Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Angel - the Elusive Rat... and Dyson, the good guy.

My granddaughter has been wanting a rat...yes I said a rat...for over two years now.  She's ten years old and ten year olds think rats are cool.  Having icky thoughts about rats, my daughter told her she could have a hamster instead so off they went to the pet shop on Monday.  She tried to hold the hamsterss, but they were all little biters.  The pet shop owner told her she would have to wear gloves for about a month or so while she handled it in order to train it not to bite.  "He bites? I don't want him", she said.  "Then you need a rat".  Pet store employees can be so annoying, can't they?  Gen's eyes lit up because that's what she wanted all along.  "Oh, OK" said mom and home they went with a 3 week old rat and all the accessories that said Pet store employee could talk them in to buying.  They named her Angel - a name my daughter has changed several times since Monday.  The last name I heard her call Angel was this afternoon.  #$*#@~*# is what I think she said.  Maybe I heard wrong though, I don't think she uses words like that.

Angel was the perfect little Angel when they got her home.  She crawled in and out of Chloe and Gen's hands - Gen even put Angel on her shoulder and she crawled up under her hair.  It made me cringe.  Angel even proved to be very photogenic.  See....
Now for the rest of the story...

The deal was that Angel could only stay in Gen's room, but seeing how sweet she was, Mom gave in a little and allowed Gen to bring her downstairs to socialize.  Since she handled that so well, Gen asked if she could take Angel into the bathroom and close off all the doors so she could have a little more freedom.  Sure, why not?  Little did they know that there was a tiny hole underneath the sink cabinet between the cabinet and the wall.  The hole was hidden well - but guess who found it?  I knew you would guess.

This was Monday night.  Today is Wednesday and Angel was still in hiding.  They would put food on the floor and Angel would run out and get it but was back so quick they couldn't catch her.  She teased them like this for two days.   The hole was too tiny to put much of anything other than a straw with peanut butter on the end - barely an inch square.  Angel would follow it to the edge of the hole but wouldn't come back out.  They even devised a little makeshift trap out of a plastic container that had peanut butter in the center and was held up by a pencil.  They put it on the floor outside the hole in the cabinet.  It was so unstable that if you barely touched it, it would fall down.  Angel managed to go into it, lick the peanut butter off the pencil and get out without missing a beat.  Did I say that rats are smart?

Gen was distraught and Mom was at her wits end.  As a last straw they called Grandpa.  Off we went with a handsaw blade to try to cut the hole a little bigger.  The hole was in an odd position near the floor, so Mom had to do the tedious job.  It worked - it was now about 2 inches square which was as big as it could get.  Angel was living in a 2" wide by 2" high space that ran against the wall on the floor from the front of the cabinet to the back - and she was staying just beyond Gen's arm reach.  Golf clubs, back scratchers, kitchen utinsels, sticky tape on a long stick - nothing worked.  This is when I think I heard my daughter muttering Angel's new name under her breath.  Then she walked out of the room to turn down the thermostat.  It was getting hot in there - after all, there were five of us in the bathroom trying to save Angel.

Krista walked back in and we all gasped.  She had gone after the "big guns".

~Here he comes to save the day~  The Dyson Vacuum.  Oh my!  These things are powerful bad boys.  Would Angel be bald from the suction.....or worse?   I could just imagine her sucked up into the vacuum somewhere and us not being able to get her out.  Or it sucking all the breath out of her little nose.  By this time, I don't think Krista cared - not even a whit.  "Stand back", she said, brandishing the hose as if it were an AK-47.  She loaded it with a little brush attachment and put it as far back in the hole as possible.  I was in charge of pushing the button.  Button pushed, hose pulled out - nothing.  "Let's do it again", she said.  She was enjoying this way too much.  Hose inserted, button pushed, hose retrieved.  Angel's little body was on the end with her legs just a kickin'.  Bingo!  "Close the hole", Krista shouted as I pushed the button off.  Gen was quick on the draw.  Hole closed.  Angel caught.  Back in cage.  No worse for wear.  Whew! 

If it were my rat - which is like saying if it were my million dollars which I won't ever have either, I would put old Dyson right beside Angel's cage for a few days just to show her who's boss.  And if she's not overly traumatized by being sucked out of a hole, maybe she'll start living up to her name.  I, for one, prefer Angel to the new one muttered under someone's breath.

Did I say rats are smart?


  1. One of my nieces had a pet rat that sat on her shoulder ... I have to say that I hated it. I am OK with most animals but rats I just can't abide.

    Love this tale, it reminds me of a hamster we once had, and the sofa ...

  2. I would think if Dyson stayed near Angel's cage, that would make her never want to pull that stunt again.
    On the other hand, she might have to be put on nerve pills, too...

  3. Good morning Glenda, What a fun story. I was laughing so hard I about spilled my coffee. I can just picture it all. I would be right in the midst of it as well....having too much fun with that vacuum and terrorizing that lil' angel. My girls wanted rats for a while but I never dared give in. I kept picturing it getting out and either finding a new home in the couch or tangling with the 2 dogs and 2 cats already residing with us. oh boy.....

    So glad to see you are doing well. I have stopped by a few times to comment and say hey but google and/or my laptop was not being cooperative.

    God bless you richly with His joy in abundance today in all you do.


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