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I want your sappiest pet-related stories! (NVRish)

Okay everybody, Story time!
I declare this thread to be for the discussion of our most dear-to-the-heart, cherished, and scrapbooked or journaled about-style stories about your pets!  I know that a lot of you have animal friends living with you, and surely have some special memories or notable tales to tell about them.  Even those of you who've never had a pet can share any special memories about animals you've known or interacted with. (I just ended a sentence with a preposition! ha!)

Rescue stories?  I KNOW there should be some of those around here...
First pet experiences?
Births, deaths?

lemme tell you these two little stories about Zumi:

Last Friday's weather forecast promised very chilly temperatures with wind speed up to 20 mph, and sure enough, that morning's weather delivered on that promise.  Before I left for work, I wanted to be sure Zumi would be able to keep warm (as my room typically is colder than any other in the apartment). So, I gave her a good bit of new paper scraps (the plain-paper wrapping from tea bags collected whilst making the morning tea) and decide to cover her cage with a blanket.  Rats are nocturnal, they dig the darkness, right?  it's cool even if it blocks out the sunlight until I get home five hours later...

So I tossed on this synthetic fleece-like blanket (short-fibered cloth = safe for ratties) over her cage right before I left.  I stopped in the door briefly, thinking, Gee, I'll bet Zumi's going to pull that right through the cage and chew it all up... But I just carried on out the door, knowing that I should abandon further contemplation on the matter, lest I end up late for work.  Screw it, I figured...it'll make great material for her to build a nice warm nest!

I returned that afternoon to find, sure enough, that there were two ragged holes, roughly the size of a grapefruit, chewed into the blanket.  For a moment I felt very disappointed, even though I knew that it was my own darn fault...I had received that blanket as a Christmas present from my mom only a few years ago.  I had taken it along with me to my painting jobs (ask me about those, or check my deviantART gallery linked in my profile) and camping trips/sleep-overs and such, rolled up like a sleeping bag and tied with a shoelace.  and further, it was a perfectly good blanket!  it was in great shape, considering its many journeys in so few years.

but then.......I saw that Zumi had all the blanket scraps and tufts piled up with shredded tea wrappings around her cardboard oat canister house...and I marveled at her beautiful handiwork, and saw her adorable little nose poke out of the bedding and fluff, followed by her pretty little eyes, and those eeeears...and said, awww, Zumi, look at your pretty nest!  I'm so proud you, my sweet wittle darling, you're my purdy lil girl, yes you are... and so on.
So I guess that was the moment of realization, when I could see plainly that I care more about her needs and comforts than my own possessions, even very special ones....and that I'm just nutters about her when I adore and praise just about everything she does, but get extra excited at every new thing, like a new mom in the first year or so of her baby's life...or something.

woah, that was kinda long.
I'll tell you about the other one later in the thread if you folks would care to hear it...
but let's hear about your stories first, eh?

It's not really a pet story, but a animal rescue story.  I used to volunteer at a wildlife rehabilitation center.  One year after a really bad storm we got TONS of baby squirrels.  People brought them in because they had been blown out of their nest or the tree with their nest had fallen in the storm.  There were so many that by the time we finished feeding all of them it was time to start over again for their second feeding (babied got feed 4 times a day).  So volunteers brought them home for more personal attention. 
I brought a litter of three babies.  They were the cutest things.  Their eyes and ears were still closed.  I had to feed them when I got up in the morning (with a little syringe of formula), I would come home for lunch from work to feed them, once again at dinner time and once again before I went to bed.  I kept them for 10 weeks.  I watched them as their eyes began to open, as they got bigger and furrier and wild.  As they got older and moved to solid foods (fruits, veggies, pellets etc) I brought them home acorns and maple seeds.  They seemed to know what was natural for them to eat and always preferred the acorns to the veggies.  When it was time to release them (at 13 weeks old) I put them in a squirrel box (looks like a big bird house but with the opening on the side) and tied it in a tree in my parents back yard. 
They grew up to be healthy squirrels.  I was so sad to release them.  Even though I didn't raise them as pets, I still got used to how funny they were.  When i saw them finally get brave enough to leave the box and climb on the tree, I started to cry.  I was sad and proud. 

