I am writing you with an immensely heavy heart to announce the passing of my beloved Himalayan, Ben. In July of 2005, he and I met (and fell in love!) while I spent time there on Sundays. The best thing I've done so far, I selected Ben because he stood out primarily due to his uniquely gentle disposition and kind nature. He had a sweet way of walking up to you and lightly touching your ankle with his front paw to get your attention as a greeting. While he walked with a slight congenital balance disorder, Ben would find himself occasionally the target of other cats' dominance however he gently yet resiliently took it in stride thus never suffered their wrath. Inevitably the result was no cat could resist the sweetness of my "little fella". In fact, any person or animal who had the pleasure of meeting Ben would not soon forget his sweet nature and mellow behavior. I deeply love as well as miss him and will never forget him. In his honor, I will continue to passionately champion animal causes (including but not limited to finding forever homes for shelter animals especially Himalayans and Persians) because Ben truly deepened my heart and so too others will benefit from this experience's real and compelling type of love.
In addition to memorializing my beloved Ben, I also want to point out that a silent and undetectable long standing ulcerated stomach claimed his life. Ben, who also (unbeknownst to me) had Herpes which resulted in a ruptured cornea and subsequent eye surgery, became gravely anemic post op despite the best medical treatment. The Vet had conducted several pre op tests to ensure his fitness for surgery which he passed with flying colors. Even following it, Ben's eye wound recovered swiftly with no discharge and within 2 days had no swelling, he seemed well on the path to full recovery...until within 3 days... he took a turn for the worse. The capable and experienced Vets at both the SPCA Animal Hospital and All Animals Emergency Hospital knew something very serious and dangerous was happening to deplete Ben's red blood cells. Alarm increased when the red blood cells grew further depleted even after a blood transfusion but after stringent screening the problem still defied definition. Yesterday, 5 days following successful eye surgery and 2 days after his grave anemia was diagnosed, on oxygen and clearly suffering in pain, Ben was freed from his failing body. In the interest of advancing veterinary science and thereby helping similarly effected animals with Ben's unresponsive fatal anemia problem, I consented to a necropsy which revealed the underlying reason of death was a long standing ulcerated stomach that bled out and thus claimed his life. I speak of this because even though my beloved Ben had a physical 2 and a half years ago and even more recent scrutinizing tests, this stomach ulcer went undetected by blood panel work, X-rays and a hand examination of his abdominal area. Therefore please know that if your pet has an inexplicable loss in red blood cells/anemia that can not be diagnosed through standard means then (s)he may have a long standing stomach ulcer in which bleeding out will result in certain death. In Ben's honor, please have your Vet rule out this potential problem early. On this note of prevention, if you need to administer medicine corrosive to the stomach lining please make sure your pet drinks plenty of water so the medicine won't just lie there and eat away at the stomach lining as it will otherwise without the presence of water.I'll forever miss my sweet beloved little Himalayan guy, Catherine Thresher (Ben's Human Forever Friend)