I came home tonight to one of those messages that we all dread. My mother wrote to inform me that my cat Fahrvergnügen (Fahrvy, for short) had to be put down. Any of you who are pet owners can understand the overwhelming weight of a moment like that.
Granted, Fahrvy has not been a part of my day to day life for years now, but that doesn't lessen what I felt for him. One of the best parts of "going home" has always been that flash of recognition he would get when I came in the house. I was guaranteed to spend my time with him nestled on me and leave with my clothes covered in white fur.
Fahrvy picked me out at the animal shelter back in 1990. Our previous cat, Weazer, had recently died, and to help ease the pain of his passing, my mother allowed me to pick our next cat. And pick him I did, all cute and fluffy and gray. But unfortunately, that cat wasn't available for adoption yet, as they had to wait and see its reaction to all the shots. So, on the day it was to be available, my mom and I got to the shelter before they opened to wait for that kitten. However, one person beat us there that day, and wouldn't you know it, they wanted the EXACT SAME KITTEN.
Once the place opened we entered in defeat, knowing full well that I wouldn't get the cat I wanted. We looked around the various cages looking for an acceptable runner-up. Rather unexpectedly, I felt a splash of water on my face. I quickly turned to ascertain where it came from and that's when I first saw him.
Don't take any of what I say here the wrong way, but Fahrvy was UGLY. Even as a kitten he was rather long and gangly, with a black eye, a black nose, a black rat-like tail, and what appeared to be a hoofprint from a deer on his neck. Once I saw him he splashed me again. I knew right away that this was the cat for me. He's not much to look at, but he's got personality, and personality goes a long way.
He was rather sickly when we first got him, so he subsequently spent the first couple of weeks at our home more or less confined to my room. I established a rather strong bond with him that never fully went away. He was a lot of fun, energetic and exciteable, but always friendly and loving to everyone. He was great with children, showing immense amounts of patience and understanding.
All in all, it pleases me to know that good old Fahrvy had a happy life. He had several cat friends over the years: Black Kitty, Chessie, Frodo and Scrumpy, and never lived in want of shelter, food, comfort or love. It saddens me to know that my time with him has come to an end, but he'll always live on in my heart.