Category Archives: Rodentia

Daily Drama 54

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Daily Drama 54

I just returned from the 2016 Blogpaws conference . . . wait, almost a couple weeks ago! So where are the blogs? I’m writing about two fantastic capybara folks, really I am, with lots of photos! 

The blogs will be posted before my next trip, but the dramas have slowed me down.

This will be a little dramatic update, then, and maybe the roller coaster that is this week will take a break.

Today, my precious little budgie, Tank, gave up on me. He’s one of the two I adopted from Petco’s back room, and we never expected him to survive more than a couple days. That’s why he came to my sanctuary instead of going to a home. Two months later, his little bitey Spitfire is alone, and she pines. She knew Tank was unwell, we all did, but he was well loved.

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Spitfire and Tank, their first day at home.

This morning I faced the fact that my pet sitter still had not responded to my request for service. I frantically started the search for a new petsitter, filling out their woefully inadequate forms, leaving so many boxes unchecked, no dogs, yes but my cats are not the issue, the “other” category only goes up to “4” but who expects fifty pets? That’s crazy, right? Fortunately, my sitter contacted me a couple hours into the task. Prompted by my voicemail message, he had checked his email spam folder and found my requests. EVERYBODY, CHECK YOUR SPAM FOLDERS! You might have a Nigerian uncle who bequeathed you a million dollars!

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Frederick of Hollywood, 2014

I have been recording Guinea pig weights, just as if they are little capybaras. Frederick of Hollywood has been in a slow steady decline for the past year but I was surprised when his breathing became labored. Off to the vet he went, and now he is being treated for a touch of pneumonia.

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Frederick of Hollywood, 2015

Once we get him stabilized, we’ll see if he responds to treatment for his advanced arthritis, and what the heck is going on with his spleen? The overall conclusion is that he is much older than 5-1/2 year old Stevie Ray who he came in with. Fred loves his banana flavored medicine and his Apple Banana Critical Care. I’m also giving him some baby squash in hopes of putting some weight back on him. After loading those hand feeding syringes with critical care, I’m really excited about baby food! It’s a piece of cake!

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Fat Fred, 2013

It looks like the ratties will be here a while, so it’s time to build a larger habitat for them. I have never been quite so excited about a rat cage! Its a flight cage I picked up on Freecycle over a year ago and it has weathered to a lovely patina out in the barn storage area. It is large enough to hold some birdhouse climbing platforms, a pair of Levi’s, an IKEA bedroom suite, and two cute little white rats! There is a drawer underneath to collect debris, and I have a fistful of coupons from BlogPaws for fancy Ökocat kitty litter that should be perfect. Now we have a race to see what is complete first: the cage or this blog post. If you see before and after photos, the cage won.

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Prince Dobalob: the curmudgeon persona

Dobby has had a lot of visitors lately. It’s kind of seasonal, the interest in pet capybaras. He sets aside his curmudgeonly Dobbs persona and becomes Prince Dobalob, the charming and entertaining donkey/pig. It’s fun to see the reaction to their Facebook posts as his visitors spread the word that while there are ROUS’s, there is no fire swamp. I guess I need to talk to The Bartender about that.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/36106576@N05/

Dobby has friends in high places.

Also in the Fame and Fortune category, Dobby’s mugshot was selected by Don Moyer for his next puzzle! Selectees receive a copy of the proposed puzzle, a current puzzle, and a Surprise! Dobby just received his surprise, and it is a framed thank you card, signed by Don! Most amazingly, the card features Dobby, right smack dab in the middle of the card! It is truly magnificent!

http://www.nwf.org/Garden-For-Wildlife/Certify.aspx

No, in fact, I am NOT going to mow.

Did you know that Stacy’s Funny Farm is a Certified Wildlife Habitat? The neighbors think the sign just excuses me from traditional gardening tasks, but in fact my garden meets all four of the required criteria. The sapsucker nest is next door, but the top of their rotten tree fell into my yard. Does that count? I have a pair of hummingbirds buzzing me as I write this, and fledgling bushtits were fed by their parents on the tree branch above my head.

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Better the cat food than the cats. The raccoons around here are fierce.

I’m on day four of trying to outsmart a raccoon who discovered where I (used to) store the bag of dry cat food. The nightly possum hasn’t checked out the recyclables lately, but it’s possible he checks up on the raccoon handywork for leftovers. I doubt he’s dextrous enough to get past bungee cords on his own.

