Today we lost our oldest pet, Pudgie, at the age of 14. He led an uncomplicated life, even for a cat: never outdoors, never sick, and the dominate male pet in the house (even the dogs gave way to him). Part Mainecoon, part barn cat, he's been with us since he was 8 weeks old (even then he was chunky, hence the name). Pudgie loved being the center of attention, seeked out those willing to scratch him and tolerating virtually any indignity imposed on him by little children.
Pudgie recently lost a third of his body weight, became anemic and dehydrated. The vet ruled out the normal "geriatric cat issues" such as parasites, kidney disease, and diabetes, but was unable to figure out what exactly was going on. This morning he was listless and wheezing, and apparently had a seizure before collapsing and passing on quickly. My daughter, Kelly, witnessed his final moments, something I'm sure will stick with her for many years.