Ferrets' blog

A blog with news about my ferrets: Tata, Izzie and Liira. There will also be reminiscense about Tenchi, Adric, Ker Avon, Ryo-Ohki, Nyssa, Lady Ayeka, Romana, Pertwee, Podo, Kodo, Ella, Zephyr and Chin Soon, all of whom are gone now.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Ferret Barriers and Obstacle Courses

I have, over time, had to invent ever more creative barriers to keep the ferrets out of the kitchen. Pet gates got climbed or else the oh-so-tiny Romana would squeeze through them. Pet gate with plexiglass imbedded to prevent climbing or squeezing through worked for a while until five ferrets teamed up to pull down the gate. Just plain plexiglass worked for a while until ferrets discovered that being able to grab one edge or one corner would mean the plexiglass could be pulled, pushed, or lifted, depending on my configuration. If the configuration was particularly clever on my part two or three ferrets would team up to undo it together.

The most recent solution is plexiglass sandwiched between a wall and a large, heavy object (i.e.: a full steamer trunk). I have to be careful in my configuration because if I give Romana or Zephyr a fraction of a millimeter to work with they'll find a way to tear it all down and get over the trunk. Ferrets are too smart for their own good. Anyway this mostly has worked well but it creates an obstacle course for me to get over if I need access.

Saturday I didn't succeed getting over the obstacle course. My bare foot impacted on trunk and the small toe on my right foot was broken and dislocated. I'm posting the gory details in my Entropy Blog.

With all the worry about Nyssa posting about my own injury somehow seemed unimportant. I guess that says a lot about where my priorities are.

Nyssa is just too stubborn to die

I now have multiple recommendations for two vets in Pittsburgh. Whatever happens I know Nyssa will receive excellent care. I had completely forgotten that a family who was active in TriFL and had helped hugely when I was organizing the Education Days had moved to Pittsburgh. I talked to Pam for about an hour last night and we'll get together soon and do a combined ferret playtime which should be lots of fun.

Nyssa is just plain too stubborn to die, at least just yet. She had a better night last night. She ran for about 15 minutes and looked much stronger. Zephyr noticed it too and pounced her. Nyssa, still our alpha despite everything, took about 15 seconds to send Zephyr running and then went to eat as if nothing had happened. She also looked much improved this morning. Every time either I or her vets think we're out of time Nyssa surprises us by bouncing back. I know this can't go on forever (or probably much longer) but I'm grateful for whatever I can get.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

The traveling weasles & worried about Nyssa

I am in the middle of a seven week consulting assignment in the Pittsburgh area. I go home to Cincinnati on weekends and stay at a ferret friendly hotel during the week so the little weasels have been able to travel with me, including Nyssa, rather than having a friend care for them in the North Carolina. It's been great to have the ferrets with me and they seem to really enjoy having different places to explore. For the most part we've had high energy evenings filled with lots of play and wrestling.

The travel even seemed to agree with Nyssa for a couple of weeks, as in it stimulated her. One day last week she ran for a full hour without a break for the first time in probably two to three months. She was very much her old self. In the last few days she's shown signs of really going downhill, though, including weakness, falling when trying to walk/run, difficulty climbing into a litter pan or into the cage, etc... Her activity level has dropped to near nil. Nyssa is incredibly thin now despite a voracious appetite and Ferretvite given as a treat. Zephyr, the only ferret Nyssa still doesn't really get along with, curled up and laid down with her last night which told me more than anything that it's really serious at this point. Zephyr was awake much of the time, just laying there with her. I've seen Romana and Chin Soon do that but never Zephy.

From recent visits with Dr. Weston we know that the lymphoma has invaded Nyssa's internal organs. She has enlarged abdominal lymph nodes. I just plain think I am finally running out of time for her and I fear the next vet visit will be her last.

I've posted to the FHL (Ferret Health List) looking for a compassionate, knowledgeable ferret vet here in Pittsburgh in case Nyssa simply can't wait until we go home this weekend.

Nyssa has been part of my life since 4th of July weekend in 1998. She has always been very bonded to me. It will really, really hurt when I lose her.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

An anniversary

Saturday was a major anniversary for me. It was seven years to the day since I brought two kits, Nyssa and Lady Ayeka, home with me. Nyssa is still here and still hanging in there despite her ongoing battle with lymphoma. That's a recent picture of Nyssa below.

It's hard to believe but the ferret that was my youngest for so very long, Romana, will be seven in a couple of months. Where did the time go?