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Mr. Oliver Possum (This is right outside the kitchen door.)

Dobby’s mallard ducks are currently absent, no doubt in their eclipse molt. They’ll return in a couple of weeks. Dobby’s B&B is currently hosting a Bewick’s Wren with nestlings! I can’t really see them in the nest, but she is a very busy birdmom and they cry for her when she flies off to gather food. The crow and squirrel population have increased already and summer has just begun!

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She built the nest way up, so you can’t see in. They were only eggs when I took this photo. (Yes, that’s Dobby’s bed back there.)

Did I say summer? As in the Olympics?

THIS is summer! (Not for Dobby!)

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Daily Special: Two Female Albino Ratties!

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ADOPTABLE: two female albino rats

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The one on the top is Ghost, and the under-rat is Yuki

These sweet young rats were recently rescued from a behavioral studies lab at the University of Washington.  They were going to be euthanized so a student adopted two of them, but now the student is graduating and can no longer keep them. Rats are sweet, gentle, and entertaining pets. Though rats are short-lived, they should have a happy three years in a cat-free and snake-free home. 

Names: Ghost and Yuki (means Snow)

Gender: both are female (albino Wistar laboratory rats)

Birthdays: unknown, they are about 5/6 months old so they were probably born sometime in January. 

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The one on the left is Ghost, and the right is Yuki

Personality: Yuki is sweet and a little more on the shy side, very relaxed. Ghost is very active and loves exploring. Both love to climb and be petted. Ghost will start falling asleep if you scratch her behind the ear! They get along well– they have occasional wrestling matches but it never goes far and they like to sleep together. 

They come with:

-brand new cage (powder-coated) from Martin’s Cages

-tub of food

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This is their basic diet, but they like a variety of grains and vegetables, too.

-16 oz water bottle with cage attachment

-4 cardboard tubes that they love to relax/sleep in and chew on

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The tubes provide enrichment. Rats are very smart so toys and hobbies keep them happy. You can make them nifty little cabins out of clean cardboard boxes!

Please contact me if you are interested!

Daily Drama 44 | Happy Halloween!

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Daily Drama 44 | Happy Halloween!

Something funny is happening around here. I think the guinea pigs are getting bigger!

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Prince Pumpkin Dobalob

This is me, Dobby, in my Halloween costume from a few years ago, I think it was 2011. It’s a pumpkin, and it fits me pretty well, I think.

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Dobby Derailed

You can see from this photograph that I’m very, very big. About the size of a train. So I’m not just any pumpkin, I’m one of those honkin’ huge squash that they put in the newspaper.

So you tell me, please, what in heck is going on with these guinea pigs? That’s my costume! THOSE ARE SOME HONKIN’ BIG GUINEA PIGS!

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Stevie Ray and friend

And what the HECK is that thing over there? A guinea pig version of The Wrong Trousers or something?

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“MAKEUP! Over here, please! Can you get this lettuce juice off my chin?”

It isn’t just Stevie Ray, either. Look at Fred! He’s huge, too!

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Frederick of Hollywood and friend

Easily as big as a train, wouldn’t you say?

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“I’ll be right there, Stevie Ray! I told you not to eat that lettuce until AFTER the photo shoot!”

Here’s our Birthday Boy, Carl! He just turned 8 years old!

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Carl Sagan, looking good!

Carl, how does it feel to be an eight year old codger?

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“What? I thought we were through here!”

Have a deliriously delightful halloween!

Daily Drama 34

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Daily Drama 34

The dramas keep coming and at times I think I am surrounded by a$$holes. The squirrel hanging off the bird feeder in the photo below, for instance, should be glad I didn’t take the time to grab my telephoto lens. Cover up, dude!

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You didn’t really want a close-up of a naked squirrel.

Dobby can look so innocent, so calm and placid. Day before yesterday, Connor was on the roof cleaning the gutters, and unclogging the downspout to the diverter that fills Dobby’s bathtub. In other words, he fixed my “rain barrel.” Dobby barely tolerates having people on the roof, but he is getting used to this particular neighbor, even though he doesn’t stay on the ground very much.

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A photograph of sublime innocence.

