Nicknames: Honey Girl, Miss Serena, Miss Scared, Sweet As Honey
Gotcha Date: August 4th 1994
Birthday: June 24th 1994
Arrival Story: Serena became mine August 4, 1994. She was a little black kitten I saw in my back yard on Aug. 3/94. When I went to pick her up that day, she ran away.
A few hours later when I was in my pool I heard a kitten mewing in the ditch behind my back yard. I went to call over my fence, Kitty kitty, but she would not come to me, she just stopped mewing. So I left her alone, not being able to see where she was, just hearing her, and that was all I could do. A few minutes later I heard the mewing again, but since I could not find her, and she was not coming to me, I thought nothing more about it and went back into my house. But she must have been scared, and hungry.
The next night, Aug. 4/94 in the evening, I STILL heard her mewing but her sounds were fainter now. I thought she is losing strength and I better get in the car and go look for her. I parked the car along the ditch, and walked and walked trying to find her. She was not mewing now so I thought she is scared of me, so she will not mew now.
After a little bit, I heard her mewing but she was actually mewing from a yard that was across the road from the ditch that I was at. This road was a four lane busy street! That explains why her mews sounded fainter. She was now further away from my back yard, a whole four lane street away now.
I always thought of how lucky this little 4 week old kitten was to survive crossing a busy 4 lane street.
So I went to the yard I heard her mewing at, and knocked on the door of the house there. I told the woman who answered the door that I can hear a kitten. She came outside and heard it too. We saw Serena in the bushes in front of the house. She was so scared, and ran. She ran into the garage and we had to corner her to get her, and it was not easy to pick up a kitten when it was as scared as she was. The lady said she did not want any more cats because she had one, (Only one? Serena became my THIRD), so I decided I would keep her, considering all the things that happened that caused me to finally get her in my arms. The woman put Serena into a little box and I brought her home and took care of her; a little 4 week old black kitten. I kept her in a room alone about a week then let her out to meet the others.
She used to hide when I had visitors. Practically, no one had really seen her but me. Now she is not quite as scared, at least she comes out for my cat sitter. My pet phrase to say to Serena is: Serena, her scared of people. (I talk kitty talk with the kitties!).
When I ask if she wants cat food her eyes enlarge and she goes Mew Mew! At times she purrs loudly for hours! She loves to be brushed and is sensitive meaning she immediately arches her back when I pet her. For years she mostly slept on her favorite box in the basement. She would trot around when feeding time came, running back and forth with the other kitties. She liked sitting in windows too or eating plants, and all the cats love real catnip grown outside. She was sick for about a 3 week period in 2004; she would not eat when I fed all the kitties. The vet took Xrays of her skull and body (which I still have) and could find nothing and said some cats just give up eating. I could not believe this at all, a ten year old cat giving up eating! They gave a pill for me to give her every day I think, and it made her wobbly in walking but she got a huge appetite from it. I hated seeing her wobble though, it was awful. And she even jumped off the bed and knocked one of her sharp front teeth out, by hitting it against the chrome leg of a chair because she had no control while using this pill. The vet later said try a little Milk of Magnesia to get her to use the litterbox. So I put her in a bedroom alone with food and water and litterbox just so I could see if she would eat or not, and I used a syringe to feed her when it did not look like she ate. I slept with her every night in the room and she laid at my head all night. And I prayed and so did my friend Eva who lives in the USA. Serena must have eaten a tiny bit during the day or it was the syringed food, because a few days later she finally used the litter box and ate normally since then! I would say it was a mystery disease because the vet sure did not come up with anything definite. I had four cats by then, and maybe Serena just needed to know more definitely that I loved her too, which she could easily see when I chose to only have her with me for sleeping in that one room. I was glad when she was better and got to roam through the house again.
All my cats get vaccinated but maybe once a year, and not even every year, Serena would have a runny eye. It would only last a day or two and I think the vet called it a herpes virus yet all the rest of my cats were fine. Serena is my Honey Girl!
