in the interzone now
I am so an animal person. Which is why fate has to have a twisted sense of humor and make me allergic. I ignore the fact that I am allergic, of course. Can't keep me away!
When I was a li'l, li'l kid, I had a turtle. It was a she that we thought was a he, and we named 'him' after Oscar the Grouch. Wow, that is young. I think we'd had 'him' a year before we figured out Henrietta would've been a better name.
Of course, we let poor ol' sex-identity-crisis Oscar run (maybe that needs quotes too?) in our backyard after we'd set up a toilet paper roll maze so 'he' couldn't escape. Well, one day, my brother wasn't watching (and I was inside having a nap; I do believe I was 5 at the time), and we never saw Oscar again. Though we never found any splats on the very nearby highway, so somehow he must've escaped to the little park that was four blocks down. For a turtle, that's impressive!
When I was 7, we got Misty. She was beautiful. A husky/German shepard/collie/other with awesome black and bone-yellow fur (and that's even how I thought of it then; it's not just my new weird nature). She was dense as all hell and couldn't learn any tricks except the ones that benefited her, like sit up, but she was so adorable. We got her from the pound, and the family she had lived with before had beaten her, so it took her a year to not be completely freaked out about everything in general. In ditzy doggy fashion, she had completely forgotten by the time we moved to Calgary, of course.
*sigh* She ended up getting a tumor in her brain that made her more aggresive. She never so much as growled at my brother and I, but she almost attacked this guy who was treating her a bit roughly because he thought she was this certain breed of dog that he trained and she wasn't responding properly to all his commands. So he cornered my brother and I, just kids, and demanded to get our home phone number so he could rant about how terrible our dog was to our parents. Being only 11 then, what else was I gonna do?
I sobbed all the way home. And poor Misty was put down only about a month later.
*sigh* Still have a model of her I made when I was a kid.
After Misty, we got a hamster. Teddy bear hamster, with this amazing tannish-brown fur. We named her Marit. She lasted a year and a half. Got an infection in her lungs. I held her as she died... Which just isn't good for a kid.
Now we have Fidget. A ferret! Yes, that is, in fact, a weasel-type creature. So adorable. We've had her for five years! My poor baby is currently ill... And can't get better. *sniffsniff* It's really starting to show now. Her entire underside is bald and sometimes she'll sway on her feet, and even fall over. She'll twitch and bob. Like little seizures.
We know she's not feeling any pain (she's very vocal when hurt; a ferret can scream like a toddler), so that's good. And whenever she's not having her fits, she's acting exactly like her old self; standing on your feet, chewing on your feet, licking any bare skin she can find, schizzing out and tearing her squeaky mouse into bits and pieces. Stuff like that.
Here's for another few years of ferrety love.
In the five years with my Fidge-babes, I've also had two other animals.
One was the weekend weasel.
An actual weasel, not a ferret. That rich brown fur with a shockingly yellow bellow and shining liquid black eyes. Not even as long as my palm.
My brother and his friend were walking in Carburn Park and they found two baby weasels (SHE thought they were ferrets, and that she had to rescue them) standing in the middle of the bike path, screaming at them. They were both severely malnourished. Their mother must have died. My brother's friend managed to catch one of them, and bring it back to our house.
Upon finding out that it was a weasel, not a ferret, she basically said "ew, gross!" and lost interest. This is where I took over.
My brother and I took the weasel back to Carburn Park, in this little carboard box with one of the ferret's towels in it, and tried to set it free. It stepped out of the box, then just didn't move. I couldn't just leave it there, so I coaxed it back into the box and we went back home.
It was relocated to a big blue plastic storage box (so it couldn't jump out), with ferret blankets, a jar-lid full of wet kitten food (Fidget eats dry kitten food), a glass of water duct-taped to the side, and a little pile of litter (wishful thinking).
Every time anyone reached a hand down, to clean up its mess, or rearrange the food in hopes that it would eat, the little thing would scream its head off. It thus garnered the name of Squeak, since it had such a tiny little scream.
I ended up figuring out it was too young for even semi-solid food and started feeding it condensed milk out of those water-squirty syringes you get when your wisdom teeth are pulled. It would let me hold it, even pet it, and it trusted me.
It was so amazing to have a baby wild animal trust me. I mean, wow.
It was four days later that the animal services came to take care of the weasel, but in those four days, the li'l baby had gone from bone-thin and emaciated to actually having a tummy and looking much much more healthy. Now here's hoping they didn't set it back out into the wild before it was too young to fend for itself...
My other animal is a co-owned medium-haired black kitten that lives at my best friend's place named Halloween. Black fur, yellow eyes; sounds like a Halloween cat, don't it?
yet deign i embrace you with meek adoration?
your fragile humanity rised with contrition.