A Day in the Life of a Zookeeper

A Day in the Life of a Zookeeper
Ever wonder what its like to share your world with a bunch of crazy critters? Tune in to find out!

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

The Last Day of the Year

Here it is - the last day of 2013.  I know I always say it - but I can't believe how fast times goes:

Here are a few of my favorites of the year:

Favorite Critter Moment:  It has to be a tie - when we brought Violet and Finn home and when we brought Theo home.  They have so enhanced our lives this year.  They have been good for Maddie and for Clooney and even Nigel made friends with Finn.

Least Favorite Critter Moment:  Losing our sweet Nigel - so sad and so unexpected.

Favorite New Pet Product:  Probiotics - ferret probiotics, cat and dog probiotics, etc.  I really like them and the critters seem to really be thriving!

Favorite New Pet Toy:  There have been a lot of new pet toys - but the current favorite for kitties and ferrets is the orange mouse that was in Theo's stocking - its loud and fun and all of them seem to love it.

All in all 2013 was a good year - I so love the new year - the changing of the guard somehow, a fresh new start.  I hope you will continue to read - I will continue to post....

Happy New Year!

Monday, December 30, 2013

Ferrets - Year in Review

It's been a busy year for the ferret portion of our little zoo:

Clooney - he had his 5th birthday in February.  Healthy all year with one exception - ear mites.  Actually - he did not test positive for active mites but we opted to treat him anyway.  Clooney has really been thriving this year.  He would hate to admit it but I am convinced that it is because of the babies in the house.  I think the little ones keep him young and engaged and I am quite happy with how he is doing.  As we move towards him being considered an elderly ferret, my wish for 2014 is more of the same, good health, lots of engagement with his humans and siblings and lots of fun and play time.

Madison - she had a big year this year - going from living in a 2 ferret household with no companionship and no ferrets to play with (Clooney was not interested) to having her babies who she adores!  She is really thriving having them around.  She and Violet are BFFs and they love to cuddle and "chat".  She also loves a rough and tumble wrestle with her brothers and she is quick and strong and she takes them by surprise often times.  Maddie turned 2 this year and is quite healthy.  Her only vet related issue was ear mites as well.  I hope she continues to be happy, healthy,engaged and relishing in having lots of ferret companionship in 2014.

Violet - she came to live with us towards the end of March...oh how I love that sweet little face.  Violet has been quite healthy - again she had the ear mite incident but other than that nothing to report.  She has adjusted quite well - loves Miss Madison and is quite close to Theo and Finn.  She gives the bully treatment right back to Clooney but as of late they have been getting along much better.  Violet gets along with Aggie and Ollie - she tries with Phoebe and Zoey but often just gets whapped on the head.  She is much more aloof with the humans than any of the other ferrets.  For 2014 - good health, much fun and playtime and more engagement with her mama.

Finn - he also came to live with us at the end of March - a litter mate of Violet.  Finn is sweet, easy going and loves to be picked up and held.  He is a bit of a fraidy ferret but is quite social - he likes people and critters lots.  Finn is quite close to Theo but also plays with all the other ferrets - even Clooney whether he wants to or not.  Finn loves Oliver and Phoebe and steers clear of Aggie and Zoey.  He also loves the dog. He had quite the flea allergy episode this fall but is doing just great now.  He also had the ear mites...ugh. Otherwise he is also a healthy boy.  My wish for 2014 - continued happiness, playtime and good health - and a bit more confidence so he loses a bit of his fraidy ferret ways.

Last but most definitely not least - my wild child Theo.  He joined the menagerie in August and is something else.  He loves all the ferrets and is quite exuberant in showing it.  He loves all the kitties - even if they don't love him back.  He loves the dog - she is unsure some days but for the most part loves him back.  He loves the humans - we have come a long way in controlling biting and wild behavior - we have a bit more work to do there as well.  He is also quite healthy but might have been the source of ear mites...we will never know for sure - I am just happy they are gone.  My wish for 2014 - continued exuberance -  love his endless energy and curiosity.  I also hope that he quits biting the hubs - he is so good with me yet continues to nibble on Dad.  Good health, lots of play time and never a ferret worry....

