Posted by: kerryannekay | April 5, 2021

Ending and Beginning

So, it with a heavy heart that I write this blog post. I need to update you on what has been going on over the past couple of weeks. It has taken me that long to come to terms with it…

I welcomed Orbit and Drogon into my life at the end of January. I was joyous at their arrive and we entered a short honeymoon period. Drogon developed watery stool and diarrhea. Both her and Orbit were treated with strong antibiotics. Orbit’s treatment was preventative. Drogon quickly recovered and thankfully Orbit didn’t catch what she had.

After both guinea pigs were better, I was laying on the bed with both of them on my chest. All three of us were chilling and bonding. It was very nice. That’s when I noticed that Orbit sounded like he had a stuffy nose. I called and got him a vet appointment. It turned out his teeth were causing irritation and he needed to have a dental procedure. So, the next Thursday, I dropped them off at the vet so Orbit could have his procedure done on Friday morning. It was a success and they both returned home. Orbit was on pain medicine but was eating and drinking. Both guinea pigs popcorned when they were placed back in their home cage. I was nice to see them both so happy.

Soon after Orbit’s dental procedure, his stool became loose. I was giving him probiotics twice a day. One weekend, I noticed some blood in the cage. It appeared to be coming from Orbit due to his worsening diarrhea. Aunt Becky thought that Orbit might have a bladder stone. On a Monday, he was put on prednisone to help with his diarrhea. By the same Wednesday, Orbit’s diarrhea was much worse.

Orbit and Drogon staying with me as fosters had always been contingent on Orbit’s health. If it continued to do well, they could stay. It was clear by then that my house was not the best place for them both. It was on Wednesday night that I made the difficult decision to return both Orbit and Drogon to the rescue to be with their Aunt Becky. Based on his medical condition, I felt that he needed more expert care and one on one attention than I could give him.

I cried myself into a fitful sleep on Wednesday into Thursday. Knowing in your brain versus your heart that you are making a decision that is best for a pet are two different things. My brain knew it was right. But in the process of making the right decision, my heart was broken.

On Thursday, I got home after school and saw that Orbit needed a vet appointment. The vet saw him that afternoon. He checked out at the vet but was diagnosed with a bladder stone. His surgery was scheduled for the next Tuesday. Another member of the rescue picked up Drogon and Orbit and they were transferred back to Aunt Becky.

I texted the next Wednesday to find out how Orbit’s surgery had gone. I was informed that prior weekend Orbit passed away. My heart broke even more.

I offered to give Drogon a home. I was super happy with her and Orbit. However, it was not mean to be… Another guinea pig from the same situation Orbit had come from, had passed the same weekend. Drogon was alone and this other male pig was alone. So, Aunt Becky decided that the best thing for both of them was to see if they were a match and go from there. The next Thursday they met and it was love at first site.

Aunt Becky sent me a picture and if you look closely, you can see Drogon with a bit of a smile on her face. She and the her new partner “Mint” are now a bonded pair and went home with Mint’s humans. I’m told they are getting along like two peas in a pod. It’s the perfect outcome for her.

Now, I’ve got an empty home waiting for two guinea pigs that I can spoil and love. I’m just waiting for the heavens to align and for them to come into my life. Until then, I will take this time to heal my heart. I know there’s a pair waiting for me. – KA

Drogon and Mint.
Drogon and Mint
Posted by: kerryannekay | March 9, 2021

V.E.T. versus V.E.I.P.

Back at the end of January, I became a foster mom to two guinea pigs. Their names are Drogon (female) and Orbit (male). They are a bonded pair and quite lovely. I never expected to have guinea pigs back in the house soo soon. Their Aunt Becky made the offer of the foster and sent me a pig-ture of them. I couldn’t resist… who could? I call Orbit “my fluffy cloud” because he looks like a cloud in the setting sun and feels like one too. Drogon has an attitude. She quickly earned “Miss D” as a nickname when she’s behaving and “Sassy” when she’s not. Can you guess which one comes out of my mouth more often than not?

The other day, I took the lovely couple to their vet. Orbit’s nose was running and I needed to get that checked out. Both guinea pigs got nail trims. All in all it was a very successful trip. We got home the other night and the couple was rewarded with dinner.

When I was finished teaching today, I had to take a trip to the Vehicle Emission Inspection Point or VEIP for short. So, I jumped in my car and set off. After a quick stop to get gas, I wound up in a 15 car line at the inspection station. I put my audiobook on and sat in line. I was finally able to pull into a stall 20 minutes later…

“May I have your inspection notice?” I was asked by the working employee as I rolled down my window.

