Yesterday was a very sad day for us.

Barnes, one of our four cats, had to be put to sleep after we took him to the pet hospital because he was having trouble breathing. A bit over a year ago, Barnes was diagnosed with Diabetes and he'd been getting regular insulin injections (2 per day) and vet visits. In fact, his most recent visit (3-4 weeks back) was very good. The doctor was happy with his progress and he generally seemed peppier. His blood test results were all very positive.

But yesterday when we noticed he seemed to be working harder to breathe, I knew something was very wrong.

He was placed into a 100% oxygen environment to make is breathing easier while they conducted some tests and gathered information. After some X-rays, we learned the extent of his troubles. He had an enlarged heart, fluid in his lungs, and cancer.

In a way, it's good we didn't see this coming.

His brother Noble seems to be taking it better than we are, and they'd been together their entire ~12 years. His newer brothers Timmy and Thunder will surely miss him as well.

His favorite activities in the world were eating chicken (and fish), exploring our catnip plants and toys, getting belly rubs, and napping on his favorite fuzzy blanket.

Barnes was the most loving and strong cat we'd ever known. He was probably hiding his illnesses for a long time, hoping for a few more belly rubs with us and visits with the catnip plants we grew.

We'll really, really miss him.

Here are a few of the pictures and videos we'll use to remember him...

Barnes as a Kitten

Barnes and Noble as Kittens
Barnes and Noble as Kittens

Banes on the Bed
Banes on the Bed

Barnes Stretches
Barnes Stretches

Barnes and Noble Cuddle
Barnes and Noble Cuddle

More Recent Barnes Photos

Barnes on the Floor
Barnes on the Floor


Barnes and Noble
Barnes and Noble

Barnes and Noble
Barnes and Noble

Videos of Barnes

Barnes with a Catnip Toy

Our cats eating Chicken

Please remember to get your pets regular checkups with a good vet. They deserve it.

Posted by jzawodn at January 04, 2010 12:03 PM

Reader Comments
# Pete Connolly said:

I'm saddened to hear that. I've lost two cats in the past two years - both hitting good ages (I'm talking 14-18 years between the two) and it sucks. The only consolation is your memories and the knowledge that you did well by the critter, giving them at least as much pleasure as they gave you. Best wishes, and you're spot on with the check up advice - it's obligatory.

on January 4, 2010 01:08 PM
# jr said:

The few times I got to cat sit, Barnes was always the first to greet me. (So he got extra time with the brush.) A total sweetheart.

May the memories always be fond.

on January 4, 2010 01:15 PM
# Jochen Maes said:

Hey Jeremy, been following your blog for a while...
Sorry to hear about Barnes, looks like he was a fun cat to have around... I cannot imagne how much I would miss my cats when one should pass away!

Lot's of strength wished to you and your family!


on January 4, 2010 02:01 PM
# J Cobb said:

So sorry to hear that.

When one of my Ocicats was diagnosed with diabetes a year ago, some of the information I gleaned from your site was key in his treatment. It has now been about 6 months since he's had any insulin shots and his latest blood test shows that he is fully in remission.

on January 4, 2010 03:27 PM
# C Yeh said:

Jeremy - sorry for your loss.

We put our 16 year old cat to sleep last year. It was an incredibly hard thing to do and it was a truly sad day for our entire family. Best wishes.


on January 4, 2010 03:48 PM
# Grant Root said:

Jeremy, I'm really sorry about your loss. I've been through the same thing, and none of it is any fun -- neither the illness or having to make the decision.

Great pictures, by the way!

on January 5, 2010 08:54 AM
# Aaron said:

I'm sorry to hear about Barnes. We've had Unix and Molly for about the same amount of time. I can only imagine how difficult letting him go was. You're in our thoughts.

on January 5, 2010 09:17 AM
# PurpleGirl said:

I'm so sorry about your cat, he was beautiful. Love the names, too.

on January 5, 2010 11:36 PM
# Pid said:

Handsome cat, I'm sorry he's gone.
Feel for you, like most people who are owned by cats will.

on January 6, 2010 03:40 PM
# C. Enrique Ortiz said:

I'm sorry to hear. I lost my dog of 15 years, Blubbles, last May 2009... I feel your sorrow.


on January 7, 2010 06:15 AM
# Matt said:

So so sorry to hear about your loss Jeremy. Absolutely gorgeous cat.

on January 8, 2010 12:16 PM
# Bryan Strawser said:

Jeremy - I'm really sorry to hear this. I lost my cat of 13 years back in February 2009 and I still mourn her every day.

