I'm excited to announce our newest guinea pigs! We just picked up two (unrelated) teddy pigs that carry the skinny genetic (that's right, we're on track to produce werewolf and eventually hairless babies). They're too young for breeding yet, but when they're of age they'll be put together. We also got a new female to replace one of ours that refuses to breed. It took all day to go and get all of these piggies from various places, but it's so worth it! They look awesome and they're going to be great new bloodlines.
Yesterday was an exciting day. A new (dark tan) chinchilla kit was born, and a new litter of three dwarf hamsters arrived too! We're still awaiting one very large guinea pig to deliver now, and we might have new teddy bear hamsters by the end of the week. I let my son match them up for breeding, so I don't know if they actually did or not. We'll wait and see!
Tomorrow should be exciting too as I'm going to be making an all-day trip to go pick up some new guinea pigs! With these new genetics, we should be able to produce Skinny Pigs (hairless guinea pigs)!
I recently got notice that the fundraising site I'd been using (ChipIn) will be discontinuing services as of next month. That's when I stumbled upon GoFundMe, and decided to attempt to "go big" with fundraising. In the past I have successfully raised funds for all kinds of vet care from heartworm treatment to Onion's corneal ulcer just two months ago.
Reach for the stars and dream big - that's what I believe in. So here goes. I'm attempting to get enough funds to buy a hobby farm and start doing rescue work on a constant basis.
I understand that this is a very lofty goal, and that chances are I won't come anywhere near reaching it. But I have faith that someday, when the time is right, the means will come, and the right property will be available. Maybe it's now, maybe it's next month, maybe next year, or perhaps not for another decade. The very least I can do is try, and the worst that can happen is that I won't get the donations I need for the upgrade I have planned. But even then, the journey will have been traveled, and the dreams in my head will still be there, ready for when they can be put into action and turned into reality.
Today the 12/16/12 twins (one mosaic and one blue-eyed white) went to their new home. They will be part of a petting zoo that will (in part at least) help with therapy for special needs people. I'm so happy that they're going to be employed to help other people! I'm hoping their new family will keep me in the loop about when they open so I can share that here - and maybe get some folks out there to see the boys, and enjoy the petting zoo experience.
Let me quickly sum up Rumple's history. Rumple came to me with four siblings that were just coming off of bottle feeding and starting on soft food. While all four litter mates adjusted well, Rumple's back end started to swell. It swelled so badly that there was no genetalia visible - only a swollen butt hole. He went to visit three different vets and switched a number of foods before I realized that Rumple was allergic to grains. After weeks on a grain-free diet and some antibiotics, the swelling went down, but the genetals were still not quite right. One vet was sure Rumple was a girl, another insisted Rumple was a male. So I brought him (we have always referred to Rumple as a male) to my regular vet who gave me a cream to put on the poor kitty's bottom to reduce the last of the swelling. Once everything was close to normal "back there" I brought Rumple back in for a very thorough exam. The results? Rumple does not have a penis, no testicles could be found, but the external genetalia is not right for a female either. Without a penis, he must be a she then, right? So for a month and a half we tried to adjust to calling Rumple she and her and even bought the ID tag in purple (not quite pink, but not blue either). I scheduled a spay surgery for 2/6/13. When I dropped Rumple off we discussed how we still weren't 100% on gender, and that this could be an interesting procedure.
Snap back to today, when Rumple came home from "spay" surgery... and the file listed MALE on the gender! When they opened "her" up, there was no uterus, so they started looking for testicles. They only found one. So Rumple is officially listed as male, having been a cryptorchid (undecended testicle). That said, without a penis, and having been born with just one teste, I firmy believe that despite the joking comments made earlier in the cat's troubled history... Rumplestiltskin is most certainly what I would consider to be a genuine case of hermaphrodism. Leave it to me to bring home a hermaphrodite cat. I do love oddballs, but in all my years, I think this case trumps them all.
Welcome home Rumplestiltskin. I love you no matter what genetalia (or lack there-of) you were born with. And for the record, Rumple will continue to be referred to in the male persona. I am currently hoping to keep Rumple permanently, as we've had a long journey together, and quite honestly, my kids absolutely love him and would be crushed to see him go.
Follow along with the joys and heartbreaks of one small-time hobby breeder.