Monster Truck has been murdered by a dog. It happened last Sunday. I tried to write a song for him but it makes me too sad, so I'm going to tell his story here.
Monster Truck was a beautiful little cat with a beautiful little soul. We chose him from his litter because he was both the prettiest and most vivacious kitten we could find. The kids loved him immediately. He settled in straight away, with none of the hiding and fright that Vlad suffered from when we first brought him home.
Despite the enthusiastic love he received from Zak and Bliss, Monsty never got upset or afraid. He always played along, and always had a great deal of love to give. We took delight in his rapidly growing skills as he developed from a kitten in to a small cat.
He was always desperate to get out. We kept him in as we had been told, and recaptured him on the occasions he slipped out of the back door with the kids (after a bit of a creep around the garden). He was very unhappy about this, and made it clear his natural habitat was pouncing in the wild undergrowth, being a very dangerous predator.
Eventually the day came when he had his final jabs at the vet (which he was very brave about of course). We got him microchipped so that he would never be lost, and we bought him a very fetching red collar with his name, address and phone number so that if he was found he would be helped home. Finally Monster Truck was ready to go out in to the world!
A few weeks prior to this a new family had moved in two doors down. They seemed nice and have two kids the same age as ours, so we were looking forward to having new people to play with. They had been re-housed from a one-bed flat, which must have been pretty cramped.
What we did not know was that they were planning on moving a killer dog in as well.
It turns out they own a mastiff. A mastiff which had spent its life in a one-bed flat with 4 people. A mastiff which is never walked. A mastiff which hates cats.
A couple of days in to Monster Truck's new-found freedom we were all playing in the garden. Monsty climbed the tree, got on to the roof of the shed, wondered in to next door's garden, all of which we now felt was his right as an officially sorted-out cat. I even took my eyes off him to play with the kids. I noticed the new guy was sitting in the garden with his huge dog- the first time I had seen it- but thought no harm could come of it as he was right there.
There was a cat screech- the kind of noise you hear when cats fight. No barking. I thought a bigger cat must have had a pop at Monsty so went to have a look, but no, two gardens down the psycho dog had mauled Monsty! No barking, no aggression, no reason for Monsty to run away. He had gone to say hello and the dog had simply chomped him without warning.
I ran round to the front and rang the doorbell. The guy tried to make out Monster was OK, but he was clearly very badly hurt. There was blood in his mouth and he was gasping. I asked Jacqui to phone the emergency vet while I tried to comfort him, but the poor little guy passed away in my arms.
I simply couldn't believe it. That such a beautiful little soul could be so quickly and so cruelly snuffed out by a psycho dog, as soon as he was ready to go out in to the world! We got the new neighbour back out, I was distraught, the guy apologised and offered to buy a new kitten as if Monster had been a piece of property, and as if there was any point when he had just brought a killer dog in to our street to murder our pets. Jacqui is now worried about the kids. The dog is massive and clearly dangerous. The guy ended up promising to get rid of the dog.
After warning the neighbour on the other side to keep an eye on his cats we went in to the garden to dig Monster Truck a grave, under the tree, by the shed. We buried him there with his favourite toy giraffe. The kids said goodbye, and gave him a last kiss and a last stroke. They wanted to know why he wasn't moving, when he would be better, why he had blood on him. It's all very difficult to explain and very sad.
I've been genuinely surprised at how sad I am for that poor little cat. I just wish we could turn back the clock and keep him in, or could have done something to stop the new neighbours bringing a dangerous dog in to our street. But there isn't anything we can do and all those years of fun that he should have had, growing old as the kids grew up, have been cancelled now. He isn't going to get any of that. His shot at the world is over nearly as soon as it began. That poor, poor, beautiful little cat, who died in my arms, looking at me wondering what had happened to him and probably trusting me to make it ok. I'm sorry I couldn't make it ok, little cat.
We love you Monster Truck. We love you very very much. Goodbye, I hope Vlad is looking after you in Kitty Valhalla.
UPDATE: I got a call to say the dog is gone. PHEW! Hopefully we can all be friends now.