Sorry this is going to be a long post because I just need to vent a little bit and I think most people here are kindhearted enough to understand a little of what I'm going through... I am very sad to say that my cat Pumpkin was killed by a coyote over the weekend (on my birthday!). She was one of my two cats - the other is Nala. Both cats are outdoor cats...but I always make sure they are in the house as soon as it gets dark and my family usually does also since I nag them so much to make sure the cats are inside. Usually when I get home if Pumpkin is still outside she is waiting for me on the front steps. I got home about 11pm and she wasn't on the steps so I thought she was in the house - looked everywhere for her and couldn't find her. So I went back outside and called for her some more and still couldn't find her. At that point I called my brother because I was freaking out. Its totally not like Pumpkin to not come when she is called or to stay out at night since she was such a chicken. My other cat Nala would stay out all night if I let her. So my brother was on his way home and we went looking with flashlights and found a bunch of her fur in the backyard and some blood but no sign of the cat. We searched til about 2:30am and I went out again in the morning as soon as it was light out but couldn't find any other trace of her. At first I was just hoping that she got attacked but managed to get away and was just hiding but its been a couple days and there is no sign of her so I've pretty much accepted that she is gone. I'm not positive that it was a coyote but I don't know what else it could've been....we don't really have any other animals around here that would attack a cat. Plus after I went around the neighborhood to warn people they mentioned they had seen a coyote around. I think right now I'm probably more shocked than anything - I don't think it has completely sunk in yet. I keep looking for her and then remember that she is gone. All I have left is the fur I picked up from the backyard. I know to some people pets are not part of the family but Pumpkin was like a child to me. She was born to a semi-feral mother (lived under a porch and was fed scraps by an old lady). I rescued her when she was only 4wks old when the mother cat was run over and the kittens were abandoned. Out of the 4 kittens she was the only one that survived. I had her for almost 9 years. I know you are not supposed to pick favorites with pets but she was definitely my favorite and it is so hard knowing that I'll never see her again So everyone who has pets - please be careful....I don't want anyone else to have to go through this!