Two hens, one fish and one cat. No… we’re not bringing them to Spain. So what can you do with pets when you’re gone for a year? Well, personally, I wanted two in a stew and one down the drain, just leaving the cat to deal with. But that wasn’t going to work for some members of the family. So…
Hens: Some lovely friends of ours offered to take Migas and HennyPenny. They had lost a few hens in their coop, so decided to adopt ours rather than let us send the birds to “the farm”.
At their new home, our girls stayed in a fenced off area of the coop for a couple days while they got familiar with the other chickens. (Otherwise they would have pecked each other bloody. Hens are thugs.) Two weeks later it was reported that Migas is queen of the coop. In fact, she is stating her case so emphatically that she has started crowing. Yes. Crowing. We have given permission to send her to the aforementioned “farm” if this ends up bothering neighbors.
Fish: For years we couldn’t keep a fish alive no matter what we did. Then we got Fin, who refused to die no matter what we didn’t. That betta rarely got food, almost never got fresh water and was mostly ignored. I kept hoping we’d find him floating belly up so I wouldn’t have to arrange for his care, but alas, he is tenacious.
Cat: Tuesday the half-wild cat who adopted us 2 years ago spends 95% of his time outside, sleeping and killing, killing and sleeping. Then he comes into our house to eat and sleep, sleep and eat. After that, he goes to our next door neighbor’s house to nap. In between, he visits the two houses behind us to kill, and our other next door neighbors’ to taunt the dog and indoor cats.
We thought about asking my brother and sister-in-law to take him. After all, they are stray cat magnets. But Tuesday has such a sweet deal at our place, we were sure he would run away and try to find us. So when our renter and neighbors offered to keep an eye on him, we gratefully accepted. After a tearful goodbye we handed Ruben and Deanna a giant bin of food, a waterer, cat toys and a hefty gift card to Pet Smart. Tuesday sat in the front garden bed, watching us drive away.I was shocked at the kids’ reactions to leaving their pets. Violet, the chicken whisperer, seemed completely unaffected by the losing the hens. Graham teared up. And when his fish left the house, he lost it.
But neither of them cried when we said goodbye to Tuesday. I think maybe this will sink in when we are in a casa sin gato.
Then I will lose it too.