Friday, February 18, 2011

Phil – A Memorial

Guest Blogger: Siri Espy, Animal Friends' Communications Team

Cats come and go from Animal Friends, but sometimes a resident stays awhile and captures our hearts. Phil, pictured above, was such a cat.

Previously adopted, Phil returned to Animal Friends at age 14. He tested positive for Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV) and had other health issues, as well. While many animal shelters would have put Phil down, Animal Friends embraced him, and he became a resident of the Cat Cottage, a special haven for FIV+ cats.

Some cats spend their days watching birds and squirrels out the window, but Phil’s vantage point gave him a view of scurrying humans, who seemed to fascinate him. He was a sweet and mellow gentleman, happy to be in the company of the staff and volunteers who would become his friends and family. Laps, ear scratches, and treats were among his favorite things.

Phil was briefly adopted, then returned when he proved too difficult for his new family to medicate. While Phil was living proof that FIV+ cats can and do live to grow old, his health began to decline, and he was losing weight despite his appetite for treats. Although volunteers often come forward to provide foster homes for ailing cats, it was decided that Animal Friends was Phil’s home, and he would be happier in his special room, among friends.

Last Saturday, Phil began having difficulty breathing, and his gums grew pale. No longer content with his surroundings, he was struggling and suffering. Surrounded by a group of adopted family and friends, Phil’s final moments were spent with hugs and kisses before he was humanely euthanized. Many tears were shed for the special cat who was always cheerful and loving despite his challenges.

Although Phil is gone, a number of older and special needs animals are still waiting for their forever homes, including several residents who remain in the Cat Cottage. In memory of Phil, we hope they will find homes quickly.

And as a lasting memorial, we’d like to ask for your support to help us purchase a brick to be placed in Animal Friends’ patio in remembrance of Phil. Click on this link to go to a donation page for Phil. A total of $250 will fund a small brick, and $500 will allow us to place a large brick. Any funds collected beyond those amounts will go toward the loving care of other animals like Phil.

Phil touched the lives of all who knew him, and we hope you’ll take this opportunity to join us in touching the lives of the animals who remain at Animal Friends, awaiting their turns for a comfortable and loving home.

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