Good bye, our Lucy

The Life and Times of our Lucy Liu, with us April 2012 – February 2018

The very thoughtful and kind gift from the 404 Emergency Vet clinic. Each of our smalls received one. Lucy 🐾

When we bought this house in 2012, it came with cats. Like fourteen feral cats with varying degrees of illness and disease. And in among the chaos of cats we were dealing with, was her. A small, black and white warrior, who survived despite her surroundings. She, who did not hiss, run or yowl. She adopted us quickly. The other cats were trapped and taken by Animal Control. Many went on to have litters of kittens shortly afterwards. Some were able to be adopted out. Others, well, I don’t know.

The bond between Lucy and ‘her kids’ was unbreakable, genuine and always loving.

Anyone who knows me knows that I am not, by nature, a cat person. In fact, cats scare me, I never know if they’re about to attack. This cat though, was different from any other I had ever encountered. She very decidedly chose us. Lucy Liu (aptly named after the actress of the same name, by my husband, for her obvious, ‘Kill Bill’-esque ninja abilities) stayed with us and within no time at all, a matter of a few weeks actually, she gave birth to a litter of three kittens. We never even knew she was pregnant. She was just that tiny, undernourished and unwell. Immediately we could tell that she was an amazing mother. It was apparent that this was not her first litter. When the kittens were old enough to leave their mama, they were adopted out. But Lucy stayed with us. We had her spayed and microchipped and loved, cared and fed her back to health. She was amazing. She was also a bit blood thirsty, but only towards creatures we wouldn’t want in our house anyway. So we appreciated her huntress ways.

My husband snapped this picture on his phone a few days after Lucy had her kittens. We named them Squawker, Little Grey, and Butterball.

Lucy was never indifferent and uninterested in us. She trusted us with her kittens, she trusted us with her own care. She never fought or scowled at us. She would follow me down our driveway and along the road and around the corner to pick up our mail. She would respond to her name and come when called. She was the perfect blend of independent and social. She would join us in the living room for movie nights, lie on the floor with our smalls, she would even join us for bedtime story and outdoor movie nights. She was completely comfortable and at ease, blending in with our big family without missing a beat.

She was all in. Whether it was story time, movie time, playtime or sleeping time, she gave it her all.

Often in the mornings (during the months that she enjoyed the outdoors), she would walk with us down the driveway to see the smalls get on their school bus. She would check on the children at night, visiting each one of them after lights out. And sometimes she would stay with one or the other and sometimes she would settle in for the night in her own bed (a favourite cardboard box filled with baby blankets), or on a cold night, in front of the fire.

I loved when she slept like this.

She was definitely a cookie. If the box fits, sleep in it.

She would plank anywhere

 

 

 

 

 

 

She was an outdoor cat from April until October and absolutely agoraphobic between November and March. This always struck us funny, as before adopting us, she lived outside 24/7, 365 days a year. She rarely, if ever, really left our property. When other cats, both known to her and feral would approach her porch or deck, she would defend it with a fury that we otherwise never witnessed.

For such a tiny little thing, she sure knew how to walk menacingly.

She never grew to be much  more than 7 or 8 pounds, so stayed a small cat always. But she had the heart and spirit of a lioness and I often joked that one day we would look out and see her pulling a deer down the driveway after a day out hunting.

Lucy Liu, Boxing Day 2017.

Then, last night I had to rush Lucy Liu to the 24 hour, 404 Emergency vet clinic in Newmarket. She could barely breathe and was not acting like herself at all. She was immediately taken into an examination room and triaged and within 20 minutes of our arrival, Dr. Rebecca, very gently and kindly gave me the results of her assessment and the options available to us. There was very little doubt. I had to call my husband and let him know that it was probably best to get the kids (I had just put them to bed before Lucy and I left the house) and bring them down to say good-bye. Lucy’s chest was filled with fluid and making it impossible for her lungs to inflate, the most likely cause was cancer. Rather than putting her through endless tests and diagnostics and lengthy hospital stay with a poor prognosis and nothing but suffering on her horizon, we had to let her go. She deserved to go gently, without anymore suffering.

We were all with her to the very end, petting her, loving her and comforting her. When she was gone, we brought her back to the home that she loved and we will bury her here in the Spring. We miss her tremendously already. Today, our house is a little bit emptier and a whole lot more sorrowful.

Good bye our beautiful Lucy. We could not have asked for a better companion and friend than you. Thank you for all the gifts you brought to our family. We will love you always.

I am living with a serial killer and I have the proof

Totally not a joke. For a while I thought it was just a phase. A passing, twisted, gross phase. I’m not a cat person and I’m not a cat. I don’t pretend to know what is normal for cat-beings, and try really hard not to be overly critical but as the bodies start piling up and the violence escalates, I realize that we have a problem here.

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Lucy is a serial killer. Believe me, I tried to give her the benefit of the doubt. Making excuses for her, steadfastly refusing to accept that the crunching sound coming from her general direction was her gnawing on the bones of some innocent soul who dared cross her path. But no more.

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And, while I honestly do appreciate her keeping our home safe from mice and other small-ish yet terrifying creatures (because I’m not a rodent-y person either), being basically a pacifist at heart means that I cannot accept or stomach violence of any kind. This includes mouse-a-cide, bird-a-cide, bat-a-cide and vole-a-cide.

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But now that she’s had the taste of blood, as far as I can tell, she-lion is HUNGRY for more. Our cat food bill drops to almost zero in the summer and it’s not because she’s fasting to fit into her bikini. She’s eating up a storm. She’s just hunting for her breakfast, lunch and dinner. Honestly, at this point, I’m expecting her to drag a deer up the driveway one day soon. She accepts no guidance, acknowledges no limits and refuses all reason.

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Paxton tried to talk her out of her murderous ways when he was three. She had taken down a huge butterfly or moth and Pax happened to be there when it happened:
“Looooocy! Why you hurt dat butterfly? You not a-pposed to hurt  da butterflies! Don’t eat da butterflies! You don’t do dat again. ‘K, Looocy? Pax was very cross with Lucy, sitting in front of her, nose-to-nose, eye-to-eye, giving her hell. What he didn’t realize was that this was not Lucy’s first rodeo and it was unlikely to be her last, and that really we should just count our lucky stars that she didn’t have a hankering for toddler boy that day.

Last summer was her ‘best’ hunting summer. This summer, either she’s slowing down or taking her murder spree underground. Either way, not having to step over and around mouse organs when I’m half-asleep in the morning and just want to get the bins to the roadside, is a nice change, but I still watch my step and always have something on my feet when I step out the door. ‘Cause I would just DIE, I tell you.

Well I thought that she had slowed down until I found this:

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