Stewie's Owner Speaks

RENO, Nev. Fighting back tears, Robin Hendrickson remembers all the great times she had with Stewie.

"He was something I could give to the world," she said. "He was that great of a guy."

Eight year old Stewie captured hearts here in Nevada and across the country as the Guinness World Record Holder for Longest Domestic Cat.

Measuring more than 4 feet from tip of nose to tip of tail, Stewie used his fame for good and became a therapy cat.

"One of our big dreams after he got his records and certified as a therapy cat was to go to St. Jude's and visit the children there," Hendrickson said.

Sadly, that dream would never come true. Early in 2012, Stewie was diagnosed with Lymphosarcoma, a malignant disease of the lymphoid tissue. Hendrickson decided to take on the deadly disease.

"Not everyone can afford chemo for their cats," she said. "I'm still in debt up to my eyeballs, but I'm glad I did it. It gave him a longer life."

At first it seemed the chemo was working.

"He fought it for a long time," Hendrickson said. "He fought it for about 8 months"

For a short window of time, Stewie was cancer free. But things took a turn for the worse.

"We went down for his 3 month follow up check and they found a lump on his kidney," Hendrickson said. "My heart just dropped and it just about killed me. I knew we were going to do what we could. But we couldn't do anything."

She says the second diagnosis was made even harder by Stewie's upcoming 8th birthday.

"We knew we'd be celebrating his birthday then celebrating his life," she said.

On Monday, Hendrickson decided it was time to let Stewie go. She says putting him down was difficult, but the right decision.

"It was one of the hardest things I had to do, but one of the best thing I've ever done," she said. "They kept telling me he wasn't in pain, but there was some suffering there."

"The biggest last moment I'm going to remember is him looking at me and saying 'You know, we did good together mom'."

Though he may be gone, Hendrickson says Stewie will never be too far away.

"He's mostly in the urn," she said. "But I got a little piece of him inside this pendant here, and he'll always be with me right next to my heart."

Hendrickson says she appreciates all of the condolences she has received from the community. She asks if you'd like to remember Stewie's life, to please donate to the Northern Nevada Humane Society.


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