[thechat] RIP Cooper.

Isaac Forman isaac at triplezero.com.au
Tue Mar 19 15:39:01 CST 2002

 From April 2001 to February 2002, I lived with my then-wife in a townhouse
beside a busy street. It wasn't really a major thoroughfare, but the
two-lane street received a substantial amount of traffic, especially before
and after traditional work hours.

We lived there with our cat, Pixel, who despite being somewhat reckless,
survived this time. It was a concern of ours -- purchasing a property close
to a relatively busy road -- but we'd been searching for a place for too
long to miss the opportunity. And so we risked it.

You can see a photo of Pixel here:

For approximately the last six months of our time there, Pixel befriended
little Cooper, who lived one house over. He was cared for by a mother and
daughter who were renting together. The daughter called him Cooper, but the
mother called him Frankie after his gorgeous, clear blue eyes.

At the time, Cooper was much smaller than Pixel. Pixel treated him as a
younger brother, and used many opportunities to playfight to his advantage.
But a lot of the time, they would sit together on the fence, and watch
people walk past. Cooper would sneak into our house after Pixel, and hang
out at our place. Pixel would sneak in after Cooper to our neighbours house,
and hang out with them.

Here are three of the photos I took of Cooper:


Last night, I held Cooper's body in my hands. He was limp. One side of his
face was covered entirely in blood. One of his beautiful eyes was hanging
completely out of its socket; something I will never forget. My hands were
red with his blood, and I was shocked.

We were driving home after a movie, and spotted him in the middle of the
same road we had lived on. We recognised the striped tail immediately (it
matched Pixel's), stopped, and went to inform the mother and daughter who
cared for him. He had been hit by a car only minutes early, which was
obvious enough from the still-warm body. From the blood stains on the road,
I could tell that the impact hadn't immediately killed him. Somehow, with a
face covered in blood and an eye hanging out of its socket, Cooper had
dragged himself from the middle of the lane to the centre-line of the road.
He died in a pool of his own blood.

We told Cooper's mother. When her daughter arrived home, we broke the news
to her also. Cooper had been booked in for a visit to the vet today; they
loved and cared for him, but cats are not always road smart, and they
maintain their independence. It is not always easy to keep them inside, even
when it's in their best interest. They sneak through a closing door, or
complain incessantly to get some fresh air. They don't always come back
inside when you call for them at night.

Afterwards, we went home to hold Pixel and be thankful that he had survived
our time next to the busy street. In bed, with Pixel sleeping at my feet, I
cried. It was the first time I had ever hoped for something beyond death for
anyone; for something beyond a lonely death on the road for a young cat. He
had not experienced more than 6-9 months with the people who fed and cared
for him.

I will never take a decision to live beside a busy road with a pet cat as
lightly ever again.

Here is a picture of Cooper and Pixel sitting on the fence together:

Please look after your animals, and tell anyone else with a pet to do the
same... :(


triple zero digital | upstairs at 200 the parade, norwood 5067
(08)83320545 | www.triplezero.com.au | isaac at triplezero.com.au

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