Kara took her kitty, Cali, to the vet's last Monday, to have an infected claw removed. She had to go back to work, so Romie picked Cali up at the end of the day and brought her back to our house. Kara and Adam came to pick her up that evening and stayed for supper.
Dr. Paul Kleman has been our veterinarian since the beginning of pets at Our Little Acre and has given wonderful and affordable care. Kara and Adam had taken their cats to a local vet in Defiance, but prefer the care that Dr. Kleman's office gives, so they drive the extra mileage for it.
Last Thursday was Simon's day for his annual shave session, and Chris (from Dr. Kleman's office) did an awesome job, as usual. I picked him up late Thursday afternoon and saw Dr. Kleman of course, and his associate, Dr. DuVall, while I was there.
Sunday, I got a phone call from my mom with some sad news. Dr. Kleman had suffered a fatal heart attack that morning. I couldn't believe it. I had not given it a thought that this wonderful man would leave us so soon. He has taken care of every single one of our pets when they required a veterinarian's care.
First Smokey, the long-haired gray cat we had when we first were married, then Misha, the long-haired black/brown cat we had when we moved to our present house.
Mimi knew Dr. Kleman for 16 years and his face was one of the last she saw when she left this world. I will never forget the kindness and empathy he showed while having to do what he was trained to do to end her suffering.
And so it was when we were faced with the same situation with our dog, Simba.
Though extremely professional, Dr. Kleman had a way of showing his love of animals - a love for our pets - that shone through his quiet exterior. You just knew he wanted what was best for both pets and their owners.
Last year, when we took a stray in for neutering, we had a change in heart due to the myriad of problems the cat had and we questioned the wisdom of the surgery. Dr. Kleman said he couldn't make that decision for us, yet let us know that he would understand if we chose to euthanize Barney. As I sat in his office, crying over a cat I barely knew, you could see the empathy in his eyes, as no doubt he'd been in that position many times before.
With a family of nine cats (presently), you can imagine that Dr. Kleman (and more recently, Dr. DuVall) has been a very important person in our lives and the lives of our cats. We're very sad to hear about his passing and he will be extremely missed by so many.
We mourn the loss of Dr. Kleman and pray that God will give comfort to his grieving family, especially his grandchildren that he talked about and enjoyed so much. May they find peace in knowing that he was loved by those whose lives he touched, through their pets.