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I rescued my beloved Saul (an albino Siamese cross) from an "animal lover!" She was a British lady living here, and I know the British have a rep for taking good care of their animals, but she was the exception that proves the rule, I guess. When I got him, he was over a yr old but so poorly fed that his testicles hadn't dropped completely. He was skin and bone. Her excuse was that she'd been away for 2 weeks and the house sitter hadn't fed him properly. Being used to my other British friends meticulous care of their animals, I asked for his green book (health record.) She looks at me like I'm from Mars. "Oh no, he's never been to a vet." When I took him to a vet for a checkup and rabies jab, he told me, "No, this cat has fended for himself most of his life." Given the infestation of earmites, fleas and worms, as well as his thinness and lack of sexual maturity, I could well believe it.  I got him on a Wednesday. On the Friday I went to the market and brought back a few grammes of liver, as the vet had told me to feed him up. You should have seen the look on that cat's face! Total amazement--it was like, "For ME?"  I got him on June 30 (my BD) and he didn't start "marking" like a normal male cat until almost September. When we had him neutered we discovered he was anemic, and he developed post-op pneumonia. Me being me, I laid hands on him and prayed over him.He got well.

He was the sweetest, gentlest cat I've ever seen. He only asked to be with us, and to be left alone. I tried to take him out onto the roof a couple of times for a change of scene but he would have none of it--clinging to the doormat begging me in Siamese tones, "No, no! Let me stay home!"
He shared our lives for 10 years, half of my married life up to that point. The hardest day of my life was when I had to have him put to sleep because of an untreatable illness combined with aging. But I knew that the kindest thing we can do, sometimes, is to give them peace and end the suffering that we can't explain to them.

I still "see" him sometimes out of the corner of my eye, or sometimes I "hear" him scraping in the litterbox that is no longer there. I think it's his way of telling me he loves me. (I'm a sap, I know.)

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Oh, you want stories?  I got stories!  I'm a dogsitter, so I fall in love with every dog that comes under my care, for any length of time, and they all make me laugh because of their unique little ways and means.

But years and years ago, Lady was my first dog ever, the one I grew up with and spent my childhood chasing after.

Lady was known in our family as the 'Rubbermaid' dog, because of all of the things she went through- she always bounced back.  Three times she got out of our yard (digging holes under the fence) and was hit by a car, but she always made miraculous comebacks.  She did lose one eye, but it never stopped her.  She would lead the neighborhood dogs around in a pack and they immediately followed her, jumping out of their yards as she passed to trot along behind her up and down the back roads.

She once fell pregnant, but miscarried all of the babies.  As kids, we each had these squeaky rubber frog toys.  Lady gathered them all up and curled around them in the nursing position, and if you touched one to make it squeak, she became alert and watched you to make sure you didn't hurt her 'babies'.  After losing her real babies, these frogs were a poor substitute, but a substitute nonetheless, and it was heartbreaking and tender to see her taking care of these toys in place of her lost pups.

Soon after, we moved out of the town and further into the country.  Lady was still scrappy, and taught our other dog how to get out of this yard too, although it was a much stronger fence.  They would escape into the park next door and jump into the lake and run the cornfields and come home hours later, after we had been out screaming and calling all over the neighborhood searching for them.

After 14 years, she was finally on her last legs and her quality of life was diminishing, so my parents brought her to the vet's to be put down.  My mom and dad were both there as he administered the injection, and both were choked up.  Her eyes closed and she laid down, and my parents burst into tears.  The vet was just explaining the final procedures of handling the remains, when Lady surprised everyone by sitting back up again.  She turned to my mom and dad, and kissed their faces, and then laid back down again and passed away quietly.  It shocked everyone there, most of all the vet, who had never seen a 'resurrection' like that before after the injection had been given.

In true Lady form, she had bounced back for one quick, final goodbye.

