Regular readers will remember us taking in senior cat Nemo from Upper Hutt Animal Rescue as a long term foster. He was frail, paper thin and old, but we had hoped to keep him for several months, not the several weeks we had. May we invite you to join our celebration of Nemo’s time here, the joy he brought and the many things he taught us about senior cats, and the love he gave.  We received a signal honour from an artist and writer whose book we reviewed, Paul Magrs who, moved by Nemo’s story, drew the superb portrait at the top of this post. Thank you Mr Magrs, it’s wonderful.

Senior Cat Nemo the tabby Cat Close up
Nemo – a portrait

We loved Nemo dearly and he became one of the family very quickly, barely an hiss between any of the family once he settled down. As I was uncertain how far he could wander Nemo was confined to his room overnight, but he came up on the bed for a cuddle when we had an early morning week-end coffee. He learned duvet = soft V. quickly! The sad bit was we had to encourage him, he seemed so used to hard carpet.

Senior Cat Nemo helps jewellery making
Nemo helps with jewellery making!

Nemo had an irritable bowel and one site that was recommended by several people that we found truly helpful was IBD Kitties, a web site devoted to helping cats with irritable bowel issues. We were able to check on do’s and don’ts as well as things he might be able to eat, thanks to this comprehensive and friendly site. I will post a selection of senior cat links in another post as we found them really helpful, but I want to share some Nemo memories as anyone with a determined IBD senior will recognise some of these!

Nemo Memories.

  • Turning around to find Nemo at our side every time we went into the kitchen, for anything. In his determination to see where the food came from he jumped onto the cat platform, then on the breakfast bar and then to the counter top!
  • Nemo being so determined that the bedroom was not going to be his only ‘safe’ world and his prescribed food his only ‘safe’ food. The sudden worry as he was whisked off to the vet to be rehydrated after finally eating the ordinary cat food and dehydrating in our summer heat. The relief when he came home.
  • Disappearing for two hours then wandering back with an “Oh Hai, you didn’t miss me did you?” look on his face.
  • Coaxing Nemo to sleep on a soft blanket, or the Purrito, rather than the hard carpet. His first sleep on the duvet was a cause for quiet but heartfelt celebration. He spent one of his nights curled up in the bed sent by our dear pal @WallasEKat – much to our delight.
  • Coming home from shopping to find Nemo sleeping soundly in the middle of our soft duvet. YES!!!!
  • Raising the bins off the floor, his scavenging instincts would not be stopped otherwise!
Nemo the cat on the floor
Before he learned about soft blankets
  • Seeing Nemo laid out on the deck, or on the grass in the garden, simply soaking up the summer sun. This filled our hearts to the brim with love for the little old guy. Picking him up was almost impossible, as we felt he would break so it was looping an arm under his front legs and behind his back legs to gently lift him up.
  • Seeing him tottering up the drive towards the house, he wandered into the back garden then lost his strength and subsided against the house, so I picked him up and held his little purring body gently until he wanted to be left down.
  • Nemo taking part in our #TeamCat entries to the Lucy Pet Foundation contest. We didn’t win but he was there cheering on the vital work that the Lucy people do.
  • Learning so much about seniors, with the help of other social media friends and colleagues to give the best care we coculd to Nemo. We are grateful for all of the suggestions and help.

We lost Nemo too soon, but celebrate his time with us. We would do the same for him again – he was a joy and taught us a lot about older cats, and tender tums. Ave et Vale Nemo, an honoured member of our family.

Harvey Button
Cat in the window






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  1. Savannah's Paw Tracks

    March 30, 2015 at 1:06 pm

    Shame on me for not coming by sooner to tell you this is a most lovely tribute to precious Nemo. And the painting of him is so delightful. It is hard to foster a special need kitty and then lose them.
    Savannah’s Paw Tracks recently posted…Profile: The Kid SageMy Profile


  2. Kjelle Bus aka Charlie Rascal

    March 26, 2015 at 9:58 pm

    What a nice tribute to Nemo. He was lucky to have you <3
    Kjelle Bus aka Charlie Rascal recently posted…Tacksam torsdag / Thankful thursdayMy Profile


