My Kramer (COTD 12/19/09) left for Rainbow Bridge yesterday at age 17. I've tried to upload a pic of him- but see the COTD archives if I failed to attach it correctly.
We had a bad upper respiratory bug go through the pride a month ago- six cats got it and got Clavamox and other meds, five kicked it out and Kramer didn't, he couldn't smell or taste and stopped eating. He also had early-stage renal failure and a hyper-echoic mass in his liver but was in NO shape for surgery on the liver yet. He spent some time in hospital getting fluids and antibiotics, then got a feeding tube installed. He was recovering nicely at home for 2 weeks, gaining back weight and being normal Kramer (sleeping with us, occupying laps, purring, wandering the house to say hello to folks); but night before last, things kind of crashed all at once- he vomited his evening feeding, then hid for the first time, and obviously didn't feel real good any more- he'd respond to pets but was clearly not happy or comfortable, if not in any pain..... he was telling us it was time. So we sent him off to Rainbow Bridge yesterday morning.
Kramer came to me when his human (a coworker's grandfather) died in 1996. It was about the lowest time of my life, and of Kramer's, too- he was pretty neglected and his beautiful Maine coon fur was unkempt and filthy and he hid from everything. My Shadow-cat and I got him in shape and got him acclimated, and he became a real friend, very playful and acrobatic, VERY attached to me- those two cats literally saved my life. He's had a long, happy life, first in NJ and for the last couple of years in GA.
God I'm gonna miss that little cat.....but I'm so grateful to have had 16 wonderful years with him.