IKEA Rug

The other day I picked up this rug from IKEA – just $12.99 fake fur rug – thinking my ferrets would like it. Apparently ‘like’ is an understatement, the first thing Bandit does when being let out is search for her rug. She then proceeds to spend the next hour curled up on it like a princess.

Princess Bandit

At first I was really worried that she was feeling ill because of how much she slept, she would spend hours there, only getting up to eat and drink. Even her brothers were worried. I caught Radish trying to get her attention (if you see in the background Turnip didn’t seem to notice, he just kept stashing things in his ‘hideout’). Radish tried to play, then eventually just sat on her. At this point I was like ‘omgosh she’s dying!’

Brotherly love

I tried enticing her to play, she just wanted to sleep, I tried laying with her she just ignored me.

Then, I tried treats…

Treats?

Magically she had tons of energy*, even wanted to come up to help me do chores like usual. Then of course I gave her a treat and away we went.

In the end I calmed down again, didn’t even call the vet crying this time! Moral of the story is I’m an excellent ferret accessory shopper, therefore I should go out and buy them more.. Just an FYI this is the rug I’m talking about.

Here’s some cute ones of her brothers looking serious;

Ninja ferret

There was this space under the cupboard that only a ferret could fit through, I tried blocking it off a million times, they were so darn determined they got through every time. Eventually I just took pictures with my phone to verify they weren’t going to hurt themselves getting in there, it was safe, so I gave in.

Turnip looking epic

The construction people that put together my kitchen in my bachelor apartment seemed to have put all the counter stuff in, figured there wasn’t anything to do about the corner (too tight for another cupboard) so they just left that section empty, nothing but a ferret noticed.

By ferret I mean Turnip specifically, first thing he did was search out the perfect stash spot for all my dish cloths, socks, shoes, bras (he ate so many of my bras!), etc.

Standing guard on his hideout

* anyone concerned about insulinoma, her burst of energy came from hearing me open the treat cabinet not from eating it. She really was fine, just being a lazy bum, who gets away with it because she’s freaking adorable.

2013 Christmas Ferret Frolic

Every year the Manitoba Ferret Association holds an annual Christmas party. Although this post is from a few years ago, and it’s not the season, currently Winnipeg is cold and windy so close enough!

Santa

Christmas 2013 was both Turnip and Radish’s first. They met Santa, learned snow was cold and enjoyed playing with their brothers and sisters at the shelter. Radish and his brother were adopted out to two members, I adopted Radish and another member adopted his brother, because of this they hadn’t seen each other since late October/early November.

Don’t be surprised by their short attention span, ferrets are very intelligent animals, there was a posting I read on Reddit the other day of someone’s ferret who escaped and ended up at her work (she took them to work often).

During the frolic I placed Radish in the baby room, at this point he was maybe two months old, immediately his brother came directly for him and played for hours. It. Was. Adorable.

Brothers

Starting out Radish was half the size of his brother, last time they met he looked to be about twice his size!

(Animal safe) Packaging peanuts

The MFA Winnipeg branch is run out of a lady’s home where she has a room set aside for ferret play, pictured above, it has multiple cages surrounding secured on shelves. Below the shelves have ferret hanging beds, along the walls venting is secured for ferrets to run through. There’s multiple litter boxes, tons of toys and right in the middle for the party they placed a kiddy pool with (animal safe) packaging peanuts. (I would just like to say again, these are not just any packaging peanuts they are specifically made to be safe for animals).

Mommy cuddles

The frolics go for a few hours and at times Bandit and Turnip get a little tired from all the action, Radish… he never gets tired. Ever.

All my babies

One of the ladies husband dresses up as Santa and we all get pictures of our Monsters with him. If you are lead to believe ‘Bird People’ are strange – here’s a quick reminder they aren’t alone.

He Never Woke Up

Today Turnip went to be with Bandit.

The boys & I two days ago

The last three days of Turnip’s short life were full of adventure and cuddles. Honestly I could not ask for a better goodbye, but goodbyes are always hard.

