My little fur-babies aka Bloo, Billy, Pippin & Zeus are like children to me.
I am a bit of a crazy dog and guinea pig lady!
I just wanted to give you a bit of background on my life of pets and how I have become reliant on animals in my life…
On birthdays and social occasions my family have been known to tell my friends stories about when I was a kid and I drank my milk out of a bowl like a cat and ran around the garden pretending to be a squirrel or at least some form of animal!
As a kiddie I was not really interested in barbies or teddy bears… I had a large selection of stuffed dog toys. The 2 most memorable ones were ‘Pluto‘ (one of his ears were missing as the actual dog got hold of him) and Beethoven (a puppy version of the well known St Bernard). I carried these everywhere with me. When going on holiday they couldn’t go in the suitcase they had to be carried on and off the plane. I can almost remember the sheer terror when I had to leave them on the conveyor belt to be scanned for potential bombs!
My family and I have had pets for as long as I can remember. We had a shark called Fred for many many years. He was small as he only grew to the size of the tank (which to be fair was quite big). We had a springer spaniel called Jasper and also a mixed breed part Labrador part horse called Eric. Eric was my first real dog that I felt was mine as I remember going to pick him up from the house.
The house smelt awful and I believe the owners were alcoholics selling the puppies off of their next fix! We couldn’t have left him there even if we weren’t going to keep him.
Eric lived for many years but had some awful medical conditions. Mid-Life he got a cyst on his neck which couldn’t be drained it needed to be operated on. The Vets wouldn’t allow us to be with him while he was put under anesthetic, causing him masses of distress. When he came out he had the wrong side of his neck shaved where they had mistaken the correct side of his neck, the cyst had gone down and we continued with the aftercare of the area. A few days later we noticed he was really poorly. We took him back to the vets they thought it was just due to the operation, we knew better and went for a second opinion at another vets. It turns out that he had a issue with his pancreas which can only be caused by severe stress. We had to pay £50 a month for the remainder of his life to pay for a powder to stop the cause. Sadly his death was not very nice either, his abdomen started to fill up with blood so he needed to be put to sleep.
It was quite a while before we agreed to get another dog. It could have been 2 years in the end. The house felt very quite and almost like the homely feeling we once had had just vanished. I personally wanted a Husky or a Boxer as our next dog however we happened to stumble across an advert in the local news paper for German Shepard Puppies and we agreed to go and view them. The family were not breeders they introduced a bitch into the family and the dog got to the bitch before they had the chance to get her spade. Instantly I knew the family were genuine caring people who had the puppies best interests at heart. They asked us about our home life, our garden, plan to walk puppy etc. It felt almost like an interview.
When they family let the puppies out; there was a short haired bouncy bitch who was adorable. A playful long haired dog that was running around the garden like crazy. Then out came Bloo who at the time was a big dopey fluff ball. He seemed so chilled and took everything in his stride. We knew and the family knew that it was going to be him that we chose. The mum of the family shed a tear when we left, we left with some food and a sheep fleece which helped comfort him on the journey home.
We had arguments in the family about what to name him…. I wanted to call him Reeno, my uncle wanted to call him Maximus… Eventually we all agreed on Bloo. The reason behind the name is because my Grandad was a taxi driver (RIP) and his code name was ‘Blue’. We switched it up a bit with a different spelling but we thought it was a bit different to the usual.
Apologies for the attire in this video! But check out his skills:
Billy has a even longer story…
My uncle Stefan and his partner Laura ended up getting a puppy for my little cousin Fletcher. (Apparently) He chewed up lots of things in the house, he weed in the house and I think they found having a dog difficult to manage. At a later date Billy was stolen from their back garden in Leicester. I did search petitions on Facebook, we even scoured the streets looking for him. Eventually we got him back by having to pay a ransom for him!! Can you believe that!?