“Oh, sorry, I thought it was done by license plate number. Let me grab it,” I responded as I reached over to the the glove box, opened it, and grabbed the top paper out of it. “Here you go!” I cheerfully said while handing the paper to employee.

The employee looked over paper and then down at me sitting in the car. He asked, “So, you’ve got two guinea pigs named Drogon and Obrit?”

“Yes!” I responded in awe of the employee’s information, “but…” I didn’t get the chance to finish.

“And they had nail trims yesterday?” he asked.

In complete and total shock I responded, “Yes! Wow, are you a fan of my page or blog?” I will be the first to admit that I was feeling a bit proud of the fact that I may have been recognized by one of the blog’s fans. I was floating a bit on that feeling.

He then added, “And Orbit had a bit of a clear discharge but he’s feeling better now?”

I was complete shock, “What? How did you know…” I asked trailing off. My floating feeling turned to one of dread. This guy knew too much.

“Well, you gave me the bill for your guinea pigs’ visit to the vet yesterday,” he informed me while holding up the bill so I could see it and added, “and not the inspection notice…”

“Uhhhhhhh…” I groaned as I blushed bright red in embarrassment. “Sorry about that…,” I tried to giggle but it came out as a nasal honk. “Let me find the correct paper for you…” I leaned over and started to tear apart glove box throwing most of it on the car floor in order to find the inspection paper. All I could hear was the sound of the employee giggling at me. I called out, “I’m normally more organized than this,” as I was hanging over the shifter and half in the footwell. After looking through another set of papers, I finally found it. “Here!” I declared in triumph throwing myself back up to a sitting position in the driver’s seat. With the momentum, I managed to throw the paper at him.

“I’ll give this back to you,” he giggled and handed the vet bill back to me. With the correct paper in hand, he turned and walked back over to the computer.

“Listen, I’m super sorry about that,” I called to the employee as I popped out of my car. I desperately needed to salvage some of my dignity.

“Don’t worry about it,” he laughed. He plugged my car into the system. We both stood there quietly as the computer counted down from 60 seconds. After the test was done he asked, “So you like guinea pigs?” He stamped the inspection paper and handed it back to me.

“Oh, yes,” I said taking back the paper, “These two are a trip!” I gestured at the vet bill, “Such personalities!” The employee opened the car door for me. “Thank you,” I said with a nod while getting back into my car.

“So,” he explained, “you’re good to go… I mean if that’s all you need…”

“Thanks!” I called as I started my car.

“You know,” he added out of the middle of nowhere, “you’re phone number is on the vet bill.”

“Oh, thanks!” I cluelessly replied, “Wouldn’t want to lose that,” I added with a giggle. “Am I good to go?” I asked again as I started the car.

“Yeup,” the employee said. I put the car in drive and pulled away slowly. “You’ve got your paper?” I heard him ask the backside of my car.

As I pulled up to the stop sign and stopped, I grabbed the vet paper on the seat next to me and giggled. “That was stuu…” was all I got out before I realized what happened. “OH, MY GOD!” I shouted as I pounded the steering wheel, “I’m a frigging idiot! Oh, my god!” I turned to look back at the garage and quickly considered my options. I thought about turning left and just getting back in the inspection line or pulling into the parking spots and running in.

A car horn broke my train of thought. “OY!” I heard come from the driver behind me. Reluctantly I put the car into drive and pulled away from the stop sign and towards the exit. As I drove home I grumbled to myself at the lost of a potential adventure that I had missed.

Life is an adventure and you need to pay attention for those small opportunities… Even if they come in the form of a vet bill. Much love. – KA

Posted by: kerryannekay | January 22, 2021

An Ode to Love

It’s taken me some time and even more tears to be able to write this post. For such small pets, they do leave a big hole in your heart when they are gone.

Fred – June 1, 2013 to August 23, 2020 – Fred was the the brave and fearless one of the pair. Nothing bothered him… except nail trims by the vet techs… but, besides that, he was fearless. He was truly his brother’s keeper. Fred was always first to try everything and explore. However, he never forget about his brother. Fred would let out a small squeak to let Lamont know “the coast is clear”. Fred loved to have his head scratched. He hated to be picked up and held without his brother. If I had Fred out for a nail trim, Lamont had to be really close to him or he’d panic and cry out for Lamont. He was my love.

