The black cat who changed my life. Just writing that makes my heart skip a beat. Prudence came into our lives rather suddenly on 19th December 2010, she had gone to a local charity shop starving and pregnant. L worked 2 shops away and they took her to her. She put up a notice to look for her owner, but nothing. I didn’t know about this, until she came through the door with a box saying “let me tell you the story first” I thought it was a rabbit. I said she could tell me as I opened the box… I opened a corner and out pushed a matted, greasy black head… Then the most beautiful eyes, then a meowing Siamese cross that suddenly launched at my head to hug and head butt me… I burst into tears and hugged her. The rush of love was immense. She meowed and purred so loudly, like a little meercat The next few weeks involved vet trips- they aged her at between 6 months and one years old, they weren’t sure she would survive and at one point said to put her down, I refused.
I slept on the sofa for nearly a month, cuddling her, feeding her and making sure she made the litter tray…. Her bladder wasn’t great! One day she sadly miscarried, her frail body just couldn’t do it. A little while afterwards we took her to be neutered, it was obvious she had already had kittens. But this was the best decision, her bladder issues stopped, she didn’t cry all night! It took about 3 months for Holly to fully accept her. During this time Pru was my best friend. She came everywhere, except outside, with me, she didn’t judge me.
Pru didn’t know how to play, so I spent so long teaching her… Then she couldn’t stop … Bags, newspapers, shoes, fingers….! She would chew your hair, clean your whole face and let you blow raspberries on her tummy. Pru had to have a weekly bath as she couldn’t clean herself (holly used to pin her down and clean her!) Pru was the only cat holly has ever liked, they cuddled, holly told her off, Pru was always thrilled to wake Holly up. Pru yowled if she was left alone.
Having a mental illness is difficult but she was always a comfort. Anyone she ever met loved her. We made her birthday Halloween and had a party each year. She hated storms & fireworks and climbed everywhere, she once climbed window decorations in front of about 100 Japanese tourists who were all taking her picture! I never got to read a paper without scratch marks in it, and no food was safe. Pru made her own rules. I’m not sure it’s possible I or if I ever have loved anyone as much as I loved Pru and Love Holly.
When Pru got ill it was September 2012, she began peeing on the bed, endlessly drinking and became unsociable. I knew she was really ill. The vet thought it could be a urine infection, but both blood and urine checks showed she had kidney failure, she stayed at the vets during the day, and we brought her home at night.
They thought she might have a year left…. I cried like a baby, every time I looked at her I cried. It was then a cycle of different food, meds & cuddles. She was deteriorating fairly rapidly, the vet said she could eat whatever food she wanted, so I made her homemade tomato soup and put her meds in, and Tesco’s value cooked chicken.
She made it to her 4th birthday, we bought her a fleece coat as she was always cold. We had a bittersweet party. After this she went down hill. We knew we had to make a decision, the toughest decision, we took her on 15th November, we played the song she was named after, and sat on the floor and cuddled her, she was so peaceful. The night before she seemed determined to show how well she was, eating a whole tin of tuna, taking all her meds.
It broke my heart, our little meercat, the loudest cat in the world, both in purr and meow, was gone. I rarely cry, but even writing this has made me sob. We miss her every day and have such good memories. But her ashes & toy meerkat are always where she was…behind the bed!
Dear Prudence, it’s a brand new day, dear Prudence won’t you come out to play? The sun is up, the sky is blue, it’s beautiful and so are you, dear prudence – John Lennon
Love Sooz x