Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Goodbye Kwagga - Update - Welcome back!

Kwagga came back today, extremely thin and very hungry but otherwise OK. She has not yet divulged where she has been but we are very happy. The few days where we thought she was dead was depressing for us and Donkie. Next time we will be more patient, but not necessarily less worried before we assume the worst.

By the way, we now have a total of 3 cats :)


We lost Kwagga and it is clear now that she is not coming back. This is incredibly sad and the impact that she had in our lives is much bigger than we ever expected. This small black slightly crazy animal with intelligent eyes that we will never see again. We miss her a lot.

It all stared mid 2014 when we decided to move into a house. One of the things that we were very eager to to do is have some pets. I remember talking to everyone about our plans to get cats. Everyone at work knew and several people kept an eye on the online advertisements. For several months we read about cats, watched videos about cats, spoke to people who had cats and made plans on what we would do when we had cats. I never had cats as pets while Carina did and both of us discussed the idea of cats quite thoroughly. Several times we were tempted to get one that was advertised but stuck to our plan to wait until we moved into the house.

During December 2014 we moved into our house and within the first week I found a nice looking pair of cats online. I contacted the seller and informed Carina when she got home that evening that we can get them over the following weekend. I think she was a bit surprised that it happened  so quickly. We were still in the process of unpacking and the day we arranged to collect them was on the same day we needed to clean the apartment that we just moved out of. The day was one of the most exhausting days we had. We left our house very early in the morning and drove to Uppsala in snowy weather, spent the whole day cleaning, drove another 40 minutes south to pick up the two small balls of fur and drove almost 2 hours back home. The kittens did not seem to like the driving that much and complained a bit on the way. But we got home finally and released them into their and our new home.
Kwagga on the left

From the start it was clear that Kwagga was more bold than Donkie. She was the first out of the travel cage and started to explore immediately. Donkie, her brother, was a bit smaller and followed her everywhere she went. This was how they lived for one year with Kwagga leading exploring, playing and Donkie following learning and joining in. Their galloping through the house like small horses chasing each other has stopped and the absence of this sound is very sad.
Kwagga yawning at the back.

When we got them it was mid winter and cold outside. We debated a lot about making them indoor cats and decided we would gradually let them out as it got warmer and see if this works. It was clear from talking to many other people but even more from their behavior that they would be much happier cats by venturing out. We installed a door to only let them out during the day to try and keep them a bit safer. This is of course the reason that Kwagga is gone but I am sure that she was her happiest when running outside chasing leaves and insects (and catching several mice).

In one year they permeated through everything in our lives. This can be seen in the hair all over the place but also in the way we live. We spend a lot of time at home and there, one of the best feelings were being home after a workday, sitting on the couch after dinner and relaxing a bit with everyone back from their day's adventures. We talked about this feeling a while ago, looking at Donkie laying at our feet and Kwagga next to the heater, and mentioned that this is what makes life feel good.

Kwagga did not need to do much to make me life seem better. She was very fond of one chair in my workshop and always slept there while I spent hours making things. Often something would not work or something would go wrong and I just needed to look at her contentment to feel better.

One of the things that I will miss is opening mail. Most of the mail we get is junk, but the sound of paper being crumpled into a ball, immediately got Kwagga's attention. She would play quite happily with any ball of paper.

Something that was a bit odd was Kwagga's like of the small boat we have. She often sat on the edge while it was moored and a few times came along when we rowed downstream to do a bit of fishing. She was also very fond of sitting in a Willow tree above the small river or on the rocks staring out over the water.

Something else that Kwagga was very fond of was when we were outside working in the garden. She and Donkie ran around and chased each other through the garden and into trees. Kwagga specifically liked to stalk and surprise everybody (including us and Donkie) by hiding around corners and jumping out. She also liked "helping" Carina with weeding by attacking the weeds vigorously (sometimes mistaking a useful plant for a weed...).

We think Kwagga enjoyed her last few days with us (during the start of our winter vacation). She did not leave the house until we got up. She galloped in and around the house until we came to walk with her and Donkie in the fields next to the house. They loved the walks and it became a holiday routine. They would chase each other through the wet and frozen grass and were very wet and muddy when we got back home.

Donkie was also very depressed when Kwagga did not show up after a day. He stalked thought the house and did not venture out for more than a few minutes. He slept much more than he usually do. They were together most of the time and he clearly misses her.

Kwagga was just over a year old and part of our new life in the house. It is with a heavy hearts that we say - goodbye Kwagga...


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