I’ve received a lot of wonderful feedback about my new book, Tortitude: The BIG Book About Cats With a BIG Attitude. Many of you have reached out via email and social media to let me know how much you love the book, and every one of your emails makes me so happy.

This past Sunday, I received an email from Anita Botman, whose tortie Snoes is featured in the book. Anita’s email was a little different from the others:

Dear Ingrid,

My cat Snoes was selected for your tortitude book. I was so excited about it! The book was dispatched and I was so much looking forward to it. Unfortunately in the meantime my cat Snoes became ill. Yesterday we went to the vet and she was diagnosed with kidney failure. The vet told me that treatment would be extremely difficult because she was a very sensitive and anxious cat. Also, it didn’t look good, she had very little chance even if she got the treatment. So the vet advised me to let her go.

A few weeks ago I read your article about choosing not to treat severely ill and anxious cats. It was a huge consolation and support yesterday. I feel the same about it. I had to let her go. She was my very beloved friend. She was my child, my everything.

When I got home, the book had arrived. I opened it and saw all those beautiful cats….and my darling, looking back at me from the page. It was a very special moment. The book will be an inspiration also, because Snoes got me hooked. I think there’s a very big chance my next cat will be a tortie as well. I love the Conscious Cat, and Ruby and Allegra are so lovely! All the best, from a sad but grateful cat owner. It’s such a gift, to be loved by a tortie.


Anita’s email touched me deeply. I feel like I’ve come to know every single one of the torties featured in my books – how could I not, after spending two months poring over photos, and trying to match the right quote with each of these special kitties. My heart ached for Anita’s loss. I asked her to share a little more about her special girl with us.


Anita first saw a photo of the beautiful Snoes, which means “sweetheart,” on the website of an animal shelter in Hoorn in the Netherlands. The description read “Snoes is a beautiful spayed female. She’s 6 years old. She is a quiet cat who’s affectionate to her owners. Among strangers she’s reluctant. She’s a bit insecure and she sometimes lashes out when she’s anxious. Her new owner will have to accept this. Who will give this lovely lady a quiet new home without any other animals?”

“Snoes was a miracle to me,” Anita told me. “She entered my life as a very anxious rescue cat.”  She had been dumped by her previous owners. Snoes was with Anita for only two years. In these years she grew and flourished. “She was very sensitive, but also so sweet and sometimes extremely funny,” said Anita. “In the beginning she did lash out, but these instances became less and less frequent. In the end she was with me day and night. We understood each other completely.”


Not surprisingly, Snoes had a unique personality – after all, she was a tortie. “She taught me so much,” says Anita. “Even though our time together was short, it was a wonderful experience.”


Anita saw Snoes’ photo in my book just after she had buried her. “It was as if she said to me: “We’ve had a wonderful time together. And I did a good job raising you, human.”

Rest easy, sweet Snoes.


A few days after Snoes passed away, Anita went back to the same shelter where she adopted her. “I found another tortie that made my heart melt,” Anita told me. She took Bibi home the same day. “It’s strange and I feel guilty, incredibly sad and happy at the same time. Snoes will always be remembered and loved, but I’m also glad I can offer this sweet cat a good home and all the love in the world.”

I think Snoes is smiling from heaven.

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30 Comments on A Tribute to Snoes, Who Lives on in Tortitude: The BIG Book About Cats With a BIG Attitude

  1. So sorry for your loss, Anita! Yes, I am crying too because I know how hard it is to let a fur baby go, and eventually I will have to do it yet again. Although it is worth all the pain to experience the pure joy of having them in our lives. Wishing you and your new baby peace, comfort and delight!

  2. The best tribute we can pay to any of our pets who have passed is to adopt another rescue … we love them all in different ways and we never forget the ones who have been in our lives. Sitting here with tears welling reading this. We are so blessed with our kitties. Condolences over Snoes, Anita … and congrats on adopting Bibi. I hope she has many happy years with you.

  3. What an amazing (yet heartbreaking) story, but I’m so glad Anita has found another tortie to love. That’s exactly why this book is so special to me as well, because my Angel Truffles is in it. It helps our beloved pets live on forever.

  4. The story of Snoes will have touched all of us who know and love cats; torties are very special I think, although I have never had one. Anita was very brave I think but did the right thing by her. Two years is a short time but they formed a special bond obviously and the little girl will never be forgotten.

