Monday, July 19, 2010

The pet rat

You know how I said that we weren't going to add anymore pets to the house that weren't in an aquarium? Because I am just sick of the mammals in this house? Well yeah, don't you know the kid, the husband and the mother in law are on a mission to subvert?

2 weeks ago the kid and her older cousin (he's like 14 I think) were sent to the San Diego Humane Society summer camp for a week. A camp that, I'm assuming, familiarizes kids with not only all of the types of pets they foster there but the plight they are in because of irresponsible owners. At least this is what I hope they were trying to get the kids to come away with. I see no other reason why the HS would have a kids summer camp. Well it turns out the mother in law adopted a rat for each of the grand kids. 2 males. 1 that bites (the cousin's, thank gawd) and the other that my kid just dotes on (hers doesn't bite). Last week she called me to tell me she was teaching hers to dance. I asked her how she was teaching Oreo to dance. She said she didn't know but that she was. OK, sounds good to me. She also refers to Oreo as a 'she' but because of what they had available and/or her cousin both of these rats have balls. Hey, if it works, run with it.

Needless to say I was less than pleased to find out their grandmother had adopted rats for them. I mean I don't care if her cousin gets one (his mother won't let it in their house either) but I had no desire to buy a plane ticket for a rat. Seriously, oh fuck no. The kid then begs me to let her keep the rat. She knows that I'm bringing back frogs on the plane and doesn't see why she can't bring her rat too. This is a fair argument but not realistic. I'm not telling the airlines I have frogs in my bag, just security. The rat would be impossible to hide and lord forbid someone notice it. Not good. Vermin are looked at in a slightly different light than a frog half the size of your pinky nail.

Yesterday the kid tells me her grandmother doesn't plan on keeping the rat once she leaves. She was told the rat would be given away. Alright wait just one minute here. Why send her to a camp that is trying to teach (I would hope) responsible pet ownership if you were just going to dump the pet after the kid leaves? And tell her this before she even leaves? I'm hoping I'm missing something in the translation and she was actually told something else. Because in our house (and we were doggie foster parents you know) we don't adopt any animal we have no intention of keeping. That just isn't right. Setting poor examples much? I told the husband this and he said we should let her bring the rat home with her (not on the plane, Southwest doesn't do pets). I told him that he'd have to be responsible for the upkeep because I think rats are nasty. They stink. Bad. Plus those feet, and the tail? ICK. There are a few 'pets' I don't do. Rats and ferrets. Why? Their feet and tails are gross and oh, they stink to all high heaven. The dogs smell bad enough as it is, a rat is going to make me less than happy. I'm thinking the kid will figure out real quick that keeping that cage clean will be the difference between mommy letting it stay or finding it a new home.

Hey, I didn't adopt the thing, don't expect me to be sympathetic to it existing in our home. And I'm not paying to have it shipped either. Grandmother had best pony up to the responsibility that should be hers. I did, however, research it and figure out the best way to go about shipping a rat. I am not without connections in the world of such oddities...

OK, rant over. I'll let y'all know how this pans out. I don't see good results any way you cut it.

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