January 1, 2013 – January 31, 2023.
Yesterday morning, when Fred gave the cats their breakfast, everyone showed up as usual except for Archie. This is very unlike Archie, and so Fred went looking for him. He was curled up in his favorite bed in the recliner in the living room where he had passed away at some point in the night. He has had absolutely no health issues lately – in fact, he had an exam just a few weeks ago, and came through it with flying colors.
Monday night, he was quintessential Archie – he had the zoomies, ran around the house for a bit, complained to Fred that it was time for his bedtime crunchies, and kept me company while I watched TV. He just turned 10 years old earlier this month, so we expected we had plenty of years left with him… this was just an out-of-the-blue shock to us both and we both keep expecting to see him in his usual spots. It’s so strange to have him suddenly gone.
Archie showed up on our property (Crooked Acres) in November 2014. He was skittish at first, but Fred worked hard to gain his trust, and it wasn’t so very long before Archie decided we were okay and was letting us pet him and pick him up. It was our intention to keep him as an outdoor cat – we’d feed him and make sure he had many warm places to hole up – but one day Archie decided he was meant to be an indoor cat. So he went over the fence into the back yard, and stomped into the house through the cat door. We spent an entire weekend trying to stop him from coming over the fence, but he wasn’t having it. No matter what we did, he got over that fence and into the house. So we gave up. Archie became an indoor-outdoor cat and we had him tested, neutered, and vaccinated.
We had no idea where he came from, but he had clearly been in a house before – nothing about being inside mystified or scared him. Loud TV, loud radio, vacuum cleaner, none of it bothered him at all.
He was a pretty quiet cat unless he had an opinion (that opinion was usually “It’s time for me to be eating right now, and you need to make that happen”) and then he’d unleash this loud, husky meow.
He got along with the other cats, though sometimes he’d chase Alice (I contend he was trying to play, but it frightened her). He got along surprisingly well with the fosters – he found them interesting to watch. But he absolutely hated his nemesis Stefan, and if he wanted to walk somewhere and Stefan was in the way, Archie would arch up, growl fearsomely at him, and just absolutely lose his mind. (Stefan would just sit there and look at him like “What is your problem?”)
When he got all arched-up and tense and growly like that, he could be scary. But the truth is that he was all talk. I could reach down and pick him up while he was arched and growling and hissing, and he never once bit or scratched me.
He had a hair-trigger temper and if you were walking behind him, he’d growl and skitter away. He liked to be petted until he didn’t, and if you reached the threshold of his tolerance, he’d growl and skitter away. He did NOT like to be restrained in any way – as soon as you tried to hold him in place, he’d tense and growl and yowl and hiss – but again, it was all talk.
(I’ve always said that Archie is the cat version of me – he’d go from 0 to 100 in an instant.)
Of course I can’t describe Archie without mentioning his vendetta against dish towels. When we walked into the kitchen to find one on the floor, we knew that Archie had been there, doing his job, keeping us safe from a dish towel gone rogue.
I worried how Archie would handle the move from Crooked Acres to Shady Cove and then here to Crooked Acre. I needn’t have worried – he handled it just fine. I will say that I think he would have preferred to be a free-roaming cat, but he was happy to be able to go into the back yard every day… and sometimes we’d let him roam in the back yard after dark, with supervision. That was enough to scratch his itch to roam.
In the past few years, he and Newt developed a relationship that I wouldn’t exactly call “friends”, but they’d snooze together just inches from each other with no drama. It was nice to see that relationship develop for a cat who never seemed to be that crazy about other cats.
He’s only been gone for a little while, but the house seems so different without him here. Quieter, maybe. Which is an odd thing to say about a cat who didn’t really make that much noise. It will be strange not to see him stomping through the room when we watch TV, or look over and see him sleeping in one of his favorite spots.
We are having him cremated, and while we might eventually scatter his ashes in just the perfect location, for now I just want him back here with us for a little while.
There’s an Archie-shaped hole in our home, and we miss him so much.
2022: Still here, still pregnant, still eating up a storm!
2021: Three weeks into fostering Canasta, I still get the occasional “She looks a little cross-eyed?” comment.
2020: No entry.
2019: This turned out to be less of a good idea than he’d expected.
2018: And yet, I get the Squeezy Eyes of Lurve.
2017: It was an Archie in the poltergeist tree.
2016: She’s really starting to fill out. I haven’t seen any belly movement yet. (GEE, I WONDER WHY?!)