2013 was a great ferret year - I so love my little weasels and look forward to documenting their adventures in the coming year.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Kitties - Year in Review

My little intrigue - I do love them so!  Let's go youngest to eldest:

Phoebe - 2013 was great for my little beauty.  She did fantastic healthwise this year - no issues to report. Little Miss is quite funny, chatty - she must converse with her toys as she plays and she must tattle on her critter siblings that she thinks are doing naughty things.  Speaking of naughty - Phoebe continues to try to push the envelope to see just how naughty she can be without getting into trouble.  She really does hate being in trouble.  She still despises being picked up, she is not a fan of Aggie and she is quite accurate with her right front paw when whacking a passing ferret.  All in all my girl is doing well!  For 2014 my wish for her - continued good health, a peaceful co-existence with Aggie and lots of play time with her beloved toys!

Oliver - 2013 was a bit of a tough year for my boy on the health front.  We have gone through a couple of UTIs this year and he was diagnosed with hyperthyroid as well.  The thyroid condition is well in hand - his levels are perfect thanks to his 2x daily ear gel.  We are just getting over a UTI in fact - poor dude.  As for other aspects of 2013 - Ollie is loved by all the critters with the exception of Aggie.  He is the head bather - making sure that not only he is handsome but the kitties, dogs and ferrets all look fab as well.  He is ornery - wow - really ornery.  He is also my lovey boy - quite needy some days in that he wants to be held ALL the time.  I adore that boy.  My 2014 wish for Ollie - a year of good health, lots of interaction with his humans and his critter siblings, continued orneriness - I would be sad without it.

Zoey - 2013 brought Miss Zoey a hyperthyroid diagnosis as well - she is doing just great since she went on the same ear gel as Oliver.  Other than that bump in the road, this has been a great year for Zoey in the health department.  She continues to be my little snagglepuss - quite grumpy at times, but, when the chips are down and her humans are sad or under the weather - she is right there, stuck to them like glue.  Zoey hangs out with all the kitties - she has lots of feline friends.  She would have ferret friends if they weren't terrified of of her - she is a whacker like Phoebe - but she adds the snarl which the ferrets don't like.  My 2014 wish for her - continued stable health and more interaction with the members of the household.  Love that grumpy cat!

Last, but certainly not least, my sweet Aggie - 2013 has been a good year for my eldest girl.  No health issues to report.  Aggie has gotten more engaged over the last year, hanging out with her humans and with Zoey quite a bit.  She and Oliver still fight - he loves to antagonize her.  She and Phoebe still have no love for one another.  Aggie is gentle and sweet and rarely gets into any kind of trouble.  For 2014 - I would love for her and Ollie to cease and desist on the crazy chase and fight thing they have going.  I would love for her and Phoebe to find a way to peacefully coexist.  I hope her good health continues and that she is a happy kitty that knows that she is loved.

There you have it - the year in review on my little herd of kitties....

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Emma - Year in Review

This year we hit double digits with our Miss Emma - she turned 10 years old - wow - where has the time gone?  In general Miss Emma is doing quite well - she seems to be a happy and healthy puppy.  She is currently on a supplement to try to correct her liver numbers which are a bit out of whack.  We will get results back on a new set of number in the next few days - fingers crossed that does the trick.  Other than the liver numbers and the flea episode there is not much to report healthwise for my girl.

Emma didn't travel a lot this year - the humans worked too hard in 2013.  She did go with us to the lake for the week over the summer which she loved.  She has spent lots of time with Quincy this year - the two of them are BFFs for sure.

We did lots more walking this year than in the last few year.  She loves going with us and I think its really been good for her.  Its been good for the humans as well - we will continue our weight loss quest.  For 2014 my hope for my canine friend is continued good health, a happy and fun 11th birthday in March, lots of play dates with Quincy and lots of play times with her critter siblings.

