One of our cats was injured and died a couple of weeks ago, despite emergency veterinary treatment. This was a sad day for all of us. We really love our cats. He had broken his back and become paralyzed and insensitive from the ribcage down. We had to euthanize him. I requested a “private cremation”, which means we got ashes back we could scatter into his favorite places.
A few days ago, I got a small box in the mail. It was from the company that had cremated him, and it contained a plaster or ceramic ornament that looked like it might have been meant for hanging on a Christmas tree. It had his name and some heart shapes pressed into it, and a pawprint.
So I’m curious how this strikes other people, and imagine there’d be a wide range of reaction.
The pawprint was spread out, like an open human hand, with long gaps between the pads where you could see the lengths of his toes pressed into the plaster. This isn’t the way pawprints normally look, as cats normally leave their toes together. Was it this way because he was dead when the impression was taken?
I always like to see pawprints, see where somebody was going, where they waited, where they shifted around as they explored, where they tried to get ready for a jump, where they slid down a dewy windshield and probably looked surprised. Pawprints tell pleasant little stories about the cat’s days and doings. I don’t want to see a spread out pawprint from a dead cat, and especially don’t want it on the Christmas tree, or hanging in a window, or wherever else this thing is for. I didn’t even show or mention this to Mrs. Napier, thinking it would really upset her.
How do the Dopers react to this? Is it a nice extra, a heartwarming rememberance? Anybody feel like I do? Anything else?