Monday, February 9, 2009

RIP Musashi, Summer 2007-Feb 9, 2009

I got my rat Musashi, along with my other rat Rasputin, the summer I graduated from college. While Rasputin is the smart one, Musashi was the fun one. Rasputin was happy sitting around on his lardy ass, but Musashi was always willing to come out of the cage and run around on people. He also had a bit of a problem with bladder control, but that cleared up (mostly) as he became more used to people. His disposition around people earned him the nickname "sweetie."

As a white-furred, pink-eyed rat, Musashi had more sensitive eyes than Rasputin, which meant that he loved hiding in people's clothes and dark rooms. Whenever I cleaned their cage, he would always end up either in the closet or the storage room. He would always explore the room a little bit first, though, and he could usually be counted on to check up on me in the bathroom as I washed the bottom of their cage and their house.

At first, Rasputin was the sickly one and Musashi was healthy. Pets that are bought from chain stores are notoriously prone to respiratory infections. I got my guys at Petsmart, and they both had breathing problems throughout their lives. Rasputin's breathing problems seemed to improve after a while, but Musashi started having trouble breathing, and it got better and worse for the rest of his life. I remember one particularly scary night when he seemed so sick that I feared he wouldn't last the night, so he slept in my bed with me that night. His breathing was so shallow and his heart rate so high that he picked up his other nickname, "little bird."

When I cleaned the rats' cage yesterday, Musashi was so weak that he walked in dazed circles before limping around the room. I hoped that giving him some more food would help, but when I came home this morning I found him at the bottom of the cage, on his back, dead. So I grabbed a plastic bag, pulled his stiff body from the cage, put it in my kitchen trash, and took the whole thing out to the dumpster. He deserved better.

So if you have any pets, give them an extra squeeze for Musashi today.


Elizabeth E. Grey said...

oh noes! poor musashi. well, he had a long, very happy life. he was a brave little warrior, and i'm sure he's feasting on cheese and thumbing his nose at cats up in rodent heaven.
RIP musashi.

Kawaika said...

I'm sorry to hear about your loss.

Although difficult to sing the requiem
We can be comforted with this thought
We shall meet our loved ones in Elysium
Where reside all brave warriors who fought

A toast for the warrior.