We put Zoe to sleep this morning. She was 15 and so thin and wasted - it had been a very long time since she was able to do more than eat, sleep and growl. Her whiskers were falling out. She still hadn't grown back the hair on her paw from where she was shaved last summer after a blood sugar collapse.
We were with her while she died. The vet will normally put a catheter in and then administer the drug while you are there with the pet, but her veins were in such terrible shape and her blood pressure and circulation were so bad that they couldn't get a catheter in.
We ended up having to hold her down while the vet injected the drug directly into a vein in her thigh. She struggled but she didn't have much fight left in her. Pretty quickly her head started to droop and then her heart stopped and I could tell from her eyes that she had left us. I wish I could believe in heaven so I could believe that that's where she went. I guess I will have to content myself with knowing that she is the earth's pet now.
Oh Zoe. I miss how you used to groom my hair until it was soaking wet and disgusting. I miss how you wanted to be on my lap and purr even when it was 95 degrees out. I miss playing baseball with you - you had such good aim batting away toys. I miss you curled up on my chest, purring for hours while we both napped. I miss the funny little hairs between your toes. I miss your people-food-stealing mischievousness. I miss you. I know it's better that you aren't in pain all the time now. I know we made the right, kind decision. But it's still hard.
Update: I love this picture of baby Zoe and baby Dave. Kittens together.