Sometimes ferrets have wonderful, loving, but sadly short, lives. Turnip was only with me for two years, in those two years he met and said goodbye to his sister, Bandit. He watched his little brother Radish grow up, and he gave me the most wonderful and loving home.

The hardest thing is saying goodbye to the ones we love, I cannot believe after such a short time I have to, but I know he is with his sister happily waiting until I can be with them again.

Today I came home to find Turnip’s body, we believe it could have been his heart that gave out, it appeared he went to sleep and never woke up.

This is two days prior, a few videos of Mister Turnip at the park with his little brother, Radish.

Here Turnip was very adamant that he was a much better digger than Radish.

Turnip loved his little brother from the second they met. Turnip was a very protective big brother, always watched over Bandit when she was outside. Then when it was just the two boys he watched over Radish with the same vigour.

Boys at the park

When Radish decided it was time to relax, Turnip was right behind him ready to cuddle.

Nap Time

Radish loved his big brother with all his heart. They never were apart except when Bandit was sick and they took turns taking care of her. To now be alone, it is going to be very difficult for poor Radish, I will definitely miss their cuddles and the joy they got from  adventuring together.

Radish with his arm on his big bro

Adventures

Dearest Turnip, I will miss you. I am so sorry you could only be with me and your brother for a short time. The time we did have was amazing, thank you for the love and cuddles. I am happy you are able to take care of your sister once more. Until we meet again, I love you.

My gorgeous boys

Turnip Turned Two!

Today is Turnip’s Birthday – which is so exciting!

Two years ago I was shopping for some quick last minute ferret things before heading out of town for the weekend, and there he was.

Turnip was laying on some wood shavings, this little ball of fur, sad and lonely. A week earlier little Turnip and his sister were surrendered to the pet store, his sister was adopted right away which left poor Turnip very lonely.

As I was going out of town my SO at the time said I should wait until I returned, and if it was meant to be he would still be there – he was (read more Introducing Turnip).

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Every second with Turnip has been awesome – even though he eats everything in sight!

Although introducing Turnip to Bandit was slightly difficult and took a bit of time, introducing the business to Radish was wonderfully simple – it barely took 48 hours!

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Right around Turnip’s birthday he had the idea to eat the lining of a lunchbox – yep the silvery/foamy not-edible-in-any-sense stuff. Thankfully Turnip has an extremely tough digestive tract because every piece he ate was later found in the litter box (not so surprisingly it wasn’t all silver at that time, although still very reflective). Talking about it now sounds so relaxed, while it was happening I was so far from, thankfully I have a wonderful resource.

The Manitoba Ferret Association has come to my rescue many times, Deb the main shelter mommy has always been on the other side of the phone when I call terrified – she has always walked me through every health concern and question. Another wonderful resource is the blog – read Deb’s post on blockages.

Now that Turnip is 100% back to normal, we can celebrate his birthday, recognize his last two wonderful years of taking care of me, and cannot wait for many many more!

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Happy 2nd Birthday Turnip Rose

Saying Goodbye

Wednesday night I said goodbye to my dearest friend. I’ve missed her every second from then on, but it slowly has begun to get easier.

Bandit Rose was born around March 16th 2009, although I purchased her April 27th 2009 and since then that was her designated birthday.

In the five years we spent together she destroyed almost everything I ever purchased, she was a viscous little bear for her first two years and refused to be litter box trained for at least a year! I remember one time I was so frustrated with her, she had destroyed something of mine, hidden another, friends were on their way over and I just didn’t want her to annoy anyone. The second friends appeared that little jerk became the sweetest most innocent little girl, everyone loved her and she loved all the attention.

After a horrendous breakup that left me extremely depressed, Bandit was there with all her kisses and love. I remember crying on the couch at my new place, having been alone for a while now she walked right up, climbed the couch and just sat there will me cleaning my ears. Bandit loved cleaning ears, that or she just thought mine were always filthy.

Cleaning

Oh I would note that above mentioned couch, yep brand new $1500, she destroyed it in a month. Best part is I didn’t even care, it was more her couch than mine anyway – she had free range of the whole one bedroom but she spent the hours I worked sleeping inside the cushions and creating tunnels to store her stashes throughout.