Lamont – June 1, 2013 to December 16, 2020 – Lamont was the timid one of the pair. But, if his brother went first, there was nothing he couldn’t do. Throughout his life, Lamont struggled with a chronic upper respiratory infection. He was in and out of the vet for treatment. However, he was always brave at the vet. Lamont loved to be snuggled. He loved his brave brother even more. Lamont followed Fred everywhere because ‘if it was safe for Fred than it was safe for him’. Lamont turned to me even more for companionship when his brother passed. I’d put in in a snuggle sack and tote him around the house. Lamont spent many hours sleeping on my lap in his snack as I taught from my home computer. He was my love.

As I sit here and try to finish writing this for the dozenth time, I have started to cry again. I sit here and remember all of the adventures I have had with them. I remember all of the love I had for them. But most of all, I remember how lucky I was to have them in my life.

Popcorn free, my loves. I promise, I will meet you at the rainbow bridge.

Love, Your Mom, KA.

Posted by: kerryannekay | June 2, 2020

Happy 7th Birthday Fred and Lamont!

Time sure flies when your having fun. And boy, has it gone fast with Fred and Lamont. I can’t believe they are 7 years old today! I’ve been with them for close to 6 years now! Amazing.

Originally, I thought that Fred and Lamont didn’t have an exact birthday. I knew that I adopted them on August 1st and they were about a year old. So, I went with it! And, I went with it for Birthday’s 2 through 6.

When I found the adoption paper, I decided to look at it closely. It had the day of their adoption, August 1st 2014 and their Birthday, June 1, 2013! “Whaaattt?” is all I got out when I read the paper. I had to tell the boys!

“Boys,” I called when I walked into the bedroom. “Did you know you were born on June 1st, 2013 NOT August 1st?” I asked them both. Fred looked up at me blankly as he chewed some lettuce. Lamont let out a small chatter with his teeth. “Yeah, no need to talk back,” I told Lamont as I walked back over to the office with paper in hand. I ran multiple calculations through my mind. WOW! The boys were older than I thought! WOW!

Today, I spent some time reading though old blogs and old Facebook posts to reminisce about my time with Fred and Lamont. They truly have been such wonderful companions. I know that they won’t be around forever. I will cherish each day they are with me.

So, on this very special day, let me just say: Happy Birthday, Fred and Lamont! I love you both! – KA

Fred and Lamont waiting for a treat!
Posted by: kerryannekay | January 24, 2020

Lovely Times

One of the nicest things about having two old men guinea pigs is the time I get to spend with them.

Night I have give Fred his medication for his arthritis. He used to hate that. After a while he tolerated it. Now, he loves taking the meds. I think / hope he realizes that it’s helping him. He likes the medicam the best. He won’t let go of the syringe.

Lamont is still skittish about taking his medicine. He’s on shilitong mixed into water. He was peeing some bladder sludge. This and a small change in diet has worked very well. The sludge is down to all most nothing. Just what I wanted to see.

The best thing about giving the boys their meds is the extra time I get to spend with them. I always cuddled with them. But in their younger years, I had to respect the ‘nudge’ they’d give me when they had enough. It was never more than 5 or 10 minutes at a time.

These days, the boys don’t give me a nudge. They will happily sit in my arms and cuddle. It’s wonderful. Of course, I always respect them and won’t hold them for too long.

My heart is so full when I have them in my arms each night. It is the perfect way to end each day. They bring me peace and joy.

I know one day I’ll have to say good bye to each of them. But, I have time now and I’m going to take full advantage of that. I will appreciate every day, every minute, every second.

As time goes on so do we. It is way we spend that time that determines its quality.

The boys and I are living the highest quality of life. – KA

Posted by: kerryannekay | December 12, 2019

Critical Care

Those of you that haven’t had a herbivore in your life have most likely heard of Oxbow’s Critical Care. It’s a life saver to help rehabilitate heal all types of herbivores. Don’t freak out; it’s not bad. Let me explain…

So, Lamont managed to get hay in his eye on Tuesday. I got it out and cleaned up the eye. But, that meant a trip to the vet. Thankfully we were able to get in on Thursday. He managed to scratch up his left cornea. He’s on a pain medication, an antibiotic eye drop, and a gel of some sort. More importantly, the boys have lost some weight…

I’ve noticed that both boys were not as interested in their dinners over the past three weeks. I’ve been watching them. Why the past three weeks? That’s when the scare over romaine and spring mix ended. Before that, they were eating really well. Green, red, and butter lettuces were the most common on their plates.

