(Llanelli, South-West Wales (UK))
In the garden in all his glory
My recently deceased Coon was called Arthur and he lived to just over 13 1/2 years, though we hoped there was more left in him.
Until a few days before he died, he was still agile, fast and food loving, but went lame over a 3 day period and was thought to have a thyroid problem gone into overdrive. Sadly, upon examination at the vet, he was diagnosed with feline leukemia despite showing no symptoms and being vaccined, so was put to rest as I could not bear to see him fail any more.
But enough of sad times, he brought us many years of joy, although without sounding big headed, seemed to have a special bond with me as he was a generally apprehensive cat. He came to us as a kitten from a litter of 3 coon varieties (2 male, 1 female), though his mother was a small black cat!
He knew the sound of my car and would always run out to meet it, sometimes galloping down the street like a horse.
And wherever he was hiding in the house, the sound of my voice entering the house would cause him to come to me. He could knock to come in by standing on his backlegs and tapping (very persistently!) the doors or windows with his front paws, and would give a little chirp every time you let him in. He would also chirp every time you made eye contact with him, making for an amusing game of back and forth head turning sometimes!
His sleeping positions were bizarre - would start in a ball, but would give a big stretch at some point and hold that as his sleeping position for long periods!
He wasn't much of a lap cat. Would jump up for attention, but would often jump off again just as quick, sometimes after a few seconds. However, if you were laying down, he'd like nothing more than to sleep lengthways between or on your legs!
He also enjoyed finding new places to sleep, sometimes being found in the most unexpected places, from prams, to toy suitcases, to cardboard boxes. If it was new, he'd try it out! His favourite (but strange!) stroking position was to be smoothed while laying down, between his body and the surface he was laying on - he couldn't get enough of that!
But his best trick was how to get his paws on food - especially the Whiskas fish variety. He would leap onto the kitchen table and stay there till you got the tin out, and would jump straight back up if he felt he deserved more.
He also had worked out that as it seemed a general rule that he was fed as soon as he was let in, then that was a crafty trick to get more - as he would often ask to be let out, only to return minutes later and head straight for the food dish again! He would also try this trick on different family members, with the latest one sometimes not realising he'd only just been fed!
We've just had a new black and white kitten whom we all love, but I will miss Arthur dearly and now realise what a special and unique breed he was now that he has gone.
Mr J Taylor-Goddard
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