2015: (“Use a sharp tooth, Ruth”)
2014: No entry.
2013: I believe that the only correct response to your question would be a Miss Piggy-style “HMPH!”
2012: Sugarbutt gets in the middle and decides to show Sally who the boss is.
2011: Corbie’s all “Why you gotta be up in my space, man?”
2010: Where’d they come from? What are they doing here?
2009: No entry.
2008: A picture of each cat with his/ her name and nicknames, and what they’re doing in our house.
2007: Maybe she IS part cougar.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.
Oh, those pesky dish towels.. who will keep them in line?
This was such a shock for me, I can’t begin to fathom what it was like for you. My heart goes out to you.
What a beautiful tribute to Archie. Who is going to keep those tea towels under control now? Sending you my deepest sympathies xx
Such a great tribute and pictures. I love the one of him drinking with the chickens. And of course his constant dish towel battle. He knew what he was doing finding you and he had a wonderful life with you. He is missed.
My heart breaks for you all. Big hugs for everyone!
OMG! This can’t be happening, this can’t be happening! Maybe if I say that long enough it won’t be true.
My heart has been breaking about the state of the world (my personal world, included) this week and this caps it off. I don’t even want to imagine how much worse it can get.
My heartfelt condolences to you, Fred and the gang. And I’m sure the gang will feel it as much as you do. The world is a more strange place (for me) today – weird!
A little melodramatic? I’ve had a helluva week and it’s only Wednesday.
I know that feeling, Eva. I hope your week gets better!
Our heart goes out to you and everyone in your household. It’s always too soon that they leave us. Thank you for sharing him with us.
Such a heartbreaking shock, I am so sad for you, Fred and all the kitties (whether they liked him or not!)
What a beautiful cat… I’m so very sorry for you loss… it must of been an absolute shock for you both… sending love and thoughts … fly high little Archie xxx
I’m still in shock, so I know you and Fred are doubly so…. You just did that wonderful write-up about him last week! But I feel certain our beloved dude Stefan was waiting for Archie at The Bridge, to let him know he was safely home and to show him where the towels are. ❤️
I’m so sorry for your loss. One of his dish towel-wrangling videos on YouTube years ago is how I found Love-and-Hisses, and he’s always had a special place in my heart.
Robyn, Fred and to the other Sweet permanent resident kitties, from here in Australia you have our most heartfelt condolences on the sudden loss of your Beloved Archie <3 He was one of my favorites and his antics with the dish towels always had me laughing <3 Archie will be watching you all from his new Perch on the Rainbow Bridge where he will be showing off his Rainbow Angel Wings <3 He will fly down to keep checking in on you all and sending down Rainbow Kisses as well <3 Love and Hugs to you both and our Sweet Kitties send the biggest Purrs to your Kitties on the loss of their Brother <3 <3 <3
There will never be enough words to take away the pain of losing sweet Archie. Just know that everyone here in Kitty City is thinking about you, Fred, all the permanent residents and fosters and we’re simply heartbroken over your loss. I’m sure Archie is over the Rainbow Bridge protecting everyone from those dastardly dish towels and telling all his friends about his wonderful family back home.
I have no word other than I’m so very sorry. And thank you both for giving him such a wonderful 9 years. He will be remembered for a very long time by so many.
Bless everyone and a special hug for Newt over the loss of his naptime buddy. Archie was a beautiful boy.
I know there’s always a chance of a tribute post appearing in your blog, but I thought we had ages before it was Archie’s turn. I’m heartbroken, and can’t even imagine how it must be for you and Fred. He was a BEAUTIFUL, sweet, fascinating little boy, and I’m truly going to miss his stories. Much love to you and Fred.
I’m sorry Robyn I’ve never had one just drop dead! Bless you and Fred and the others.
I have seen it once before, and I hope I never see it again.
My condolences to you and Fred and the kitty residents, Robyn. That’s always a shock.
Aww! So sorry for your loss Robyn, Fred, the other permanent residents, and all the to-be fosters who won’t get to meet Unca Archie. He was so awesome and will be greatly missed. 🙁
I’m so sorry for your loss. I think there is something about a cat’s energy that leaves a noticeable absence when they are gone.
And now the dish towels are going to take over your home!
I’m so sorry for your loss, he was such a lovely wee boy.
So, so sorry! Thoughts and prayers for you.
Wow! what sad news. Please accept my sincerest condolences. Saying goodbye is hard, no matter what the circumstances. I hope Archie is slaying dishtowels, and maybe even making friends with Stefan somewhere far away. I know you and Fred will miss him dearly.
