beautiful boy cat.
I have seen friends lose pets recently and I could imagine the pain of losing a much loved pet but I couldn’t begin to imagine the overwhelming grief I feel. I’m still in shock that he has gone – it was so unexpected and I didn’t get a chance to say goodbye. I just hope that his sister doesn’t miss him too much and that we all get used to our new normal at some point.
Lukey, I hope you are being spoilt wherever you are. You daft animal. Love you Lulu x