For the first time in 20 years, I'm living with no cats. This evening we said goodbye to Battlecat, who was somewhere around 16 years old (she had been Mr. Pants cat for several years before I met him). Her kidneys were starting to fail, and over the last few weeks her appetite seems to have been dropping. She was becoming skin and bones, and it's been harder and harder to interest her in even yummy wet cat food. There were things we could have done to keep her going a few more days--maybe even a week or two--but there's only so much you can do if a cat won't eat. (Plus, if you've ever given a cat subcutaneous fluids you'll know that it feels like you're torturing the animal to keep her alive. No fun for the cat or the humans.) We decided that euthanasia would be a more pleasant way for her to go than slow starvation punctuated by needle sticks. Sixteen years seems like a reasonably long cat life--she lived longer than any other cat we've owned.
Now it will be weird not to have to keep telling Mr. Gomez to leave the cat alone.