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Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Wednesday Spotlight: Devyn Quinn

Anyone coming into my house will immediately notice one thing: it's full of animals! That's right. I am one of people who could be called a "pet nut." Not only do I have cats--a lot of cats--I have 5 ferrets and a dog.

How did this happen?

I'm not perzactly sure. I have always had pets. But when I moved to the place I currently live, there was a slight population explosion at my house. Living in a small rural area one of the first things you'll find out is that resources are limited. Especially in the area of animal control. There is none here. None. Thing is, there are tons of dogs and cats and kittens and puppies running around homeless and starving.

Not on my block. While it is true I cannot save all the animals, I can and have saved some. Each season, wild cats have kittens on the property and each season I am outside, looking under the decks and in the woodpiles for kittens. Sometimes I can catch these wild little boogers, sometimes I can't. Those that are caught are given flea treatments, collars, the whole nine yards. Many often find they like the house cat life and never leave. Others return to live outside on the property, where food is always provided for wild and tame cat alike. I can't help it. I like cats. I like having cats around. If it means I have to scoop a lot of poo, well, so be it.

I like ferrets, too. It was entirely by accident that one came into my life. I was called to pick one up and find her a new home. When I arrived, I found the sorriest little animals you've ever seen. Not only was the little creature living in a cage of filth and excrement, her poor little body was covered with fleas and sores. The people were feeding her pieces of bread and water. They had no business having a ferret, or any animal for that matter. I quickly squelched the desire to kick the living poo out of the owner and took the ferret off to what I had hoped would be a good new home.

Turns out the new owners took one look at this miserable little animal and turned her down.

So home I trot with my first ferret. I knew nothing about ferrets, except they looked like long rats. It took a bit of research to learn about them, and it took a bit of time to get the ferret cleaned up and living decent again. I had meant to find her a home, but the ferret ended up staying. Since she looked so pathetic in her cage, I began to let the ferret out. Well, in no time at all, the ferret was out of her cage more than she was in it. Didn't matter that she was digging holes in my carpeting or in my cushions. She was happy and got along with the cats and the dog. That's what counts. But she was lonesome. So I went and bought some more ferrets for her to play with. Through the years one ferret became 4 ferrets, and then 5. And they don't live in a cage. As for the litter training, we're working on that.

And, of course, there is my Shih Tzu, Tess. Tess is almost 5 now. She was one of those animals you don't plan to get, but do because they are little and cute. And sick. Tess came with health problems, including a heart murmur. I chose her specifically because she was little, cute and sick, and came from an elderly woman who was puppy milling to make ends meet. The old lady had explained that Tess was sick and she couldn't afford to take her to the vet. She still wanted 200 for the dog, but that didn't matter. What did matter was that here was a cute little pup that needed some help. So I forked out the money and whisked Tess off to the vet. Thanks to good care, she recovered and outgrew the heart murmur. And it didn't matter that the new pup chewed the corners off my walls, or peed all over my carpets until she was housetrained. After all, those things can be replaced. And as long as I have one of those handy-dandy things called a carpet cleaner at hand, I suppose we will survive.

So if you should ever happen to come over to Devyn's house, be prepared to meet the fur family. You will be mauled by ferrets, licked by a dog and wear the hair of multiple cats. :)


Julie Robinson said...

I loved hearing about your zoo!! You've got me beat. I only have the 2 dogs and 3 cats. But you're right about rural areas. For some reason, 'city folks' think they can drop unwanted animals off here. Unfortunately, the rural area I moved into 12 years ago is now one suburb after another, but old habit die hard. In fact, our town is having a council meeting because the animal shelter here has been a 'no kill' shelter. Thus people in the city next door drop their animals off here, placing a heavier tax burden on us with the large number of animals dumped. Anyways, let me get off my soap now.

Ferrets are cute but they do smell. But they are so friendly and lovable. When we lived in the city 15 years ago, the apartment manager brought me a ferret that had been lost. Why did she bring it to me? Because I'm a sucker!! I advertised and eventually found out who owned it and then returned it. But I thought it was sooo cute.

You must be the type of person who attracts strays. My mom has commented before that I seem to attract strays, both the two and four-legged kind!

Julie Robinson said...

Oh, and yes, it does seem like you wear the fur of your kitties. I was all dressed up one day and had gone to a meeting. While there, this woman looked at me and, in the middle of our conversation, abruptly said, "You must have cats." Thrown off guard, I asked how she knew. Of course, I had a white cat hair on the breast of my suit. I had to pick them up to say good-bye before I left that day!!

Caffey said...

I like your home already Devyn! I love cats and have always had two of them! I believe that they too need to have a friend too. Only thing is I'm scared of big dogs, but the smaller ones are cute! No ferrets here! I adopted my cats from the shelter. I didn't have them growing up but once I had a hearing ear dog for the deaf (similar to ones they have for the blind) and I loved having her and she made me feel so safe when my kids were babies and helped me hear them as well as the door and other things.