Like his mythological counterpart, Pollux did indeed outlive his younger brother. His personality was different from Castor's in many ways. First off he was more reserved, still friendly, but he would give people time to settle in before he'd invade their laps. He also would take a turn around the room to visit with all of the people before settling down.
Unlike Castor, I didn't pick Pollux. I didn't want Pollux. I wanted their white and gray brother who never got a name. My then boyfriend picked Pollux as his kitten. When we split up, he left Pollux with me. I was saddled with a second set of vet bills for another cat with irritable bowel disease. It was hard, but I made sure I could afford the food they had to eat so they would be sick less and medicines when they needed it.
Over time, his nickname became "Pollywog," which eventually shortened to "Woggs." He began to become more of "my" cat than I wanted, but he was still my responsibility and Castor loved him. I learned the hard way that he had a penchant for pasta in Parmesan sauce and peppermints. Peppermint was his absolute favorite, but he wouldn't turn down the chance to steal pasta.
After Castor died, Pollux was my link to both Castor and Confetti. We also became more watchful of his condition, in case he started developing any of the same symptoms. For almost two years nothing changed. He still loved to drink water from the bathtub after someone showered, still slept on his back with his front feet curled over his belly, and played with his toys. Then he snagged a claw on something, pulling it out of his foot and the wound became infected.
Last Monday Pollux wasn't doing well at all. He was still fighting with the flare up of irritable bowel disease that came with those antibiotics he had to take for his foot. His balance was off, he seemed more distracted, and despite eating like a horse he was still loosing weight.
FH and I decided to see how he progressed during the week and to spend as much time with him as possible. Artie and Pixel didn't seem to care about what was happening, but Artie did become more aggressive toward Pollux. I think Pollux's smell was changing and that bothered Artie.
I spent a lot of time stitching in Pollux's company last week. We'd listen to the birds outside the window and he'd sniff the air when the breeze came through. Sometimes he would decide I needed to put down my work and have him in my lap. That's when I'd watch a movie and pet him until he decided to go have a snack. We also let him fill up on his favorite canned foods. At night I slept with him in the guest room, shutting the young cats out. That way he had me to himself.
Friday rolled around and he was no better, in fact he was worse. When we listed off our observations about his attitude and symptoms, our vet told us that Pollux's liver was definitely failing and it was very possible that his pancreas was also failing and the irritable bowel disease may have turned into cancer. That left us with only one option for his care and comfort. Pollux didn't flinch and like Castor, he looked relieved.
Artie and Pixel spent some time looking for him after we came home with the empty carrier. Gus did some investigating of his own and did his best to make me relax. I've been trying to wind down from the stresses involved with palliative care and loosing a member of the family.
Enjoy your rest, my Pollywog Kitten. Remember me to Castor, Confetti, 'Bert, Tempie, and Meat Loaf. I'll see you all again someday.