Bodacious ‘The Shepherd Cat’ – who wrote his own book - passed away on February 1st), after taking ill three weeks prior to his death.
Bodacious’ owner – Suzanna Crampton – took him to the local veterinary practice where he received an intravenous antibiotic to combat a high white blood cell count from possible infection.
It was later discovered that the cat had a tumour in his intestine at the junction of the large and small intestines; it has almost completely closed his intestinal passage, according to his owner.
“He would have lasted at most no more than a few days. He would’ve suffered incredible abdominal pain before he died.”
“So, when I was asked if they could put him to sleep then and there for his own comfort, I could only say yes,” Suzanna added.
Suzanna retrieved Bodacious’ body and a dug a grave for him; she discovered the cat wandering around a shop in Kilkenny twelve years ago. When no one claimed him, she took him back to join the array of other animals on her Zwartbles sheep farm.
He is viewed as the most famous farmyard animal since Babe; his YouTube videos have amassed 500k views; his book was published with Harper Element - a sub-division of HarperCollins - on June, 14th, 2018.
In tribute to my feline friend - by Suzanna Crampton:
Imbolc though it be, frost bones lie lacy in patterns reflective of still leafless winter trees.
Bodacious’ fire of life never left, just wained slightly with illness, his pain muffled by quiet enjoyment of companionship.
My heart breaks with the loss of my feline friend.
He walked by my side through wind, rain, sleet and snow.
He followed where no normal feline would dare to go.
He chose to walk with me across flooded muddy fields, through the Beast from the East’s deepest blizzard snow.
He kept me company as long nights lambing stretched into daybreak.
He would sit with me to watch the gloaming indigo sky turn into dawn, then day.
On hot days enjoyed a spin on the Quad, head lifted into the cooling breeze.
Life has gone from Bodacious, his strident demanding yowl no longer heard.
He is buried now where wildflowers grow.
Photo: Clement Gelly.