We said enough is enough and we adopted Billy from them. Since being stolen he has been a very scared and nervous dog but he is so loving and kind hearted. He just wants to sit on your lap and be stroked all the time. He is the most intelligent dog I have met, he picks up tricks and behavioral activity very quickly. He doesn’t soil in the house and he does not chew. He does get under your feet quite a bit usually leading to almost falling over!
A cheeky video of his skills: http://www.facebook.com/miss.kirstie.jade/videos/10152791986753230/?l=5698713167011099166
We have had a fair few small pets in this house too!
I had 2 russian dwarf hamsters. One called VK and one called OJ. They were both male and got on lovely with each other. One day OJ completely flipped out and started attacking VK so sadly we had to separate them.
VK was a spider hammie – he would climb up the walls of the cage – he passed first, just from old age. He started to lose his fur a little and got quite skinny. He was completely happy and wasn’t in any pain.
OJ was a fatty but loved crawling around investigating my boots and crawling up my dressing gown arm holes. He lasted a while longer than VK but sadly he had a growth which we didn’t know if it would be cancerous or not. Because he was 3 at the time there was no point in operating, I just had to ensure he had good quality of life. The day I noticed him struggling to get into his food bowl I took him to the vets and cried like a baby as the vet put him to sleep. It was the best thing for him, I stand by that.
During the Hamsters time we had 2 other guinea pigs….
First of all we ended up having another one of my uncles pets ‘Dave‘ who was a American Smooth guinea pig. After getting him for my cousin they realised as a lone guinea pig he was extremely lonely. Due to this we adopted him. As he was living outside in the shed we thought it would be best to get another guinea pig for him to become friends with.
We took him down to Pets at Home and asked to introduce him to a Guinea Pig from the adoption center. I spotted a long haired Texel Guinea Pig called John! He was lovely. He was put up for adoption because he had ring worm and the family could afford to pay for his medication. We introduced them and they got on very well. We packaged him up and away we went (p.s we renamed him Scuff). They ended up loving each other so much.
Dave passed when he bit a cyst and he needed to go for an operation. He died on the operating table. Under a week after Dave passed we had awful weather out side… frost, thunder and lightening so I brought Scruff inside out of the shed. I gave him cuddles and went to bed. In the morning I went to wake him with his veggies but he had passed in his sleep. I do honestly think he died of a broken heart.
Heres a quick video of my little ones when they were still here. Creepy voice alert: http://www.facebook.com/miss.kirstie.jade/videos/10151181756088230/?l=8795461141800024429
Fast forward a year and I went to Pets at Home to pick up some treats for the dogs… I spot the most adorable guinea pigs. I wanted some more after my other babies passed but my family refused. I couldn’t help myself. I ended up picking a white and ginger American Smooth (Pippin) and a black brown and white Abyssinian (Zeus).
I hid them from my family… I still remember my heart pounding out of my chest when I had to confess what I had done! I thought they were going to kick me out!!!!
They didn’t want anything to do with them initially but as they do they came round and they love taking to them.
Pippin didn’t have a good start. He had a cyst under his chin. After all of the bad experiences I have had with The Park Vets (I will write a blog/review on this at a later date) I decided to take them else where. I took them to Matthews in Syston. I took Billy there for his jabs, chip and castration. The neatest work I have ever seen.
Matthews drained his cyst and administered antibiotics. It never came back (touch wood). After this I noticed that Pippin had a funny nose instantly I took him to companion care which specialised in small animals. It turns out he had ringworm and he had it when I brought him from Pets at Home. Thankfully I got the veterinary bill wiped by Pets at Home as its £100 for ringworm treatment.
Since all this happened they have been happy and fighting fit!
Pets are huge amounts of work so please ensure you research in advance of buying!
Adopt where you can and if you are unsure of anything seek medical advice.
When I have a place of my own I was planning on having a micro pig if there are no issues with the council and where I am living. Sadly I do not agree with the tattooing or tagging of pigs which by law you need to do. So this is something I need to think about.
Otherwise I think a little french bulldog is on the cards!
I will follow up with future grooming, training and information you might find useful.
Thanks again my lovlies!
Stay safe and have blessed day!