Friday, December 27, 2013

1000th Post

Believe it or not - today is my 1000th post.  According to the math - I have been blogging every day for 2.73 years - wow!

When I very first started the zoo looked alot different than it does today.  Nigel was our youngest critter. Clooney was our only ferret.  Since then we have added Madison and then the baby ferrets, Vi and Finn and then Theo.  Its wild and crazy and I wouldn't change it for anything.

I hear often that I have more documented about the critters that most people do about their human children. This is probably true but the whole reason I started blogging was because I didn't have lots of pictures of Isabel (our eldest kitty) when she passed away and I wanted to make sure that never happened again.  It's grown from there and now we have gone from a blog I did just for me to something that has a few hundred followers.  I hope to continue to grow over time.

So - if you are reading this - thanks for stopping by to read about my little menagerie!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Critter Planner - 2014

Every year I try to make at least one homemade gift and every year I pull together some shots to make a critter calendar.  This year I thought I would combine the two to create a monthly planner.  Each booklet comes with a pen and a dry erase marker held in place by a coordinating elastic band.  The first four and last four pages are laminated.

This project was quite the labor of love - honestly there were times when I didn't love it all.  I used multiple devices and software and I must have tried literally hundreds of pictures before I found ones that looked okay after converting them to the sketch.  All in all I am pretty happy with how it turned out.  Mass production was quite time consuming but 30 of these got printed, assembled and put under our tree this year.

Given that we just lost our sweet Nigel - I had a thought that I should pull these from under the tree.  After more consideration I kind of feel like its a nice tribute to him - whenever anyone opens to July they will see his cute face and think of him - I kind of like that.

Front Cover

To Do List and Inspiration page

Agatha is Miss January - since she is the eldest she gets to be laminated  :)

2015 Calendar and a place for Birthdays and Anniversaries

Weekly meal planner and shopping list - these pages are laminated and you can use the dry erase marker so you can clean them off each week and reuse the template

Back Cover

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas Day

Christmas is rapidly coming to a close.  It's been a fantastic holiday - I am very spoiled!  I am posting this - my first post on my shiny new laptop.  It's amazing!

Our day looked something like this:

Christmas Morning:  We spent the morning lounging - we needed to try to recover from the craziness of the last two days.  The critters got new toys - I put them in gift bags and set them out last night so they would find them in the wee hours.  They had much fun pulling them out of the bags, playing in the tissue and playing with their new toys.  I try to find toys I think each critter will like - sometimes I do okay and sometimes I hit it out of the park.  Violet got a plastic squeaky pig that she liked well enough to take upstairs and put into her private stash.  Finn got a stuffed rhino that has made its way into multiple locations over the course of today. Theo got a plastic mouse that is shaped like a cone with beads inside - it makes a ton of noise and he loves it.  I think he played with that toy for at least an hour today.  For a ferret that is an excessively long attention span.  Clooney and Madison got toys and treats - no big stand outs today for them.  Kitties got lots of toys and all of them have been seen playing and investigating the new loot today.  Ollie must be feeling pretty good because he spent the morning chasing a green ball all over the place.

Christmas Afternoon:  We headed a bit south to see my brother and sister in law and my parents.  My folks were watching Emma so we got to see her when we got there.  She had fun with grandma but she is glad to be home.  I have to admit I loved opening the door tonight and having her be here.  I miss her when she is not around.

Christmas Evening:  We headed north to the hubs family for a delicious dinner.  Now we are home and hanging out with our menagerie.  They are playing and wreaking havoc as usual - I wouldn't want it any other way.  The only damper on this Christmas season was losing my little guy Nigel - I miss him so and have shed many tears as I think about him.  I pick up his ashes tomorrow - not looking forward to that but I think it will make me feel better to have him home in some strange way.

Day after Christmas - might result in taking Christmas down - its done and I am ready to have things back where they belong.  We will see how motivated I am tomorrow....