Bio: Dentistry; the Vet SHOULD have warned me!! I am upset with them. Vets too often say It could be this or It could be That and often you wonder why they do not have a definite reason for anything. Serena had her checkup last summer in 2009 and the vet said there are 3 teeth that should be pulled. I never had any cats get their teeth pulled before, I always refused. I thought I will try it this time with Serena. In September 2009 she got them pulled and has been sick since. She has a runny eye most of the time, sometimes sneezing with occasional blood in her sneezing. Sometimes she can only breathe through her mouth. Sometimes you hear nothing but phlegmy noisy breathing. Sometimes you can hear a thumping sound in her throat when she tries to swallow. And quite often she refuses the food I give her. She probably cannot smell the food sometimes so no wonder she cannot eat. She comes to me a lot to eat, and I feed her, then she walks away from the food. It is heartbreaking. I have caught her eating when I surprise her by walking in on her, thank goodness, and she keeps eating. A regular depo-medrol injection at the Vet, about once a month, works temporarily and removes all the annoying problems I wrote up above but it does not last long enough. When she gets the shot she does not yet improve for about another week. Then there is about a 10 day period where she is pretty normal. Then the shot wears off and she sounds and acts like I mentioned above. This is why I am angry with the Vet. I asked the vet: why did the dentistry cause this, because it never happened ever before, and she is losing weight very gradually. They said under anesthesia the immune system of the cat can lower and makes the herpes virus worse. THEY SHOULD HAVE TOLD ME THAT BEFORE THE DENTISTRY. I may remain upset with the vet for a long time. As to how Serena got her name, I once thought of calling her Marjorie. Samantha my first white long hair cat in 1993 (who will soon be on Catster) was named because my friend had a dog named Samantha and I liked the name for a cat; (and I liked fair haired Samantha on Bewitched on TV), then because of Bewitched, I decided my black kitten in 1994 would be Serena (on TV Serena has black hair). I am glad to have Serena and especially happy when she is her normal self these days when I can just ignore the denistry fiasco. If I was told what could happen, I never would have had her teeth pulled. However, I am so very glad I could catch this kitten in 1994 and am Happy Serena is MINE. * * UPDATE * * On June 13, 2011 Serena had to be put to sleep at almost the age of 17. The tumor in her forehead that came after her dentistry slowly caused Serena's life to deteriorate as the tumor slowly grew larger in her forehead and over her eyes. She still ate, drank water and used the litter box but could not see well and slowly was getting weaker. When she rubbed a scab off the eyes, or rubbed her forehead, which she did not do very often, it would cause the tumor to bleed and she dropped bits of blood around the kitchen which is where she stayed the last couple of months or so, at her own choice. She liked sleeping there lately. My heart broke to put her to sleep, as I've never chosen, on my very own, to do this before to one of my kitties.
Today is that happy day we all dream about, when someone takes us home!
My Dad took me home August 4, 1994 and I was so very tiny; a black kitten with blue eyes.
He still thinks of the spot he saw me at, in the back yard, when he's in his pool.
I lived to be almost 17 years old, within a month or so from being 17. I had some strange times during my life, like when I would not eat when I was 10 years old and had x-rays done and nothing was wrong. Dad slept with only me for a few days in a spare bedroom with the doors closed, to see if I'd eat, especially when he'd go to work and leave me in the room with food. I eventually ate and he thinks it was because he gave me single attention and love for the week!
The other strange time was getting a tumor in my nasal passage after having teeth pulled; it just didn't seem right that this would happen.
Dad sleeps in the basement and remembers how I'd come down to the basement at bedtime if he said "where's Serena"? And I'd lie with him and purr the longest and loudest of any cat! Other times I'd already be sleeping in the basement on top of my favorite box. When he talked to me while I was lying, I'd purr loud and long then too!
Up here at the Bridge I sincerely wish all kitties in the world will have a 'Gotcha Day' - a trillion of them happening, every day.
My Birthday is here at the Bridge again this year. In 2011 my Rainbow Bridge Day was June 13 so I’m used to being here with many rainbows in the sky. I was born in 1994 so my age is getting pretty high; though here we kitties are going to always be young and spry!
My Dad and I had many years together and toward the end it was too hard to say bye, when I had that horrible tumor. Was my bridge day too early, or was it too late; Dad thinks of that often. But I’m sure I’m not the only kitty this happened to; life is our life, as it’s given to us. And I had a life of food, a home and love and so happy Dad rescued me and took me home.
He remembers a few little things about me all the time. Right now he’s thinking about how I always came down to the basement when he went to bed, only after he called out his favorite night time phrase to me: “Somebody get Serena. Her scared of people”. I’d come running downstairs, and sleep with him. Funny how us kitties understand good (Kitty-cat) English! Other times I’d already be asleep on one of the boxes in the basement before he went to bed too. I’d purr loud and for a long time; he’ll never forget that.
Something he remembers almost every day is how sweet I looked when I would lick up little nibbles of wet food from under my dish, and food on the floor that fell out of my dish while I was eating.
Thank you my Catster friends for your rosettes, comments and pawmails for my Birthday and the beautiful photos from Pipo & Minko (We Bees Siamese) and also from Rory, Manytoes, Lynzee and Tundra!
And to any Rainbow Bridge kitties we know, let us try and go into the dreams of our family.
My dad has this date on his calendar but he did not need to check it, he remembered my Rainbow Bridge anniversary today. He remembered I lived to be almost 17 yr old but the tumor I had makes him upset, he wishes that did not happen to me.
Thank you kitties for the pretty gifties, comments, mail and pics made for me! My dad will post them when he is home from vacation.
Meanwhile many of you at the Bridge with me mentioned we will sit and meow our memories of life back home, so that is what we will do! Our families will remember us always.