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Xena, Warrior Pussycat


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Today we made to most heartbreaking decision an animal lover ever has to make. We sent our Xena to the bridge. She was diagnosed with lung cancer, a massive tumor that had collapsed 2/3’s of one lung and another growth on Thursday afternoon. I brought her home and Kevin and I loved her until we all felt her time was here. This morning Kevin woke me up and we knew it was time.

 

 

 

 

 

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Xena was the last of the nuke plant cats that we brought home to live. In September of 1998, Kevin told me that there was a small cat hanging around the fitness center in the West 40 at the plant. After a short discussion, we decided to catch her and see what kind of shape she was in. The next night, Kevin said that another Officer, Diane has been feeding the cat and she is a very nice cat. Kevin says his first actual sighting of her was watching her catch and eat a lizard from a microwave head in one of the zones on the camera system. So, a week later, Kevin took the cat carrier to work in hopes that either he or Diane would see the cat and be able to grab her. About 3 in the morning Kevin called and said that “Mission Cat Rescue” was successful and she was in the carrier in the car, protesting loudly.

 

At the time, we only had Dancer our first greyhound, James Dean, our ‘Tuz and one cat Aggadore Spartacus. I stayed up the rest of the night until Kevin arrived home with our new family member. The dogs perked up when they heard Kevin come home and they greeted him at the door. He came in with the carrier and we set it on the floor. After appropriate dog loves, Dancer realized the carrier was there and she pranced over to sniff it. Her ears were up and her tail was wagging. We figured now was as good a time as any, so we opened the door. Again Dancer happily play bowed and sniffed. The ball of fluff stepped out, took one look at Dancer and without so much as a hint, this little cat reared back with a paw and whacked the 65 pound greyhound on the nose!! Dancer jumped back and walked away with ONLY hurt feelings. Then this cat strutted around and made herself right at home. Therefore, she became Xena, Warrior Pussycat.

 

 

 

 

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Xena blended in seamlessly into our home. We took her in for her spay and our Vet guessed her age to be about a year old. She never left our house and showed no inclination to go out the door. She always greeted new animals and people with welcoming interest. She was also the first to whack a passing greyhound or charge out from behind something to ambush feet. Xena never used claws and she seldom used her teeth in the ambushes. She truly was no afraid of anything in the house. She pretty much let all new animals know that she was the head feline and if they had any questions, they could “talk to the paw.”

 

Anytime packages arrived, she helped open them and inspect the contents. Everything passed the Xena test. However, it was truthfully the empty boxes that she loved the most. She would claw and play and pounce around the boxes for days. Kevin got creative and glued a bunch of larger boxes together and made a cat tower of sorts. Xena would play in that for hours. Walking by was treacherous because she would lay in ambush and take a swipe as you passed. Then she would burrow deep into the box so you “couldn’t see” her anymore. I think the tower finally gave up the ghost after a couple of years. We always talked about getting one of those carpet covered fancy towers, but the money was never really there and neither was the space. We would just toss boxes on the floor for a few days and she was happy.

 

 

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In the process of inspecting packages, she became the official treat tester also. She loved when smelly BurpDog Biscuits arrived and Xena would seek out the tuna ones and eat them. I told Diane about it and she laughed. The next package came with a bag of tiny BurpCat Treats just for Xena and she loved them.

 

 

 

 

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Xena also felt that she was entitled to help the other dogs eat dinner. It was very common to see her dive into a dogs bowl for a bite of tasty dog food morsel. And anytime I changed the water bowl, she would lay in wait for the fresh water. And she did like fresh water. Xena expected you to turn on the water and fill the bottom of the bathroom sink with fresh water, just for her. It was just part of her indomitable charm.

 

 

 

 

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I think one of the coolest Xena stories to share revolves around Kevin’s heart attack in 2000. He had worked all night and I had stayed up after working all day Thursday. We slept and I got up, really cranky on Friday afternoon. Kevin woke up pretty chipper and had a salad to eat. I was growling at him from the couch and he said he was going to lie back down. A while later I heard him call me from the bedroom. Of course I was cranky with lack of sleep, but I went to see what he wanted. Calling or requesting me to come see something is not the norm in our house, for either of us. So I trek down the hall and he says, my chest hurts and I am having trouble breathing. Well this immediately wakes me up and I reach for the phone, asking if perhaps the salad is causing his stomach to be upset. Kevin takes the phone and calls his Aunt, a retired nurse. :rolleyes: She lived 15 miles away. I still have no clue what his thought process was at the time. Men!! :lol :lol Anyway in the middle of their conversation, he gasps and hands me the phone. She starts saying to call 911 as he has having a heart attack. Of course, I can’t because I am on the phone with her. She starts asking me more questions and I tell her I gotta go so I can call rescue.