    We have two cats at present who are diagnosed with kidney failure although do not appear to be presenting any great problems. Making the most of each and every day with them – what more can one do?

    May Bibi help to ease the loss of Snoes, I’m sure she will.

    It was a wonderful and heartwarming mail.

    May the little lady rest in peace.

    • Hi Margaret, You are so right about making the most of every day with them. Cats are so precious, I hope there will be many precious day to come.

  5. The compassion and relationship we have with our cats (our babies) is like none other in the world. I believe we our heart-break and grieving of our loss when they leave us, is more intense then any other. They are the little innocent beautiful souls who come to us and fill our lives with the kind of love and devotion that we could never receive from a human. My heart ached too, when I read of the loss of this beautiful kitty. Its one the the hardest decisions to make what you decided, but it shows what a wonderful heart you have. God Bless. Liz

  6. I read your story about Snoes right now, and my tears are pouring.. .however, you should not feel guilty for bringing home another sweet cat soon after your loss of Snoes – Snoes would have wanted you to be happy, and as a caring person you will love Bibi as much, but in a different way. Every cat we are happy to share our lives with, leave huge pawprints in our hearts.
    It is my Birthday today, and I just received a notification that I can go and pick up my copies of the “Big Book about Torties” – and I am thrilled since my cat Kajsa also is featured in the book.
    Anita – I send you loving thoughts from Sweden.
    Ingrid – Thank you for this wonderful gift!!

    • Thank you Maria! Kajsa is gorgeous! She has such a sweet and friendly face. Happy birthday from Bibi and her human from the Netherlands. Bibi is a darling as was Snoes, she’s such a comfort!

  7. This was such a beautiful, albeit sad story, and a wonderful tribute. I can tell that both Anita is a special woman and it goes without saying that Snoes was, (and STILL IS) special as well. I am sure your tribute touched her beyond belief, and her words that she wrote about YOU only reinforce everything that I wrote and feel as well. xoxoxo My deepest sympathy

    • Thank you so much! You are right, Snoes was a very very special cat and this tribute has helped me so much! Ingrid is a wonderful person with a huge heart.

  8. I am so sorry to hear about Snoes. It sounds like she brought a lot of happiness to Anita’s life. And I know Anita brought a lot of love and happiness to Snoes’ life as well.

  9. First my deepest condolences to Anita. I am so sorry for Snoes passing, and yet happy too that you opened your heart and home to beautiful Bibi.

    Thanks again to Ingrid, for sharing Snoes story. What a wonderful memorial to Snoes to have been included in your book.

  10. Oh my goodness, that’s so beautiful and also heart-aching too. Thank you for sharing this story with us and my love to Anita and rest peacefully dear little Snoes. My heart goes out to all who have lost little furry loved ones… our hearts will never forget them as long as we live… they will always be there. As you know Ingrid this story will mean a great deal to me through what happened with Britney. Thank you so much for sharing this today. I’m popping over to Amazon now. Love and blessings to you Ingrid, Allegra and Ruby and all Conscious Cat friends… we are a family of cat lovers and so many of us are torti-aholics Jennie & Faith xoxoxo

  11. Snoes was an absolutely gorgeous Tortie! Loved her beautiful long white whiskers. I know the emotional price–it’s more stressful than a big Vet bill. I am truly blessed that my 17 yr old tortie seems to realize I give meds & subcutaneous fluids to help him. He’s difficult to get oral meds down, but I give lots of loving & positive wirds, tone of voice, touch–& his favorite treat when done. He crouched down when I say ‘meds,’ & does issue Mee or two of protest, but when it’s done, he acts like nothing happened! Truly amazing. He’s my special boy, who lives to be around me. I might feel differently if this was frightening to him,so I’m grateful for every ‘extra’ day I have him, xo. Maybe my experience as a pediatric nurse isn’t list in him

    • Her whiskers were so beautiful! I didn’t hav a choice, the vet also adviced me to let her go. How rare to have a male tortie! I hope he will stay with you for a long time.

  12. Snoes was my cat and I’m so grateful for this story. It’s so beautiful and the book has been such a comfort. Thank you so much, Ingrid!

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