After leaving that apartment I moved on to a bachelor (aka Glorified Shoebox) where again she had free range – but this time it was much smaller and she later had a ‘little’ brother join the family (quotations are for the fact that Turnip was most definitely not little). Turnip Rose, born approximately February 18th, adopted April 1st 2013. Although she hated him at first Bandit and Turnip grew to understand each other and soon enough they were inseparable.

Now that I had two little monsters going to the park was even more awesome, they could do their thing while they didn’t feel like walking, or we could all walk together – the only catch was Bandit was way more adventurous than Turnip so I usually ended up carrying him or asking a friend to hold his leash after a while.

Turnip did take on the protector  role while they were together, he would watch over his sister or physically stand over her to protect from the birds, if she took time to drink he’d be watching the skies.

Protecting his sister

If things got too dicy, they would come to me to be picked up and watch from above until it was safe again. Bandit always knew I was there for her, when she was tired or scared, or lazy or just wanted to steal my food she would look up at me. I would reach down and spread my fingers and Bandit would put her paws on either side of my hand and I would pick her up. Sometimes if i wasn’t fast enough she would take things into her own hands and climb up her damn self though! She would look at me after with that ‘thanks for nothing’ kind of look and proceed to steal what ever she could.

Bandit wanting up

Bandit’s stashes were legendary, honest to goodness I don’t even know how she was able to drag the things that she did and fit it in the places that she wanted. Moving one time we were carrying the couch down the stairs, everything I had ever lost fell out, including whole piece of pizza.

After about six months with her brother, I introduced another little guy into the family. Radish Rose, born approximately September 25th, adopted November 6th 2013.

Now, if you’ve read my introductions posts you are aware of these introductions, if you have not; Turnip and Bandit took a month to become friends, Radish took an hour. Just to be safe I kept them apart for a bit but my day two they were already family.

Family on an adventure

I love all my little monsters, they bring sunshine to my life for sure, but Bandit and I had a very special connection. I always knew that no matter what, she was waiting at home for me to melt away the pain, inside and out. She would kiss me goodnight, clean my (apparently eternally filthy) ears and always (even in the worst of times) make me smile.

Bandit is who got me through my struggles with depression, she is who loved me no matter how I felt or looked. Bandit is the little angel God gave me to protect against the darkness, I feel the deepest loss at not having her physically around to protect me anymore.

Even in her final hours Bandit, now unable to even stand dragged her body slightly closer to my face which rested beside her, my arms encased her body on the vet’s table, she looked at me – at the time I didn’t realize it was to say goodbye – and began cleaning my ears just one last time. We had cuddled, her body wrapped against mine in my cardigan for about forty minutes while the vet setup for her IV, Bandit pushed away to go back on the table after that and we stared at each other. I told her I loved her and that I didn’t want her to go,  every adventure, every second, with her was wonderful. I said that I couldn’t imagine life without her, but if she was ready, if she needed to, I would understand if she needed to leave. She knew I loved her, she knew her family was waiting for her to get better and come back to cuddle but with all that poison running through her veins it was just her time to sleep.

Bandit saying goodbye

There is some sunshine, a close friend of mine pointed out that now my little girl will be with me anywhere and everywhere I go. Although that is true I still feel a sharp pain in my heart when I remember there is no more cuddles to be had from her, then I remember she would be extremely upset if I did not love and protect her brothers like I love her. So as of today I can feel my heart slowly mending, and I know that’s her patching the broken pieces of my heart, if her life in our physical world has come to an end, her job in my heart is just beginning.

Bandit I love you. Every inch of me aches for cuddles again, little kisses on your head and your sighs when my cuddles are just annoying. You changed my life and I’m so thankful to the years God allowed us to be together, I loved every single adventure. You were my Sunshine revealing all my dark thoughts and healing me.

Although it will be a while before we see each other again know you are always in my thoughts and your home is in my heart. Your brothers miss you, they’re in need of your grooming and discipline for sure! Thank you for holding on as long as you did, I know it was hard and you were ready to go, so thank you for being there for me and reassuring me until the end.

In loving memory of Bandit Rose

Protector of  happiness

April 27th 2009 – August 14th 2014