Liz and Ian Finlay of the U.K. first met their resilient and perdurable (purr-durable?) feline, Nutmeg, 27 years ago.
“We celebrate his birthday in March every year so we know it was around March 1990 when we got him,” Mr. Finlay told the Newcastle Chronicle last year.
According to Metro U.K., the Finlay’s former cat, Spice (who died earlier in the 2000s), kept bringing a stray buddy home. They eventually adopted him and were told by their local vet that the friendly tabby was about five years old at the time.
Aside from treatment for an abscess on his neck when the Finlays first took him in, Nutmeg had lived a healthy and unremarkable life until he suffered a serious seizure and stroke in 2015. Treated by Westway Veterinary Centre in Newcastle at the time, Nutmeg appeared to fully bounce back from the incident.
At the time, Mrs. Finlay told the Mirror U.K., “We have loved him and taken care of him … he only has three teeth left but he loves chicken so much he stands at the fridge door when he wants to be fed. He comes and lies on your knee when it is time to go to bed. He is not our cat, we are his humans and he never lets us forget that. Maybe that is the secret to his long and happy life.”
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Sadly, Nutmeg’s health took a turn for the worse this summer. He passed away on Aug. 29.
“We both feel like our hearts have been ripped out. He was our little boy,” Mr. Finlay told Metro. “He went downhill so quickly it was unbelievable. He suffered from a bad tooth and he had rasping breath. We knew that when we went to the vet’s that he wouldn’t be coming home. It was an unspoken solace.”
The Finlays, who have no human children, considered Nutmeg to be their son. They say they don’t plan to get another cat, as the heartbreak of losing one again is just too much.
At the age of 32, Nutmeg was certainly one of the greats. A cat’s average lifespan is 15 years, meaning he surpassed his life expectancy by over 100 percent.
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Forget nine lives, Nutmeg lived over 18 lives. R.I.P. to a feline legend.