PUBLISHED: 11:08 06 March 2008 | UPDATED: 15:41 11 May 2010
IT is sad to report that Nipper the cat – whose antics have been much publicised in this column – died in the early hours of Saturday. As they say in announcements of this kind, she passed away quietly. She died without distress or pain. She had simply gr
IT is sad to report that Nipper the cat - whose antics have been much publicised in this column - died in the early hours of Saturday.
As they say in announcements of this kind, she passed away quietly. She died without distress or pain.
She had simply grown old. She was 16-years-of-age: in cat years, so I've been told, it is quite a remarkable age.
But that doesn't really make any difference. She is greatly missed.
You see, Nipper was not just a pet.
She became part of our lives and our daily routine which, really, revolved around her own routine.
No longer will she be sitting in the kitchen at a certain time in the day waiting for her Grub-o-Cat, or making sure that she took command of an armchair when she knew all the time that she shouldn't be sitting there.
No longer will she be sitting at the top of the stairs at night ready to leap into bed and take up such an incredible amount of space for someone who really was so small.
No longer will she walk across the keyboard of the computer and with one touch of a paw destroy hours of work.
That was all part of her character.
And what a character.
She could be brave (from behind a window when she knew the danger lurking outside could not really cause her harm), and silly when not realising there was water in her bowl; she could be bold by climbing into the most unlikely of places and then making sure that no-one was looking as she negotiated an undignified escape.
But most of the time she was just simply loving.
Indeed, she really didn't like being alone and made sure that you were always in the vicinity.
Even in the last three weeks of her life as she battled to even walk as her legs became weaker, she wanted to be with company. It was not for her to hide and attempt to disguise the fact that, suddenly, she had reached old age.
In the end, even the effort to walk became too much, and we simply wrapped her in a blanket and move her from room-to-room as we went about our routine.
But for the past week or so all she wanted to do was to be asleep. Now she is sleeping forever in a "grave" dug for her in the garden.
It was always her territory - and will remain so.