Ode To Rags

Ode To Rags:
Poo, I bid you adieu.

Rags on 3/29/09

Rags on 3/29/09

Ode to Rags

In December 1989, I was ten years old
when you arrived at Christmas, a mere 4 months old.

You were the family’s cat, a replacement for Skittles, my first cat,
It’s no surprise that I rolled out the welcome mat.

You knew you’d be mine,
it was just a matter of time.

Cabbage patch clothes and baby carriage strolls–your introduction to the human world
And subtle meows and popping purrs would unfurl.

You were an old soul and were chosen for our family for that reason.
As you grew, my affection and adoration for you were to season.

You’d encounter German Shepherds–Snickers, Vandy, Tucker, Napa, and Marley,
And you’d have your share of kitties too–Kit Kat, Caymus and Murphy, oh how gnarly.

I’d drag you all over– swimming pools, jet skis and a few boat rides,
Yet you’d tolerate it, knowing it would be one of those things that’d soon subside.

Hiding in basements, avoiding the wrath of teenagers and toddlers,
You’d venture out, in due course, as one of earth’s great healers.

Walks outside, visits to the dock, wrapped around my neck,
Any other cat would be a wreck.

Catnip highs, dry tuna flakes and ice water cups,
We wouldn’t know when fur balls would erupt.

Your name evolved through the years:
Rags, Raggle Muffins, Oh My Muffins!, Raggle Puss, Naggle
Boo Boos, Freegie, Raggles, Raggies and Poo,
Must have been confusing to those ears!

Most of your life, you were a hefty 13 pound,
And you’d pee and poop in places, where that stuff should not be found!

Drinking water from sinks, stuffed animal catnaps,
Days would go by and time would elapse.

Boobs, periods, cramps, boys and heartache,
You were my much needed break.

A patchwork kitty, a band-aid man.
You quilted my heart, your grand plan.

Late night studies and the distraction of you on my bed,
I couldn’t resist getting you to pop me on the head!

I was off to Nashville, then to Lawrence and finally Albuquerque,
I missed you all the while, my furry turkey.

In December 2005, they’d discover lymphoma of your liver,
The news of which, would make me quiver.

Yet you battled the surgeries and the chemo, all our trips to Mission Med Vet,
Fighting all along, avoiding the threat.

You’d come out on top, free of cancer,
For only you knew the answer.

I’d have you to myself,
alone in my house, just me and yourself.

As your age progressed, so did your failing kidneys,
Sub Q fluids, pills out the wa-zoo, were all part of the decree.

Never a break, never a rest,
You and I were exhausted, and you began to protest.

Finally, you’d give me that look, “Jenny, I cannot do this anymore.”
And I knew it would be my turn to do that most dreaded chore.

You’d choose the time, the place,
We’d do it at your pace.

It was a Monday morning,
And I had had plenty of warning.

Bill, Dad and me were there to say good-bye
It was by your wishes that I would comply.

Jenny and Rags
Jenny and Rags

You went quick and serene,
In your final moments as a Dean.

With all your wisdom, strength and courage, I will miss you tremendously,
And the desire to see those steely blue eyes will haunt me horrendously.

Naggle Freegie, you, I adore,
You’re a love, a love that builds from the core.

I love you Poo,
And I bid you adieu.

If you want to learn more about Rags on this website, please feel free to visit the following pages:


One of the things I knew I would miss most about Rags was his purr. For 19 years I listened to that purr as a way to de-stress. I wanted to capture it, so about 2 weeks before he died, I decided to record it and then put it on YouTube, so I would have it forever. I am so thankful that I did.

The video, although black in the picture below, starts out with Rags in his yellow bed. As a kitty in renal failure, Rags was weak, so didn’t get up much, unless I had him go on walks outside. I figured the exercise helped keep everything moving.


If you have an older kitty with CRF, and you want to learn how Rags died and the days leading up to his death, please don’t hesitate to contact me. I would have loved to have known about what happens and what to expect.

