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The Carnivorous Critters
Morgan is my Cairn Terrier. He is currently 14 years old, and on his way out as he has some kind of weird degenerative disease effecting his internal organs. My parents got him when I was younger from some really shoddy BYB because they wanted a "purebred." They got a poorly socialized dog-agressive manbiter with a heaping ton of genetic problems. Maybe next time they'll adopt from a fricken shelter like I suggested. <_<
Leo is my cat. He's about 3 years old. I rescued him as a very feral kitten while doing some "watchdog" work at a stockyard during my internship at Farm Sanctuary. He somehow got trapped in the steer pen, and was at great risk of being trampled, so I darted in and grabbed him when no one was looking. He was supposed to go to a shelter, but turned up FIP+, so he's ours now. Funny side note, he isn't "leo" because of the relationship to lions, but because there was a steer at FS rescued at that very auction years ago named Leo, so I saw it fitting.
Charlie is my ferret (age unknown). He was found abandoned in an apartment with an iguana - the tenents had left 2 weeks ago. He was, as a result, very emaciated and sickly, and because our shelter doesn't take exotics, we ended up with both. The iguana bounced back fast and found a good home with a vet, but Charlie had suffered permenant GI ulcerations from being without food for so long. As a result, he needs a special diet and constant medications, so we've kept him.
Lapines and Rodents
Darwin is a 3 year old mixed breed rabbit. The story of how he got here is long and frustrating, so I'm going to give the shortened version and say that, because of a fraudlant rescue, his mother ended up impregnated by her own son with a severe back injury. She was unable to nurse, and rejected her small litter of three. Because of profound deformities and health problems, only Darwin survived being bottle raised. He has badly pigeon-toed forlegs, an oddly shaped skull, and a hypersensitive GI. He is also the most affectionate, lovely rabbit ever.
Brindam is a 2 year old mixed breed rabbit. She may be a cottontail hybrid, as the only male in the whole pen was indeed a wild rabbit who wandered in and got trapped. She was being kept in the barn of an animal hoarder as part of numerous rabbit litters. I found her and another rabbit with severe eye infections and URIs when taking photos to collect evidence for law enforcement against the owner. Returning a week later, I found her in a cage with her dead brother, in even worse condition. Feeling badly that I didn't take them on the spot before, I took Brindam; I doubt her owner ever noticed. It took me 3 months of flushing and terramycin to save her eye, which the vet just wanted to remove. I'm glad I was stubborn; she has full vision in one eye, and partial in the other.
Widget was in the live feed room of the zoo I used to work at, and had been having bad seizures. The zoo wanted to euthanize her, as the other gerbils would attack her in her weakened state, but I decided I wanted to take her home and give her a more dignified death. I'm glad I did; it turned out the seizures were because of a hormonal problem stemming from her pregnancy, which I was wholly unaware of. She had three beautiful babies, two of whom went to a sanctuary, and one of whom lives with her now. She has not had a seizure since they were born.
Auhlae is Widget's daughter. 'Nuff said.
Anja was from the Johnson College Vet Tech program (the one I dropped out of, hehe). She was used for injection practice, and her eye was injured in a botched retro-orbital sinus bleed (which for those of you who don't know, involves shoving a hematocrit tube into retro-orbital sinus, behind the eye, to collect blood). The school wanted to put her down after all she'd been through instead of just medicating the eye and seeing if it recovered. So, I fought with the director for a bit and eventually had her signed over to me. The eye did indeed recover; she sees just fine.
Nadja and Lucia (look very closely on the left to see Nadja hiding) were also from the Johnson College Vet Tech Program. Unlike Anja and Tosha (RIP), who had injuries and were thus taken in by my for treatment, these girls simply found no adopters at the end of the school year. Nadja is hand shy (gee, wonder why) and Lucia is vicious. I took them so that they would not be euthanized.
Leucos was adopted from the Port Jervis Humane Society. Him and Moreau had been abandoned there ages ago, were not hand tame, and generally had poor adoption prospects. I agreed to adopt them both so that they could use the caging for a hoarde of baby hamsters someone dropped off.
Moreau was adopted with Leucos from the PJHS. His adoption prospects were especially lousy, because he had inoperable tumors on his genitals. He has lived about a year with them, but the cancer has spread all through his body, and he will probably be euthanized (if he doesn't die on his own) in the coming week or so.