For now - Merry Christmas - I hope your day was everything you imagined.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas Eve

Its late here...almost Christmas Day.  Christmas Eve was B U S Y - but much fun!  Tonight we hosted the family for a fancy dinner extravaganza.  We pulled out the china and had multiple courses.  My husband and my brother did the majority of the cooking and my sister in law and I were prepper/servers.

The critters did great!  Emma was at Grandma's house...I think it was good for her and good and for us to be dog free for the two nights of entertaining. She is so barky in her old age...I miss her though and will be happy to hang out with her tomorrow and have her home with us tomorrow night.  Kitties and ferrets were sequestered upstairs.  They don't love it but they tolerate it.  Once the majority of the festivities were over we let them downstairs.  The kitties did well - Oliver and Zoey were right in the thick of it.  Phoebe came down and was a brave girl - very brave for her.  Aggie - not so brave - once the door was opened she went to hide in the closet.  The ferrets - Clooney was carried down and was very patient about being passed around.  Then Violet and Finn came down. They were good - Violet, who isn't a fan of being held was quite easy going about being picked up a zillion times. Finn - my fraidy ferret - was a brave boy and let lots of strangers hold him.  Then Madison and Theo came down - Maddie is an old pro about getting passed around.  Theo was very well behaved and very polite - no biting of the guests!  This is a good thing!

Now the kitties are sprawled out downstairs like they haven't been allowed down there in 17 years.  The ferrets are racing around between upstairs and downstairs like crazy little freaks.  Glad they are running off the energy - maybe I can actually sleep in....

Tomorrow I won't see much of my little zoo - I will have the bulk of the morning with them I guess and then down to my brother's for Christmas with my family - then to the hubs parent's for dinner with his side of the family.  Then home and then - truly we can rest.  I am thinking Thursday might be a close the door and and not answer the phone kind of day....

Monday, December 23, 2013

Christmas Eve Eve

Well - here we are - Christmas Eve Eve.  Today is the day of our 12 annual Eve Eve Bash.  In a way I am kind of thankful for the timing of events related to the hedgehog because I have a lot of distractions and the next few days will be CRAZY busy!

I am up early again - not sure why - I think it was the crazy weather we are having that woke me.  Its like July outside - 70s and pouring down rain...weird.  I am getting ready to start my part of the prep work for the party - I am spoiled as my brother and husband will be doing the lion's share of the cooking for today, tomorrow and Christmas Day.  This morning is very quiet - no critters are up yet.  Emma is at her grandma's with Quincy until we pick her up on Christmas Day.  I was kind of hoping that the ferrets would be up and playing - its hard to feel any sort of sadness when they are around - alas they are all still sacked out.

This evening will be filled with family and friends - the food will be amazing, the gifts are ready to go - all in all I think we are ready.  Parties are interesting for the critters.  The ferrets are quite social and like it when people come over.  We tend to lean towards closing them upstairs for the bulk of the time - there are lots of feet that can accidentally step on one of them and lots of opportunities for escape out the opening and closing door.  As for the kitties - we usually close them up as well - Aggie and Phoebe HATE parties.  Its about the only time the two of them get along - when they are hunkered down in the closet hiding from the strangers.  Zoey and Oliver love parties but they are total pains in the butt and in the middle of everything so they usually end up sequestered.  Emma is at my Mom's so she does not have to be locked up - she wants to be the center of attention so we decided it would be better for her to stay with Quincy and we will entertain for the next couple of days dog free.  I miss her though.

I am missing my boy, honestly still so shocked at the events of Friday evening and the speed with which things happened.  I am holding my other furry babies close and savoring every moment with them.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Early One Sunday Morning

Its early here and I am wide awake.  I haven't slept well the last few days - not sure if it's Nigel related or just the fact that I am not a great sleeper.  It's dark and for the most part quiet - I do hear zoo noises... Aggie is softly snoring at the end of the bed. Finnegan is up and about, I can hear his pitter patter in the hallway. Clooney is munching on some breakfast.  I am missing the sound of Nigel on his wheel - he would run in the early morning hours.

