I went to the vet today, to pick up Claire’s ashes. When I had her euthanized I had a choice between communal and private cremation. Private costs more* (obviously), but in the end it’s what I chose- not because I was super desperate to have her ashes, but because I kept picturing a pile of dead pets just being shovelled into an incinerator like coal into a furnace** and it was a VERY UPSETTING MENTAL IMAGE. Of course on Friday night I kept picturing her lying all cold and alone waiting to be cremated and I cried my face off about that as well.
Over the weekend I started clearing out Claire’s things from around the house. It was hard and sad but I felt like getting it done sooner rather than later would be good. It was especially sad throwing out her litterbox, not because I was particularly attached to it, but because I could see she hadn’t used it in over 24 hours before she passed. Also when I took it out to the garbage room along with an unfinished bag of cat food a woman was in there with her spaniel and she said “I feed the same brand of food to my dog!” and then tried to start a pet convo with me, and what was I going to say? “O yeah I used to give my cat this food but then she died.” I just smiled and mumbled awkwardly before throwing everything in the dumpster. Anyway. I took her leftover insulin and the sharps box of used syringes back to the pharmacy to be disposed of properly. Her unused syringes I gave to the vet, as well as a blood glucose tester, test strips and lancets, for them to pass along to another owner of a diabetic pet.
I don’t regret my decision to have my cat put to sleep; I’ve been looking through my pictures of her from only a few weeks ago and it’s so clear that she was at the end. She just fell into such a fast decline, to be honest I think if I hadn’t taken her to the vet when I did she would have died the next day anyways. I miss her though, I wish she didn’t have to go. Sometimes I still think I hear her in the bathroom, meowing for us to come turn on the tap for her to drink out of, or just meowing because… cat.
* I was told it would $60-$80 more for private cremation, since Claire was such a very small cat (at the time of her death she weighed just 5 1/2 pounds). In the end the euthanasia + private cremation cost $200, although I declined a receipt so I don’t know the actual breakdown of charges.
** I’m sure they don’t just like… shovel them in BUT it’s what I kept thinking about.