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Name: Chris M.
Status: Other
Age: 30
Date: 2/15/2004

A longtime pet of ours died recently. A Maine Coon cat of 15 years, and strictly an indoor pet. The evening he passed, he picked himself up from the floor, walked unsteadily into another room and crawled under my desk. This room is cold in the winter, so I picked him up and put him on his favorite soft chair where he was dead within 5 minutes. People have told me that cats will try to hide when they know they are dying. How can this be true?

Hi Chris!

I will give you an answer that is not based in proved scientific facts. It so happens I am very fond of pets and had many (mostly cats) during all my lifetime, so one observe. The(domestic)animals seem to look for a quite place to die, what is natural. If they have companions these dont get close if they feel their "friend" is dying. But if they are very close many times they try to help and stay around. And when the death comes they mourn and miss a lot.

Why? Maybe some day the specialists will find many more similarities between the Superior man and their less developed siblings in this Earth.

Sorry for the digression.

Mabel (Dr. Mabel Rodrigues)

I had lunch with two vets today and brought up your question. The answer to this question is obviously not going to be answered without first communicating directly with a cat.


One idea is the animal may be wanting to seek some shelter protection because of feeling very ill, a natural response like reacting to seeking shelter from rain or seeking protection with the perception of fear. The second may be a natural (similar to the first) response to seeking some environment that brings the same comfort like that the mother cat provided in early kitten hood by seeking a closed area for birthing and raising the litter.

Who knows!?

Steve Sample

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