My Animal-Magnet Family
So my family and I tend to be a magnet for animals in need of rescue and or re-homing. Word must spread like the barking chain from the movie 101 Dalmatians. Every time we think we’ve hit full capacity we end up being stuck with and then falling in love with a new member of our family.
[SIDE NOTE: Don’t worry, I don’t have a corny “Rescue Mom” bumper sticker. Whether you adopt, rescue, or get your cool, beloved purebred pet from a (hopefully reputable, of course) breeder, you’re giving a creature worthy of love a home just as much as a “rescue,” so it’s not like I sit on a throne of judgment over here. Like I said, we’re just magnets for the stragglers.]
Heck, someday I reaaallly want to get a purebred German Shepherd, but holy crap puppies are a huge pain in the ass, so we shall see.
I think it all started with my long-since-given-up volunteering at various animal shelters, then once married with kids, I got the whole family involved. I fully admit right now that after years of it, I tapped out. It’s heartbreaking way too often, and will make you hate human beings with the power of a supernova. I feel things much too deeply, I’m too sensitive really – and don’t know how to compartmentalize, so it was emotionally harming me. I had to gracefully “resign” from that and instead just dedicate myself to my family, including the pets we already have.
So onto the introductions! First up is Felix Kevin.
Just look at at that face! Isn't he kinda the fugly type of cuteness?
Okay so here’s the backstory for Felix Kevin: my sweetheart hero husband Marc was on his way home from work when he saw this little guy in the middle of traffic on a busy street. He said he saw this little dog was just sitting there, looking at every car whizzing by with a look on his little face of “hey! look at me! hey!” – so of course Marc pulled over, put his hazards on, stopped traffic (!), and approached him saying “Hey little guy, come here!” – and he trotted up to Marc happily, like he was a long-lost friend! This sweet good boy wasn’t scared at all, he was HAPPY.
Marc proceeded to scoop him up, put him in his lap to take him home. He said when he was stopping traffic to get him, he saw a dude across the street walking his dog and the guy smiled and gave Marc a thumbs up. That just adds to the sweetness of the moment to me.
He calls me on the way home saying “Hon, I’m minutes from home, just a head’s up I found a dog in traffic I’m bringing home.” I didn’t think twice, I was all “awww, you are the best!” (and seriously, he is)
So he gets home and this little doggy made himself right at home. He’s obviously some kind of Chihuahua mix and I typically do NOT like Chihuahuas, sorry-not-sorry. But he isn’t the shaking all over, baring teeth, yapping and nipping kind. Not even close, he’s the sweetest, most loving and trusting thing. He just loves people in general.
We diligently tried to locate an owner, checked for a microchip, no luck. So we’re like, okay guess he’s ours, we are not putting this sweet guy in a shelter, nope. Marc took him to our vet, got him a checkup, his shots, etc. Vet said he’s at least 10 years old, has a heart murmur, awfully messed up (and some missing) teeth, but otherwise fine. Cue our hearts breaking a bit more and wondering how in the heck he was still alive – how did this little doggie make it on the streets? We searched high and low for an owner, I assure you. No one came forward.
Since we are at full pet capacity (each with their own sad Sarah McLachlan “Arms of the Angel” nope-change-the-channel-style-backstory) we brainstormed. Our 23-year-old son was home from grad school thanks to the quarantine, but was about to finally head back to his apartment up at his university. He’s also a 10-ish-year shelter volunteer and is fiercely protective of scruffy shelter rejects, so he asked if he could take him. We were like “hallelujah!” Perfect solution!
So he’s up at uni living with Austin in his apartment, spoiled, well cared for, and already Austin has taken him to a vet again to get his teeth worked on and some meds. I can’t tell you how proud I am to have raised such a wonderful, huge-hearted young man.
Lastly, the inspiration for his name: Felix is a h/t to Felix Kjellberg, AKA PewDiePie (if you’re the type that thinks Pewds is a Nazi, I don’t like you, go away); and Kevin is a nod to an inside joke with a family friend (said family friend has a long, multiple-name Spanish name, and for some reason his parents stuck “Kevin” in the middle of it – it’s absolutely hilarious).
So that’s the story of Felix Kevin!
Next up: G-Dragon (“G” for short)
Look at this sweet lil guy! The pink bed on the left is called a "Cuddle Cup," how cute is that?!
We’ve never had a Guinea Pig, and having one was never once on our radar. But here we are. Backstory: one of Marc’s co-workers announced to everyone at the office one day that their brother was going through chemo and needed to re-home this chunky potato.
No takers. So guess who said “OK fine, I’ll take him.”? If you guessed Marc, ding-ding-ding you are correct! So we are now the owners of a Guinea Pig (former owner isn’t taking him back, and we’re so glad because we are totally bonded). His name was “G-Force” which we promptly changed to “G-Dragon.” If you don’t get the reference, that’s understandable. Marc, Kate (17yo daughter) and I are all HUGE Kpop fans. Not even remotely embarrassed – we’ll scream it from the rooftops, to the utter horror of our 23yo son, the one who took Felix. We call him “G” for short.
This is Kwon Ji-yong, AKA G-Dragon: South Korean rapper, singer-songwriter, record producer, member of the Kpop group Big Bang, one of our favorites!
So anyway, “G” was super shy at first, no squeaks, hiding all the time – but after about 2 weeks he started trusting us and now he is totally bonded with all of us. Guinea Pigs are very social creatures come to find out, and he squeals with delight whenever someone goes near him. We used to have a large cage, but we ended up making a large interlocking gate area with all his favorite stuff and it gives him so much room to run around, play, and places to “hide” or sleep. We even have a pet play-pen we bring into the living room every night for him – that’s how much he loves being close to us!
Suffice to say, the little guy has melted our hearts and is a full member of the family. He’s best buddies with our dog JJ, they bump noses and sniff each other and it’s adorable; and our 4 cats are completely apathetic about him, they aren’t a threat (I mean we’re not stupid, we don’t take chances and leave him alone in a room with them, duh, but when we have G on the sofa with us, the cats are always lounging around us – they just look at him like “meh,” and go back to their naps).
G loves leafy green lettuce, parsley, blueberries and carrots – and feeding him these treats is the cutest thing ever – he’ll sit in your lap and just monch, monch, monch out of your hand. I think it’s safe to say now that we know how amazing Guinea Pigs are, we’ll never be without one again (not sure their lifespan, but it’s a cruel rule of nature that our beloved pets aren’t with us anywhere near long enough).
We’re too tempted to stick a pat of butter on him (Guinea Pig cliche’ but holy cow they really are built like baked potatoes hahahahaha).
I hope you enjoyed the backstories of our newest pets! Our family really wouldn’t be complete without them.