Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Well, I'll Be...

Yesterday it appeared that one of our little gerbils was ready for that Big Gerbil Wheel in the sky.  I promised my sobbing daughter on Sunday that I would make an appointment for her with the vet if she made it through the night on Sunday.  She did, but I could not get an appointment until today.  I knew I wasn't going to have to keep that appointment.  I prepared my girls for the inevitable last night.  We have experienced a gerbil death before, and the signs were all there.  Except she decided to hang out another night last night.

I got up early to go check on her, fully anticipating that I would need to remove her body so the girls would not wake up to that scene.  I snuck into their room with my flashlight and checked the tank.  Not a gerbil in sight.  Our sick little one, Sally, had been lethargically living her last days on a bed of cotton we had put down for her, and hadn't been budging, yet now she was nowhere.  I couldn't even find her sister, Lucy.  Panicking a little and imagining a lifeless Sally buried somewhere amongst the pine shavings and paper pulp, I shined my flashlight into the wooden house that dominates the glass tank.  Two very annoyed and tired eyes reflected the light back at me.  I think I jumped three feet into the air.  Sally, looking at me a tad perplexed as to why I was shining a light in her eyes, turned away and rested her head back down.  I breathed a little sigh of relief that she had lasted the night.

Later this morning, she had taken refuge once again on her cotton palette and was looking worse.  Her labored breathing had slowed way down to shallow gulps.  I was ready to call the vet and cancel the one o'clock afternoon appointment I was pretty confident she would not live to see.

Zoom ahead eight hours, and I am wrestling my wee friend to try and stick a syringe full of antibiotics between her teeth.  She is not happy with me, whatsoever.  The vet is hoping that she simply has an infection.  I never imagined I would actually have to keep a vet appointment for a gerbil.  In the last few hours, the sweet docile Sally girl has bitten one vet and one vet assistant necessitating a bandage for both, ran around her tank inspecting it for change while she had been gone at the evil aforementioned vet's office, completely demolished, by chewing her way through, the cardboard of a toilet paper roll, and dug so furiously, had she been in actual dirt, she may have made it to China.  She is now asleep, and I am exhausted.

I have no idea what tomorrow will bring for our girl, but I can bet it won't be what I plan for. In either direction.

1 comment:

Dale Cupo said...

update? how is the critter?