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Jonny The Fer Ret

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About five and a half years ago I was freshly graduated from high school, loving life and my new job at an exotic animal petting zoo/rescue. I loved being around such a huge variety of animals, but high on everyone’s list of favorites were the fun-loving fer rets. All of the fer rets lived in one huge cage where they could play and snuggle together, but one day a fer ret was left by his owners, and he did not fit in with all those boisterous fer rets. They sensed his nervousness and he had to be separated from the rest to keep them from hurting him. The zoo owners decided to find a new home for this one that wasn’t like the others, and I decided to take him on.

He came to me nameless and scared, but quickly relaxed in my already animal friendly bedroom. I am not good at thinking of names, so when one day my best friend Jonathan joked, “Name him after me.” I said, “Why not?” and Jonny Ferre t he became. He was very smart and learned to use the litter box, come when called, walk nicely in his leash and harness, stand up, roll over, and give kisses on command. I brought him everywhere with me, and he was a perfect little ambassador. He drew attention as he walked next to me down the street or in the parks, and I had many wonderful opportunities to teach people about fer rets, and about respecting animals in general. Even when people were nervous, he easily won them over with his sweet gentleness.

During my brief college career he came with me to the dorms. His cage was under my bed, he slept in the bottom drawer of my dresser, and he annoyed my roommate to no end by attacking the telephone cord that stretched and bounced invitingly across the room when she sat on her bed with the phone. I kept a battered tote bag next to his cage so he could come out with me during fire drills without anyone noticing him.

About two years ago he was dosed with insulanoma, or cancer of the pancreas, and was put on twice daily pred. doses. He had done well on it for a long time, but meanwhile his body was breaking down more and more, he had several external tumors, and he lost almost all control of his hind legs. He still managed to get around, even though he was incontinent, but when it became painful for him to go to the bathroom, and when he started falling down the levels of his cage, I knew it was time. His bad days were outnumbering his good days, and he seemed uncomfortable. Last night I took him to the vets for the last time, and he slipped away very peacefully. I love you so much Jonny, you were my heart pet, and there will never, ever be another like you.

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Rebecca, I am so sorry. Since we lost our little Boo several years ago, I just have not been able to bring myself to get another ferre t. Jonny, say hi to my precious Boo for me. Gentle hugs to you, Rebeccca :grouphug :grouphug :grouphug

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