Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Belle

We all wait for the enviable while hoping it never comes.

This morning while doing the feeding and checking routine with the mice I noticed some odd behaviors with the girls. Some were agitated while some were more affectionate than usual. The one thing that stood out was that I noticed that the girls would not go into the nest in the cage with the big wheel. One mouse in fact made her way towards the nest, stuck her nose in and immediately ran the other way. I opened the cover and found Belle. Belle was positioned like she may have died in her sleep while the other girls might have been nudging her or trying to snuggle with her. Belle was not completely rigid and in fact felt slightly warm, as if she had not been dead for too long or that the other mice may have snuggled with her during the night.

I took Belle out and gently wrapped her in tissue paper. Trish came over with a nice piece of fabric and I laid Belle out. We spent some time petting her, remembering her as the perky, seemingly fragile Auntie Mouse. I wrapped her up in her burial cloth and took her to the park where other members of her mouse family are buried.

As mentioned in the Tuesday, May 31, 2005 entry, Belle had a tumor-like growth. Research showed Belle could live for some time in comfort. I could not find any obvious injuries on her so I am assuming she died from complications related to the tumor. The evening before we found her she had been frisky and playful

1 comment:

Trish said...

Belle was one of the first mice I ever had. I knew she was a special mouse the moment my eyes spied her in the throng of mice in the pet shop cage. Her large beautiful pink ears, her ruby red eyes that always seemed to see right through me, and her long lovely silver hair. She stood out from the rest in her behavior, too. I learned later that her unique and circumspect way of navigation was typical of red-eyed mice, since they sense of vision is less. She also proved to be no pushover, as we later learned, because she would not put up with any nonsense from Mabel when he tried to woo her. In fact, she even tried to prevent him from bothering her friend Puddin', but evidently Mabel won her over since we have the offspring to prove it!! It was funny to see her run from him, then stop and turn, glaring at him, rearing up, and chattering away. Mabel would stop dead and retreat. Nope, no way was she going to let him ravish them with his churlish behavior...Poor guy didn't know any other way, but they weren't going to make it easy for him. Way to go, Belle...

The other big memory I have of Belle was her tendency to snuggle against the base of my neck along the hair line, especially if I had a collared shirt on that she could wedge into. She loved that. She would root around the hair, making it all comfy for herself. If she was feeling especially frisky, she would sometimes explore my head, and a couple of times ended up sitting on TOP of my head!

Belle, you were a wonderful sister, friend, and auntie to the other mice, and a dear friend to us humans who you allowed to share your life with you. You will be missed...