December 30, 2010


About a week after the gerbils came home (I think the day after my last gerbil post) we had a bit of a gerbil incident. Once the storm had passed the kids begged me not to blog about it. I agreed to wait until we knew what the outcome of the situation would be.

Blackie in the hospital.

Well a month has passed and Blackie is a healthy, active little gerbil once again. She is no longer a patient in the "hospital" and has returned to the big cage with her sister Snowflake to wreak havoc and chew up everything (including their wheel)!

 The Story

Mommy was cranky. Daddy was hanging shelves. The kiddos were sent downstairs to play in hopes that everyone could have a little peace and space for a short time. It was a good idea in theory, but we forgot about the gerbils.

Alidia had just gotten comfortable with picking the gerbils up....a little too comfortable maybe. But either way she enjoyed holding them, but had a bit of trouble with their never ending need to wiggle and try to get away. Apparently she found the best way to deal with that was to hold them very tightly. A little too tightly.

Cole, being the responsible party of the moment, noticed she was holding Blackie a bit too snuggly and demanded that she be handed over. Which Alidia willingly obliged. But when Blackie was placed into Cole's waiting hands she was lifeless and that's when Cole screamed, "Blackie's dead!".

The quiet and peace of the afternoon was shattered.

Jeremy met Cole at the top of the stairs and took the gerbil from him. I gathered 3 hysterical children up and tried to quiet the sobs with reassurance that all would be fine. Though a quick glance in Jeremy's direction had me thinking otherwise.

I sent them to their rooms to be calm while mommy and daddy took care of Blackie, made a few phone calls to some veterinarians (one of whom laughed at me when I asked about the probability of saving an injured gerbil), and tried not to cry myself.

$77 later and 3 weeks of quarantine in the tiny box dubbed "Gerbil Hospital", plus zero touching by children, plus lots of personalized attention from Dr. Jeremy the administer of gerbil pain medication every 4-6 hours.....
and Blackie is somehow just fine. Her broken leg healed right up and you wouldn't even know she ever had one. She runs around and stands up on her hind legs and is even, on occasion with high supervision, tolerant of being held by Alidia.

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