Monday, 26 August 2013

Sleep Tight Ivy & Carol

It's been a sad week in the Click house as we've said goodbye to both of our last two Christmas rats. Carol and Ivy were the remaining pair of a group of four who we brought home December 2011.

First we lost Ivy, quite unexpectedly on the 18th. She was always the most skittish of our girls and I have very few photos of her because she hated the noise and flash of the camera. When we first brought them home and transferred them from the blue box to the small cage she made a bid for freedom, though as time wore on she became more and more cuddly.

Ivy was always the lightest of the two fauny coloured girls. She was skinny and soft and had the longest little whiskers.

She liked the hammocks and disliked being squashed by her sisters in the bottom. Ivy also liked pockets and sleeves and would burrow her way into your clothing and then hold on for dear life if you tried to evict her.

She thought that any fingers posted through the cage bars were food but she was a bit fussy about all other foods. When we gave them cereal she preferred the healthy ones like Cheerios over the ones with chocolate in them.

Ivy was my Ivy of the Nine Toes. There was a toe missing at the first knuckle on her back right foot, but that never slowed her down. She was still climbing up to the top of the cage until a few weeks before she died.

I was expecting her to be the last one left when she suddenly went downhill. She got a bit wobbly and slowed right down and then slipped away peacefully.

And then on Saturday 24th Carol died too. To be honest, I didn't really imagine her making it this long. She developed two lumps back around Easter and I was sure that we would be saying goodbye to her soon. But she was a super-rat and just kept going and going.

Carol was cheeky and she knew it. She figured out how to open the cage, let her sisters out (except Bell who either stayed home or got tired of partying in the living room and went back to bed early), realised she'd done something wrong and climbed into bed with us to let us know what she'd done.

She was the Upside Down Rat who used to climb up the bars of the cage and then swing upside down across the top. Carol would've been named Dangerous Beans if she'd been a boy and it would've suited her perfectly.

She was an adorable little squish. Even when she got bigger and you picked her up, she'd sort of ooze through your fingers. I think she had more squish than some of the boy rats I've owned.

Everyone who met Carol fell in love with her. She was Mr Click's Heart Rat and his mum fell for that cheeky little face too. For such a small creature she had a massive personality.

After Ivy left us I had a funny feeling that Carol wouldn't be far behind. Mr Click was at home a lot of the time this week so she wasn't really too lonely and she was still eating like crazy, until Saturday when she was a lot quieter. I heard her rustling about in her box while we were watching TV and when I went to check on her she'd gone.

We won't be getting any more ratties for a while, we can't get them out with both of us without shutting Tara away in another room on her own, but she's gradually calming down. Plus we've got these big things going on in our life so it's not really fair to go adopting new little bundles of fur.

I'm glad that we had these girls though; Holly, Ivy, Carol and Bell. We'd originally planned to get two, then when we saw them there were three so we decided to stretch and take the three. Then a fourth one popped her head up and we'd already fallen in love with three of them and couldn't leave the fourth one behind. I'm glad we got to keep this group of sisters together because they loved each other so much; aside from the odd squabble over who had the tastiest treat (whatever the other ones were eating were always much better than whatever the one had in her paws), they had a lot fewer scuffles than the boys ever had.

And this is how I'm remembering them. All snuggled up together in a big bundle of fur (they always liked to sleep together right from the day we brought them home, though occasionally as they got older you'd find one in the hammock and her sisters elsewhere). They used to get so hot sleeping like this that I was sure it couldn't be comfortable, but they never seemed to mind.

I miss them all like crazy, but I'm so glad they were ours.


  1. I'm so sorry for your loss. Rats are such wonderful creatures and I loved your description of the girls.

    We had four girls and their mom for about three years. They were a joy.

  2. I'm so sorry to hear this. It's always hard loosing the little furries. How you're doing ok.


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