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In Memory of Puddy and Woody

Puddy and Woody were my cats for many years -- I lost them both within 6 months.  They were casualties of MEOW MIX.  DO NOT feed your cats cheap food -- it will impact their health.  This cat food metabolized into sugar and caused them both to become dependent on it.  Dr. Timothy Hennehen of Hennehen Veterinary Clinic advises that before Purina introduced Purina Cat Chow, diabetes in cats was so rare that vets were not even taught to treat it.  Now, 30 years later, every vet in America has diabetic cats in their care. 
 
When Puddy reached the point where she was becaming ill every day, I switched them abruptly to Iams cat food.  This was a mistake but at the time I did not know.  Within a few weeks, Puddy lost weight, her fur lost all its sheen and she lapsed into a complete systemic failure and she had to be put to sleep.  Shortly thereafter, Woody was diagnosed as diabetic also.  We controlled his condition for some time with pills but he gradually ceased to be the gentle, happy cat he had been.  He became violent, scratching, clawing and biting me (he had always refused to scratch me even in play or bite me even when the dreaded flea baths occurred).  As his condition deteriorated, I finally concluded that I was not doing him a favor to continue and we had him euthenized.

Woody Flynn Niemer
November 8, 1988 - January 23, 2002

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Puddy Flynn Niemer - 1986 to 8/27/01

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We will never know Puddy's exact age. She was abandoned as a young cat in downtown Cincinnati at the 9th and Vine parking lot by the Cincinnati Public Library. She was found on 12/4/86 by my ex-boyfriend, Garry Forbeck and brought to me. (This was long regarded as "the only decent thing Garry ever did"... but alas, it eventually turned out he was in that parking lot smooching with a co-worker 2 weeks after we moved in together, so the event lost a lot of its sparkle!) The vet estimated Puddy's age at that time at approximately 1 year. She had one litter of kittens in April of 1987, 5 little black or black and white cuties who looked more like their daddy cat than they did Puddy. The daddy was Garry's ex-cat, Papa Kit, who ran off and left Garry not long after I did -- don't let anyone tell you cats aren't smart!

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Puddy's philosophy was that if you were going to sit around, you might as well be admiring her and not just reading some dumb paper... but she liked when you laid out a paper for her to sit on and be admired.

Woody was the son of Sophia Fry and the big yellow cat down the road. Sophia moved Woody and all the other kittens into the porch roof of the old house when they were only a few days old. Mother had Jimmy climb up in there and get them all out and for a full 24 hours Mother was sure they were one kitten short. She sent Jeff back up into the roof when she heard tiny cries and Woody was saved after 24 hours of exposure to the November cold. He really never bonded with Sophia and literally believed that I was his Mommy.

When the litter of kittens was 5 weeks old, Mother gave them all to me in a box to take to the Cherry Grove Pet Store. Naturally, Baby Woody did not make it into the Pet Store and was brought home and loved and spoiled. For the first several months of his life, he even went with Jimmy and I on weekends when we would go to Mother and Daddy's for visits. He didn't even mind riding in the car.

Woody loved other animals including dogs, cats and on one memorable occasion he was known to socialize with a neighborhood possum. The only creature he was ever afraid of was Weasel the Ferret and he would hide when Weasel was around... unless I was around, in which case he would stay around to protect me and maintain a position between me and the dreaded terrifying Ferret at all times.

Here are some views of Woody in his prime... he had a happy life and was a jolly, easy going kitty. He reached a top weight at one point of about 20 pounds. In an attempt to save their teeth I fed Woody and Puddy both dry cat food for many years. It turns out the sugar in that food brought on diabetes in both cats. PLEASE CONSULT YOUR VET ABOUT THE CORRECT FOOD FOR YOUR CAT AND DON'T BELIEVE THE COMMERCIALS!