A cat-loving Instagram friend named Julia reminded me that it’s a year to the day since I posted the best-ever video of my younger exotic shorthair cat, the late, great Purrkoy the kitten. PK was such a character! Among his many quirks:
- He loved to sing the song of his people at the top of his lungs …
- … but he hated it when I tried to record his purrformance.
- He had a funny “RUN AWAY!” move that his aunt Stacy Lomman described as the “high-up-booty run.”
On April 7, 2018, I got all those things in one video, which has over 98,000 views on Instagram. I’ve posted it on the blog before, but it’s the record-a-versary, so let’s enjoy it again. Turn your volume up, and watch for him peeking around the corner at me.
We helped PK cross over the Rainbow Bridge on December 18 when he was only four years old, after he had a stroke and the vet neurologists at the Animal Medical Center in New York couldn’t get his symptoms under control. I got a preliminary necropsy (that’s the term for an animal autopsy) pretty quickly, but that is a basic physical examination. I had to wait till mid-February to get the final necropsy report with all the results from microscopic examination. In the interval, I became a stroke expert with the help of Dr. Poodle, as one does. (Did you know babies can have strokes in the womb?) I learned that the exact cause of a stroke may never be known, so I was prepared when the final report didn’t indicate a cause. There was no underlying heart problem, no cancer. The biggest news for me was finding out that the stroke had led to brain herniation, which usually leads to death or brain death in animals and people alike. My big fear in December was that I missed out on a miracle because I didn’t keep pursuing aggressive treatment. Now I knew for certain that nothing would have helped. Feeling weirdly relieved, I initially brushed off my vet’s concern that I would be troubled by the lack of a reason for it all.
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As 2018 comes to da end, Meowmie and I want to thank ewe all for all da wuv both before and after I flew to da 🌈 bridge. We read every comment and DM and we appreshiate dem all. For meowmie it haz made all da difference since I left her and it makes me happy to know I haz left her in good hands. I wuvs ewe all. #rippurrkoy #meowmiemissesyou #babycat #happymewyear #exoticshorthair #nye2019
Emotions are so sneaky though. If you banish them in relation to one thing, they’ll just attach themselves to something else. It hit me that I had been waiting for the final report for weeks — looking forward to it in a way — and now there would be no more messages from or about PK, not on this plane, anyway. The final report from AMC was The Final Report. Now PK was really gone. I was devastated.
One big consolation has been the continuing kindness of the cat lovers of Instagram, aka Catstagram, from the moment I brought PK to the hospital for sudden paralysis. So many tributes were posted after his death and there was even fan art. Then #Catstagram tiptoed out of my phone (presumably on little cat feet) and into the physical world: The day after PK transitioned from a wee devil to a #babycat angel, I was amazed to receive a huge bouquet of white roses that had been organized overnight by the Catstagram family.
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Meowmie waz so surprised and touched and overwhelmed to get bootiful flowers today from so many cat friends (as you can see Edward was amazed too). Thank you so much everypawdy. She put dem in da mail trays where I liked to sit and where she keeps looking for me and now she feels so much better about dose spaces. Yesterday she was planning to hide da trays in da closet. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️ Instagram won’t let us tag all da peeps in one post so Meowmie will put you all on her blog!
More roses came from Max and Abigail, the pawrents of Agnes and Hobbes, as well as my friend Elizabeth Wurtzel. Cards arrived by snail mail. The AMC donated a tree to the Chippewa National Forest in his name. And I’ve continued posting on PK’s account and people still leave likes and cute messages for their favorite opurra singer.
Who could ask for — or imagine — anything more? When MrB, Aunt Stacy, and I ventured to Mew Purrsey in February to meet Jamie, the organizer of the white roses, it was just to snug her four exotic shorthairs: Teagues, Oliver, Graham, and Jaspur.
