We have had several mice here on the Unfarm going, in chronological order, from Bernadette to Caroline, then Daphne, and then Evangeline, Francine, Gemima, and (since it was bugging me that I had missed the "a") Angela. A couple of weeks ago I noticed that Gemima appeared to be losing weight so I made an appointment with the vet for her. It was quite timely because the morning of the vet appointment Gemima was sitting in her cage, hunched and moving very little with a discharge coming from her nose. I had her in the backseat of the car and was ready to leave for the vet's office when I got a phone call from them. An emergency case had just come in and the vet had rushed into emergency surgery with a ferret with a life threatening condition and as a result Gemima's appointment got bumped. Now I faced a dilemma: wait it out with Gemima at home and hope she pulled through until the vet could see her or take her in to the vet's office anyway and leave her there for the vet to check once he got out of surgery. I chose the latter. The next morning I got the call that she had unfortunately passed away sometime during the night, probably due to a failure of some sort in some internal organ. So my little quartet became a trio: Angela, Evangeline, and Francine are left still and are, for the most part, doing well. (Evangeline has a bit of a respiratory illness that she is not quite suppressing as well as she should but it is nothing that requires medication as of yet. Fingers crossed that she beats it on her own.)
Switching gears: apparently I am a horrible decorator. As soon as I set a litter box down in the rabbit cages the rabbits start tossing them about, moving them from one side of the cage to the other. Ginger was quite fond of tossing her litter box off the second floor of her cage and scattering her litter, box, and bunny berries all over the floor until I thwarted her by keeping her box on the first floor of her cage. Dog beds and blankets neatly laid out get scrunched and rearranged and dragged down the hallway until the dogs are satisfied with the new arrangement. The chickens and ducks are not much better - the chickens scratch about in their straw convinced that there is invisible food buried somewhere in the coop until they have made a proper mess and Minna is fond of pulling up any loose material around her to create little nests. I am no more successful with the mice. I cleaned their cage the other day and put in more bedding than I usually do - too much, as it turns out. I saw Francine at the cage bars yesterday, busily pushing bedding out of the cage between the bars and onto the table below. Maybe the feng shui was off somehow. Or maybe the cage wasn't "open concept" enough anymore. Or maybe I simply am a horrible decorator.