Kipling-The Jungle Cat Who Walked by Himself- We will miss you!


This is a tribute to our lovely cat fur-baby Kipling, who went into the great unknown three days ago, leaving behind a huge hole in our lives. We will miss you our brave, smart and beautiful boy. We hope your life with us was happy and that you knew that we will always love you!

I was a wet nose and knowing eyes wrapped up in a warm furry package

But I was more

I was a heart that gave love endlessly and unselfishly

But I was more

I was a child, not of your flesh but of your soul

But I was more

For everything I was became a reflection of the love you showered upon me

And I am more

I will live in your hearts forever

I am yours….

We are so grateful to Dr. Tanya Kjeldsberg, DVM of Peaceful Pet Departures who made those last moments we had with him as loving as possible by ministering to him in the comfort of his own home and who spared us all the trauma of a clinical setting. He went as gently as possible into that good night. We also wish to thank Tyler and Jamie Jackson of Major Street Pet Services for performing his private cremation. It is good to know that such caring people were able to be there for him.

Kipling Our Lovely Jungle Cat

Once upon a time, there was a large black and white cat, with green eyes and magnificent white whiskers, whose fur resembled a beautiful tuxedo suit. He had come to be alone in the world and somewhere along the way had suffered a horrible incident that resulted in a broken shoulder and two broken front teeth.  Being a smart and clever cat, he managed to survive on his own and in his travels one day he saw a small bungalow where a man and woman lived in love, with an ageing cat of their own. “This is the place for me,” he said to himself, “I will stay here for a while and see what happens.” So he made a snug little hidey-hole place in the jungle-ish vines of their small front yard. He stayed there for several months, coming and going so that the man and woman only caught sight of him now and then. Even though he now walked with a limp from his former injury, he was a mighty hunter and managed to feed himself. He licked the water from the jungley vines when it rained and never lost his love of that small treat. When he first arrived it was still cold even though it was springtime. One night he ventured into the front porch of the house where the man and woman kept four potted citrus trees warm during the cold months. He climbed into a pot and curled up around the base of a lemon tree and went to sleep. The man found him there and talked to him kindly, but he was afraid and ran away. After that the woman would wave to him when she saw him and speak silly, comforting words of encouragement. But still, he was the cat who walked by himself and all places were alike to him.

As the summer began, the older cat who lived inside the house passed away and the man and woman were so sad. The Jungle Cat (as he now thought of himself) saw them crying and missing their beloved cat. He began to linger a bit longer around the yard when they were near hoping to see them, but still he was afraid. He had lost his trust of the kindness of humans, but something made him want to befriend this couple.

Two months later, when some of the sadness of the couple had begun to dull and yet there remained a cat shaped hole in their hearts, the woman began to call the cat with small friendly, clicking sounds that drew him near. She would come the the entrance to his hole in the now lush jungle of the front yard vines and call to him. He would come out and say hello and purr to her in a reassuring way and then quickly return to the safety of his lair. One day the woman told the man that she felt the jungle cat should be cared for and loved by them. The man said,”If you feed him he’s yours.” So she got a cat carrier and a can of tuna and enticed the cat into the carrier for a somewhat scary trip to the vet for a checkup. When they came home the cat was carried into the house. He promptly ran behind a room divider screen that was against a wall and hid himself for three days with only small ventures into the house to eat, visit the loo box and make sure all was safe and secure. After three days he decided that this house thing might just be okay after all and he came out to start his new life. From then on he was known as Kipling aka the Jungle Cat. It turned out that the man was a “Cat Whisperer” whose gentle ways taught him to trust again.

The couple grew to love Kipling with all of their hearts and he repaid them with all the love of his own huge cat heart. He maintained a bit of grumpiness now and then just to show them that he could still walk by himself but now all places  were not alike. This was his home.

He considered himself the guardian of the man and woman- even once running to protect the woman from an over-enthusiastic dog when he thought it was attacking her.  He had toys and cushions and blankets and  bits of salmon and cream now and then. The man made him a perch so he could keep a watch out of the front windows- which he promptly shredded just to show that he could.

Kipling lived in happiness with them for many years until he grew old. He was still comforting the man and woman until the end of his life. He was the best cat that they could ever ask for.

Now they are sad and crying and there is a huge cat shaped hole in their hearts but they wouldn’t have missed knowing Kipling the Jungle Cat for anything and will keep him in their hearts forever.

The Cat That Walked by Himself, by Rudyard Kipling

A link to Kipling’s The Cat That Walked by Himself from the Just So stories on Project Gutenberg


  1. Elephant's Child says:

    A friend sent me the link to this post and I am weeping. They wind their paws deep into our heart strings and take a piece of us with them when they leave. I am very, very sure that he loved his life with you – and send hugs and love from a stranger you have touched.

  2. casalba says:

    Oh Dear Gabi, I was so sorry to read this and send you love from across The Pond. Beautifully written and very moving. Lots of love, Sally

  3. Gabi says:

    Thank you for taking the time to come visit and read this Kelly. Writing it did help me to cope.
    Special cats are such part of your life and your family and yet when they go you don’t really have a memorial.
    I appreciate your thoughtfulness and support- it means a great deal to me.

  4. kellypea says:

    Gabi, I am so sorry for your loss. This just about broke my heart reading it, but how beautiful. And I hope it provided you some catharsis. Although I have lost so many cats in my life, one in particular will stay with me, and when I read of someone else’s loss of a special cat, I am reminded about how special some are. Best to you…

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