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Remembering Scheisters

Cute Pet Orange Cat Ginger Cat Cat Ginger Tom

This post is to celebrate and honor my cat Scheisters, who died August 16th, 2005.

Those of us with pets often find ourselves wondering, if our pets could talk what would they say?  My feline companion of sixteen years, Scheisters, gave me incredible words of comfort after his passing.

ScheistersScheisters was a seventeen year old orange tabby, full of himself and full of life.  Prior to adopting me, he resided at the local humane society and answered to Gus.  At our first meeting he climbed into my arms and nestled down with the ease as if he had known me all his short kitten life.  In our first 24 hours together I discovered the unique talents this kitty possessed.  He was quite capable of turning lights on and off, opening doors, and especially accomplished at opening the cabinet door that housed his food.  He was renamed Scheisters.

In the summer of 2005 I returned to Illinois for a week to visit my family and friends.  I knew the critters were in good hands while I was gone as their vet tech was staying with them.  I returned and everyone was happy and healthy.

The following morning I awoke to find Scheisters lying deadly still in front of his water bowl.  I thought he had passed during the night, but when I touched him, he raised his head.  I immediately called the vet and took him in.

Other than a highly-elevated white blood cell count, all the tests were normal.  He remained at the clinic for the day so they could stabilize him and monitor his progress.  I was confident the vet would diagnose the problem and “fix” my buddy.

Throughout the day it kept coming to me it was Scheisters’ time to pass.  I was aware it would be a labor of love, as well as my privilege, to be with him during his transition.  Those words came consistently and clearly, so filled with love and compassion that I knew them to be true, even though it wasn’t what I wanted to hear.

When my vet’s office closed, I took Scheisters to the Emergency Vet Hospital so his condition could be continuously monitored throughout the night.  During our ride, he again became deadly still, inviting me to face the reality of the words I had been hearing throughout the day.  When I picked Scheisters up the next morning for the return trip to his regular vet, he seemed more alert and comfortable, yet he was still not himself.  After discussing exploratory surgery with his vet, I vetoed the idea.

There was no change in his condition during the day.  I paid a visit to him that evening, hoping that would cheer him up.  I walked in to see my exuberant, mischievous seventeen-year-old darling lying inert, pale, and exhausted.  I immediately knew the time was right for his passing, and that I would be his companion in this transition.  Scheisters received his final shots surrounded by those who loved and cared for him.  He died peacefully nestled in my arms, ending our physical journey just as we had begun our time together.

While Scheisters was no longer with me physically, I knew he was still with me spiritually and had things to tell me.  Here is a portion of the communication Scheisters and I had the evening of his transition:

“It was time for me to go and time for you to let me go.  I have finished my work here and I am needed on the other side…You do not have to worry about me.  I am set to be free.  While my body failed, my spirit is strong and ready….

I know you cry because you love me.  I love you and I honor your tears, as I honor our time together.  We were meant to be together during this Earth time and we have served each other well…I waited for you to return before I passed.  Just as you needed to be with me, I needed to be with you.  It is right that we were together at the end.”

Scheisters again came to me two months later through an animal communication for my horse, Shiloh, who was scheduled to have his eye removed.  Scheisters thanked me for not making him go through the exploratory surgery.  He also assured me he would be around to comfort me while my horse was in surgery. The day of the surgery I could feel his presence through a sense of peace, camaraderie and serenity.

Scheisty, this post is for you, buddy.  While I still miss you, I am grateful, and I honor the time we were together.  Here’s to you, bud.

Harmony,

Janet Roper

14 Comments

  1. billie August 15, 2009 at 7:59 am #

    I love this post – losing an animal friend is so hard, but I have always felt the spirits of mine stayed close and two times have had “new” cats come into my life that were nearly indistinguishable in appearance from the older ones.

    Dickens E. Wickens, the cowboy, is so much like my cat Yuri I often call him by that name. The fascinating thing is that Yuri was very much my “baby” and I kept close dibs on him his entire life – he was rarely able to be outside in nature b/c of where we lived. He died peacefully in his sleep when my firstborn turned one year old.

    Almost exactly 10 years later, Dickens came into my life. He is so much like Yuri – but here he can and does spend much of his time out at the barn, patrolling the property, but comes inside to eat and snuggle, and every now and then gets under the blanket with me and lies on my chest just like Yuri always did.

    It sounds like Scheisters is still very much with you in spirit – and you honored that beautifully!!

    Reply

  2. V-V August 15, 2009 at 8:27 am #

    I read your blog all the time, I love what you do. Todays post just had me is HUGE tears.
    You little boy is beautiful :)))
    Thank you for sharing your story :)) I think the very worst time of my life was having to make the decision, I just wanted my baby girl to tell me, and even though you feel for sure that is what your fur babies want, the doubt that you did the wrong thing is always there, enough to make you cry whenever you think about it, even after many years.
    That’s why today I am going to leave a comment and just to thank you very much for sharing this :)))

    Reply

  3. Daisy the Curly Cat August 15, 2009 at 12:11 pm #

    What a beautiful tribute to Scheisters.

    Reply

  4. Cher Marie August 16, 2009 at 1:02 pm #

    Hello Janet ~ I meant to read this post previously and somehow got missed. I’m in tears. Helping Scheister transition was such a beautiful thing to do. I am so happy you and he are able to continue your communication even though he is on the other side.
    I too have been through having to let pets go. It is so wonderful you could hold him and love him during his transition. Thank you!

    Reply

  5. janet August 17, 2009 at 8:06 am #

    Hi Cher
    It was an honor to be with Scheisters as he passed. He was one wonderful boy, had 5 toes on each paw. Maybe that’s one of the things that made him special! LOL
    Harmony,
    Janet

    Reply

  6. janet August 17, 2009 at 8:12 am #

    Hi Daisy,
    Thank you for your kind words. Scheisty was one good boy, can’t help but think it would have been interesting to see you, him and Harley together!
    Have a good day,
    Harmony
    Janet

    Reply

  7. janet August 17, 2009 at 8:17 am #

    Hi V-V,
    Thank you for stopping by and leaving your comment; it’s always a pleasure to meet long time readers!

    Yes, it can be difficult to know when it is time to let our beloved companions go. When we are in heart-felt connection with them, I believe we can trust them to communicate their desires to us.

    Feel free to comment any time!
    Harmony,
    Janet

    Reply

  8. janet August 17, 2009 at 8:22 am #

    Thanks billie, for your kind words and sharing your story of Yuri and Dickens. An interesting sidenote: Billy, the gray cat in the above picture with Scheisty, tried to ‘be’ Scheisters after Scheisters passed. He took on Scheisters actions, even to the point of sitting in the same places and in the same way Scheisty did. I asked him about that, and he said that he knew how much I missed Scheisters, he was trying to make me feel better. As I write this, I think part of it was to make himself feel better too. Animals are so compassionate and loving.

    Harmony,
    Janet

    Reply

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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    […] What I didn’t learn about cats from Pookie, I learned from Scheisters. When I saw him at the humane society, he was just the sweetest little thing, loved to cuddle and play games. I named him Gus and took him home. Within 24 hours of being at home his true personality came out, and he became Scheisters until his dying day. […]

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    […] What I didn’t learn about cats from Pookie, I learned from Scheisters. When I saw him at the humane society, he was just the sweetest little thing, loved to cuddle and play games. I named him Gus and took him home. Within 24 hours of being at home his true personality came out, and he became Scheisters until his dying day. […]

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