So, when the scare was over, I switched them back to their normal spring mix. Apparently, they don’t like it as much as the premium blend I’ve been serving. Shocking, huh? The two of them spoiled? Never… *cough, cough*

So, now they’ve lost weight. Oy! I talked to the vet last night about it and we came up with a plan. I’m going start giving them a bit of critical care each night. This will help them put on some weight, introduce them to the taste, and get them used to taking it. If something does happen, this will be a ‘normal’ thing for them.

Fred, of course, was the better of the two tonight. Once he decided that I wasn’t trying to kill him but feed him, he greedily ate up a 1/2 tube. Wonderful for the first time at it. Lamont whined the whole time. I gave him about 1/4 of the tube, feed Fred, and then went back and gave him the other 1/4. Done.

I’ve got to say that both of the boys really didn’t mind the process as much as I thought they would. I just had to be careful to let them chew and swallow between squirts. It went well. Fred didn’t spare a drop. Lamont is a bit of a sloppy eater.

So, that’s the current drama for the week. Old men = old men problems. Old, spoiled, rescued pets are the best kind. And, I love my two with all of my heart! – KA

This isn’t a sponsored post. But here is the link to the product I’m talking about:

Posted by: kerryannekay | November 29, 2019

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you and your family are having a great Thanksgiving.

I’m writing this blog today to talk about one of the things that came to mind after dinner today…

My friend has two cats at their house. But it’s how she and her husband treat their cats that not only stuck me as special but, also felt really familiar. You see, they treat their cats as if they were part of the family.

Now, this isn’t a revelation for most of you reading this. “Of course, pets are supposed to be a part of the family!” your thinking. That’s not always the case during the holidays when lots of people are visiting.

Some families will treat their pets differently when company arrives. No, I’m not taking about pets that have to be treated specially due to their needs. No. These are the people that banish their pets, yell at them, and ignore them when company arrives. You know the people I’m taking about…

This friend introduced her cats to me, didn’t yell at them when they were curious about the visitors, and gave them a treat when we were at the dinner table.

When I was sitting at dinner, there was a natural conversation about pets in their family. Everyone at the table talked about their pets like they were part of their family.

On the way home, I reflected on the dinner. It’s then that I realized something… I could go through my phone and Facebook list of my very diverse friends and find one common thread… They all considered their pets a valuable member of their family.

That realization was and wasn’t a surprise simultaneously. It’s not like when I’m forming a friendship, I screen people for how they treat their pets. Who does? What I find remarkable is that I have surrounded myself with those types of people.

I guess what I’m saying is that I am amazed and grateful for all of the friends that I have in my life. They are some of the most amazing people in the world. Their compassion and love for their pets is just one of the things that I love.

Look around your world. Are the people in your life ones that have the qualities that you support? Do they lift you and inspire you? Are you proud to have them as your friend?

So, on this Thanksgiving, I’d like to say that I’m grateful for all of my friends out there. Thank you for your values and love. – KA

PS – I’m always grateful for Fred and Lamont. They are my loves.

Posted by: kerryannekay | November 22, 2019

New Habits for Old Men

When you live with animals, you get to know them and they get to know you.  That’s the deal with me and the boys.  I know their schedules, food likes, sleeping spots, and grooming habits.  However, in their old age, somethings have changed.  Here’s a list of some of those things that have changed with them:

1) Only the freshest food – Oh, heaven forbid, I give the boys slightly wilted lettuce…There will be heck to pay!  They demand only the best lettuce.  They will pick through and eat all of the ‘good lettuce’ and ignore the less than perfect ones.  Before they became old men, they’d eat anything.  Not anymore!

2) Only the mixed blend – The boys used to love timothy hay.  Then I made the mistake of giving them a mixed blend of timothy hay and orchard grass.  They won’t eat anything else!  And it’s more expensive.

3) Eating times – I have Fred and Lamont on a regular feeding schedule.  If I know I’m going to be late coming home, I will give them extra food.  However, I always face their wrath when I come home.  They will squeal and complain at me for being a half hour late.  Do they have a hidden clock in that cage?

4) Are you up? – I swear with this one, the boys are trying to kill me.  They have begun to call out for me at odd hours of the night….at the top of their lungs.  NO, it’s not them singing me the song of their people!  They whine and whine until it wakes me up.  They get louder when they realize I’m up.  In order to get them to stop, I have to call out something to them.  This happened last night three times.  I’m exhausted.