Yesterday afternoon, I accompanied Dobby to the front yard. That, apparently, was the signal for the weatherman to turn on the sky sprinklers. The pressure reducing valve failed and the subsequent gullywasher was even too much for Dobby, who is, after all, a rainforest animal.  He was through grazing in the front yard, already totally drenched and he finally gave up on the great idea of going in through the front door. We were both on the narrow path to the back yard when I was suddenly knocked flat into the mud from behind! At the same time I heard the front gate open. I looked up and saw Connor standing there! Nobody expects a neighbor to visit during a downpour, and it scared the heck out of Dobby! Between the three of us, I’m not sure who looked most embarrassed! Dobby certainly looked unhappy about knocking me down!

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You should see the jacket and pants!

A couple days ago I noticed that Dobby had pulled out the birdseed and dumped it out. He does love him some birdseed! However, the message was more complex than “I’m hungry for bird seed.”

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“Except that I actually WAS hungry for birdseed. Want to try some? Its pretty good!”

He couldn’t eat his potatoes because there was poop in his potato bowl.

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“See, I lost my appetite for potatoes, and that’s when I noticed the birdseed!”

It’s a good thing I have guinea pigs. Even at their worst, they are still adorable. I have never had one knock me down.

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Who could be sweeter than Carl Sagan?

Stevie Ray is a handful, but once you get him away from the others, he forgets to be macho and loves to cuddle. Most guinea pigs don’t like being on their back, but Stevie Ray loves to be held tummy-side-up like a baby.

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“It’s all lies!”

Fred usually comes over to be petted but quickly realizes how undignified that is and runs off with the others.

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“I’m busy customizing this window.”

 

I’m still transcribing Georgia Dee’s Diary. Every once in a while I realize I have a piece of jewelry someone gave her 70 years ago. I even have the fountain pen she used to write in the diary! I’m up to November 4, 1944, but I’m stuck for now, because I know what happens on the next page. I’m not ready to face it, though it happened long ago and I’ve known about it for 50 years. So, I’m relieved to be leaving town for a while. I’ll turn that page and finish transcribing when I return.

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Georgia Dee’s 5-year diary and artifacts

Gift shop sales are going well, but the shop will be closed for a couple weeks while I am away. I’ll try to post some more jewelry when I return. I also want to sell some true “garage sale” items like my S&P collection or maybe I’ll just pull some boxes out of the closet and sell everything I find in there. There are a lot of boxes in my closets. On the bright side, there’s a reason why I still have some of my Mom’s stuff from 70 years ago.

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Shipping by Mr. Woody Slug

 

So I have switched into my Alternative Writing Mode. The pet sitting instructions are seven pages long. I slipped out last night after dusk to take a photo of Dobby’s heater. It hangs up on some s-hooks, and sometimes he knocks it off one of the hooks, so I thought I’d give the petsitter a photo of what it is supposed to look like. But, DANG! The heater is hanging and it is plugged in, but the kennel pad has come unplugged! I didn’t expect to see that!  The kennel pad is actually more important than the wall heater, so it’s a good thing I saw it before I left home.

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Unplugged!

 

So I locked him out and plugged it back in. (Take my word for it, you don’t want to be molested by a 125# rodent while you are trying to plug in a heater.) So, just one more thing to worry about while I’m gone. Other than that, I have a hen in the infirmary (She laid an egg today!) and the turtles seem to be coming out of hibernation early.

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Plugged!

This year, the bartender and I are going to Maui! My orchids at home are ready to bloom in anticipation! This was a test and it looks like my camera has decided to focus. Cameras do have an uncanny sense of when to go wonky, but let’s hope it keeps working throughout the trip!

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Aloha!

Capycoppy and SuperCapy will be reporting in when I return!

 

Daily Drama 23

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Daily Drama 23

Dobby bit another hose this morning. He seems to know which ones are “live,” as in under pressure and “on.” So I heard it spraying before I saw it. Serves me right for leaving him to play in the aviary with his hens.

There’s a crow poking a hole in Dobby’s nice bed out on the deck. There was a tiny frayed piece, but I just saw the crow sticking his beak in there to really ream it out. Thanks a  lot. This particular crow has very badly scaled feet. It looks like he walked through wet concrete, so I have named him Gambino.

The guinea pigs had a visitor earlier this week, so Carl, Fred, and Stevie had a celebration with cilantro and wheatgrass! Dobby managed to steal the show, and scored big with corn and a HUGE bunch of bamboo! He’s still munching on the bamboo.

The Bartender

I thought these photos were funnier than anything I have on hand at the moment. And that explains THAT! There are a bunch more of these funny photos if you follow the link below:

http://www.boredpanda.com/hamster-bartender-miniature-bar-kawanabesatou/