Stewie, who just turned 8 in January, has given up his battle with cancer. The world renowned Maine Coon was surrounded by family and passed peacefully at his home in Reno just after 7:30pm on Monday, February 4.
Diagnosed in early 2012 with Lymphosarcoma, a malignant disease of the lymphoid tissues, Stewie's person, Robin Hendrickson, began treating him with chemotherapy. He successfully received treatment, entering remission after being declared cancer free. However, the remission period was brief, as veterinarians recently found another tumor on his kidneys, and this time, the cancer was more aggressive.
"I made a decision last year that as long as Stewie wanted to fight, I would too. While I knew that he may only have a few years left, I knew he wasn't ready to go, so I chose to stand by him. I knew that he would tell me when it was time," said Robin Hendrickson, Stewie's person. "But when the cancer came back, I knew that although we could fight it, the end was near, and so I wanted to simply make him comfortable and let him enjoy the time he did have. He was given permission by his veterinarian to continue visits as a therapy cat here in Reno, and recently attended the International Cat Show in Oregon. Stewie was always very social and loved meeting new people. I knew this is what he needed during his final days. He has touched many lives, and for that, I am grateful."
Stewie is known across the country for his title of Guinness World Record Holder for the Longest Domestic Cat, measuring 48.5 inches from the tip of his nose to the tip of his tail. He is also a record holder for the World's Longest Tail on a Domestic Cat. As a certified therapy cat, he frequently visited people at the Regent Care Center in Reno. He also helped to spread awareness for animal welfare, supporting numerous events hosted by Nevada Humane Society. Stewie lived in Reno with Robin and his fellow animal siblings.
"It's the hardest thing for me to do, but it is the best thing I can do. Letting go of a dear soul and knowing that a piece of me will be gone forever, all the while keeping a piece of his soul. Maybe it's selfishness... maybe it's just grief... it will keep me holding on forever. I will think of him daily... hoping some day to heal but never knowing when that will be. He is such a huge part of my life. I thank you, my friends for being here for me on good days and bad... and I thank him, for without that, I would never have known most of you," confessed Hendrickson to Stewie's supporters.
"I love you, Bubba," said Hendrickson in one final goodbye.
Sunday, May 19 2013 7:02 PM EDT2013-05-19 23:02:30 GMT
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