Bottom image: An actual picture of Chandler the Cat. This was the only appropriate image of him at his final visit to the vet. I think you can fill in the rest of what ensued that day.
It has taken me a bit of grieving to upload this video to YouTube and to write this blog post but now I'm ready. My cat Chandler passed away on August 7, 2015 at the age of 11 due to intestinal cancer. Well, technically he was put to sleep, but I'll used the term "passed away" for those not familiar with the "put to sleep" euphemism.
His Biography(Warning: Wall of text below)
Chandler was born (presumably) on March 19, 2004. He lived in a home with an old lady and 40 other cats! When the old lady died, all the cats were taken to animal shelters.
In 2006, my mom(who is also now deceased) naively thought Emily needed a feline friend(this was before Cameron was adopted and Jordan was even born), so she took us to a local no-kill animal shelter. The people at the shelter said Emily needed a male cat because according to them, multiple female cats fight(whether that is true I do not know from personal experience since Emily is still the only female cat I've ever had). A 3-month old kitten named Bella scratched my mom, so kittens were out of the question. My dad saw a good looking black and white cat tuxedo cat. The shelter named him Chandler and he was 2 years old at the time.
Maybe he was named after the character from Friends named Chandler(that character was a white guy with black hair) or maybe his namesake was the city of Chandler, Arizona(I don't even live in that city's time zone; that's all I'll say about my location). Nevertheless, he's the only cat my family has had that actually liked the name a cat was given(Cameron was originally known as "Freud", Emily was originally known as "Precious", and Jordan didn't have a name, just a nickname- "the Purring Machine").
I was initially set on an 11 month old kitten named Greg(that is also the name of my nephew) but my parents liked Chandler. I gave in and my family took him home. However, Emily hated Chandler from the start until the day he passed away. Chandler was so scared he hid under my parents' bed for a month. So much for male and female cats getting along. By the way, all my cats were fixed at the time of their introduction to my family(except for Jordan but that was because he was too young to be neutered at the time), so it wasn't sexual tension between the two of them, just hatred.
My family adopted Cameron the following year and Cameron and Chandler were best buddies. The two of them slept together and groomed each other. I even joked that they were a gay couple. My dad would always reply "NO, THEY'RE BEST BUDDIES!". They were also partners in crime, tormenting Emily by chasing her and fighting with her.
Jordan came to my family in January 2009 as a 3-month old kitten. My mom's final wish was to adopt a kitten.
Cats have a go-to human they like to hang out with. Chandler's go-to human was my mom. In April 2009, my mom passed away from pancreatic cancer and Chandler was devastated. I still recall Chandler on my mom's chest on the foldaway bed in the couch watching Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune with me every weekday night at 7 PM and 7:30 PM.
After my mom passed away, Chandler started hanging out with my dad, which creeped him out a bit since he heard a story of a cat that hung out with elderly patients who were dying. But he got used to it.
I also recall my dad and I having an endless argument about Chandler's appearance. To me he looked like a cow from the side because of black spots on white fur but my dad said he was wearing a tuxedo(albeit without the requisite bow tie).
Fast forward to July 2015. This is when Chandler's health started to decline. My dad and I took Chandler for his annual checkup at the veterinarian and when they weighed him, he only weighed 6 pounds(he was 12 pounds the previous July). He was also frequently vomiting up anything he ate.
The vet took a blood test and it turns out he had an overactive thyroid. Chandler got his thyroid medication in the form of a liquid put into his wet food. After 3 weeks, he stopped taking his medication. Then he stopped eating his favorite treats and ceased being the social, talkative cat that he once was.
It also didn't help that Chandler fell off a 7-foot counter and landed on his leg and not his feet, like cats are supposed to do. It turns out he just bruised a bone. But that warranted an emergency visit to the vet for x-rays.
Chandler's final appointment was on August 7. When the vet weighed him, he was only 5.4 pounds, so he lost a pound in a matter of weeks, which is very bad for a kitty. At the end he was practically a furry skeleton who wasn't really aware of his surroundings. We almost took him back home but then my dad kind of convinced me we needed to put him to sleep. He only had a couple of weeks left anyway. It was the humane thing to do, albeit very painful for the humans.
Cameron was devastated Chandler was gone. So was Jordan. But Emily, on the other hand, was so happy she became less stressed and her fur became smoother. She also became more social. The last time she was this social was 10 years ago. I never thought cats could be glad another cat died.
So that's the story of Chandler's life. And all I have of him besides my memories of him is a piece of his fur, a clay mold of his paw print and the words "Chandler- 2004-2015"(I don't feel comfortable sharing that image on the Internet. Sorry.), and a card from the vet expressing their condolences.
TL:DR: Chandler was a true feline gentleman.
Of course, being the Meatloaf Princess, I came up with a meatloaf to honor Chandler. The recipe is below. I call this my "Chandlerman" meatloaf because that's one of the nicknames my family had for him. Other nicknames included "Senior Commander", "Big Baby", and "Big Boy". Normally I wear a dress in my videos but this was a somber occasion that warranted black clothing and somber music. As you may notice, there are exactly 11 ingredients in this recipe(even including the salt and black pepper). 11 is the number of years Chandler lived.
You will need:
For the cooking vessels:
A lasagna pan
Nonstick cooking spray
For the actual meatloaf, you will need:
2 beaten and whisked eggs
1 cup of cooked squid ink pasta(it was the only black colored ingredient I could find, plus it symbolizes Chandler's black fur)(You can get this ingredient at http://www.deandeluca.com/pantry/pasta/filotea-squid-ink-pasta)
1/2 cup of tartar sauce(symbolizes Chandler's white fur; it turns out tartar sauce is more of an off-white color but tartar sauce goes good with fish, so I ran with it)
1/4 tsp. of parsley(symbolizes Chandler's green eyes)
1/4 tsp. of cinnamon(symbolizes Chandler's sweet personality)
1/4 tsp. of cayenne pepper(symbolizes Chandler's loud meows- I equate loud with spicy)
1/4 tsp. of garlic(symbolizes the bad breath cats naturally have)
1/2 tbsp. of onion powder(I didn't use sauteed onions in this recipe because to me, tuna and onion don't mix; this amount of onion powder is the equivalent to 1/2 a raw onion)
Pinch of salt and black pepper(to me it's standard for any meat-based meatloaf)
A little under two 5-ounce cans of tuna(Chandler loved tuna; the other cats love it too so we give some to them in the recipe video)(Note: normally I use 1 pound of a meat when I make a meatloaf but tuna has mercury in it, so it's not good to eat it in excessive amounts)
1. Wash your hands! :)
2. Put all ingredients in a large bowl.
3. Mix all the ingredients together to distribute the ingredients evenly among the mixture. This is going to be very hard since the pasta has a tendency to clump up. So you might need to use your hands for this one.
4. Spray a lasagna pan with nonstick cooking spray.
5. Form 1 loaf(there was only enough ingredients for 1 loaf)
6. Bake in a 350 degree Fahrenheit preheated oven for 30-40 minutes(technically canned tuna is already cooked, but the raw egg isn't; fish in general doesn't take that long to bake in the oven anyway).
7. Bon appetit!
This blog post has 2 videos in it for condensing purposes. The top is one is the recipe. The bottom one is a memorial video I made of Chandler based on all the pictures and most of the videos on my iPhone of him(except for one where I was petting Chandler but Donald Trump was in the background on CNN talking about "They're bringing drugs, they're bringing crime, they're rapists..."(you can fill in the rest of his rant. *Facepalm*))