Bentley, my sweet cat husband and the best boy

Biomehanika

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His name was Bentley, but I rarely ever called him that. Over the years he became Boobear, Bobear, Snoobear, Snowbert, Bobert, Bubba, Snuggert, Nubbert, Nuggert, Nub, Snub, Snubbert, the list goes on… and he responded to them all. There was no such thing as too many names of endearment for my little guy.

I have spent a lot of time trying to make this post since he was suddenly put to rest on the 20th. I have typed out his whole “life story”, starting with his adoption, and then his tragic and unexpected demise (advanced heart failure that was never detected/misdiagnosed as allergies by my regular vet, she saw him just days before and multiple times over the past couple years…. don’t get me started there) and deleted it many times. I am now coming to terms with not only the fact that he is gone, but also the fact that I will never be able to convey in words or pictures how much he meant to me or how special he was. He was fifteen, possibly sixteen, I had him for almost thirteen years, and it wasn’t nearly long enough.

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I love cats. The longest I’ve gone in my life without the company of a cat was the five or six months before I got Bentley after I had moved out on my own for the first time. I was born into a family with a cat, I still have two cats, I will always have cats. But Bentley was different. I knew Bentley loved me just as much as I loved him, if not more, if that’s even possible. I used to joke that he must have been my (extremely loving and devoted) husband in another life because he wanted to be not only with me but on me 24/7 and would just stare at me, constantly. If he wasn’t cuddling me he was cuddling his bonded girlfriend, Bitsy, who I got a year and a half after him. There was no such thing as too many pets or kisses or cuddles with him, if it was up to him they would have been never ending. If I ever stopped petting him he would beg for more. He loved having his face stroked and eventually adopted the behaviour himself, so he would reach up and touch my cheek with his little paw. He also loved to press up against my side with his arms around me in a hug, he was very human-like in his affection and we’d often fall asleep that way. Whenever I was on the computer he’d come and stand on his back legs, and put his front paws on my knees, asking to be picked up and put on my lap. He reeeeally loved to be brushed. If I ever dared to brush one of the other cats he would forcefully insert himself between them and the brush. He was the sweetest most affectionate boy with the most beautiful big green eyes, and he always looked at me in the most “knowing” and loving way.

Bentley liked everyone, ESPECIALLY random men who would come over to do work at the house. He would rub up all over them and mew at them for pets, and he definitely convinced some cat-doubters/dog people that cats could be just as loving, if not more loving, than dogs. He also loved other cats. He was glued to Bitsy from the moment I introduced them twelve years ago, and immediately accepted my new kitten, Moose, who he only got to spend three weeks with.

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I had no idea things were as bad as they were during Bentley’s final hours. Something was clearly off with his breathing, but he still ate like a horse and was still trying to cuddle me, so I thought whatever was going on could be fixed. I assumed the medication my vet had put him on just days before suddenly wasn’t agreeing well with him (I had already stopped it the night before after speaking with her and being told to “just watch him”), and that that morning, when he wasn’t showing any signs of improvement, the ER vet could fix him up and help get it out of his system, and that he’d be fine. When I checked on him during the car ride and handed him off to the ER triage in his carrier I didn’t even consider that that could be the last time I saw him as himself, but it was. I never even got to properly say goodbye to him until he was already gone because he declined so rapidly in there. By the time they brought him out for euthanasia he was already so sedated that he may as well have been gone already, and I saw him for all of five seconds in that state before the ER vet said they had to do it right then.

I hate that he went the way he went. He didn’t deserve that. I feel so guilty for continuing to take him to that vet, I never liked her much and I should have trusted my gut, but it was convenient and closeby and he never acted like anything was wrong until his final 24 hours. I feel guilty for putting my trust in someone else’s judgement, just because they were a “professional”, and giving him the medication that likely triggered the episode that killed him, and for not asking more questions and advocating for him more. I knew he was getting older but I never imagined the end could come so soon and suddenly. I can’t help but think, had he had a better vet over the past couple years, like the one I had before I moved here, he could still be here.