Pretty bird is an 8 year old white fronted amazon parrot. She was living in a cage so small I wouldn't feel comfortable keeping a parakeet in it, with no toys, eating all sunflower seeds. Worse thing about it? She was living like that at a vet's office. She'd been left there by an employee after biting the woman's 3 year old son. She'd lived 5 of the seven years of her life there, and no one ever gave her attention or talked nicely to her because she was extremely agressive (gee, wonder why). After working with her for a few months, it was obvious that she'd bonded to me, so her previous owner (who still worked at the office) left her in the employee's lounge with a big bow on her cage when I came in to work on Christmas morning. Needless to say, she has a much happier, healthier life now.
This is Aspen, a green cheeked conure, who is starring on the Hanukkah cards I made last year. He was a very stupid gift idea from my well meaning but misinformed grandparents. Note to all of you non bird-savvy people out there: birds are not gifts, they are life-long commitments with highly specified care needs. And there are too many needing homes in rescues to even begin to justify buying some crappily bred one from Petco, of all places. <_<
((Note - this is NOT an up to date photo of them; this is when they first came in, hence the obesity, overgrown nails, dirty perching, and horrible feathers))
Sigma and Theto are parakeets of unknown ages, though it is safe to assume that Sigma is "old" and Theto is "young." They were owned by a kind woman with parkinson's disease who didn't know much about birds; they had one perch and a wire, and nothing else, in their very small cage. They'd also been fed exclusively spray millet. I adopted them from her when her disease progressed and she was no longer able to "take care" of them.
Velveeta is a 13 year old parakeet. She and her mate Sky (RIP) came at a great discount from a shoddy local pet store, because they had bad colds and I was threatening to call and report them for having unhealthy animals on display. Both recovered well, and Velveeta has had a long, happy life. Her mate was less fortunate, dying of liver tumors at a fairly young age. I tried to keep her with Sigma and Theto, but they do not allow her to eat, so she lives alone - and seems to like it.
Jesus is a 14 year old zebra tail finch cross whose life has all around sucked. His parents and siblings died of pneumonia during a power outage. He recovered from the pneumonia, but responded poorly to hand feeding and started to develop rickets (one legs is forever deformed from this). He recovered once more, only to be later attacked by a sugar glider that my mom accidentally let into the bird room; he almost bled to death from the injury. And, at 13, he had a stroke that has impeded his ability to fly (he gets around, but is very clumsy, and has trouble staying on a perch once he gets up there). Still, he's a spunky old guy, and really adores Velveeta. He does not have any cage mates, which I know is bad, but my mom wouldn't let me get him any because "he's going to die soon anyways." She said this back when he was 8 and outlived all of his cage mates... 6 years ago.
Alejandro is my cute little hen, only a year old. My neighbors gave her to me out of a clutch they bought their kids for easter (<_<) and proceeded to kill through various accidents and neglect. Alejandro has trouble with chronic sinus infection, so I'm glad we got her, as even if she HAD lived over there, she'd probably have died from some out of control infection by now.
Insects and Arachnids
Rosalinda is a 7 year old Chilean Rosehair Tarantula. She was brought to the zoo I worked at with 5 others who had been rescued from a pet store where, being kept in tiny cups, who suffered later fatal injuries trying to shed. They all were infested with parasites and badly emaciated; of the five, only 3 survived. The zoo only had display room for once since they are territorial, and kept the healthiest. I took Rosie, and another volunteer took the other. As you can see from this pic, Rosalinda is now so well fed that she doesn't even eat her crickets in a timely manner.
Farrago is a Madagascar Hissing Cockroach. She was a gift from my mom for Valentine's day. She is the proud mother of my 18 bouncing baby roaches.
Arloest is my other Hisser that came for valentine's day. She is much more active and hand-friendly than Farrago (though you wouldn't know from the picture).
Just two of the 18 baby Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches I was very surprised to find this past May. How two females had babies is a mystery to me; one must have come fertile. Anyways, these guys need names, so if you have name suggestions (male and female) for the babies, please suggest away!
Whoo... I think that's all. Add to that the 25 bettas, the two goldfish, and the occasional wildlife rehab patient or foster, and I'd say I have a pretty full house over here.