R.I.P. Panda Claws


Sadly, we had to have Panda put to sleep today. We were all able to visit him and say goodbye, then my FIL took the kids into the waiting room (where they wrapped up Mr. Bear in gauze bandages), and landisdad and I stayed with him till the end. It was really the best thing at this point–he was so weak he couldn’t even hold his head up. We’re all still a little shell-shocked, since the onset was so quick.

Our vet couldn’t have been any nicer or more humane about it, even to the point of opening especially for us on Sunday. I guess in the greater scheme of things, it’s only a little tragedy when an animal dies, particularly an animal who had such a wonderful life. But it feels like a big tragedy to our family now. In the end, of course, the Potato didn’t understand enough about death to really know what just happened–my worries about his reaction came to naught. But the Bee distinguished herself, showing enormous compassion and sympathy.

When I came home from the vet yesterday, to tell landisdad and the kids that Panda’s prognosis was incredibly grave, but they wanted to give him one more day, she made me the following note:

“Dear Mommy,

I wrote a story about you. I think you are the best mom and woman in the world!

Your daughter,


She also read “The Tenth Good Thing About Barney” to her brother. I think we’ll be having a funeral later in the week, which may confuse the Potato, or maybe not. The Bee still remembers the funeral we had for our last cat who died, but she was nearly four then. There were certainly more than ten good things we’ll be able to come up with to say about Panda.


November 19, 2006. thoughtful parenting.


  1. Jennifer replied:

    So sorry to hear about your lovely cat. It’s heartbreaking to lose what one has cared so much about.

  2. MommyWithAttitude replied:

    Oh that is so hard, I’m sorry.

  3. Doppelganger replied:

    I’m so sorry. I’m in tears for you over here, and a bit for myself, too. My 15-year-old cat Puck had a tumour removed last week, and we’re just waiting to find out if the cancer has spread. You’re right about the fact that, in the grand scheme of things, these are only little tragedies, which is part of what makes these things so hard: you feel guilty for caring so much.

    It’s lovely to hear about the Bee’s response to the situation. At the end of the day, this is what family is for, right? For honouring the little tragedies with one another.

  4. Ms Sisyphus replied:

    So sorry to hear about Panda. It’s absolutely a tragedy when a beloved pet dies. I hope you guys are ok.

  5. Elizabeth replied:

    I’m so sorry.

  6. Deidre Aufiero replied:

    I’m sorry. Losing pets is one of the hardest things.

  7. chichimama replied:

    I am so sorry to hear about Panda. And your vet sounds great. Hope the kids continue to do OK with it all.

  8. Suzanne replied:

    So sorry to hear about Panda. Virtual hugs to your family…

  9. jackie replied:

    I’m sorry for your loss, all of you. My Sophie was in tears the other day just at the idea of our cat dying- it will be a very sad day.

    how amazing is your Bee-girl, though? I’m in awe!

  10. chip replied:

    sorry to hear about panda, it’s tough to lose a kitty. Hopefully you’ll find another cat (or one will find you) soon.

  11. jo(e) replied:

    Oh, how difficult.


  12. alala replied:

    My sympathies on your loss.

  13. Emily replied:

    Sorry for your loss, even pets are hard to loose. It sounds like your little Bee is taking it all well. Such a good big sister.

  14. Ken Albin replied:

    I am so sorry about Panda Claws. It is hard to say goodbye but you showed your love in doing so.

  15. Barb replied:

    Hi. Found you through BE. I’m very sorry to hear about Panda. You have my condolences. =^.^=

  16. retardedrugrat replied:

    I’m so sorry for your loss. A friend of mine recently lost her 9 week old kitten.

    We have just adopted a Cat from the Shelter here in BC and already I know it would kill me if we lost her.

    My heart goes out to you and your family.

    Here via Blogexplosion.

  17. Anjali replied:

    Oh, I’m so sorry. Pets are the most special kind of friends.

  18. Library Lady replied:

    So sorry about this. I lost a kiitty to renal failure and it’s a bitch.
    The kids were too little to really get it–I was sort of glad of that. Bee really is a wonderful big sister!

  19. thordora replied:

    oh, I’m sorry. I had to put my cat down when I was pregnant and I bawled like a baby. We’re getting a cat for the girls next summer, and I’m not looking forward to this part of it. i s crushed when my childhood cat died.

  20. Daydreams and Musings replied:

    I’m so sorry to hear about your cat. I’m glad the kids have been taking it well and the Bee sounds so thoughtful and caring.

  21. Kate the Shrew replied:

    Ohh, so sorry about your kitty.

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