 

Next Kevin says he feels better and maybe it was just indigestions. Not taking any chances, as we had just been through first aid class at work, I call 911. As soon as I hang up from 911, I realize of course they are going to come in the house and we have animals, especially a spooky greyhound, Dylan. As I am deciding what to do next, Aunt Diane calls back and starts asking questions again: “Give him an aspirin, check his pulse, is he breathing?” Well, we don’t have any aspirin, his pulse is fast and yes he is breathing. I need to get the animals secure Diane!” So she freaks out because we don’t have aspirin in the house! :lol :lol I look down and Xena is standing in Kevin’s chest, kneading it.

 

 

 

 

 

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I hand the phone to Kevin and herd the dogs outside into the yard. The phone rings again and it’s Diane, still freaking out because we don’t have aspirin and telling me what hospital to take him to. :lol :lol As I answer it, running back down the hall, I realize Kevin is now sitting on the sofa. He realized the rescue guys would have a heck of a time getting him off the water bed, so he decided to walk to the living room. :rolleyes: I grab the two cats and stick them in the bathroom.

 

Anyway, rescue shows up, takes him to the ER, he is admitted, they do a cath and he has two 70% blocked and two 90% blocked arteries. They move him to another hospital on Monday and he has bypass surgery on Tuesday. As a result of all the above events, thanks to Xena, CPR has a whole new meaning in our house: Cat Paw Resuscitation.

 

Pillows were meant for sharing and for a long time Xena slept on mine with me. She would curl up on her half and flick her tail in my face until I gave her the other half. Again, it was just part of her indomitable charm.

 

When I was diagnosed with carpel tunnel, her sleeping on my pillow was a great help. I would slip my hand under the pillow, under her and her weight would prevent me from clenching my hand during sleep. Xena also had a knack for knowing when one of us was feeling ill and would again start sleeping on our pillow for a few days.

 

Xena loved to bird watch and lizard stalk out the window. She would chatter and quiver in excitement. It was very common to see her loving on the dogs as they slept on the floor and have her draped over the back of the sofa while we watched TV. My lap is fair game for all the cats to sleep in while I watch TV. Xena was the first to give an intruder a dirty look is she was not the first up. As soon as one cat moves or I move, another cat moves into my lap. I never watch TV alone. Often a greyhound will walk up and get loves and Xena had no problem rubbing her face against their nose or deep sniffing ears. All our greyhounds always just stood patiently while Xena inspected them.

 

 

 

 

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Last year we nursed her through a bout or probable pancreatitis. It was a few weeks of IV’s and syringe feedings, but we got her through it and she bounced back in true Xena style. Although she was never a big cat, probably weighting maybe 10 pounds at the most, we never really got all the weight back on afterward. She did very well and ate well, loving anything left-over on our plates and especially licking an ice cream dish.

 

 

 

 

 

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The past month her weight dropped off and on Tuesday I noticed she was lethargic and not breathing well. Thursday afternoon we visited the Vet for the news. We brought her home and loved on her until we all knew it was time.

 

 

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We miss you already little girl and we love you so much. We know you are giving Dancer, Dylan Dixie and JD hell at the bridge and one day we will all meet again.

 

 

 

 

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Wendy and The Whole Wherd. American by birth, Southern by choice.
"Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup!"
****OxyFresh Vendor ID is 180672239.****

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I'm so very sorry. :cry1 She was absolutely gorgeous, and a true character. You wrote a wonderful tribute to her--I just wish you didn't have to do it so soon.

 

Godspeed Xena.

Standard Poodle Daisy (12/13); Greys Hildy (Braska Hildy 7/10), Toodles (BL Toodles 7/09), Opal (Jax Opal 7/08)
Missing Cora (RL Nevada 5/99-10/09), Piper (Cee Bar Easy 2/99-1/10), Tally (Thunder La La 9/99-3/10), Edie (Daring Reva 9/99-10/12), Dixie (Kiowa Secret Sue 11/01-1/13), Jessie (P's Real Time 11/98-3/13), token boy Graham (Zydeco Dancer 9/00-5/13), Cal (Back Already 12/99-11/13), Betsy (Back Kick Beth 11/98-12/13), Standard Poodles Minnie (1/99-1/14) + Perry (9/98-2/14), Annie (Do Marcia 9/03-10/14), Pink (Miss Pinky Baker 1/02-6/15), Poppy (Cmon Err Not 8/05-1/16), Kat (Jax Candy 5/05-5/17), Ivy (Jax Isis 10/07-7/21)

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I'm sorry Y- she sounds like a great cat and will always have a huge place in your heart

Please give Kevin a hug from me

:grouphug

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Kari and the pups.
Run free sweet Hana 9/21/08-9/12/10. Missing Sparks with every breath.
Passion 10/16/02-5/25/17

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Oh, my gosh, she had enough personality for a dozen cats! And how you loved her. For such a little girl, her presence was huge, and the empty space created by her passing will be huge as well.

I'm so sorry you lost your precious Xena.

