To the best cat I’ve ever had.
Murphy, you were the WORST. But also, the best.
You chew through MacBook and Apple lightning cords. You ate through leather boots. You destroyed Marc Jacobs handbags. You pooped on the rug. You woke us up every night at 4am for wet food. You never let me sleep in the bed if non-GFBF was gone. You constantly meowed throughout phone calls and clients thought I had a crying baby. You jumped into a candle and burned your whiskers. You stepped on a hot stove and burned your paws. You ran away once and joined a hood cat gang and we had to come find you. You ate EVERYTHING. You literally stole chicken nuggets off of our plates. We had to watch our food like we were in a prison cafeteria. From a 10 lb. cat.
You made our life interesting. You weren’t just a cat. You were comic relief. You were stories to tell. You were the source of so many laughs, so many tears – just emotions. You made us feel all the feels.
And you were just so photogenic! I mean, c’mon. You could have been a cat model if you were just better behaved. So, to share this with the world, I started an Instagram page just for you – Terrible Murph.
Through your Terrible Murph Instagram, you were able to share all of your beauty and crazy antics with the universe, beyond Celiac and the Beast readers that had known you for years. Everyone loved you.
But the last few years have been more sad than terrible for you. You started having seizures out of the blue and we had no idea what was going on. Every time you had one, I’d lose my mind and cry until I couldn’t even breathe. Watching someone you love lose their ability too walk – or breathe – and cry out in pain was so awful.
We tested you for everything, and toxoplasmosis was our first treatment plan. Toxoplasmosis is pretty common for cats (and for people who clean their poop too!). On top of the anti-bacterial medication, we had to give you seizure medication that made you less than your normal spunky self. You slept through most of the day, and sadly – lost your balance and lost your ability to jump. It was pathetic to see you even fall off the shortest of jumps and it hurt our heart every time you fell flat – very uncatlike of you. We wanted to get you off the seizure medication but we couldn’t bear to have you continue to have seizures that kept getting worse for you. We thought after the Toxoplasmosis was healed, we could get you off of the seizure medication and you’d have a long life. We were wrong.
Even after the toxoplasmosis was healed, we still had seizures. Things just weren’t getting better. We x-ray’d your lungs and found huge masses. We thought cancer for sure, but our vet thought that it could also be a mold infection that took over your little body. We started treatment for Valley Fever and we thought for sure that after treatment you’d be back to yourself. Once again, we were wrong.
It looked like after all this, it was your heart – too big for your little body – that was the end.
One day we noticed that your breathing was really rapid. Compared to Mushu, your breathing was like you were running a little kitty marathon, just being upright. Something wasn’t right.
We took you to the vet and after more chest x-rays we found out that you had a heart condition, probably genetic. It was making your breathing labored, possibly from fluid in your chest. We were told to seek a cat cardiologist. At first we laughed, but I assure you, a cat cardiologist is a real (and very expensive thing).
After putting off meeting with a specialist, we finally booked an appointment. The procedure all went fast. He took out the ultrasound and realized we needed to act quickly. We had no idea just how quickly it all went downhill. Was it valley fever? Was it your heart? The cardiologist told us that we had a ton of fluid in your chest, more than what we thought we saw in the x-ray. Apparently, putting in a chest tube and draining fluid needed to happen ASAP. So, we said yes. Leaving you in that room with the cardiologist was so hard, but because I knew how much he loved cats – I trusted him with your little life. You did GREAT and they drained a ton of fluid from your chest. I asked the cardiologist how long this procedure would give us with you – and he said, “days, months, or years.” Doctors just can’t tell when their patients can’t regularly give them updates. We were told to watch your breathing and it was like you were a new cat – except the terrible shave job.
But it didn’t last long. The seizures came back, even on seizure medication, and they were worse and longer than ever. The breathing started becoming rapid again – even with a “free and clear” chest x-ray the day before. We knew it was time.
We wanted to keep you for forever. We wanted to have you be at home and pass peacefully in your sleep. But with all of your history of being so crazy – there ain’t no way you’d let the white light take you so easily. You fought until the very end. Even when I told you that you could pass and we were so happy to have had you for so long. I told you to go towards the light if you were tired of fighting. Because we didn’t want to have to make the decision for you. But, you were a fighter, and it was so bad at the end, the referee had to come in and call the fight. For your sake. For our fragile emotional state. I didn’t stop crying for days at the end. It was so bad I felt like I couldn’t even take the pain anymore.
You were held until the very end. Told that you were loved. Because you were. And the love didn’t stop when your little body crossed over the rainbow bridge.
Your fans, our readers, raised over hundreds of dollars for you – to the Arizona Humane Society – and to no-kill shelters throughout the country. Because no cat should ever have a terrible life. It should be loved and adored and given every fighting chance for a good life. We received cards, tribute bricks, and even a personalized book about your life. You were so loved.
So thank you, Murphy. Thank you for giving me 8 years with you. Even more for non-GFBF. You’ve enriched our life more than you know. You were more than a cat to us. Thank you for giving us your all and trying to stay around to make our life a little more full – a little more terrible – with you in it.
If you’d like to donate in Murphy’s name, please consider a donation to the Arizona Humane Society in his name.
Oh Erica…I don’t even know how to start or what to say because I don’t think anything that anyone says will help you feel whole again without Murph. I can say that I’ve been there..three times with cats and once with a dog and there just is no way to describe how your heart hurts for them. The only thing that you do it realize that you did your best for him- MORE than your best and you said goodbye with him. And even that is so amazingly difficult. Our family loved Murph and we were heartbroken when we heard. He truly did become a part of so many people’s lives beyond his home. I wish your family healing and warm thoughts and I thank you for being strong enough to share even this with all of us.
He was the brightest light that will ever be on our instagram!
We love you forever Murphy Murpher!
Dave & Lori McBride @thebeanagent