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.


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

Introducing: Rose Family Business

If you have noticed a few extra posts in the last few days on the point of view of one of the Manitoba Ferret Association’s members family, that’s me! Time has become too scarce to entertain my own blog full time. As well my business and I are moving to England!

Hope you enjoy reading about the Rose Family Business adventures!

Luna’s Great Adventure!

Luna and Garret are recent arrivals to the shelter. You may recognize Garret’s name.  He is the young fellow who was surrendered because of aggression. Turns out he was an incomplete neuter.  Once the testicle was removed Garret’s aggression disappeared and he was returned to his family.  Unfortunately, the family decided to re-surrender both Garret and his cage mate Luna as they no longer had time for them with the new baby.

Luna and Garret are very high energy.  With mostly older ferrets in the shelter, it is quite a change to have such energize bunnies running around. Love it most days!!!

Luna and Garret were out for playtime.  About an hour into their play time, I heard the loud tinkle of a wind chime. I love wind chimes and I have several hung up along the walls of the shelter room.  When the window is open, the breeze creates a lovely melody.

My prized wind chime was a gift from my husband. It is a large outdoor wind chime from Schrimer’s. Cost him a small fortune many years ago and it is so beautiful I don’t want it ruined by actually putting it outdoors. So, it hangs right in front of the shelter window and I smile each time I see it.

So, back to Luna and her adventure! I hear the tinkle of my wind chime.  Each wind chime has their own unique sound. I recognized the tinkle as my prized outdoor wind chime. Hmmm, the window is closed and so I should NOT be hearing the tinkle.

I dash in to the shelter room and there is Luna. She is swinging on the wind chime.  She has climbed up the Ferret Nation cage and from there onto the wind chime. She looked back at me when I hollered her name! The look was a typical teenager “whatever”.

As I approached her to take her down, she realized that maybe she was in trouble and should make her get-a-way!  From the wind chime through the blind and hung up on the screen!  I ALWAYS keep my window closed when ferrets are out playing. I never want to experience the tragedy of a ferret falling to its death because the screen gave way. Thank god I had that rule in place.

So many funny things happen in the shelter and I almost never get to document it on my cell or camera. This time I just happen to have my camera on the coffee table and grabbed it as I ran to the shelter. I was able to get some good pictures before I put the camera down and rescued Luna.  Her thanks was a ticked off weasel war dance and an attempt to scale the Ferret Nation cage for another go at the wind chime!

Luna and Garret are up for adoption to an experienced ferret owner. These two are a real handful! Wonderful, but definitely a handful!

Enjoy the pictures of her Great Adventure. PS – she has claimed the wind chime as her personal diva spot and I am constantly taking her down now!  Should I remove the wind chime – NO, some times you have to say “It’s my house damn it and I get to have something for me”.

Luna swinging on my outdoor wind chime in front of the window in the shelter room

Luna swinging on my outdoor wind chime in front of the window in the shelter room


Luna in her best Diva pose on the wind chime

Luna in her best Diva pose on the wind chime

Luna thinking of getting down-nope!

Luna thinking of getting down-nope!

Luna back to sitting pretty and giving me the LOOK. She looks like a statue!

Luna back to sitting pretty and giving me the LOOK. She looks like a statue!

Luna deciding that Mommy is mad and maybe she should make a get-a-way

Luna deciding that Mommy is mad and maybe she should make a get-a-way

Luna realizing that she is stuck

Luna realizing that she is stuck

Help Mommy= I stuck

Help Mommy= I stuck

How to NOT step on your sleeping ferret

The MFA has a handout “Ferret Proofing” your home.   I wish we could also ferret proof our ferrets! Years ago after a “near Squish” scatter rugs were banned from my house and added to the list under Ferret Proofing.

Carpet runners have crept back into my house now that I have vinyl flooring through out. When the ferrets are out playing I will never step on a bunched up carpet runner.  I know that a silly ferret may be hiding under there.

I hang up wet towels after my bath and my clothes go into the hamper immediately.  I do not give the ferrets  the chance to curl up under these things. One moment of inattention and hurry could lead me to stepping on a sleeping ferret. I have a dozen safe sleeping nest boxes all over the house but we know that the ferret will choose the most dangerous place to sleep if they can. If only I could ferret proof the ferret!

One trick I have learnt over the years is to put a ferret blankie down were a ferret insist on pooping and I don’t want him to; such as behind the bedroom door or even in front of the bedroom door when the Plexiglas partition is in place.

I left Rosie and Finnigan out in the ferret room to play as an overnight treat. These two old ladies do tend to go potty where ever they want, not even in corners!  I put a blankie across the front of the shelter room door hoping to discourage a mess at the door.