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Bentley my sweet boy, if tears could resurrect the dead you’d still be here with me. You were my best friend in the entire world and the biggest blessing. The purest little soul. You taught me what unconditional love is. I survived the worst years of my life because of you and I will miss you every day, life is not the same without you. Bitsy and Moose miss you too. I love you forever and can only hope that somewhere, someday, fate will bring us together again. Goodbye for now my cat husband, you were the best boy.

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Furballsmom

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it wasn’t nearly long enough.
It isn't. It is never enough.

There is no way to know if, had you done things differently, the outcome for him may have been exactly the same.

You did the hardest yet most compassionate thing for him.

RIP sweetheart.

You might try some Cat Music for Bitsy - it may help her through the transition even though it has been a little while.
 
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betsygee

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I have tears in my eyes reading this. What a lovely, lovely tribute to such a beautiful and well-loved boy. My heart goes out to you for your loss. I'm so sorry, and I agree it's never enough time, no matter how long we have them.

Rest in peace, sweet Bentley. :rbheart:
 

Mamanyt1953

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Rest you gentle, Bentley, dream you deep. Your sweet purrs echo in someone's heart forever.

No, his time with you was not long enough, but...where there is love, an eternity is not long enough. Someday, in the fullness of time, you will have your eternity with Bently. Bently lived, breathed and had his being wrapped in your love, and you in his. And you will so miss his physical presence in your life. This is the Deepest Truth I know, that love never dies. It is translated and purified into Love, and continues on. Now, from his home in That Place Where All Things Are Known, Bently blesses you, and he sends his Love back to you to walk beside you down through all of your days, until that day in the fullness of time, you meet again. Because Love abides. Always, forever, Love abides.
 
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Biomehanika

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Thank you all for the sweet messages. I’ve cried a lot again today.

When I originally typed out my post there were a lot of pictures I wanted to use and I had a really hard time choosing which ones to include. I didn’t want it to be too photo spammy, but have now realized if anyone is going to appreciate cat photo spam, it’s probably you guys lol. So here is a final (but still relatively small in cat people terms) photo dump of my boy. Most of my pictures of him are from the past 5-ish years as the laptop I had most of my older pictures on blew up and was unrecoverable ☹
 

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di and bob

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A beautiful, loving, tribute to a soulmate.......Once in a lifetime a cat comes along that is connected directly to your heart. Bentley to yours. He will always be there for you, a part of your very soul. Love is spiritual, so eternal. NOTHING can break that bond, not even death. he lives on through you now, so send him prayers of thankfulness for having him in your life and more love. He will send his own for the rest of your life.
Living to fifteen or sixteen is a great lifetime for a cat. Just like in humans those who live to nineteen or twenty are rare. My own Burt was diagnosed with heart failure at around 9 years old and survived to 16, They have the hearts of a lion. So they can survive with a bad heart for quite a while. Cats can hide their illness and problems very well, it is one of the things they do best. Show no weakness. So try not to beat yourself up over this, he sounds like he had a long, very happy life. you gave him what he wanted most in this world, a home, care, and someone to love him......
Eventually, this sorrow will turn to gratitude for having him share your life. But it takes time and a lot of it. Grief is horrible. I have always said it is like the ocean, one-day placid and warm, it lulls you into thinking you can actually breathe again and go forward, then WHAM, A tsunami of emotions and sorrow overwhelm you completely and bring you to your knees, drowning you in tears. We are here as reminders that there IS life after a death. That somehow you go on because it is the only thing you can do.The past is set in stone, the future is not ours to see. So live in the present right now and just get through each and every day. The world keeps on turning and we must go with it. One day at a time.......RIP in peace precious Bentley. You will always have secure places in loving hearts. You will never be forgotten. May thr good Lord bless and keep you, until you meet again!
 

marshmallow2013

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I’m really sorry for your loss of your beloved Bentley. It’s ver heartbreaking when it happens so suddenly. He sounded very special and was very handsome.

Your experience and feelings are very much like mine. I agree with you about going with your gut feeling because I have the same regrets with a vet I found when I moved to a new location. She misdiagnosed my cat‘s symptoms as having allergies even though I felt something serious was causing him to lose his hair and scratch his ears. She didn’t take the time to check him thoroughly and said normal bloodtest once a year is good enough. He was only 12 when he passed away.

Sometimes you think of all you could have done differently but you did everything you could to try to help him.
My deepest condolences to you. :hugs:
 
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