Am SO sorry! Sending all of you love and hugs as you and we all will miss dear Archie so much! Memories of him will keep him with us.
I’m so very sorry to hear this. Archie had such a big personality and was always a member of your clowder I loved hearing about. Sending you all so much love. ❤️
I am so sorry Archie left you far too soon. He was quite a character. Will miss his interactions with the fosters and the dish towels. Fly high sweet boy.
Beautiful tribute to the guardian of the dish towels! Such a handsome and smart feline! My heart is sad, I can’t imagine how you and Fred are feeling. He certainly left you with ten years of memories . I’m so sorry Robyn. Good day to cuddle one of your permanent residents and one of the fosters. With love,
I’m so very sorry for your loss. Archie was one of the best.
What a beautiful tribute to Archie. So sorry for your loss. We always wish we could keep them healthy, safe and loved forever, but we have no control over these circumstances. Thank you for sharing him with us. I’ve loved watching his antics for the last 5 years. The community you’ve created is missing Archie already. Sending you, Fred, the Permanent Kitties and the Love.and.Hisses community hugs and love from Canada.
So very sorry to hear this. It is always Too Soon. Just turned over the calendar, to find that dear Archie is the King of February, so we will be thinking of him (and you all) every day.
Archie seemed to be one of those grumpy ‘get off my lawn’ but heart of gold characters to most of the other permanent residents – and dish towels. Yet he was so good with the fosters – and loved kitten food. He clearly adored you and Fred. Treasure the time you had with him, and thank you for sharing him with all your readers.
You’re unforgettable, Archie!
A spirited and joy filled life leaves no regrets behind.
And Archie DEFINITELY had spirit… just ask those dishtowels.
Sorry for your loss.
Truly sorry for your loss.
oh no……this is so terrible. I am SO sorry.
I am so sorry about the loss of Archie. He is still around protecting you all from the wretched dish towels. Thank you for sharing him with us. It was a fun ride. RIP Archie.
So terribly sorry to hear it, I know that pain and it hurts so much. Archie was such a lovely boy, I’ll miss his face in the blogs and the updates on his battle with the dish towels. I’m sending my thoughts your way, and I’m so glad you gave him a warm and loving home for the years since he found you.
Crying all over again. What a beautiful tribute to a wonderful cat. Keep his ashes with you in an urn, don’t scatter them. That way he really will be where he belongs, forever. He deserves that.
I am very, very sorry. To loose a cat is like having an appendage cut off. When they are here with us it feels so good and it doesn’t do to look to far into the future. I so enjoyed the stories of Archie, Slayer of Kitchen Towels!
I was so shocked to read your post yesterday morning. My deepest sympathies to you, Fred and all the fur babies in your home. It is so hard to let them go, but especially when you don’t get to tell them goodbye. My heart is breaking for you all. Hugs. Purrs from Ebony Rose.
Hugs to you both! I so understood when you wrote “an Archie shaped hole in our home”. Our fur babies are our babies. Sending you love.
Much, much sympathy to you!! What a terrible shock that must have been.
“…one day Archie decided he was meant to be an indoor cat”; well, I’m so glad that he decided on YOU and that he did have so many happy years with you.
If I was a cat, I would be very much like Archie, I believe, so I’ve always had a soft spot for him.
Bye bye, sweet boy.
Oh, jeez. 🙁 I am so, so terribly sorry.
Archie was so loved, he will not be forgotten. We will keep him in our hearts until we meet again. Blessings to you and your family.
I’m so, so sorry to hear of your loss. And so sudden. Only another “cat person” truly understands how devastating a loss of a cat can be. My heart goes out to you.
Dear Robyn and Fred, I am so sorry for your loss, finding Archie that way must have been so shocking and devastating. Sending extra love and kisses to your entire household today and always.
I’m so very sorry you lost your Archie and in such a strange and frightening way, with no warning whatsoever. I wonder what happened. He was an adorable kitty and I always loved hearing about his tussles with towels. RIP.
I am so sorry for your loss and I know how you must be feeling. There will be an Archie shaped hole in your hearts and home for quite some time. The dish towels will take over your kitchen, now that Archie the towel slayer is no more. In our 30 years as cat parents it has happened to us twice that cats died in their sleep for no apparent reason, both of them were around 10 at the time as well. If there is anything I can do, please let me know. I am not very far away.