Today will be a busy day - family has arrived in town.  We are preparing for a slew of entertaining this coming week so there is menu planning and shopping to do.  Miss Emma is going to stay with her grandparents for a couple of days - she will have much fun with Quincy and my brother's dogs Loki and Berger.  We opted to be dog free for our two parties although I will admit with the events that occurred on Friday I am not all that excited about having another member of my little zoo be away from the herd right now.  She will be fine and will have much fun....

After Christmas I am going to tackle re configuring Nigel's cage - it makes me quite sad when I pass by his room so I am thinking I will turn the cage into a play area for the ferrets.  After all - the cage was purchased originally for Clooney who later became a free range ferret.  Currently it has just one level so Nigel had maximum floor space - I think I will make it a fun area for the ferrets - installing some tubes, hammocks, etc for them to play in.  If I get really ambitious I may even hook together the cage and the planned dresser conversion so they have a really interesting and fun place to play and nap.  Not sure I will make it that far but we will see.

Missing my pokey little friend....

Saturday, December 21, 2013

This is why....

I am often asked why I blog...why I take the time every day to write something about the critters or something critter related.  This is why - situations like what happened yesterday with Nigel.

It was actually our sweet Isabel's passing that made me want to start blogging - when she left us I had so few pictures of her.  It inspired me to start documenting and it was truly the best gift of inspiration that I could have received.

As I awaken this morning with a great deal of sadness that my little critter menagerie is not complete I do take quite a bit of comfort in knowing that a vast majority of Nigel's time with us is documented with memories, experiences, photos and videos.  Nigel came to live with us in January of 2011 and I began blogging in March of that same year so we have almost all of his life on "film" or written down.  I also have some video of my boy - I am inspired by this event to capture even more of life with the gang on video in the future.

As fate had it - I took several picture of Mr Nigel Hedgehog just about 36 hours or so before he left us. Some of the photos are not so great - some of them show him interacting with his siblings - regardless - I have them and for that I am grateful:

Friday, December 20, 2013

Mr Nigel Hedgehog - November 26, 2010 - December 20, 2013

Our hearts are broken here at the zoo - its only been a short while since the animal hospital called to notify us of Nigel's passing.  Things happened so fast:

Yesterday he was fine - he didn't want to eat much but he was active and wiggly and he was playing with the ferrets and the cats.  This morning I checked on him and he was sleeping in his cage - all seemed well. Around 4:30 I went to get him for some cuddles and to see if I could get him to eat something for me.  He wasn't doing well - he was cold to the touch, very lethargic and not very mobile.  I knew he was in trouble...I had no idea how much trouble though.

We arrived at the vets office around 5:30 and they started assessing.  They never found a definitive issue. Around 9 pm we opted to leave him there for overnight care.  Things were progressing, he was eating and things seemed better and then suddenly for an undetermined reason he passed.  They think it was likely a blood clot - either to the brain or lungs.  He went very quickly and with no suffering - for that I am grateful.

I learned a lot from my prickly friend over the years - that hedgehogs are misunderstood and that if you are covered with pokey spines you can still be sweet and affectionate.  He taught me patience and together we learned about hedgehog tameness.  I like to think that he had a great life with us and that he was happy.  He was a well traveled hedgehog who had visited many states and many vacation homes over the years.  He conquered his fear of ferrets and became friends with Finnegan.  He was quite the gourmet taste tester and would try nearly anything he was offered at least once.  I will miss him so much.

Rest in peace my sweet boy - I hope you find Miss Isabel at the rainbow bridge and the two of you have much fun together.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Girls Girls Girls

Ah my little girls - they are fantastic!

Emma - she is doing just great.  She is still taking her liver supplement.  We not so affectionately call it the Smurf pill because she hates it and holds it in her mouth to be stubborn before she swallows it.  The inside of her mouth then looks like she ate a village of Smurfs for dinner...ugh.  Will be glad when that it over and I have my fingers crossed it addresses her inflated numbers.  Emma will get to meet some new canine relatives later this week - my brother's dogs (along with my bro and sister in law) will arrive for the holidays and their two dogs Berger and Loki are traveling with them.  Emma and Quincy (my parents dog) should have a grand time with some new playmates.

