More often than not, we’re aware that we’re going to outlive our pets.
We adopt them knowing we’re going to spend years and years feeding them, grooming them, and caring for them before we’re forced to say goodbye. We hope we have plenty of time to prepare for that, but we’re never prepared to say the last farewell to someone we devoted our lives to.
Our fluffy friends become our family members and we’re brokenhearted when we’re faced with the harsh reality of life. Whether we’re battling a disease we might not be able to recover from or getting ready to depart due to old age, there’s nothing worse than coming to the conclusion that our days together are numbered.
We might not be ready for that, but there’s something comforting about the fact that sometimes our favorite fluffers outlive us.
We don’t spend our time together thinking about that day, but we’re conditioned to think they’re going to go before we do. Most cats live twelve to twenty years, and most dogs live ten to fifteen years.
Depending on when we adopted them, we’re aware that they’re going to grow older – we know we can’t expect them to stay kitties and puppies forever.
But what do you do when you come to terms with the fact that you’re the one that needs to say goodbye? What do you do when you figure out you’re going to outlive them?
Nothing can prepare you for that, that’s for sure. No matter how hard you try, you won’t be able to shake off the feeling that you’re leaving your favorite fluffy friend alone.
Not to mention that you’re going to spend hours and hours thinking about the fact that your fluffer might not understand what happened to you – the poor thing might think you ran off somewhere.
While that might be the hardest thing you’ve ever done, remember that you have the chance to say goodbye. Give your feline friend a day to remember – take her to her favorite places, play with her favorite toys, and feed her a myriad of her favorite treats.
Do the thing you always wanted to do with her but never had the time. Whether you take her to a pet store to pick whatever she wants or take her on a walk down the neighborhood, she’s going to be over the moon to spend more time with you.
Shower her with affection and attention and watch her “make muffins” on you over and over. Don’t worry, you can do the same thing even when you’re too weak to go anywhere with her. Build a fort, play with her favorite toys, watch Netflix, and snuggle the day away.
Seek help from the rest of your family, too. We’re sure they’d be over the moon to make the day memorable for both of you.
You’re not the only one going through that, you know. You’d be surprised at the number of people who are trying hard to stay strong and make sure they’re doing everything to make the ultimate days memorable.
When we came across an Imgur post about an elderly woman saying goodbye to her BFF, Oliver the cat, we couldn’t help but shed a tear.
An Imgur user, nani17, posted the heartbreaking photograph and wrote, “Her dying wish was to see her best friend, Oliver the cat, one last time to say goodbye.”
The photograph featured the elderly woman lying in a hospital bed, snuggling with a white-and-orange tabby. The tabby was clinging to the woman, hiding his face in her arms, and weeping.
The woman was embracing the tabby with affection and appreciation that would make a grown man cry. She was fighting back her tears and trying to be strong for the poor tabby, but her smile was a dead giveaway of how utterly brokenhearted she was.
She was smiling through her pain, but she was aware that she was saying goodbye to someone who was going to cry for her every moment of the waking hour.
The tabby seemed to be aware of what was going on, too. He was holding onto the woman, and he didn’t seem to want to depart from her. He was devastated, but he was trying to be strong, too.
The photograph took the Internet by storm. The commenters couldn’t cope with the sheer sorrow that was coming off of the photograph.
One of the commenters, FusRoDoodles, remembered a Winnie The Pooh quote that perfectly described what the elderly woman was thinking of when she was saying goodbye to her BFF. “If there ever comes a day where we can’t be together, keep me in your heart. I’ll stay there forever,” he wrote.
Of course, other commenters were equally as devastated by the sad destiny of the elderly woman and her beloved cat. Zellacat wrote, “When you are at the adoption agencies, remember that older cats may have been left because their owner died & will be very loving companions.”
Markfebruary added, “Oliver is gonna miss her, too. Sorry, I’ve… got something in my eye.”
We hope Oliver the cat manages to cope with loss, and we’re keeping our fingers crossed he remembers how adored and appreciated he was by his mom. We love you, Oliver!