This morning it was time to put the old girls back in their cage and let another cage out to play.  I lifted the Plexiglas divider and looked down at the flat blankie.  I gently patted the blankie and sure enough even though it looked flat there was a small warm ripple (couldn’t even really call it a bump because it was so small).

"Flat" blankie in doorway

“Flat” blankie in doorway

A tiny little face poked out of the folds!

Finnegan poking her head out from the blankie on the floor

Finnegan poking her head out from the blankie on the floor

Finnegan is half a pound soaking wet, maybe! She is so tiny.  My miniature Eskimo Miki had wanted to dash past me into the ferret room to “clean” any crumbs up.  Miki weighs 30 pounds; she would have caused a fatal squish had I let her bolt past me into the ferret room.  The reason Miki is so overweight is because of all the ferret food she steals. She is very good at it!

Miki cleaning up ferret "crumbs"

Miki cleaning up ferret “crumbs”

I peeled back the blankie and my sweet Finni was not much interested in leaving her current sleeping spot. Finnegan is the same little girl that hid in my grandson’s boot and had me on a worried hunt for over 30 minutes!

Finni and Rosie were put back to bed in their cage. A kiss on the nose, now safe and snug as a bug in the rug! LOL

Finnegan uncovered and not wanting to move from her blankie in the doorway!

Finnegan uncovered and not wanting to move from her blankie in the doorway!

If you have anything on the floor and you know your ferrets are out; enforce the rule “Never step on anything  a ferret can sleep under or in!

Valentine’s Party Was a Blast

The 2015 members only Valentine’s Party was held on February 15th. The first human game “Steal Your Hearts” had folks picking up candy heart with CHOPSTICKS and transferring them into a dish. Sharon beat out everyone else with 12 candy hearts in 30 seconds. Sharon actually picked up 2 hearts at once and that put her in the lead from Sue’s 9 hearts. Sharon won a stuffed Frog for her fuzzies.

The first ferret related game was “Pick your Own Treat” We had 6 paper plates set in a circle. Each plate had a different treat on it. Bandit Chicken, Raisin and Bacon, Ferret Chews, Ferretone and Chicken Temptations. You placed your ferret in the circle and guessed which treat he would not just sniff at but actually eat! Both of Rena’s ferrets Jack and Baby chose her guess of the Ferretone. Sharon’s Sara correctly chose the Chicken Chew stick and her Diago correctly chose the Ferretone. All the correct guesses went into a draw and Sharon’s Sara won a stuffed Bear holding a heart!

Our next human game was the Left/Right Story told by our Melissa. You had to pass the gift to the person on your left or right as the story unfolded. You would think this is easy but after a bit, left became right and  had you confused as hell. The gift ended with Andy who took home a stuffed puppy and a crinkle toy.

The Most Kisses in 30 seconds was hilarious in that only 2 ferrets deemed their owners worthy of kisses this year. Rena’s Jack gave her 5 kisses however Zoe’s Radish bestowed a whopping 25 smooches to win a stuffed Tiger which he promptly clamped on to and wouldn’t let go of!

Our net human game, Cupid’s Arrow turned out to be much harder than it looked.  You had to BLOW a Q-Tip through a straw into a Valentine Pot.  Zoe and Leslie sitting on the love seat behind the coffee table ended up “shot” with the Q’Tip arrows over and over. Dare I say everyone was full of hot air and overshot the mark! Melissa managed to get one Q-Tip arrow into the pot to win a Happy Face stuffy and mouse toy!

The Lightest ferret went to Dan and Melissa’s Bellie at 1 pound 07 ozs slipping past Nibbles at 1 pound 09 ozs and the Heaviest ferret went to Zoe’s Turnip at 3 pounds 06 ozs skipping past Duncan at 3 pounds 03 ozs.

The next game should have come with a warning to use the bathroom before we started.  The game was very simple. Place cookie on forehead and move the cookie into your mouth. Easy Peasy! RIGHT! The facial contortions, the tongue antics, the shoulder wiggles, the desperate rolling on the floor trying to keep the cookie off the floor;  honestly, you had to be there. If our wonderful photographer had taken a full length video, there would be much bribing to keep the video of the net!! Much laughter till some of use almost peed ourselves. All the successful cookie grabbers names went into the draw and Brandon won the squeeky bird and cat toy.

The final game of the day was pin the lips on the Heart Valentine. Brandon cleaned up by placing his lips almost on top of the lip outline!

Adrienne brought a lovely tray of cookies and tarts, Sharon had crisps and dips and Deb provided the tea, coffee, pop and potato chips.

All in all, it was a terrific party. All the ferrets socialized with only a few spats.  Fred took lots and lots of pictures and we invite you to view them on our  Flicker account.