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Hi, I’m Jenny Dean, creator of Floppycats! Ever since my Aunt got the first Ragdoll cat in our family, I have loved the breed. Inspired by my childhood Ragdoll cat, Rags, I created Floppycats to connect, share and inspire other Ragdoll cat lovers around the world,

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  1. Robin Holbrook says:

    “You quilted my heart… .” I well know the feeling, Jenny, and what a beautiful way to express it: just perfect!
    THANK YOU for this poem. I’m right there with you having had a feline soulmate, too. She is missed every day of my life. ❤️❤️

  2. Denise Grande says:

    Jenny, that was beautiful! Of course I am crying and you are so right about the purr and you had the forethought to get it on video. Merlin didn’t purr loud but he did have the sweetest softest Meow with eyes that were the windows of his soul. I never captured that on video and oh what I would give now to hear him or see him look at me like no one else could. Thank you Jenny and thank you Rags for being the inspiration for your mom’s blog. It has been so helpful to me as I become a new cat mom again! They won’t replace Merlin but they will help fill the hole that he left in my heart. RIP Merlin by beloved ragdoll. I miss you everyday buddy.

  3. wonderful tribute to your sweet boy, i am bawling my eyes out, i know how it feels to lose your baby. my cats are my best friends and i prefer them to most people i know when they die it is like having a piece of your heart ripped out. i do believe though that i will see all of my cats again and what a wonderful day that will be. and rags lives on in you and what you do and in all of us that love you and what you do for everyone that loves their wonderful cats. thanks jenny.

  4. So sweet it made me cry. Can readily understand and know those feelings all too well unfortunately. Just tears your heart out when they have to go. Know he loved you as his “special” one. Makes me think of my Angel who was my soul mate. She absorbed my physical and mental anguish over my injury and resulting pain and became hyperthyroid 6 months after I was diagnosed. She also succumbed to the horrible CRF. Wish with all my heart that some day, there will be a cure or a preventative for that horrible disease process at least to where it can be treatable and not always fatal.

  5. In 5 days it will be 4 years since Rags died, that’s hard to believe. Rags was a great cat. 🙁

    1. Yes, I know! There will be a post about him on the 30th – thanks for keeping track. Yes, he was one of the great loves of my life.

  6. Sure, that would be great. How does it work if they are not in my area?

    1. Great – I sent you a private email with her contact details. She is best with a phone call, as she doesn’t check email terribly regularly.

  7. This is a beautiful ode to Rags. Beautiful cat and beautiful caretaker. It’s hard not to cry. I have a 20 year old cat, Bobbie (a.k.a. Land Shark), that is going through kidney failure right now. It’s so hard to watch her decline, since she’s always had such an amazing personality and is so sweet. She’s my best friend and my baby. I don’t want her to suffer, but I don’t want to let her go. Every option seems unbearable…

    1. Thanks, Heather. I am so sorry to hear about your Bobbie/Land Shark! NOT FUN! Enjoy the time you have with her. Those last three months I had with Rags were so very precious and dear to my heart – take photos, take videos, post them on YouTube, so you will always have them! I honestly believe that they never leave you – I can still feel my Rags with me.

      1. Thank you so much, Jenny. I have been consoling myself with that very thought — she will always be with me, and she will be like a kitten again, full of life and energy. There will be no keeping her off the bed! :,) This quote is also comforting, “Sleep soft dear friend, for while I live, You shall not die.” Michael Joseph

        1. Heather, I talked to an animal communicator on a regular basis through the 3 months that Rags was in renal failure and it helped me so much get through the process. I was able to ask questions and get answers. Animals, from what I have heard from animal communicators, always have a message to give us before they go. If that’s not too far out there for you, I would be happy to give yo the name, email, etc. of the animal communicator I use.

  8. Precious!! I’ve loved learning about Rags and how special he was and how much he’s influenced your life. Love and grieving both last.

  9. Sharon Shulby says:

    A tough cookie am I,
    Still I cry
    When I read about your Rags,

    RIP Rags

  10. helena mlinek says:

    that was so touching i truly understood and felt your pain been there done that , our little angles pop into our lives and give us so much ! god bless you and your rags and all that have passed on to better places … what a blessing it is to have such love in the world …

  11. Thank you for the beautiful video. I

  12. I just read your tribute too Rags I just cried my eyes out with no sound I dont want to scare my boys that was just,,,He was just an amazing babe of a cat and you are so lucky to have had him for 19 1/2 years and he was so loved by you. Charley And Trigg are so lucky too have you and so glad you have them especially for times like these .

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