Despite the trouble she always seemed to get into (probably largely due to being a headstrong dog in a big, busy, distracted family), she was such a great dog, and everyone, including our other dog, missed her when she died.

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I have a story about my wonderful old man Nelson.  We used to live in Bokeelia Florida, on Pine Island, in a little house at the edge of a brackish water pond.  There was a big alligator in that pond who never seemed to come out of the water and pretty much didn't bother anyone.  Well, one morning I was in the kitchen cleaning up the breakfast dishes and my beautiful one and a half year old daughter was playing on the living room floor, about 4 yards away (the rooms adjoined).  The front door was opened but the screen door was closed and locked.  All of the sudden my kitty Nelson started meowing and it was a weird meow, low in his throat.  He did this four or five times so I set the dishes down and walked over.  My daughter was now standing up behind the open living room door with both hands on the screen door, Nelson was crouched right behind her and that big a$$ alligator was coming up my front porch right for my daughter!  I snatched her up and slammed the door shut and the alligator went back down the two stairs it had managed to climb and boogied back into the water.    I put my daughter in her crib and called my ex to tell him what happened and ask what I should do.  He informed me that it was rutting season which is what brought it out of the water and that we should just keep the doors locked and not go to the shed to do any laundry that day.  We didn't want to call animal control because we thought they might kill it. 
About an hour later that sucker came out of the pond again so I took my ex-husband's .357 and went out the back door and around the side of the house.  I took a shot into the ground beside it and it took off back into the water again.  Apparently later that day he made it out of the water without me seeing him because he was spotted walking down the middle of Barrancus St.  Animal control was called and I heard later that he had been relocated.   
You can bet that my Nelson got fat on kitty treats that day!!  He saved my daughter's life.

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I'm not really a 'sappy' person, but I've got a funny story about how I met my kitty Gizmo (the one in the pic).

DH and I were pet-sitting my parents 4 dogs and 2 cats while they were on vacation.  When preparing to leave from this particular visit, the dog pushed his way out the front door (he's about 80 lbs.) and ran straight for the highway. 

I tried calling him, but to no avail.  I ended up sprinting barefooted over 100 yards and tackling him.  He wasn't quite ready to give up being in charge yet, so he simply refused to move.  Now, I'm fairly strong, but I cannot carry an 80 lb. dog over 300 feet back to the house. 

I screamed for DH, but he was still inside, oblivious to what was happening. So, inch by inch, I 'reasoned' the dog back to the yard, and within a few feet of the front door when I heard a tiny little meow. 

I saw a flash of gray from the corner of my eye.  Sure enough, it was a kitten - living in a crack in my parents foundation beneath a butterfly bush!  Now, since my parents live just off a very busy highway, I began to panic.  I had to get the dog and kitten inside NOW. 

Somehow I manhandled the big doggie in the house, but by the time I made it back outside the kitten had retreated to her hiding place.  DH, now attuned to the situation, came outside and poured some dry cat food on the ground.  The starving kitten abandoned her fear and began gobbling up the food.  DH swooped in and quickly grabbed the cat and took her inside (where we let her finish her snack.)  He was rewarded with an intimidating hiss. 

It was late in the day on a Saturday, so we weren't able to reach the vet's office.  We knew the kitten had fleas, so we took her to a pet store where we knew the owner.

I asked DH to stay in the car with the kitten (since we didn't have any carrier - she rode on my lap the whole way to the store) while I checked to see if the owner was in.

About 5 minutes later, I came back out to the car and saw DH's feet where his head should have been.  I asked him what the heck was going on and he explained that *somehow* the kitten crawled up through the opening around the brake pedal and was now sitting inside of the dash.

I placed my head against the odometer and sure enough, I heard a faint 'meow'. 

I went back into the pet store and bought a can of food, planning to lure the kitten out with the enticing aroma.  {bleck!!!}  After 10 minutes of 'wafting' cat food around the floor of our car we finally admitted that the only way we were going to get the cat out was to take the dash apart. 

