Sunday, December 10, 2006

Ferret rustling

My favorite thing about this time of year is going into the basement, brushing the fuzz off of the Christmas decorations and bringing them up to the living room, where our ferret Chopper will romp through all of the plastic bags filled with fake pine things and red candles that we’ll never burn, spreading his fuzzy little holiday cheer and scratching his left cornea on a glittered ornament.

Actually, that last part is a trick he just picked up this year. I don’t suppose we’ll turn it into an annual tradition.

If we had waited to name Chopper until he was a little older, we probably would have named him Russell after his favorite thing in the world to do: rustle. I guess if we’re still thinking that the onomatopoeia thing is cool in a couple of years, we can name our first kid Buzz or Kerplunk.

But a few days ago Chopper embarked on one rustle too many, opening the ornament box with his nose and putting an eyeball, literally, onto one of the glittering globes.

When he came romping across the floor a little while later, he only had one eye open, which I attributed to him just waking up. Every time you see him, he’s just woken up. He could beat a teenage koala in a sleeping contest.

“What are you, a pirate now?” I asked him. Then I held him up towards my wife Kara. “Arrrr, matey, I be makin’ me poop deck wherever I dern well please. Yar!”

“Baby, I think his eye is bothering him,” she said, simultaneously proving her viability as a candidate for Household Pet Optometrist while knocking me out of the race altogether.

I’m a big wimp about taking our ferret to the vet. We’ve been very fortunate over his five years that he hasn’t required very many visits. The first time I took him there, it was just for a little bug bite that turned out not to need any treatment, but the vet took Chopper’s temperature anyway, which didn’t really go over very well. You should have seen his little legs churning when he realized what was going on back there. He looked like Scooby Doo when he and Shaggy see the phantom coming towards them.

Eventually, Chopper gave up, standing there on the metal table and looking up at me like, “You’re just going to stand there? Why don’t you DO something about this?”

So that trip cost us forty dollars to find out that our ferret doesn’t like to have metal things shoved up his rear end, something I’m guessing I could easily have discovered at home for free.

But this time, sitting in the waiting room, I felt relieved that a professional was going to check our little varmint out and help make him better. As I sat on the bench, a guy with a large plastic crate next to him leaned towards me and said, “I found these little black flecks all over my house. Turned out they were falling off of my cat. So I picked up one of the flecks and looked at it under a magnifying glass, and it looked like some kind of insect larva. You believe that?”

“That’s very interesting,” I said, shoving Choppy’s crate away from the infested Larval Cat so fast that the crate left burning tracks on the bench like the Delorean in Back to the Future.

It turns out that Chopper is going to be just fine. We just have to give him some eye drops for the next couple of days. Incidentally, we’ve recently found that giving eye drops to a squirming ferret is every bit as easy as painting a self-portrait on the blades of a spinning windmill.

You can send your 1.21 jigowatts to Mike Todd’s flux capacitor online at


  1. Oh man that sounds as bad as when we have to give our dog the ear spray, which he hates.

    Our big dog (the old bassett) as soon as we get him to the vet, he drags us, the vet, and two techs around the place trying to get out. He also thinks if he stands with his nose in the corner, that nobody can see him. hehehehe

    I'm glad it wasn't a really major eye injury though. Them darn animals are our family dammit. hehehehe

  2. "no no no, this suckers electical. I needed plutonium to generate the 1.21 jigawatts.."

  3. Bears are on. Back later. Hopefully I will have a reason to make later tomorrow - you got that didn't you? I'm sure you did.

  4. The game ended up being worth watching. Go Bears.

    Funny. Pets are funny. And did I mention expensive?

    You have candles like that too? Ha.

  5. Dude,
    just poke his turdy little eye out. He's only gonna live for another three months or so. Congrats on the house again.

  6. Burf -- Word, dog.

    Child -- That's heavy.

    Buster -- I'm dumb, remember? For proof, I've provided this blog. Gonna need a little more help to get that one.

    Yow -- Yo. Yow? Yo.

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