Bob Dole longhaired orange cat

On Saturday night, Bob Dole, my dear friend Robin Olson’s beloved cat, died peacefully after a long battle with cancer. He was surrounded by those he loved.

Bob was Robin’s mother’s cat. When she died unexpectedly five years ago, Robin took Bob in, initially intending to find a good home for him, because she already had multiple cats of her own. Bob had not received regular veterinary care while he lived with her mother (a regular topic of dissension between Robin and her mother). When Robin took Bob to her vet, he was diagnosed as FIV positive and diabetic. His liver values were through the roof. He had severe dental disease. Robin was almost ready to throw up her hands and walk away, but, said Robin, ” it was Bob. I couldn’t do that to him. He was a sweet-hearted cat with an odd, bubbly purr and bright green eyes. Bob never asked to be left outdoors and fed inappropriate food or not get vet care. Somehow I would help improve his outlook.” And Bob went on to live another five happy years with Robin and her other cats. He was diagnosed with liver cancer earlier this year.

I never met Bob in purrson. I first met him, and by extension, Robin, online, when I came across an article Robin had written for the Feline Nutrition Education Society, titled What Bob Dole Taught Me About Raw Food. In the article, Robin describes her experience with raw feeding, how it put Bob’s diabetes into remission, and how the experience turned her into a raw food advocate. I had just begun investigating feeding raw to my own cats at the time. In a way, you could say Bob Dole inspired me to transition my own cats to a healthier diet. I’m sure I’m not the only cat parent who was inspired by Robin’s article – there’s no telling how many cats are on healthier diets now because of Bob, and Robin.

Bob also inspired one of my own articles, Making Medical Decisions for Your Cat. At the time, Bob had just been diagnosed with liver cancer, and Robin was writing about her struggle to make the right decisions for his care. I received a lot of positive feedback for this article. Once again, Bob inspired and helped other cats and their humans.

If it wasn’t for Bob, and the article Robin wrote about him, I might never have met Robin. Sure, I probably would have come across her fabulous blog, Covered in Cat Hair, eventually – but I like to think that Bob was responsible for “introducing us,” and for what has turned into a beautiful friendship.

When a special cat like Bob dies, he leaves a huge void for those who loved him. My heart goes out to Robin. I hope that knowing that Bob touched so many lives will provide some comfort as she mourns his passing and adjusts to live without Bob.

Rest in peace, sweet Bob. Your legacy lives on.

14 Comments on A Tribute to Bob Dole

  1. What a beautiful and touching tribute to a special cat!!!!
    Rest in peace, sweet Bob! My heart goes out to Robin, she gave him so much love and I’m sure her beloved Bob is smiling at her from the Bridge…

  2. Thank you, everyone, for your beautiful words. Robin has not been online much these past couple of days, but when she reads them, I know they’ll provide comfort.

    My heart was breaking for Robin when I heard the news, and writing this tribute felt like a way to keep Bob’s legacy going.

  3. Clearly my heart breaks for Robin at the lose of her beloved Bob. Just like Buckley, some cats are destined to make us better people and better cat owners – Bob is another one of those master feline teachers. I have been remiss in learning about the positives of raw food feeding and am going to look into this for my cats. We will miss you Bob, but somehow I think you will stay in the hearts of all of us.

  4. Bless Robin for caring enough for Bob to help extend his time here before heading over the Rainbow Bridge…..There were blessings all around thanks to Bob it soundsl like – the benefits of raw diet and the fact that good vet care can extend the life of our cats. He sounds like he was a most special guy.

    Pam and Sam

  5. Good bye Bob Dole.
    Robin gave you more love and care in that 5 years than so many cats get in a lifetime. I am so glad you got to experience this here on earth. I know you love Robin. She is a saint.

  6. It’s been bitter sweet reading Robin’s posts during the past few monthss. As cat lovers we’ve all experienced this deep emotional roller coaster of feelings while caring for our aging and ill babies. Our hearts and healing wishes are with her now. Wrapping you in warm fuzzy love dear sister! Thank you TCC, for this very lovely tribute!

  7. I am so sorry to hear of Bob’s passing. What a gorgeous boy and what a great battle you both fought. RIP sweet man! Robin you gave him better health and lots of love in the years you
    had him. What an inspiration to us all.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *