Monday, December 5, 2022

Pet Loss: Has My Cat Gone Off to Die?

Learning how to communicate with animals is just like learning any other language. The more you practice, the better you become. ~  Karen A. Anderson

A reader writes: Have you ever heard of a pet going away from home if they know they are going to die? A good friend of mine told me this just a few days before my 15-year-old cat disappeared from his usual favorite place to be, the front porch! Osh was 15 years old and never left the front porch. He was spending more and more time out there, and I always brought him in. That particular time, for some reason, I decided to let him stay! He and I were very attached to each other, my mom and I got him about 11 years ago. Funny thing is my mom passed away suddenly in a car accident 6 years ago and a big part of me feels like she was ready for him.

He was getting sick a lot. He was the only living piece of my mom I still had to hold on to! A couple of months ago, I actually said out loud, I am finally at peace with my mothers death! Well, early that morning before I knew he was missing, I bawled like a baby, that same gutwrenching one that took me back to that day! I told my partner that I felt like something had just left me. I continued to shake and get the chills uncontrollably and then fell asleep from exhaustion!! I am just looking for a sign and am having a real hard time resting my mind! He just started going out again 6 months ago! My other cat Pippen, who I adopted from an animal shelter goes out about every night and comes back in the AM and sleeps all day! After that happened he didn't go out for 2 days! I keep thinking if he is alive he would come back with him! Well, thanks for letting me vent!

My response: I'm so sorry to learn that your cat has disappeared. You asked if animals leave home when they know they're dying and want to find a place to go. I'm not an expert in animal behavior, but I've certainly heard of animals doing this.
I'm more concerned with how you may be feeling and reacting to the fact that your cat is missing. Although you didn't say so in your message to me, I know that this kind of loss can be extremely difficult. See, for example, When A Pet Goes Missing.

The fact that your cat Osh represents a symbolic link to your mother complicates your loss even more, as I'm sure you already know. 
I don't know if this would appeal to you, but there is another resource available to you that you may want to consider. Nowadays there are animal communicators who offer their services in helping people get in touch with the spirits of their dead or missing animals. This of course is not for everyone, and some communicators are far more reputable than others. I offer this avenue not as an endorsement but as yet another resource you may want to explore. See, for example, the Daisy Sutra page on my Web site; I've exchanged e-mails with author Helen Weaver and she is wonderful. Her book is about her original intention of writing a memoir of her dog Daisy who had died, which eventually evolved into describing what happened as she found a number of gifted animal communicators who helped her communicate with her dog. Three communicators about whom she speaks most highly are 
- Penelope Smith, author of Animals: Our Return to Wholeness, website Animal Communication 

- Teresa Whalen, website Animals in Our Hearts 

You may want to explore their websites to see if any of this interests you. 

See also the extensive list of animal communicators I've assembled here: Pet Loss and Animal Communication: Suggested Resources.

In any event, please know that you are in my thoughts and I wish you well.
Afterword: THANK YOU so much, I have been wanting to seek out just that! I have just e-mailed Penelope! You have been an angel for me! Thank you for taking the time and the understanding. Much love your way.

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