Aggie - she seems fantastic!!  She is hanging out with her humans and   with Zoey who is her favorite furry. Aggie is healthy and active and she seems quite content.  She has turned into quite the people food fan - I try not to give her any because - don't tell her I said this - she is a bit on the pudgy side.  That might have to be one of the critter new year resolutions - slimming her down just a tiny bit.  She is not a fan of the ferrets - with the exception of Violet.  Not sure why but she seems to have a soft spot for the Violet girl.  All in all she is going strong!

Zoey - cranky pants - she is too funny.  She went through a phase where she slept with us, on me, for several weeks.  That phase has passed.  Once we rearranged the downstairs furniture for the holidays she has taken up residency on the back of the couch.  Her health is very stable and she looks amazing - she's at a great weight, her coat looks great and she has a spring in her step for sure.  She still hates getting her ear meds on but she has resigned herself to the inevitability of it happening 2 times a day.  She may be my cranky girl bit I do love her...

Phoebe is doing great as well - she is right on the verge of naughty but afraid to push it too far because she hates to get in trouble.  She is still BFFs with Ollie and still arch enemies with Aggie - not sure that will ever change.  Healthy, happy, still chatting away with her siblings and her toys.  She is really quite well.  Love that sweet blue eyed girl!

Madison - my sweet and joyful girl.  She is so affectionate - kisses almost every time she visits you.  Maddie keeps her own schedule for sure.  Sometimes she hangs out away from the chaos of the baby ferrets but most of the time she is in the thick of their shenanigans.  Her health is great.  Her coat is changing again - its getting longer and thicker and the dark markings that had developed on the white part of her mask over the summer are fading and she is almost back to white again.

Last but not least - my beauty Miss Violet.  Healthwise she is great - doing very well.  Her coat is also changing but in a different way than Madison.  She has lost her long locks and has much shorter hairs at the moment.  Violet is truly the most independent critter we have.  She does her own thing on her own terms and if it so happens that she loops you in you should consider yourself lucky.  She is quite sweet when you hold her and she tries to be patient.  The reality is - she would rather be down playing and doing her thing.  She has developed a taste for Emma's milkbone dog treats - she has actually stolen a couple of them.  I usually wait til Emma takes the first bite and find a small piece to share with her.  She takes it and runs off to find a place to munch - shes a funny girl.

There you have it - an update on my girls....

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Boys Boys Boys

The male critters are doing great these days - causing chaos but doing great...

Clooney is my happy boy - he wants to hang out with his peeps so he follows us to whatever room we end up hanging out in or working from and then he finds a comfy spot to curl up and snooze.  He has been very nice to the other ferrets for the last week or two - very minimal squabbles - not sure what that is about but it makes me happy.

Theo is my wild boy - he is so exuberant about everything.  He has turned into such a love bug with me - not so much with the hubs.  We are still battling biting at times - very frustrating for my husband as he gets munched on.  Hopefully as we move into holiday break they will have a bit of time together and we can establish that Theo may be one of the pack but the humans are not.

Finn is my sweet, lovey boy - he is happy to be held and loved on and carried around.  He has such a sweet disposition and is kind to all the critters.  He loves Theo and Oliver and his ferret girls.  He tries daily to encourage Clooney to be friends with him.  He loves the hedgehog and Nigel much prefers Finn over the other ferrets.

Nigel - my pokey little dude is doing so well.  He is happy and healthy and generally go with the flow.  His health seems fantastic.  He loves his heated bed in his cage and is quite the sound sleeper.  Nigel has some new treats in his stocking - I am sure we will be reviewing those in an upcoming post.  One of the other things I am considering it creating a new enclosure for him downstairs so he can spend more time with the family while we are down there.  We will see how that goes....

Ollie - he is still taking antibiotics and is going back to the vet the day after Christmas.  He has done pretty well - I think he has thrown up 2 times since he started his meds.  Considering he was doing that multiple times a day - 2 times in 10 days is pretty darn good.  He seems happy as ever - causing chaos with his siblings - ornery boy....love him!!

