Bing, a beautiful grey tabby appeared on our back patio one day in 2004. I thought he was rather cute, definitely looked hungry, so I fed him. When I told my husband that he was awfully cute, he said, “don’t feed him.” I said, “too late.” That was the beginning of our relationship. I contacted animal control and found out the correct procedure to follow in order to adopt him. He continued to come to the back patio where he was fed and played with our other two cats (Mel and Bud). One day he showed up with an infected scratch on his nose. With much trepidation, I called animal control and had him picked up. Just before he was taken by the officer we said, Bing, do not worry, we will come to adopt you.” I think he understood because as soon as we were allowed to visit him we did so. We were taken to a room and allowed to see him. Upon seeing us, he meowed. The attendant said, “that is the first sound that cat has made since he arrived.” We played with him, arranged for neutering and shots and told him we would be back to bring him home. The first day with us he purred loudly and drooled as we petted him and told him he would have a good life. His fur was matted, he had lots of scars on his head and played roughly. Soon his scars disappeared, his fur became sleek and beautiful and he began to be more gentle. He communicated by looking us right in the eyes. He fit right into the family and brought us so much joy. In December 2009, my husband and I went out to dinner for my birthday. We returned home, played with Bing and Mel (Bud was diagnosed with Lymphoma, had chemotherapy for a year and died in July of 2009–I really miss him) and got ready for bed. We noticed Bing had vomited so I went to clean it up. As I began to clean it up I noticed Bing was having difficulty breathing. I scooped him up, called the vet, and we took him to the emergency hospital. Once there we were told he was in serious trouble. They administered oxygen but he remained in distress. After two hours they recommended he be put to sleep as he was suffering and could not breathe on his own. I agreed. Once he was gone, I picked him up, held him for a very long time, stroked his silky fur, cried and cried. I spoke to his vet the next day. He told me Bing had cardiomyopathy. It was so hard to accept . As each day goes by I am able to do so a little bit more. We miss him terribly. He was one great cat! He was very large (18 pounds) and had a way of showing his appreciation for having been adopted (actually, he adopted us!). Bing was cremated. On December 31st we spread his ashes in the places in the garden he favored.

— Victoria from Anaheim, CA