(Click on images for larger view)
1995 (est) - March 28, 2003
In loving memory

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Amber in the hall

Amber was a stray in our neighborhood when we moved in (1996).  She would come by to visit and rest in our driveway or hide under the porch.  We began to talk to her and eventually she would let us pet her a bit.  One day she walked in the front door and stayed ever since.  She seemed quite happy to now be an indoor cat, though she did dash out on occasion.
Even though she was now a house cat our little girl was always a bit wild.  There were only certain ways she could be held, and attention was always on her terms.  Amber still had some rough going.  She developed an infection in her right ear.  We kept trying to treat it, but she made all efforts quite a challenge.  We had oral medications mixed as a specialty pharmacy to make it palatable, but putting drops in her ears was definitely something she resisted with great "enthusiasm."  We finally had to have her hospitalized for a month so she could be restrained for her twice daily treatments.  After all this the problem returned only a few weeks later. 

Several attempts were made to treat the problem.  It appeared the underlying condition was a yeast or fungal infection that made her susceptible to secondary infections.  Finally we went with a more drastic approach, surgery.  We still had a reoccurrence so more drastic surgery was required.  A large fungal mass was found deep in her inner ear, apparently causing lots of pain.  It was removed, but a long recovery was still needed.  With the removal of her inner ear her balance was off and she now had a permanent head tilt..  She also had lost some control of the right side of her face.  This still seemed better than the pain she must have been suffering from the infection.

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When I was working at home she often would come and sit in my lap.  After her surgery she seemed less willing to come up to the office and usually just hung out in the living room.  She would still come sit in my lap when watching TV, and would always come over and try to encourage us to share our people food with her.  (She even liked vegetables!)  She didn't seem to care much for canned food (except some fish based foods) but loved chicken, turkey, beef or anything else from our plates.  She ate her dry food, but also was always a bit picky about it. 

Amber's recovery was slow, but she did progress.  She eventually recovered most of her abilities, though she would always have a bit of balance loss.  Over time the dogs joined us and Amber first let them know what for, then decided they weren't so bad to hang out with.  As other cats also joined our family she continued to spend more time with the dogs, happily sleeping among or near them.

We noticed Amber was acting somewhat abnormal and took her to the vet.  The first impression was that she had a hernia which was potentially a serious problem.  We left her to have surgery in he morning.  I was called the next morning and told Amber had reacted to the

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Amber on the stairs (with Sheba
behind in the first photo.)

anesthesia and died (March 28, 2003.)  Our little wild child was gone.













Amber passed away on 3/28/2003.  She will always be missed.