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Nancy, Mom to Evangelina, Kiva and Laila
Missing Lacey, Patsy, Buster, my heart dog Nick, Winnie, Pollyanna, Tess, my precious Lydia, Calvin Lee, and kitties Lily, Sam and Simon
My Etsy shop: http://www.etsy.com/shop/Catsburgandhoundtown

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What a beautiful girl, and what a great life she had with you :weep

 

I'm so sorry, Wendy :grouphug :grouphug :grouphug

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"Hurricane Sandi" (Baurna to Run).

Forever missing my "Angel-With-A Crooked-Halo" Hailey, and "Mokkah" (Xpress Point) with all my heart.

"If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went." ~~Will Rogers

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What a lovely tribute to your warrior princess. Godspeed Xena.

Missing my sweet girl Scout. My snuggler, my chow-hound, my kissy girl.
It never thunders at the Bridge, and your food bowl is ALWAYS filled.

So strange not living in Atty World. I was a love struck handmaiden to your every whim.

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Beautiful tribute, I'm so sorry for your loss. :(

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~Beth, with a crazy mixed crew of misfits.
~ Forever and Always missing and loving Steak, Carmen, Ivy, Isis, and Madi.
Don't cry because it's ended, Smile because it happened.
Before you judge me, try to keep an open mind, not everyone likes your taste.

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Wendy, what a wonderful life Xena lived with you and Kevin. Thank you for sharing her story - it was so moving and a special tribute to her.

 

I'm so sorry for your loss - my heart is with you and Kevin tonight :grouphug :grouphug :weep :weep

Mom to Daisy (1999-2012), LB (aka Little Bit), and Sammy James (aka Sammy or Buddy)

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Guest BradyzMommy

She sounds like such a character. what a beautiful life you all shared with her. my deepest sympathies to you, Keuin and the crew.

Edited by BradyzMommy
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I'm so sorry, Wendy. Sending Warm Thoughts to you, Kevin and your whole crew.

Jayme with Pippi (the scaredy-beagle)
In the memories of all of my Bridge-babies I'd like to remind people to choose adoption--and that it's not just dogs and cats that are available!

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Guest krystolla

Torties are the best. She sounds like an indomitable spirit, your Xena. :grouphug She's probably giving them hell at the rainbow bridge.

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Guest cruzNhounds

Poem For Cats

 

And God asked the feline spirit

Are you ready to come home?

Oh, yes, quite so, replied the precious soul

And, as a cat, you know I am most able

To decide anything for myself.

 

Are you coming then? asked God.

Soon, replied the whiskered angel

But I must come slowly

For my human friends are troubled

For you see, they need me, quite certainly.

 

But don't they understand? asked God

That you'll never leave them?

That your souls are intertwined. For all eternity?

That nothing is created or destroyed?

It just is....forever and ever and ever.

 

Eventually they will understand,

Replied the glorious cat

For I will whisper into their hearts

That I am always with them

I just am....forever and ever and ever.

 

Author Unknown

 

Sorry for your loss Wendy :grouphug

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Xena was an amazing cat, it's clear from your tribute. Thanks so much for sharing her story. I'm very sorry she had to go now.

:f_pink

 

 

Mary with Jumper Jack (2/17/11) and angels Shane (PA's Busta Rime, 12/10/02 - 10/14/16) and Spencer (Dutch Laser, 11/25/00 - 3/29/13).

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Guest hannahmom

Wendy, what a beautiful life Xena had with you.

I'm sorry it was her time to go, but no animal who lived with that much love ever really leaves us.

Godspeed Xena

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What an amazing kitty, and what an amazing life she had with you! She could have written a book for cats: "How to Live With Dogs and Humans and Make Them All Do Your Bidding." I'm so sorry she's gone.

 

Godspeed, Xena.

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

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What a wonderful girlie she was, and what a heartwarming memorial you've written about her. She's in good company at the bridge.

 

Our sympathies on your loss.

CAMP GREYHOUND

Tempo (Keep the Tempo), Nora (Road Noise) & Gabe the babe (Gable Habenero), Cooper (Uncle Bud's Coop), Topper (Red Top), & Galgos Lisette & Manolito. Missing our beloved angels Cody (Kiowa My Dodie), Lou (Cantankerous Lou), Romi (FingerRoll), Connie (Devie's Concord), Millie (Djays Overhaul), Bailey (Hallo Forty nine), Andy (Iza Handy Boy, and Rocco (Ripley Rocco), Gracie (VS Megan), Eragon the Longdog, Joey (WJS Flashfire), Roy (Folly and Glory)

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Wendy I am very sorry for your loss. I must say that your tribute to Xena was one of the most lovely ones I have ever read. I feel like I knew her. I hope that these many wonderful memories of Xena will bring you and Kevin comfort in the days ahead.

Hugs,

Carol Ann

 

:f_pink:f_white

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Molly Weasley Carpenter-Caro - 4 Year Old Standard Poodle.

Gizzy, Specky, Riley Roo & Lady - Our beloved Greyhounds waiting at the Rainbow Bridge.

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