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post #1 of 5
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Last night I heard sounds in my garage (as my room wall is also the garage wall) and I ignored the sounds as I thought it was just soda cans exploding as we have horrible and life threatening temperatures right now (-30 below zero). I ignore the sounds and eventually fall asleep. When I wake up in the morning my mother has a small cat wrapped in blankets and heating pads. I can't help but think the sounds I heard last night were those of that little, stray cat. My mother did everything to help and comfort the cat, but it died several hours later. I don't think I will ever be able to forgive myself knowing that I ignored the sounds it was making; I could have saved this poor innocent cat, but instead let it freeze to death. Don't know what to say or do. Just need some words of advice to help me with this extreme level of guilt. Rest in peace little kitty. <3
post #2 of 5

You didn't let it freeze to death. This is not your fault. You didn't know it was there. Had you known, you would have taken action to try to save it. You had no reason to know the sounds were a cat and they may not have even been the cat at all. Even if you had know, if it was active enough to be making that much noise you may have had not been able to catch it to help it. If it didn't improve with the warming then it likely was suffering from malnutrition or other problems in addition to the cold and may have been beyond help already. As it was, it was found and spent it's last moments with someone caring for it instead of alone. 


The only thing you can do at this point it take it as a life lesson and check any sounds you hear in the future instead of making assumptions. You could also set up some feral cat warm shelters (look online for feral winter housing) in the little cats memory so that any other cats outside will be able to find a safe, warm place to go with the weather. You can make them fairly easily and inexpensively out of plastic bins, boxes and straw. When it gets warmer you could check your area for TNR groups and help with trapping, neutering and returning feral cats in your area to help prevent other cats from suffering the same fate. 


Well wishing and support your way in this trying time. 

post #3 of 5
You have nothing to feel guilty about. You had no way of knowing what the noise was. Chances are it may not have been the kitty at all. Also, it may have already been too late to save this poor kitty. Just know that the kitty's final hours were spent safe and warm, in the company of loving people who did their best to help. The kitty knew warmth and love. It is so sad that so many kitties never get that.
Be kind to yourself.
RIP Sweet Kitty!
You were loved and will be missed!
post #4 of 5

It took me a long time to realize that you can't hold guilt for something that was not intentional. If you had KNOWN that the cat was in the garage and still ignored it then you should hold yourself guilty. But it was an unintentional act, you had no reason to believe it was anything but a natural occurrence. Why did the cat not cry out, if you heard the sounds you did, you would have heard her crying. She was meant to be with someone who could show her some compassion at the end of her life. That you did.  Cats can and do survive such horrible temperatures, especially in a shelter like your garage. Mine show up every morning from I don't know where in -20 degrees to eat and survive. She needed someone near her to show her love for just a little while, I believe she knew she was dying and was seeking out a place.

It hurts so bad to go through something like this because of all the unknowns, she may have been hit by a car, she may have had cancer, there are just too many unknowns.   I cry with every one of the deaths I see, for the innocent creatures laying on the side of the road, for the starving little ones who are too far gone for me to save when some heartless person dumps them and lets them fend for themselves. For the helpless and the homeless. Go out and do something good in her name, as unknown as it is. Pay for the adoption of a cat at the shelter, donate food and litter, or your time to the same. This time of the year I donate a cat heating pad for the smallest and the frailest to have a chance to survive, they are on Amazon now for 11.99 I have never seen them at that price before. (K&H manufacturing, 9.5 x 8.5 - 4 watt)

You have a big heart that breaks when things like this happen, Try not to dwell on it, it does no good. Try to bring some light back into your heart through doing something positive from the experience, hang posters to warn people about the dangers of exposure to their pets, It may save several lives if people would stop and think. Bless you for your compassion, I'll pray for that sweet baby and for you to find peace. Take care......RIP little angel,you are at peace now, held in the arms of someone who loved you for a little while. Please know the world mourns your passing and there is someone left behind that will hold a place in their heart for you, sleep tight, Little one! 

post #5 of 5

Imagine you will never find the frozen kitty. Then you will never know that was a kitty there, right? Only God knows how many kittens die and nobody notice.


But you feel sorry for something you should do. This means that you a have a big loving heart. Then why not act instead of sorry and donate some pads, blankets or alike to a cat shelter? That would be even more than you saving that kitty.




By the way, you just could not save her anyway: hypotermia in small bodies is not easy to revert and by the time it strokes to death, it already caused irreversible damage to the organs.


Little chance, if any, to warm the body up using blankets and to revert to full functionality in this way. Professional care in such events is complex, it is not only about warming by blankets. There is far more to discuss about this subject, but for the given case, just note that most chances are you could not save the kitty anyway.

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