Persephone, a very good cat, died yesterday.
She was finding it impossible to get up and down stairs-- the vet thought it was arthritis and possibly a urinary tract infection, and prescribed antibiotics, a pain-killer, and baby food banana (because a cat keeping it's head in corners might mean a potassium deficiency). Perse was getting better for a few days-- less crying, better walking, and even though she was still under a work table in the basement, she wasn't facing the corner-- but yesterday I found her in a coma, and there wasn't much to be done but the final injection.
Anyway, Perse was your basic housecat-- a short-haired tortie who was a stealth red tabby. In other words, she was mostly dark brown, but the dark brown was a little splotchy, so that if you looked, you could see that the non-splotched areas had a coherent stripe pattern. Only half her tail (lengthwise) was dark brown, so you could really see the stripes on the other half.
Sometimes, she'd sit on a shelf with her tail hanging down and the stripes showing, and she'd look like a lemur.
She was quite jealous when she was younger, with such vivid facial expressions on the subject that I thought she could be rented out to play Shakespeare.
She wasn't an anecdote-generating cat for the most part, but she did come up with one thing which has made me cynical about tests of animal intelligence. We were boarding a cat that she didn't like, and if I petted the boarder and then her, she'd give my hand a great big sniff and then turn away. This is interesting because a big sniff isn't (so far as I know) a default part of cat vocabulary. It got more interesting when I tried petting the boarder where she couldn't see, and then petted her. No big sniff. No turning away. She had invented a gesture which was clear communication to humans.
She vocalized when she purred-- it was like singing.
Perse is survived by me, inquisitiveravn, and Gillian (the other half of the tortie conspiracy).
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