5) Poop sitting – Most boy guinea pigs like to sit on their poop.  My two have taken it to a new level.  They will get up and have several beans stuck to their side and butts.  I’ve had to use a damp washcloth to clean their backsides up at least once a week.

So, is it true that guinea pigs age like a good wine?  Only getting sweeter, more robust with age? Perhaps, but they are most definitely more stinky… pe-yew!  – KA

Posted by: kerryannekay | October 31, 2019

Halloween 2019

It’s a spooky Halloween Day,

Someone is out to get Fred and Lamont in some way!

“Boooooysss!” a voice from the stairs called.

The sound it made had them appalled!

“I’ve got dinner for you!”  

Nope, they didn’t need to think it though!

“That’s not our mom!” they said

As it climbed to stairs to Lamont and Fred!

“We must run, hide, and go away!”

“Take shelter and keep out of the fray!”

Both boys took shelter under the cover.

It felt like they would both smother!

“GO AWAY!” both boys pleaded.

Their mom is what they needed.

“Mom, oh, mom!” they screamed.

This was worse than they ever dreamed.

“Yes, my boys,” the voice choked out.

The voice was ugly without a doubt.

A hand lifted the blanket as a voice said,

“Why are you two so filled with dread?”

Fred didn’t want to look see,

Lamont let out a little wee.

“Boys, oh, boys, my voice is thick.”

“Can’t you hear that I am sick?”

Then the creature let out a honk.

Fred jumped and hit is head with a bonk.

Lamont mustered up all his wit.

He declared, “I’ll be the one to put an end to it!”

Lamont popped his noise of cover.

He was not a fighter but a lover.

“That’s mom’s smell!”

Lamont let out with a yell.

Fred swallowed his fright

To look out took all of his might.

“Mom!” Fred let out with a gasp.

“Yes, Fred,” mom replied with a rasp.

The boys shouted out, “We thought you were ghosts or ghouls!”

“No boys, I’m just sick you fools!”

So we over here all want to say,

Happy Halloween, and have a spooky day!

– Kerry Anne, Fred, and Lamont

Posted by: kerryannekay | October 25, 2019

Wheeking Demanding Guinea Pigs

I’m exhausted.  It’s senior letter of recommendation time.  I’ve written a grant in less than 48 hours for my classroom.  And my graduate class is working me to death.  So, I’ve been busy.  Then I realized it was Thursday…blog day.

So, I walked upstairs and asked the boys what I should write about.  They didn’t say anything but “Wheek!  Wheek!  Wheek!”  But I heard, “Treat!  Treat!  Treat!”  “Fine,” I told them, “I’ll give you treats…”

I sat down next to the boys’ cage and began to feed them treats.  Lamont set up shop right in front of me.  “Typical,” I told him as he grabbed another timothy hay treat.  Fred walked up and grabbed another treat.  He then walked to the other side of the cage to enjoy it in private.  “Lamont, why can’t you be more like your brother?” I asked him. 

Lamont let out a long “Wheeeeek!” in my general direction. “Yes, yes, yes,” I sighed, “more treats; less talk.”  I handed Lamont another treat.  “Listen, dude,” I told him plainly, “You’re getting pretty demanding in your old age.” Lamont just huffed at me to signal he was doing being ‘treated’.  “See?” I asked, “you’ve just dismissed me.” 

Lamont paid no attention to what I told him.  As he walked away, he left several beans in his trail.  “And now you’ve just pooped in my general direction,” I sighed. 

Fred took the opportunity to walk over to where I was sitting.  He clicked his teeth at me to tell me ‘Treat me now, lady.’ “Oh, oh,” I said stumbling over my words, “Now, I’m not quick enough for you?”

Fred ignored me, turned and planted several larger beans as close as he could get them to me.  “Thanks,” I sighed as he walked away.  “Should I take that as a compliment or an insult?” I asked Fred’s receding butt.  He didn’t respond. 

So, I was sitting her pondering what to write for tonight’s blog.  I went to YouTube for some inspiration and a Monty Python skit was on my recommendation list.  Then it hit me… I wonder if my guinea pigs have been watching Monty Python when I’m not home? Are they taunting me?

To put it in context, I’ll leave you with this infamous quote: “I fart in your general direction!  Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries!” – The Guard from “Monty Python and the Holy Grail

– KA

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