At the end of my band's most recent summer tour, we were in Tallahassee, Florida. While in Tallahassee we went to the apartment of our good friend Kane. Kane has several animals and we met them all. 2 of his animals were hairless rats. Within minutes of holding one of them, I decided that I had to have one.
The next day Kane told me that if I was serious, and if I bought one, he would give me something to keep it in, a wheel, and some other things that I would need. I felt like with an offer like that, I couldn't say no. We went to the pet store to get me a rat.
We walk in and go immediately to the area where the rat's are. A girl asks us if we need help, and I tell her that I want a hairless rat. She asks me if I want a boy or a girl, and I tell her that I'm not sure but that I'm leaning towards a girl. She suggests that I just pick one out, and if it's a girl, then it's meant to be. I look at all of them for a minute or so, and then I spot the one I want. It has plenty of energy, little gray spots, and a striped tail. The girl picks her up, and it's a girl. I hold her, and I'm sold. I name her Jane Kelly, a classy name for my new classy little lady. I ask how old she is and I'm told that she's 4-5 months. She's adorable. I pay for her and we leave.
We play a show that night, and then we head home. I'm immediately excited about my new pet. I fix up her new home with bedding, things to chew on, and food. I don't have a water bottle yet, so I get her to drink out of a bottled water lid. I have a hard time not holding her the entire trip home. Whenever not holding her, I'm sending everyone text messages and telling them about her. I see quite a future with little Jane Kelly.
Jane is known best for her energy, and trying her absolute best to get our of her cage, which she succeeded to do a few times. She loves apples and potatos, and running in a wheel that is kinda too small for her now. She loves sitting on my shoulder, and nibbling on my ear, and running up and down my arms. She knows the difference between me and other people, and clearly knows that I'm her father. We get along just fine.
Here I am 3 months later, and it's a sad day. I wake up today and decide to give her a new cup to sleep in, because I noticed the night before that her current one was kinda dirty. I get her out of the cup, throw it away, and set her new one down for her to see. I'm suprised to see that Jane is being quite still, and not nearly as excited to eat and hop around as usual. I set her food in front of her to further inspire her to eat. She grabs a peice and tries to eat, but something is obviously wrong. She seems extremely weak, and when I pick her up she's very cold. My only thought at this point is that maybe the last few pieces of potato I gave her made her sick. Not knowing what to do, I ask someone to run me to petsmart to get her some new food. I get her food and hurry back, only to find her still barely sitting up. I give her some food, and she barely reacts. She looks at it, smells it, and continues to just sit there. I pick her up and she's still very cold. I take a peice of food and beg her to eat it. Confused, and worried, I start getting choked up. I set her back down, and put a peice of food to her mouth again, still begging her to try and eat. She looks at me, and then tries to get in my hand. I can tell she just wants me to hold her, and I start to cry. I hold her for a few minutes, until I can tell that she is getting even weaker. I decide to set her back in her home and make her as comfortable as possible. I go get a sock, and wrap her up and let her relax. I check on her every few minutes to see if she's still breathing, and eventually she just isn't anymore. I swell up with tears, and I have a good cry.
I'm still not sure what happened, but my theory at this point is that she managed to swallow some of the tape I used to fix the net on the lid of her cage, and it must have made her very sick over night. She was fine yesterday, or atleast she seemed to be.
Jane Kelly was buried on Sunday September 20th, 2009 still wrapped up in her sock, inside an old cell phone box. I said a few words, sealed it with a piece of tape, and sent her down the sewer. I thought she'd like that.
If you actually took the time to read this, I'm sure it might seem a little dramatic considering the short period of time I had her, but let me say this: I genuinely loved this animal. In three months, I became as attatched to her as any pet I've ever owned. The fact that her little life was cut so short has absolutely broken my heart. I miss you, Jane.