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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
recently Kakushi had not been herself, on Jan 7th she was diagnosed with brain cancer. at first i was hesitant to admit that it was a PT but it only took a few days for it to become clear that is was. you can read about her progress and battle with it here. i don't have any pictures of her during that time and for once i'm thankful that i don't have camera as i would like to remember her when she was healthy and strong most. this last week she was a mere shadow of herself, though a very sweet shadow. she was 19 months old.

i had her since she was only four weeks when a friend of mine gave me her, her mother Iedani and aunt Titania. i was not able to keep Titania and gave her to a recently started rat rescue at the time. she lived a happy life there but never found her forever home and died at the rescue. i had Iedani for 9 months before it became apparent that her issues were too much for me to handle and i gave her to a classmate from my university who already had a couple rats. she has also since passed. Yesterday i took Kakushi in to help her cross the bridge and release her from her failing body. she is now rejoined with her aunt and rat mom as well as all my other previously lost babes.

in life, as a baby Kakushi was always a bit timid and unsure of herself. during free range she would content herself with hanging within easy scampering distance to me and was always the bottom of the colony hierarchy.

it came as a great surprise when she took over as queen when her mother left. but queen she was for the last 7 months. she was a good queen and there were few squabbles. she was always willing to accept new members without a fuss though that did not mean she would be the first to cuddle with them either, she had an image to maintain afterall.

as she came into her teenager-dom she lost some of her timidity for pride. when her mother left that pride blossomed and she would adamantly refuse nearly all forms of help from me, even in the smallest measures. if she was having difficulty reaching something and i picked her up and put her closer she would jump away from where she was reaching only to start over where she was before to try again until she managed it. if she was going to do something, she dang well was doing it on her own (though she had the sense to just run with the treat if i helped her to get that... :roll::lol:

even though from the age of 4 weeks she had grown up with sesshoumaru my cat trying to mother her, she never got accustomed to the cat. much to sessho's confusion Kaku would run from him every time.

she LOVED her wheel though and was the first rat i had the experience of wheel-y tail with. she already had it when i brought her home and it only developed more as time went on. it goes to show how off she was though that even before the diagnosis she had lost her curled husky-like wheelie tail.

when i brought kakushi home last night from the vet to await the crematorium i held her body in the cage for everyone to say their goodbyes. everyone (even the new and more aloof Smeag) came to give her sniff and some even groomed her a bit. some of them seemed almost frantic in their reaction to kaku's body -ink and babydoll being most so (though their personalities are a bit more energetic normally anyway...), i just don't think they quite understood why their queen was not moving. Stewart sniffed her some then left to lay down in a hut. Violet stayed near me or kaku's body until i left with her, i think she understood the best what had happened. both bribery and sweetipie gave kaku a few sniffs but were more interested in sitting on my arms or bruxxing in my ear, i think they were trying to comfort me. the one i think took it the hardest though was twix, kaku's second in command. she tried to take kaku from me but her sister tween got in the way and started grooming kaku. i'm not sure on what level each of them understood, certainly some better then others if the youngest members reaction were any example. today, the cage is more subdued. twix hasn't beaten up stewart or smeag and smeag hasn't tried to take on ink or babydoll in play. for the most part everyone has been content to cuddle with each other and sleep their day (and so far their night) through. after the last few days of twix vying for position as queen its odd to have such a quiet cage.

i wasn't expecting for Kakushi to be next. with stewart and Violet both being 2 years old now and kaku being the closest to them at a still young 19 months i was expecting to be saying goodbye to one of them before any of the others. but just last month i said goodbye to 6 week old Sweet-ums before i barely had time to say hello and now, though we have had some very nice and good times, i'm saying goodbye to kakushi. its not in order i thought at all but i try to comfort myself by reminding myself that though kaku didn't get to live as long as violet and stewart she has known true love and the comforts of a good family far longer then either of them. though she was timid she never had reason to fear or reason to bite, she never had to feel lonely and always knew what love was.

i know intellectually i did the right thing in helping her pass when the light in her eyes had gone, when she just looked so sad but emotionally, well that's different. she was the first rat that i have put down that seemed to be afraid and fought the medicine so hard. in her other thread, i was told that that may have been because she was fighting to stay with me even though her body was nothing but a prison. and that i was right to do what i did and she thanks me for it. but i can't help wondering if what she wanted to do was to die at home pinning me down by laying on my neck like she was wont to do these last few days. i'm not sure now that i've had more time to think about it if putting her down was more to save me the hardship of watching her slowly fade more then it was keeping her from suffering. yet, even if that was the case, i honestly don't know how much more i would have been able to handle. she faded fast but had so many small glimmers of an up. she would skip a meal or two, not eat very much one meal then gorge on the next. we were up most of the night then again early early in the morning with her feedings and it was wearing me out so fast. the last weekend i had with her, quite literally, all i did was sleep and feed her. it was a bittersweet time when i gained my ratty necklace.

the following is some of my favorite pictures of her over her lifetime.

pointer rat!





try to find the baby Kakushi in the next 3








look at that wheelie tail! :lol: and oh so nervous about that kitten hahaha


the tail of the rat that you can't see in the picture is iedani's. i thought it was very sweet, instead of holding hands, they're holding tails.

Kakushi and her mother



true to form, kaku being pushed around by the baby

best friends


pfft!


honestly mom. that flashy thing, one more time and POW straight to the moon!


lookit that tail!


talk to the paw...


ratty teapot!


kakushi and her subjects



thank you for taking the time to look at all these pictures and reading her memorial. please send warm thoughts Kaku's way to help her find her way to the bridge and keep her warm while she's there.
 

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My many condolences once again, and I am sorry as well for the loss of the queen Kakushi. She will be remembered.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
thank you.

yeah, she might be but with her all the other queens ahead of her, i think she may have a battle ahead of her... i don't think her mother would take to kindly to be usurped again. but so long as she has fun, that's the important part.
 

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i'm so sorry for your loss :( what a beautiful picture memorial you have.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
i got her urn back yesterday. its a very nice one too. dark brown with gold (not real gold i'm sure) edging. very suitable for the latest queen. right now she's just sitting on the mantle piece, i'll find her spot to rest there later today. the problem though it that we're starting to run out of room for them there.
 

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I don't know if I could handle having an urn in my house... But everyone's different I guess. I sent some thoughts Kakushi's way for you :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
thank you for sending thoughts her way.

i go the urn route because i don't have my own place so i don't want to bury them yet. i need a place that is permanent, not an apartment, where i will be able to visit them for me to do that. when i get my own place, i will make markers and lay them to rest, but for now i want to keep them with me until i can do that, so i have the urns.

when a new urn goes up its rather depressing and more painful then anything else to look at the mantle. but with time i can look at the urn and remember the life and character of each of my lost babes. sometimes i will light a candle for them and think about each of them or only one of them. tell them about what they are missing and just generally commune with them. its like visiting the grave of someone i've lost, sad but a happy time at the same time. right now we have a few up there. there's Snowball (the only cat, the rest are rats), Lyiint, Pocket, Nezumi, Dust, Myght, Snicketts, Iedani, Spider, Sweet-ums and now Kakushi.
 

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She was a lovely and much loved rat, twitch. I am sorry you lost your sweet Kakushi. She will be fine and even happy waiting for you, don't worry.

((hugs))
 
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