  3. Sometimes Cats Herd You

    March 26, 2015 at 1:00 pm

    Such a heartwarming tribute. You gave Nemo so much love in such a short time, and it means so much that he had a home with you in the end.
    Sometimes Cats Herd You recently posted…Ashton’s First ChicksMy Profile


  4. The Island Cats

    March 26, 2015 at 12:38 pm

    What a nice tribute to Nemo. He was lucky to have you…and you him. Purrs…..
    The Island Cats recently posted…What’s That Wally Doing?My Profile


  5. Noodle

    March 26, 2015 at 9:24 am

    We have leaky eyes after reading such a lovely post…
    Have a wonderful Wednesday!

    Noodle and crew


  6. meowmeowmans

    March 26, 2015 at 8:48 am

    What a lovely tribute to dear Nemo. I have tears in my eyes after reading it. On one hand, I am sad that you did not have more time with this amazing senior mancat. But on the other, I am eternally grateful that he was able to know love and care with you. And that you all were transformed by your time with him.

    Love and hugs,

    meowmeowmans recently posted…A Special Someone’s Birthday!My Profile


  7. Summer

    March 26, 2015 at 7:29 am

    How fortunate Nemo was to have such a caring family to spend his last weeks with!
    Summer recently posted…She Did It AGAINMy Profile


  8. Kiki the Havanese

    March 26, 2015 at 7:19 am

    What a very nice tribute! I am stopping by from the blog hop, hope you will come over and say hello.
    A Happy Havanese


  9. Brian Frum

    March 26, 2015 at 7:03 am

    That was such a nice tribute to dear Nemo and we could feel the love.
    Brian Frum recently posted…Womancat Wednesday with Sisters Kit and DollyMy Profile


  10. Robin

    March 26, 2015 at 7:01 am

    Thank you for sharing all of those wonderful memories! Nemo seems like he was a really sweet cat. I’m glad that you got to have him in your home for a while 🙂
    Robin recently posted…Wordless Wednesday: Sharing SunlightMy Profile


  11. Annabelle

    March 26, 2015 at 6:07 am

    What a lovely beautiful tribute to your sweet Nemo.
    Annabelle recently posted…Wordless WednesdayMy Profile


  12. da tabbies o trout towne

    March 26, 2015 at 5:14 am

    harvey….this bee an awesum post ewe did for nemo, we noe him wood give it 984 paws UP ! thanx for sharin hiz storee;

    we noe nemo wood say thanx inn ree tern …for everree thing…

    & him wood all sew say…mum & dad & everee one…eye love ewe all two, N all ways will

    { insert hearts}

    ~~~ total lee rockin portrait Mr Magrs did


  13. This is one of the best tributes I’ve read. I love reading how a pet lived, as opposed to how they died. Thank you.

    –Purrs (and wags) from Life with Dogs and Cats
    Susan and the gang from Life with Dogs and Cats recently posted…What Dogs and Cats SayMy Profile


  14. Jessica Claudio, DVM

    March 26, 2015 at 4:38 am

    A lovely tribute to a very handsome man.


  15. Katie Kat and Oreo

    March 26, 2015 at 3:25 am

    Thank you for sharing the wonderful story of Nemo. Happy tears for when he learned about soft blankies for the first time.

    Not too many caregivers are willing to love a senior kitty… You are a blessing.

    Thanks for reading about how Katie Too on CatWisdom and how she mysteriously came in to our family.
    -Katie Kat.
    Katie Kat and Oreo recently posted…Oreo Sunny Selfie Shocker SundayMy Profile


  16. Athena and Marie

    March 26, 2015 at 2:33 am

    Beautiful tribute.

    Purrs xx
    Athena and Marie
    Athena and Marie recently posted…Wordless WednesdayMy Profile


  17. Random Felines

    March 26, 2015 at 2:02 am

    a lovely tribute….we have learned that sometimes it isn’t the time we have but the love we share….we are glad Nemo got that from all of you
    Random Felines recently posted…wouldn’t we all like to be #PawNaturalMy Profile


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