Three Blind Mice passed today. Actually, last night. I touched her belly to see if there were babies. There were none. She was actively dying, and did not react.
The Catholic part of me says she died because the water drop bottle gizmo did not work. I put a new one in the cage, and she seemed to take to it. The others didn't. When I put the bowl of water back in, they perked up. But, thinking she was pregnant, I got a new water bottle plus the old one, and hung them both on her cage. At the veterinarian she was drinking drinking drinking.
But the spirit part that is connected to her, is saying no. The reason she was so cute making noises was that she was wheezing in the beginning. Rats don't make noises like that, says the book I bought about rats. Along with the problem of pregnancy in store rats that are bred for reptile food, is a virus. It is uniformly fatal. Even if a rat seems okay, they will succumb of heart failure. Any sneezing or wheezing is a bad sign. Only a good rat veterinarian can treat it, and only half the time treatment works.
I put her in a box lined with tissues. I will show her to my son. What did I learn from this 'relationship'?
I can care for and truly love and animal I used to be frightened of.
I cared for her with good housing and a trip to the vet, who, unfortunately was not a rat specialist.
Her sweetness and trust is not lost on me. That is the part that stays the most. She knew me, did not suffer, and was not afraid.
I bleached the rest of the cage parts to disinfect them.
And the others? Well, her oldest roommate has ribs sticking out. I think it is sick too. And the two new ones? One almost bit the snake when I tried to feed it. They are going back to the reptile shop. Even the rat rescue won't take a mean one that bites. I did not socialize them.
Would I try a rat again? Definitely. But not now.
And for the snake? We are going back to mice for a time.
I am so glad I gave her Reiki and the transition symbol last night. And said goodbye.