Fortunately, a hardware store was also a part of the same plaza and DH was able to quickly acquire the tools needed.  After about 20 minutes or so, the dash was removed and little Gizmo rejoined her new family.

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I'm not really a 'sappy' person, but I've got a funny story about how I met my kitty Gizmo (the one in the pic).

DH and I were pet-sitting my parents 4 dogs and 2 cats while they were on vacation.  When preparing to leave from this particular visit, the dog pushed his way out the front door (he's about 80 lbs.) and ran straight for the highway. 

I tried calling him, but to no avail.  I ended up sprinting barefooted over 100 yards and tackling him.  He wasn't quite ready to give up being in charge yet, so he simply refused to move.  Now, I'm fairly strong, but I cannot carry an 80 lb. dog over 300 feet back to the house. 

I screamed for DH, but he was still inside, oblivious to what was happening. So, inch by inch, I 'reasoned' the dog back to the yard, and within a few feet of the front door when I heard a tiny little meow. 

I saw a flash of gray from the corner of my eye.  Sure enough, it was a kitten - living in a crack in my parents foundation beneath a butterfly bush!  Now, since my parents live just off a very busy highway, I began to panic.  I had to get the dog and kitten inside NOW. 

Somehow I manhandled the big doggie in the house, but by the time I made it back outside the kitten had retreated to her hiding place.  DH, now attuned to the situation, came outside and poured some dry cat food on the ground.  The starving kitten abandoned her fear and began gobbling up the food.  DH swooped in and quickly grabbed the cat and took her inside (where we let her finish her snack.)  He was rewarded with an intimidating hiss. 

It was late in the day on a Saturday, so we weren't able to reach the vet's office.  We knew the kitten had fleas, so we took her to a pet store where we knew the owner.

I asked DH to stay in the car with the kitten (since we didn't have any carrier - she rode on my lap the whole way to the store) while I checked to see if the owner was in.

About 5 minutes later, I came back out to the car and saw DH's feet where his head should have been.  I asked him what the heck was going on and he explained that *somehow* the kitten crawled up through the opening around the brake pedal and was now sitting inside of the dash.

I placed my head against the odometer and sure enough, I heard a faint 'meow'. 

I went back into the pet store and bought a can of food, planning to lure the kitten out with the enticing aroma.  {bleck!!!}  After 10 minutes of 'wafting' cat food around the floor of our car we finally admitted that the only way we were going to get the cat out was to take the dash apart. 

Fortunately, a hardware store was also a part of the same plaza and DH was able to quickly acquire the tools needed.  After about 20 minutes or so, the dash was removed and little Gizmo rejoined her new family.

awww...I like that one, MDvegan! Ill post something later... ::)

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I have a couple of stories. Ok...one so much not a story. My sis has lived in our basement appartment a couple of times and every times she comes here I wind up having to rescue one of her animals.

The sappy part about this is she is just like our father when it comes to animals and that's not a good thing. My father got sick of our conure (sp) parrot one year and just let it go! We live in Colorado and there is no way he would survive the winter. He didn't even look for a new home for him. Hell....I would have taken him! My sister is the same way. If one of her cats has kittens (yeah I know) she'll just let them go in the nearest field. P*sses me off!!! >:(  Why does she have all these animals if she won't take responsibility or care of/for them??? I've confronted her numerous times about this but she won't listen.

So, every time she stays downstairs she brings at least one cat with her. Every time she leaves, she says she can't take the animal, so what's a sis to do??? I take in the cat. I have 3 of her cats now. Only one of my cats was adopted and he just passed away last year. All the others were rescues from former renters. I am NOT going to let my stupid sis just let these defenseless creatures go....wherever!!! I can't believe she could be so heartless. She just DOESN'T THINK! She doesn't want to know where her food comes from and she doesn't want to know where her "beloved" pets go when she just sets them free. She's my sis and I love her but she's a dingbat, if you ask me....

OMG...there are a couple involving my first dog. I'll post those here on another post.

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Ok, here is the first sappy post about my first dog.....

