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Loosing a loved one. Saying GoodBye to Our sweet Sneakette

Updated on May 26, 2011

Sneakette and her Brothers

Sneakette was born in 1996 at my home in Napa Ca.  She was an "accident," in that her mother was partially feral and escaped only to be found, weeks later.  Little did we know that little "Sneaker" was pregnant.  By the time it was obvious, we knew w
Sneakette was born in 1996 at my home in Napa Ca. She was an "accident," in that her mother was partially feral and escaped only to be found, weeks later. Little did we know that little "Sneaker" was pregnant. By the time it was obvious, we knew w

Sneakette

Sneakette and her brothers were born in my home in Napa, Ca. in 1996. Unexpected, but dearly loved, Sneakette would enjoy the company of her family her entire life, which ended today, August 30, 2010. We believe that it is very important to allow family to stay together, and this includes our animals. As we have had so many cats and kittens through the years, we've noticed that they thrive together, always cuddle and sleep w/one another and seem to truly enjoy having family members close by. So it was (and is with the remaining 2) with the Sneakette family. Father Blackie, mother Sneakette and her 4 kittens lived together all their lives. Sneaker succumbed to lymphoma before our move to Kansas. But, she had 10 good years with her kittens and Blackie, the only male we could identify as being the father. Blackie, Sneakette, Boots and Muggs moved w/us. Unfortunately, Stevie lost his life shortly before our move; he was run over. We rarely allowed our cats to roam freely but, sadly, this one time was the one which ended his life. Muggs and Boots are still with us here in SE Kansas.

Sneakette was a shy girl. She was happiest in familiar, safe surroundings, rarely wandering very far. When her mother was alive, they spent ALL their time grooming one another, sleeping entertwined and always by each other. They were "one cat" we'd often say. After Sneaker's death, Sneakette became more an "inside" cat than ever, staying close to her brothers.

"Kathy, Kathy....wake up!  The kittens are about to be born!"   And so began the saga of Sneaker and the Sneakettes.  Four kittens born to a rescued semi feral mother who, in later years, learned to accept love, comfort and safety.  I woke immediately, ran into the living room where we had set up a 'birthing' kitty condo, and waited for the moment to arrive.  As usual, little Sneaker was cuddling with Lucky, our senior kitty of 20.  Sneaker always tried to crawl under Lucky for safety and comfort.  For some reason, she just knew that Lucky would be helpful and it did turn out that way.  We positioned Sneaker right next to Lucky.  When her contractions began, she crawled into Lucky's bed.  After a while and some coaxing, we were able to gently guide her back into her own big bed where, shortly, she gave birth to Stevie, Muggs, Boots and Sneakette.  We hadn't named them yet, but soon, their names became apparent.  We always do that; wait until we see the 'personality' of each cat/kitten emerge and then, the naming is obvious and easy.

One by one, each tiny new life was born.  At first, Sneakette was scared and tried to escape her babies.  We moved them into a very large carrier, with room enough for her to be apart from them but still with them.  Otherwise, she would run into Lucky's bed, forgetting to nurse or nurture her newborns.  Soon, though, her mothering instincts took over, and Sneaker became the best mother.  And, names became obvious:  Muggs because of his overly visual 'mug,' Boots because of his 4 'white booted' feet, Stevie because, the moment he could lift his head, while his eyes were still closed, he swung it back and forth from side to side like Stevie Wonder.  And Sneakette; obviously her mother's daughter.

Sneaker and the Sneakettes!

These lucky kitties lived together in our home in Napa, always with each other. 

Now, there are two left; Muggs and Boots.

Sneakette and her brothers

Sneakette and Boots as kittens
Sneakette and Boots as kittens

Sneakette and her mother, Sneaker

These two,  mother and daughter, were unseparable.
These two, mother and daughter, were unseparable.

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    • Lucky Cats profile image
      Author

      Kathy 5 years ago from The beautiful Napa Valley, California

      Hi DearBandit. You are right...my very best in all the world friend, Al, and I have have had many cats over many years. We are a rescue "group." Well, it's just the two of us...but we somehow prevail and give our beloved furry friends all they need as much as we can. It is very very difficult to say goodbye, specially when we've had a cat for 15, 17, even 25 years...my cat, Lucky (which is where so much of my ID here and other places comes from) lived for 25 years. The pain is deep, debilitating and leaves such a huge emptiness...but we continue on and love the ones who are here and need us to be strong. You can love again and, in fact...I beg you to allow that love to be given to another kitty...or several..who sorely need to be saved by someone like you. T his is such a difficult thing to do..to love these little ones who live so short a lifespan compared to ours...but, do it we must...to help them; to help us learn selfless love. I feel the same about you, Dear Bandit...that you care so much is like wind beneath my wings...the more of "us"...the more we can support one another and our sweet kittys. Your friend, Kathy...PS..thank you for such a wonderfully kind comment.

