A loss is always heartbreaking–even for animals.
Gracie passed away last year and it was a tragedy for her entire family. But what’s worse is that her best friend Baby Grey still hasn’t moved on from her death. She still shows up at the front door on their previously scheduled time.
Every day, she wanders through the yard then stands in front of the sliding door for almost 20 minutes in hopes to see her friend.
Shea BelewBrennaman, late Gracie’s owner is a fourth-grade teacher in Decatur, Alabama. When asked how the cat first came to become friends with her pet, she said that it had almost been two and a half years ago when she first saw the cat. “I think it lives two cul-de-sacs over from us and I don’t know its name,” Brennaman said. “I and my family just refer to it as Baby Grey.”
The two first met in Brennaman’s backyard. It didn’t take long for Baby Grey to become friends with the guard dog, despite his overprotective nature.
“Gracie was an American Eskimo and stayed outside almost all the time,” Brennaman said. “She loved nature and, while she was a protector of our house, she loved all other animals and they loved her.”
The guard dog didn’t limit his love for just his species. She was friends with chipmunks, rabbits, even hawks.
“Gracie accepted her into our yard immediately and the two became fast friends,” Brennaman said.
Of course, Baby Grey’s regular visits turned into something deeper. The two had begun to develop a strong bond.
“We would leave Gracie tomatoes on our porch, as they were her favourite treat, and she would share them with the cat,” Brennaman said, “which was a huge deal because Gracie was very particular about sharing food.”
“When Baby Grey started coming over frequently the two of them shared tomatoes and sunbathed together,” she said. “Sunbathing was their absolute favourite activity.”
Brennaman believed that Gracie had one of the best personalities in a dog. He wasn’t just friendly and loyal but also protective and smart. She calls back to the day when the adorable creature saved her from a water moccasin attack even though he was just an 8-month old puppy back then.
“She had a sweet personality,” Brennaman said. “[She] was a friend to all and was very motherly, especially to our Yorkie.”
But tragedy hit the sweet family like a train. During October of 2017, Brennaman noticed that Gracie had lost her spunky personality. When she took her to the hospital, Gracie was diagnosed with aggressive lymphoma. It looked like she wasn’t going to live to see her 12th birthday.
“Gracie spent most of her remaining days on the cold porch,” Brennaman said. “I think part of it gave her relief but, in reality, she was saying goodbye to her territory and to all of her friends in her yard.”
She was right. Baby Grey was right there.
“Baby Grey came to see her several times in her last days and, while there was no tomato eating, the two just laid there to be with each other,” she added. “They had that kind of connection where nothing needed to be said or done. They just wanted to be with each other.”
Within a month of her diagnosis, Gracie passed away in November of the year. Her death was a great loss for anyone, but it hit Baby Grey harder than anyone else. She dealt with the loss in her own way–by making a vigil for her late best buddy.
“Since Gracie’s death, several times a week, Baby Grey will come to our porch,” Brennaman said. “She will first come right up to the door and look in for Gracie. I don’t know how long she waits, sometimes she’ll wait for 20 minutes and then she will walk away to the porch where she will sit a while before she eventually lays down and sunbathes.”
Baby Grey’s visits are now heartily welcomed by Brennaman although she hates to see how much the cat misses her best friend.
“It breaks my heart to see Baby Grey still looking for Gracie,” Brennaman added, “but at the same time it gives me so much hope that these two animals had such a strong bond.”
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