Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Exotic Pets

Growing up as the youngest of a large family (mostly brothers), we had a wide variety of pets - ranging from the regular cats and dogs to turtles, monkeys, snakes, guinea pigs, squirrels, chickens, turkeys, ducks and even an alligator. I usually stayed away from the unusual and exotic and played with the cats and dogs.

My husband and I never had pets until a few years ago, when we bought a German Shepherd dog and then at my daughter's insistence, we bought two floppy eared bunnies. Despite taking good care of them, the two bunnies did not last longer than two years. I took their passing so hard that my husband and I swore we would not have dainty pets again. Our adopted family grew as we adopted another German Shepherd puppy in 2004.

Fast forward to late 2007 and we have a new baby hamster that my daughter snuck into our home without our permission. Needless to say we all fell in love with "Ivan the Terrible." My husband calls him "son' and spends hours playing with him. He has become our baby and not my daughter's as we gingerly take care of him. We have sheltered Ivan from our doggy kids who are blissfully unaware of his existence.

Last Friday, I had a hysterical call from my husband saying something was terribly wrong with our "baby" Ivan. We took him to the vet (yes ... we actually did). Upon examination, the nice Vet told us he had an infected cheek pouch. I have been diligently feeding him his antibiotics twice a day with a syringe and his Gerber Baby carrots and peas every four hours (including at night). With our love, care and prayers, I am happy to report that Ivan the Terrible was running around like Maurice Greene yesterday.

Love has no bounds. And, to think I could never fall in love with a hamster!

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