by Pierre le Roux
My husband is understandably anxious. You see my obsession with getting a alpacas and/or a gay donkey must by now be haunting his dreams. Waking up in a cold sweat after dreaming that our property was transformed into a fully fledged zoo, us drowning in animal dung and being in violation of almost all municipal bylaws relating to animals would stress out most people. But not me. I get super excited by the mere thought of it.
Look I know I may have a problem. Even my therapist told me last week that he does not feel he is equipped to treat me. Not many are, but what is wrong with loving and collecting animals, especially when you take better care of them than most people do their own biological children. It’s not like I am harming anyone, apart from my brother-in-law who no longer comes to our house because he is allergic to the bunnies. But there are pills for that and I have a stockpile seeing as I am the one who is allergic to planet earth and sometimes people. After having had some time to reflect on my ever expanding menagerie while cleaning the bunny mansion I did ask myself the question – how many animals are too many?
At first when I started writing this blog post I decided to coherently interrogate this issue in order to come to an objective and logical conclusion. Then I got bored. So I decided fuck it! Objectiveness and logic are for pussies. So I decided to deal with this blog post by way of example. You see it is very difficult for some people to see the world through my eyes because I sometimes have a more, how shall I put it, unconventional way of looking at things. For example, where some people think the crooked teeth of a alpacas are ugly, I find it an enduring quality. Some people are disturbed by the amount of poop bunnies can generate, I see it as a business opportunity. Bunny poop really is a great fertilizer after all. If you don’t believe me I will send you some in the mail or you can just buy yourself a bunny. But I digress…
As you my dear readers know by now hubby and I have five cats, two bunnies, a tortoise and we may still or may not have a fish. It is difficult to tell with the fish as we rarely see him because he lives in a constant state of fear and is always watching out for Killer Pussy who wants to eat him. I won’t lie; having so many animals is a lot of work. The bunnies alone have three litter boxes. The cats also have three litter boxes and the garden and sometimes the bathroom sink. Our oldest cat has also recently developed urinary incontinence and has peed on the floor a couple of times. Don’t judge her, she is old. So many Saturdays we are knee deep on bunny poop, pee and cat shit. But I don’t mind because I love them.
However, our animals do sometimes do things that annoy me. Every so often I come home from work to find a massacre has occurred in our bedroom. One or possibly two of our cats like to catch birds and kill and then eat them on our bed. It usually looks like a scene out of a horror movie but instead of human bodies it is birds. The whole of the bed would be covered in feathers, blood and the odd organ or body part.
One time, not so long ago, I came home to find three birds murdered in this way at the same time. What made that worse, apart from the fact that there was more than one, was the fact that whoever killed them then went and strategically hid body parts around the house. It took me two days to find them all. There were body parts in my study, all the bathrooms, my slippers, work shoes, on the couch and the kitchen to mention but a few places. It took me about half an hour to vacuum all the feathers up which clogged up the vacuum cleaner which I had to clean multiple times. I gagged a few times while the cats watched me and judged me. Probably thinking “What the fuck is his problem? We come bearing gifts and he says thank you by screaming at us and throwing up. Ungrateful asshole!” But it not just the cats, the bunnies are a whole different story.
Bunnies are adorable and their personalities are really comical, but this is just a ruse. You see bunnies are super intelligent animals and super destructive and this combination can cause you some real headaches around the house. They hide behind their adorableness whenever they are in trouble and they know when they are being naughty or doing something wrong. They know but they don’t care and there is absolutely nothing you can do about it. When you tell at them “NO” they will ignore you. If you shove them away from chewing the carpet they will jump onto the couch and chew on the scatter cushions.
Bunnies are stubborn. So you learn to compromise by providing them with acceptable alternatives to their destructive behavior. Instead of chewing on the carpet they are allowed to chew on those Ethiad Airways blankets we stole. Instead of chewing on the scatter cushions they are allowed to chew on toilet paper rolls, scrunched up papers and a variety of other toys. At any given moment our house looks like we have a toddler living with us as there are acceptable chewing toys scattered throughout the house. It beats having to rewire the surround sound system, replacing iPhone chargers, buying new remote controls and a new carpet. However, it is not just their destructive behavior that makes them high maintenance pets; their potty training also posed a challenge.
It took us a couple of months and getting peed on a few times to potty train our bunnies. They are now exclusively using their litter boxes to pee and decided that hubby’s chaise is their new communal latrine used for pooping. It’s not a perfect arrangement but it beats them shitting on the couch. Unfortunately the odd accident still happens. Like last week when one bunny was playing on a scatter cushion next to me and all of a sudden he stood still as if he had seen a ghost. Then I saw that he was peeing and he had this “What the fuck did I just do?” expression on his face. Clearly it was not an intentional pee but it was an uncomfortable situation for the both of us and the scatter cushion.
And then there is the tortoise. She is stoic, opinionated and a Diva. Of all our animals she is the least work. She goes about her business, don’t particularly pay attention to anyone and pretty much ignores us unless it is dinner time. She has her routine which she made clear from the start is not to be fucked with. The only issue we have is when she needs to take her vitamins. Then her Diva shows. Most times she refuses to take them even if they are hidden in her food. She would eat around them and if one should end up in a mouth full she would spit it out. So I had to resort to force feeding her. It really isn’t very pleasant for either of us, but it is good for her and she knows it but she doesn’t need to like it. At least it only happens once every two weeks and when it happens we both feel a little dirty and ashamed afterwards.
As you can see I love my animals. I must admit that when I had my initial epiphany on extreme menageries I was high on white vinegar fumes and possibly wasn’t thinking clearly. After all bunny pee is potent shit and the pee-vinegar combo can have an intoxicating effect. My conclusion is that you only have too many animals once you can no longer afford them and no longer have room in your heart to love them. Hubby can also relax because I will never do anything that is not in an animal’s best interest. When I do get my alpacas and gay donkey we will have a property with the space to accommodate then. My Zoo will happen one day and it will be the gayest zoo in the world! Admit it; you are going to be so jealous. Now go back to work and stop looking at kittens and porn on the internet. Or better yet, go feed your cat.
Till next time.