Steve, Cathy, and Nicholas -- Newton says goodbye after 20 years (created 2009-07-01).
While I have spent most of my time talking about Nicholas, he is not the only member of the "family." When we got married in 2002, Cathy brought a dog, Shauna, into the relationship, and Steve brought a cat, Newton. At the time, I joked that we had a blended family. Both cat and dog were "only children" so it took a while for them to get used to one another. After a year, though, they became best friends. Newton had always had trouble adjusting to other cats, but Shauna seemed to bring out the best in her. Shauna liked it because the food we got for Newton was a whole lot more interesting than her stuff.
Nicholas joined the mix in 2004, so he's really the third child. He learned pretty quickly how to pet a dog and how to pet a cat, and even took Shauna on some walks.
Both pets were quite old, and Shauna died in 2006, leaving Newton as the only animal member of the family. Newton did seem to miss Shauna but at her age, it would have been cruel to introduce a young energetic puppy or kitten into the mix. It was better to let Newton nap through her retirement years.
Newton, who was small for a cat at 6 pounds started to decline in health, and lost much of her weight. She dropped down to 4 pounds, and was just skin and bones. Still, she seemed to hold up well with the help of the Johnson County Cat Clinic.
She celebrated her 20th birthday in February 2009. In April, she had a bad stroke. Her hind legs were very weak and she couldn't stand without a pronounced lean to the left. We took Newton in to be put to sleep.
Here's a picture of Newton soaking up the sun.
Here's a picture of Shauna resting on Mom and Dad's bed.
We probably won't be getting any pets until Nicholas is older and better able to assume most of the responsibilities of pet ownership.
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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States License. This page was written by Steve Simon and was last modified on 2010-04-26.