My thoughts are with you.

on January 11, 2010 01:05 PM
# What Is Candida said:

I'm so sorry to hear about Barnes being diagnosed with so many health problems. I like cats myself, & have seen a couple of them pass away. It's good to remember the good things about him. I'm glad to see how you've got plenty of pictures to remember what must have been a wonderful friend by.

on January 11, 2010 03:24 PM
# Adam said:

Very sorry to read that. Cats become a real part of ones family and it must be very hard for you all. Not sure what more to say. Very sorry.

on January 24, 2010 01:08 AM
# Brian said:

The pics are great, and what they said above is a fitting tribute to both you and to Barnes...

So, all I can add is "I am so sorry for your loss."

on January 26, 2010 05:25 PM
# Harlin Seritt said:

Hiya Jeremy,

Sorry for your loss. I'm a cat lover too. I know your pain man. Thanks for sharing the pics.

on January 27, 2010 08:02 AM
# article directory script said:

Great stills of cat. Lovely blog to read out. Thanks.

on January 27, 2010 10:57 PM
# l.m.orchard said:

My condolences, man. :( We were just dealing with one of our cats losing weight and no longer eating, but luckily we managed to get her and her respiratory infection under control. I'm sorry to hear that you lost a furry member of your family.

on January 28, 2010 11:21 AM
# Kevin said:

Another techy who has read your blog for awhile here.

Also, I am a feline foster parent who has helped hundreds find new homes over the years and understand all you were doing to care for him.

Very sorry to hear Barnes has headed over the rainbow bridge but rest assured he was a very lucky kitty to have such a wonderful home and parents who gave him the best care when he needed it.

It is seldom easy to care for felines at the end of their lives and very unpredictable when that time will arrive. That said, once they adopt you, you do what you would do for any member of your family. Feline, canine, species matters not, they're family and the loss of a family member is always a challenge. I wish Noble and the rest of your family strength during your time of loss.

on January 30, 2010 04:13 PM
# john Wagner said:

yesterday was the same kind of day for us as you had...

are dog was 14 years old, but in real good shape for a 14 year old dog rusty was a chawawa and was my wife's dog. he put up with me but he was her dog and he let me know it..

the same thing started happening. he would start coiffing like a cat trying to get up a fer ball.
went to the vet and the x-ray told the store. his hart was the size of a hand ball. or a plumb. not the size of a chicken hart. and it was cutting off his air tube.. the vet was going to put him down thin and their but my wife was not with us so i said i would bring him back the next day so my wife could say god bye. i gave him a 1/4 of a 10mg Valium and a Small chunk of my oxycontin. and it was like a new dog we spent three more wonderfully months with him but after a few months it started getting bad and we did not want him to suffer so now he is at peace.
the hole time rusty was with us he slept right between us and now it is so hard.. and i know 14 years is a long time for a dog but i wish it could have Ben longer..
you never get ready to put down your best Friend even if it had Ben 25 years.. good bye rusty....

on February 21, 2010 03:42 AM
# private jets said:

This is really sad. Sorry for your loss.

on March 18, 2010 11:00 PM
# Jack said:

When I first got here I thought it would be a nice post about your cute cat, now I am sorry to hear what happened...
That's why I don't have a pet anymore (used to have a parrot), since it's only a matter of time till it dies..

on July 4, 2010 03:30 AM
# dissertation help said:

Your post is really wonderful..thanks for posting...your post is very informative

on August 10, 2010 01:16 AM
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are mine and mine alone. My current, past, or previous employers are not responsible for what I write here, the comments left by others, or the photos I may share. If you have questions, please contact me. Also, I am not a journalist or reporter. Don't "pitch" me.


Privacy: I do not share or publish the email addresses or IP addresses of anyone posting a comment here without consent. However, I do reserve the right to remove comments that are spammy, off-topic, or otherwise unsuitable based on my comment policy. In a few cases, I may leave spammy comments but remove any URLs they contain.