Jeff The Giant Orange Cat passed away this afternoon. We think he was 16 years old.
He was taken to the emergency vet last Saturday after a brief seizure-like episode. It was caused by anemia, which turned out to be related to an acute kidney infection. Treatment for the kidney infection involved a lot of fluids, which apparently exacerbated an underlying heart condition and resulted in congestive heart failure. After 2-3 days in an oxygen cage and various courses of treatment, he was still unable to breathe comfortably without oxygen support. His condition worsened this afternoon and nothing more could be done.
Our devastation cannot be described. When our former neighbor moved away and left Jeff behind, it turned out to be one of the best things that ever happened to us. We can only look back on the seven years he spent with us and hope we provided him a happy retirement; Jeff seemed pleased enough to come inside with us and leave his hunting days behind.
What Jeff Killed was started because the neighbor’s giant cat started leaving dead things in our backyard, and for some reason it seemed interesting enough to put online. At that time we had no idea of the fan base that would come to follow Jeff, or the level of international interest. We know of no other cat controversial enough to receive death threats. We never anticipated interview requests, or that one day a post about him liking french fries would result in receiving coupons addressed to Jeff from Carl’s Jr. Most of all we never anticipated that Jeff would later choose us to be his Staff, or how completely we would love him. We didn’t plan for all the directions Jeff took us in, but we are grateful he did.
We thank all those who took an interest in Jeff and followed him over the years. We thank you for your comments, gifts, emails, and fan art/music. Most of all we thank you for loving animals and loving your pets as we loved Jeff.
This is our last photo of Jeff; he was helping us play Hay Day. We will miss him always.
Since Norman has been gone, Jeff and Rita’s relationship has evolved.
Before, Rita would complain verbally or even throw a punch when Jeff got too close to her. Jeff was mostly oblivious.
Now, however, they have entered a new frontier of togetherness.
Norman’s necropsy indicated cardiomyopathy. Since he presented as healthy and had none of the signs/symptoms, there was no way of knowing. Apparently asymptomatic cardiomyopathy in cats is unusual but not unheard of.
Norman went to the vet today for a routine dental cleaning. The process was completed and he came out of the anesthesia without incident. Shortly afterward he suddenly went into distress and stopped breathing. The vet’s efforts to revive him were unsuccessful. By the time we got there, he was gone.
His prior blood work was normal and he was apparently perfectly healthy. The vet was shocked and had no indication of the cause beyond speculation of an undetected heart issue or blood clot. The vet helped arrange a necropsy so we can try to understand what happened.
We are brutally heartbroken and struggling to comprehend that what started as a completely normal day ended in bringing home only an empty carrier.
Norman – singer of the dinner song, hider under blankets, my funny, quirky, fascinating friend of nearly 14 years – you were loved.
Staff recently obtained a Nokia Lumia 1020 phone, known for its 41 megapixel camera.
Obviously, such a camera exists to capture the full detail of His Jeffness.
Click for high resolution image / to fill your screen with Jeff.
Jeff is fine. Staff just works a lot in order to maintain him in the manner to which he is accustomed.
Recently Jeff’s favorite hangout is the warm spot on the entertainment center above the receiver.
However, the width of the entertainment center is perhaps not sized for bobcats.
So, at times Jeff must must rearrange things.
Obviously Staff must explore new furniture options.
Lately Jeff has been randomly walking up to the dog and fondly headbutting her.
Headbutt, lick, lick, repeat.
Staff recently made some Jeff-oriented holiday purchases.
First, electric throw blankets for the living room. Jeff is very, very fond of these. Since they have a three-hour automatic shutoff and we have found one on when arriving home from work, we are suspicious he might have learned to operate them himself.
Second, and long overdue in Jeff’s kingdom, a proper cat tree. It is situated in the sunroom for maximum outside viewing.
The top shelf, naturally, is Jeff’s.
Football season brings change to the house of Staff.
General productivity takes a steep decline as Sundays are dedicated to NFL Sunday Ticket on DirecTV.
The cats do not seem to mind this, as there is significant reduction in cleaning, moving things about, or other activities that might wake them up.
Football on television seems to have a soporific effect on Jeff.
Even the substitute referee scandals could not rouse him.
Touchdown and goodnight.
Neil wanted to know about Jeff’s feets.
Jeff’s feets are a wholly owned subsidiary of Jeff The Giant Orange Cat.
His feets are proportional to his overall bobcat size.
His paw pads are all evenly pink jellybeans.
His claws seem somehow larger than average; however, this could be merely an impression given by past acts using them.
Jeff has one rear claw that does not retract properly and protrudes at an impertinent angle. Staff thinks he must have broken his toe at some point during the pre-Staff era. It’s never seemed a bother to him.
Jeff was escorted back to the vet office for his dental cleaning.
There were complications. A tooth had to be removed.
There were many ouchies and indignities.
Initially the pain medication seemed to make Jeff stoned enough that he didn’t mind awfully much.
But after the medication, Jeff might have had a mad.
He has since forgiven Staff – we think. At least until we start trying to brush his teeth to prevent future extractions.