The pleasure of his company
Animal Stories from

FROM Drew Robert Winter
November 12, 2020 Facebook post

Two days ago I didn't even know he was ill, and now he's gone.

Cat Sammy

I lost my Sammy today.

Sam came into my life about 3 years ago as a stray. He wandered around my friends' apartment complex with such regularity that they took to calling him "Security." He was very willing to get cuddled, even spending an entire cold night outside in Larry's arms to stay warm. To avoid this in the future, Larry and Jade suggested I give him a home.

We soon found that he was FIV+, but that never slowed him down. The first few weeks he was with me, he hid under the furniture. But within a month, he was following me around, squeaking and meowing for attention. He traveled with me from Houston to Illinois to Michigan, and was the worst road trip partner—since my last cat. Sam loved to get petted, even by strangers who he would brush up against. And he would meow to make his demands known.

Sam has been my main source of physical affection during the quarantine. He loved to be a little spoon, and as soon as I got in bed I could expect him to hop on, flop down next to me, and begin purring/making biscuits as I rubbed his tummy. He would return this affection by "bathing" me; it hurt to have his velcro tongue scrape across my forearms, but I put up with it as gratitude for the gesture.

Last night he developed labored breathing, and early this morning I took him to the emergency vet. Pleural effusion caused by a large mass in his chest (likely lung cancer). The vet and I determined that the best option for him was a painless death by my side.

Two days ago I didn't even know he was ill, and now he's gone. Luckily I have a wonderful support system of friends and family. And although our time together was far too brief and I'm very sad, it was absolutely worth every minute of unpleasantness to enjoy the pleasure of his company.

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