The ramblings of a woman,
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My definition of a pet.

July 29, 2008 - 1:17 AM

If you know anything about me, you know two things:

1. I do NOT like bugs
2. I am not a pet person

Our children are another story and I am convinced that they will become zoologist / entomologist / veterinarian geniuses.

I realized lately, that my fear of animals was having a strange reaction on the kids.  All summer Zeke has been reading books on various animals as pets and how to care for them.  Max has been trying to capture any animal he can have within arms reach and immediately bring them home.  Miriam is, well, a little Elmyra, "I'm gonna hug you and kiss you and love you forever!"

Watching Miriam's interactions with a friend's cat made me realize something... even though she is still excited around cats, she is not as over exhuberant as she first was and she is learning to be more gentle.  (Baby steps mind you, she still wants to carry them around like a doll, but she is slowly learning.)  Then, the boys had a rough run in with a friend's frogs.  Then, they had a fair but bit crazy interaction with someone's dog.  Then, I actually let them catch a tadpole and it died within the half hour.  Something had to be done.. and it had to be done by this mama.

What's a non-pet appreciating mama to do?  Go to Grandpa & Grandma's house in the country and bring home some "pets."  Enter Jack, a dark green tree frog, Joe & Joe, twin light green tree frogs, and Toady, a toad.  No bigger than a dime apiece, we made them a home out of a gallon water bottle and duct tape and some holes and wa-la - pets!*

However, after one night, the non-pet appreciating mama was worried the "pets" would escape so they went to the *gasp* pet store to *gasp* get a home and moss and a log and food for these creatures under their care.  Once in their new home, the kids were enjoying watching them jump and play up close, they were learning about animals and animal care and to be gentle and the non-pet appreciating mama was doing ok.

The next morning... 1, 2, 3... where's Jack?

Looking closely at the pets' new home, I spied moss particles on the sides of one thin slit as if a tiny tree frog squeezed his little body to slide right through and wiped off some moss along the way. 

I cleaned the house like mad - no Jack.

Then Max (& Josh) brought home a snail and a slug.  However, non-pet appreciating mama had no isses with these guys since she knew they could not escape.  Before too long, the kids had forgotten about Jack (or was it a Joe?) and were completley enjoying their cornucopia of animals.

Ten days have passed now and the snail and slug met an early demise, as we found out too late how to care for them.  The tree frogs are both dark green now and no longer jump and play and have fun... it's as if they feel like caged animals.  The toad just sits under the log which seems like something a toad would do.  Needless to say, they are going to all be released into the wild soon.

Today, I found Jack.

Stretched out flat, the dried up, shell of a tree frog, was laying on the basement floor by the drain.  My only guess is he was hiding in the drain for a while but with no food source, he finally leaped out of the drain, took his last breath, stretched out and died.

Moral of the story?

We do have this "pet" home and so I figure we can continue to collect random creatures here and there and keep for 1 week and then release.  They are then happy to not be held for too long, the kids are happy they got to watch and learn to care for the animal for a while, and the non-pet appreciating mama is happy when the pets leave.

*As for the whole ethical, catching a wild creature debate?  Um... we'll save that for another day... we'll let good kids be good kids today.

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About Me and This Blog...

Begin Our Adventures of Fall/Winter 2012 to CA, MN, CO
   Ladies Trip to Napa Valley
   My Parents Rode in a Plane!

Begin Our Adventures of Summer 2012 to MN and CO
   Vacation to the North Shore and Cabin
   Boulder for the Summer
   Life in Boulder

Begin Our Adventures of Winter/Spring 2012 to UT
   The Drive to CO/UT Begins
   Vacation in Moab
   Living in Moab / Denver

Begin Our Adventures of Fall/Winter 2011 to CA
   The Drive to CA Begins
   Living in the SF
   Living in the Suburbs
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Begin Our Adventures of Summer 2010 to Eastern Europe
   Life at Czech English Camp
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   Travels in Czech & Poland


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