The short version is that I got her from my S/O's sis. I'm glad I did because they have lots of animals but they don't have a good track record of keeping them alive. She would probably be dead if I hadn't taken her. Anyway, she is a cold weather dog and when she was a puppy I let her out in the back yard and she was sleeping on a blanket. This was in December.

I laid down to take a nap and when I woke up, she was gone!

She pushed her way out of the back gate, when it wasn't secure, and followed a jogger.

I put up flyers of what she looks like and who to call and only got a couple of calls. One from a UPS guy who said he saw her going in and out of a gate.....unfortunately it was our backyard.

Weeks past and I was no closer to finding her. I couldn't sleep, couldn't eat, blamed myself for not paying enough attention.

On Christmas Eve I got a phone call from a jogger who happened across one of my flyers. She said it sounded like a dog her brother took in recently. Some guy said it was his dog and he was moving and wanted to sell her. Well, this guy didn't trust him so he paid the money just to get my dog away from him.

She contacted him and sure enough....it was my dog!!!!! The best Christmas present I ever got....EVER!!! We not only gave him back the $50 the guy wanted for her but a case of beer too!! What a great Christmas Eve!!!!

Unfortunately, I'm a little too paranoid about her getting out now. If I let her out and don't hear her bark for a while I get freaked and have to go check. I will never forgive myself for letting her get out in the first place.

That's sappy story #1  Got one more but I think this one is the best of my stories.:)

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She just DOESN'T THINK! She doesn't want to know where her food comes from and she doesn't want to know where her "beloved" pets go when she just sets them free. She's my sis and I love her but she's a dingbat, if you ask me....

oh my gosh!  that's MY sister!  she's only done that to two pets, but that, paired with her "I don't care, don't wanna know" attitude about food, is enough for me to be totally appalled by her thoughtlessness.  She had a rat a few years ago, and was a proud owner and human friend for um, maybe a few months.  then she got lazy and "forgot" to feed and water the poor little thing, and the rattie died.  My sister just casually jokes about how she "accidentally" killed her rat because the responsibility was obviously TOO much for her.

Then last winter, just a few months after getting the first family pet for her and her two little ones, she did it again....Stewie, the Jack Russell Terrier, was just too much of an inconvenience to her unemployed, lazy lifestyle (the kids were off at the babysitter's every day while she sat at home).  She didn't even bother to TRY to house-train him, even though the two of us successfully did that by ourselves with a dog we had when we were kids!  and he was really stupid, too!  He, along with every other dog we had, was an indoor pet, and we easily managed to keep the house clean and take care of all of their needs.  So there was NO reason poor little Stewie had to be kept outside all the time and never get any attention....He ran away in the middle of a harsh Iowa winter, and she didn't bother to go looking for him (we always looked for our dogs in the past if they ran away), leaving him to freeze or starve to death.  And all because she didn't care enough to take some freaking responsibility.

I wish I could have been there both times to rescue her unloved creatures.  I'm glad you've been able to pick up after your sister's neglected pets.  What a way to make new animal friends, huh?

Zumi is actually adopted from a friend of mine who could no longer take care of her.  She took care of her situation and made sure Zumi had a loving home to go to, and it was as simple as that!  have a sense of personal responsibility, and everybody wins!

good stories so far, everyone!  this is exciting stuff!
exclamation marks!

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Ok....same dog different story #2

So one day I let the dog out...again. She is several years older now. There is a gate on the fence in our back yard that leads into the neighbors yard. The wind must have blown it open.

She got into the neighbors yard and tried to get out through the front fence in the neighbors yard. She got her head stuck in the fence! All of a sudden I hear this "screaming" like I've never heard before and the first thing I thought is that she got out and got hit by a car.

I went running, in my pj's into the street but....no dog. I started calling her but all I got was this screaming!

I started running down the street and saw her head sticking out of the fence in the neighbors yard. I was yelling and banging on the wall but my S/O was drunk and passed out at the time so he didn't hear me.

I ran in the house and grabbed her leash and got her head out, then got her back in the yard. Getting her head out of the fence was no easy task. LOL

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