Slithy Tove, the older of my two cats, died yesterday, aged 12.
As I mentioned, he had had kidney problems for the past several years, but seemed to be doing okay until recently. He may have obstructed his urinary tract by passing one or more kidney stones.
He was a shorthair tabby. He had been bred as a laboratory cat, and had some tattoos inside one ear to prove it. Anesthetized kittens are used to teach intubation of premies and newborns to physicians. Slithy had been purchased for a Pediatric Advance Life Support (PALS) course. Kittens used for intubation are euthanized afterward, but the course turned out to be undersubscribed, and there were some kittens left over. The techs who ran the course tried to adopt them out, and I took Slithy. My previous cat, a noisy but affectionate Siamese named Sheridan, had died at around age 15, a couple years before.
I've always liked the name Slithy Tove, so Slithy got it. It wasn't until several years after that I adopted the name as my on-line persona on the net. Slithy was very nice, but very shy. He never liked being held, although he would curl up on my feet when I was at the PC. I suspect he was afraid of human hands. His experiences with human hands during his first months as a kitten must have been largely being picked up and given injections. He probably spent his first several months in a cage, with minimal contact with humans or other cats, and never socialized very well.
He was never mean, but always very shy and diffident. When I acquired Tagalong, my other current cat, four years ago, I was worried whether they would get along. As luck would have it, they got along perfectly. I would often find them curled up together on a chair. They occasionally fought, but it was never serious. It always seemed to happen when I was in the room, and I got them impression they were trying to impress me, rather than fighting about anything in particular.
So long, Slithy Tove. I hope Tag isn't too lonely without you.
Slithy Tove, sitting on newspapers I'm trying to bundle up with twine.
|Originally a pictograph of a nose, with an apparent ridge on it. This reflects the Asian practice of indicating oneself by pointing at the nose. Henshall suggests taking this character as 'eye' (目) and a 'stroke', and as a mnemonic: 'Nose is just a stroke from eye, symbolizing self.'|