There you have it - the latest skinny on the boys.  Tomorrow, the girls...

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Simon's Cat - Christmas Presence Part 2

Zoey - all Zoey - scaring kitties and ferrets to take over beds, blankets and toys....

Monday, December 16, 2013

The Man Cave

The man cave - aka - the bonus room.  It's the hubs room and it's a critter free zone per his request.  Well - its mostly a critter free zone.  Occasionally, when I have to go in there for something, I might let the ferrets go in there to investigate and play.  Shhhh - don't tell.  Last week while I was assembling handmade Christmas gifts I let Maddie and Violet in with me - they had much fun.

So - yesterday we needed to go in there for something....I let Finn and Theo in with us even with the objection of the hubs.  They ran around and played and had a grand time.  It was a short visit though...so we scooped up the boys and headed out.  Poor Theo - he was heartbroken.  He actually cried at the door, he scratched at the door, the floor, etc.  It was so bad I put up the baby gate in front of the door.  He scratched and cried at that.  Then Madison decided she wanted in there so she wedged herself in between the baby gate and the door in protest.  UGH

They all finally gave it up and went to bed.  Maybe they will have forgotten when they get up this morning...

Sunday, December 15, 2013

This Year's Zoo Christmas Card

Each year for the last few years we have done a critter Christmas card.  It's challenging to find photo cards with enough spots for all the furries.  Eleven is kind of a funky number as well - how many cards have 11 spots?  So - this year I decided to use the zoo logo to bring the number up to an even dozen.  I liked the basic layout of this card so here it is - the 2013 critter card:

Saturday, December 14, 2013

A New Tradition is Born

I love Christmas ornaments and I have lots - so many that I put up multiple trees each year to display them all!!  Last year I fell in love with this little "Nigel" ornament:

Yes it is still on my list of all time favorites.....but I think my newest ornament addition might be my new favorite and will most definitely be the first of a new annual tradition.  I absolutely adore this one:

Friday, December 13, 2013

Flea Prevention Day

Since the outbreak of fleas this fall - I am very committed to applying the flea prevention every month.  I put the Frontline on order from Petco.  It comes every month and arrives on the same day of the month.  When it shows up in the mail I know its time to reapply.  It showed up today so all the kitties, ferrets and the dog are due.

Kitties are pretty easy - Ollie, Phoebe and Aggie don't care if you put it on them.  Zoey is a pain - I know - SHOCK.  The ferrets on the other hand - they don't like it.  Violet was very good - she didn't like it but she didn't wiggle.  Theo was pretty good - just a bit wiggly, Clooney was just a bit wiggly as well.  Finn was a wiggly little freak and Madison hasn't had her application yet.

Emma is a royal pain in the tush - she won't chew up the Trifexis so we have to do the same swallow routine that we do every evening for her liver supplement - UGH.  She is one stubborn dog.

Glad we have reapplied - never EVER want to go through the flea episode again so I will do whatever it takes to prevent it.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Clooney Ferret

My sweet eldest boy - I am so pleased with how he is doing.  He is bright and active and full of life these days - makes this zookeeper very happy!  Clooney does sleep more than he used to but each morning he crawls up on the bed and cuddles with the humans.  Yesterday he followed me downstairs and  found a place on the couch under the afghan and next to the Christmas pillow and snoozed there while I worked.  He likes to be with us much more than when he was younger.  I am loving this!

As for his interactions with the other ferrets - he is being quite nice lately.  Not so bullyish.  He actually plays with Theo at times, he let Finn snooze right next to him with Finn's head resting on his back.  He and Madison have shared Ferretone and treats and he is even being nice to Violet.  I love watching them interact - even moreso when they are all playing nicely!

Clooney's health is really good right now - he is at a good weight, his appetite is fantastic and he seems fit and happy!  Hooray!

Here are just a couple pics of my little ham I got the last time I had the camera out: