Thursday, February 28, 2008

Kit Kat (1992? - 2008)

Kit Kat was our next door neighbors' cat but found it convenient to visit with us on a regular basis. Sometimes she just came in through the basement cat door for a bite to eat, or to watch TV with Zorg. If her family was traveling, she moved in for the duration, making her home in Smokey's old cat bed in the laundry room.

No one knew how old Kit Kat was. Her family acquired her 10 years ago in the Green Lake neighborhood. Kit Kat had belonged to their next door neighbor, a reclusive man, and she got in the habit of visiting back and forth between the two houses. One day Kit Kat insisted on moving in, and they discovered a few days later that her original owner had died.

Kit Kat's family moved in next door to us in Ballard five years ago. At first, Kit Kat and our aggressive deaf white cat Sheba had disagreements. But over the years, they learned to get along. Kit Kat liked to visit all over the neighborhood, greeting residents and guests with her squawking meow. If you picked her up and talked to her, she talked back, echoing your voice.

This summer Kit Kat developed health problems they thought were attributable to a thyroid condition. But after a few months, it seemed as though something else were going on, and eventually she was diagnosed with an untreatable cancer. Because I'm home during the day, and because her family had to travel out of state quite a bit, Kit Kat was spending more and more time at our house. We began sharing responsibility for her care, and taking her to the vet.

This past week it was clear she was failing rapidly. But even as late as last night, she insisted on keeping up her schedule of visits back and forth. She slowly dragged herself to their house when it was time for her owner to come home from work, and late last night, she yowled until her owner carried her to our basement door, where she crawled in through the cat door for the last time.

This morning we all took her to the vet.

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