    • DearBandit profile image

      DearBandit 5 years ago

      I love the photos. You give all of your pets a great life from what I have read from your hubs! I like how you picked the names for your cats. It is really hard to say goodbye and at first it is hard to remember the good times with your pets, because the emptiness is still there. I hope one day it will get easier to write about my cat. You seem to have had a lot of cats and pets in your life, and to me it gives me hope that you can love again, and that I will not turn out to be a bitter person after all. You give me hope Lucky cats

    • Lucky Cats profile image
      Author

      Kathy 6 years ago from The beautiful Napa Valley, California

      Hi Writer! You are welcome to refer to or glean "411" from or any thing you wish w/my kitty stories. There are so many. Sadly, several months ago, Boots passed away due to intestinal cancer. His brother, Muggs is the one remaining "Sneakette." Muggs is doing very well for such an elderly kitty. What I failed to mention in this story is that Sneaker had gotten out several weeks after we rescued her...she was so small and we didn't find her for 3 weeks...during which time she became pregnant. We didn't realize it; just thought that she was gaining weight now that she was home and well fed. By the time we realized it, it really was late in her pregnancy and, though it is possible, we couldn't bring ourselves to have her spayed (with what that would require). So..began the story of Sneaker & the Sneakettes.

      Thanks for your interest. If you have any need of information about life with kitties...please, do ask...I'd be honored.

    • writer20 profile image

      Joyce Haragsim 6 years ago from Southern Nevada

      An amazing kitty story and had me glued to it all the way through.

      I've made some notes about your kitties in case I get my writing mind back. With your premission, of course.

    • Lucky Cats profile image
      Author

      Kathy 6 years ago from The beautiful Napa Valley, California

      Hi MysteryPlanet. Yes, I understand the pain of loss, specially for a younger person who loves her companion so much. This is one of life's most difficult lessons. I only hope that we will see them again...You and she have my most sincere sympathy and empathy. Loving animals is so hard because their little lives are so short. It is a wonderful and caring person who still loves after loss. Kathy

    • Lucky Cats profile image
      Author

      Kathy 6 years ago from The beautiful Napa Valley, California

      Hi MysteryPlanet. Yes, I understand the pain of loss, specially as a younger person who loves her companion so much. this is one of life's most difficult lessons. I only hope that we will see them again...You and she have my most sincere sympathy and empathy. Loving animals is so hard because their little lives are so short. It is a wonderful and caring person who still loves after loss. Kathy

    • MysteryPlanet profile image

      MysteryPlanet 6 years ago

      My sister recently had their dog put to sleep because of a long time medical problem combined with age. My niece is 12 and they had the dog since she was very little. It was really heart breaking for her.

    • Mighty Mom profile image

      Susan Reid 6 years ago from Where Left is Right, CA

      My goodness, you are truly a kitty and puppy angel. What an important mission you are on!

      I love this story of Sneakette, although sad to read she lost her life so young and was not able to move with you.

      Love the pictures -- those are some happy, happy cats.

      Keep up the good work and spread the love in the community and here on HP. MM

    • Lucky Cats profile image
      Author

      Kathy 6 years ago from The beautiful Napa Valley, California

      Oh, seanorjohn, you have my deepest sympathy about your sweet kitty. Yes, I've been through that, too. Always wondering what if and why. But, there is no fault, only fate. The love we have for our companion animals and the loss we feel when they part takes a very strong person. I wish I could find the short piece by an anthor I believe to be Kiki Dee, who wrote of the courage it takes to deeply love another whose lifespan is so short. But, love them, we do. thank you for such a nice comment. Kathy aka LuckyCats

    • seanorjohn profile image

      seanorjohn 6 years ago

      Thanks for your kind words about my cats. I see that you too had the dreadful experience of having your cat run over. It really shook me up and the image stayed with me for a long time. It got spooked by a dog coming round the corner and it was running over to my side of the road. I kept saying to myself why didn't I cross over and pick it up. The dog owner was in tears believing it to be partly her fault which it wasn't. Anyhow, great to hear of the brilliant animal welfare role you are carrying out. Voted up and beautiful.

    • Lucky Cats profile image
      Author

      Kathy 6 years ago from The beautiful Napa Valley, California

      Thank you jillsama....

    • jillsama profile image

      jillsama 6 years ago from Gwinnett County Georgia

      She sounded like she had a really happy life. So sorry to hear about your family's loss. At least she passed knowing that she was loved and cared for. I wish many blessings for you and your family.

    • profile image

      Gaytina 6 years ago

      I read this. Sorry to hear of the loss.

    • JY3502 profile image

      John Young 6 years ago from Florence, South Carolina

      The mother and daughter pic looks exactly like 2 I had once.

    • JY3502 profile image

      John Young 6 years ago from Florence, South Carolina

      Very touching story. I recently lost mine as well. Stinker.