My heartfelt condolences to you, Fred, and rest of the gang. It was such a shock to read about so I can’t imagine how shocking it was to you and Fred. Thank you for loving him and giving him such a good home, and for sharing him with us. Treasure your memories of him.
It’s always a little quieter and there’s always a big hole when we lose one of our bebbies, no matter how many we have or how loud they were because each one is special and had it’s unique place in our hearts. I’ll miss Archie… he was a character and one of my favourites right from day one. Hugs to you and Fred.
So very sorry for the sudden loss of Archie. I had a cat that had a stroke. Would not have known except it was during the day and she suddenly started limping, got behind the sofa and by the time I got to her (just seconds) she was gone. Took to vet and he said it was stroke. (((Hugs))) Archie had a great life with y’all.
I’m so sorry to hear about Archie.
He was a scoundrel and all talk but he was my spirit animal. He as the essence of a cat, total attitude, total (false) bravado and a love of creature comforts.
I will miss him too.
I’m so incredibly sorry y’all.
Oh no I’m so sorry about Archie’s passing, must have been a total shock. Thanks for the beautiful tribute to remind us all what a special boy he was. I hope all the good memories will help you during this sad time. He was such a lucky boy to have spent his life with you, Fred, and with the other permanent residents.
What a shock for you all to have Archie pass away suddenly after getting a clean bill of health. My condolences to you and your kitty family.
So sorry for your loss of your dear Archie.
So sorry for the loss of your dear Archie. My sincere sympathy to you and your family.
I am so sorry Archie passed away. I am surprised too, since he was not old or sick. We will all miss reading about him and I for one will not forget him. Again I am so sorry.
My heart goes out to you and Fred. I am so very sorry for your loss. I so enjoyed watching Archie, along with the other kitties. God bless you all!
Oh, I’m so, so sorry! Archie was a sweet boy, and so loved.
Those were to be broken hearts…. I am sorry and heart broken for you
So sorry for your loss. It’s hard when you know they are getting ready to go, but for it to happens so suddenly is especially hard. I know it sounds cliche but he’ll always be in your heart. So its a good thing you have a big heart!
Farewell sweet Archie. I hope someone will eventually take over protecting everyone from those dish towels, but I doubt they’ll do it as valiantly as you!
I’m so sorry to hear about Archie’s passing. It reminded me of Stinkerbelle’s passing. It’s always so hard to lose them.
Thank you for your wonderful tribute to Archie. Your special memories of him shall furever remain in your hearts forver.
I’m so sorry about Archie. He was a real character, in the best possible way. When I read about his passing I pictured him crossing the rainbow bridge, and being greeted by one of your kitties who had gone on before him. And there’s a big tree, all for him, with dishtowels hanging
from every branch.
My condolences for your loss. Archie was a wonderful ambassador for all things house-cat and I’m grateful you shared his story over the years.
My heart weeps for your loss – I hope you are able to find comfort and strength as you adjust. I am always stunned at how different the house feels when a family member passes. Much love to you all.
“May your whiskers be ruffled by only pleasant breezes,
May your bowls be filled with tuna and sweet cream,
May your dreams be blessed with legions of mice, and lots of dishtowels to conquer,
……And most of all,
May you forever purr in peace.”
Good night sweet Prince…and flights of Angels sing thee to thy rest.
I am so sorry Robyn, Fred and the Gang. I cried for your sweet Archie. I know all to well the loss of too young a kitty and it stays with you. My sincerest sympathy you and yours.
Clearly Archie lived a life full of love.It is a great sorrow that he left all you you too soon, but there will be a place in your heart that is Archie shaped and some day you will have good memories of him to comfort you.
So sorry for your loss.
I was so sad to read this news. Such a shock for you guys. I wanted to share a quote that is close to my heart:
We who choose to surround ourselves with lives even more temporary than our own live within a fragile circle, easily and often breached. Unable to accept its awful gaps, we still would live no other way. We cherish memory as the only certain immortality, never fully understanding the necessary plan…”The Once Again Prince” Irving Townsend
I’m so sorry. Thanks to you and Fred he lived his very best life.
We lost our cat Smudge on January 9th and I completely understand how quiet it seems without Archie. Smudge was our very vocal cat, especially at breakfast and dinner time! He was also my lap cat and sat on my lap every night for most of his 18.5 years! We miss him like I know you and Fred miss Archie!
Oh, we are so sorry! Thank you for sharing sweet Archie with the world. Run fast and free, sweetheart!