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I’m convinced the best people online are to be found on “catstagram.” I was already overwhelmed after the #cats_of_instagram community got together to send beautiful white roses after the unexpected death of @purrkoy_the_kitten …then individuals sent cards as well, and of course they all keep visiting his Instagram account, which makes me very happy. And now I have just received this amazing artwork created by @copper.and.tin and presented to me by @teagues_n_oliver … I intend to thank everyone involved by name ASAP! #coi #babycat #exoticshorthair #rippurrkoy
Everything about it is purrfect: The New Yorker font, the musical notes, the cityscape, the dates. I said to Jamie, “I have to thank everypawdy by name!” When she sent me the link to the webpage where she organized everything, it turned out that more than 60 Catstagram people had contributed. Thank you to:
- Hooman Nadiyah of @OfficallyFluffyMeows
- Meowmie Veronica of @vhamster
- Catdad Walter of @shaper42
- Purrent Kathrine of @smush_and_henry
- Hooman Seline
- Kittehs Liz, Harley, and Shazam of @chillaxtothemaxwithmycats
- Catdad Steve of @mewmerzcat
- Meowmie Anne of @therealqueenkoko
- Amanda Lee of @Amanda01lee
- Humom Michelle of @estebankitty
- Tzee Yin Hiew of @tipsydango
- Hooman Kelly H.
- Meowmie Kristina of @chalupa_and_purrito
- Pawrent Brenda of @morris_the_persian_cat
- Hooman Kathleen B.
- Meowmie Jackie of @cozisthesweetest
- Meowmie Jaclyn of @bowie.and.willow
- Humom Erin of @hitchcock_presents
- Susan of @purrfessor_archie
- Kitteh Mick of @meowing_mick
- Tina, humom of the hilariously named George and Wheezy, of @tinaf78
- Lynn from @callyncats, PK’s first home
- Humom Amanda of @ham_and_iz
- Meowmie Jennifer of @dragonflyjen_sophie
- Hooman Anita-Lynn
- Hooman Candace M.
- Pawrent Ella of @franknfluff
- Humom Alisha of @arizona_ricecakes
- Hooman Audrey S.
- Meowmie Kimberlee of @chuckbassthebritishblue
- Humom Christine of @1Tidus
- Pawrent Madeleine of @pinot_cat
- Lavinia from Italy, mama of @lucrezia_exotic_shorthair_cat
- Hooman Molly B., who said, “Love you furever, PK!
- Meowmie Maria from @mr.einsteinthecat
- Hooman Katrina
- Meowmie Tina of @matildaandpickles
- Pawrent Kay of @yanksgal23. If you like snugging tabbies, you need to meet Perry and Monty.
- Humom Katrina of @merlin_the_exotic
- Hooman Heather of @hmaggiora
- Mary K.
- Meowmie Rachael of the famous bromance cats, @seamus_n_angus
- Leila of @fluffy.mellol81
- Purrent Lisa of @dreamresidue
- Meowmie Ruth of @squishdelish
- Hooman Melissa L.
- Humom Lynn of @catswiththeirtonguesout
- Meowmie Carolyn of @bluberi01
- Purrent Elise of @snootypuss
- Humom Jenalee of @morris.moonpie
- Meowmie Lisa of @lolasbrownchin
- Catdads Billy and Jayke of @bobgeldofandsenormeow
- Humom Chantal of @theoddcatcouple
- Hooman Jimmy B.
- Meowmie Jamie of @pocketsandboots
- Humom jennifer of @loyalandlaroux
- Catdad James of @lord_finnegan
- Meomie Naomi of @presleytheexotic
- Hooman Christina of @ingmar_n_dot
- Nicole of @misspicklescat
- Humom Shayla of @chinos_monkeys
- Meowmie Joni of @jonbalone, a regular commenter who makes me smile
- Humom Laurie, whose @pikey_von_pignose joined PK on the other side just weeks ago. Much love to her.
- Hooman Kathleen K.
- Azure Holland of AzureHollandVet
- Kittehs Winston and Westen of The Winstagram
- Kittehs Loki, Lavender, and Limerick of Studley Cat
- Cat dad and artist Jimi, Mr. Eggs, and Sir Pumpkin of MrEggsTheCat
It makes me happy that PK touched so many hearts, but this outpouring represents something bigger to me. We live in a difficult (and sometimes downright evil) world, and it’s easy to feel despair. The fact that dozens of people took the time to show compassion to the bereft owner of a mischievous cat — a small loss in grand scheme of things, albeit one that is deeply felt — gives me a spark of hope whenever I think of it. Thank you to each and every one of you!