It is heart breaking to write this but my most favorite Rat that I have at The Nation has passed away this afternoon. I have lost my sweet boy Leroy.
How can I have a favorite out of the 100 or so rats that I care for every day, well you just do. There always is one that is the special one that creeps into your heart & you never know what has hit you. I have been told these are the Heart Rats. Leroy was my Heart rat & I would like to share his story.
Leroy was a club rescue rat as was his two brothers Monty & Fink. All three boys came together. Monty & Fink the two Siamese twin boys. And then there was Leroy a regular Black Berkshire that didn't quite seem to fit with them.
We received a letter from a woman who was just going through a divorce & she had moved back in with her mother. Her ex husband had the three adult male rats & he had left them with her. She took them with her to her mothers house & had them in her garage. It was late Summer & the colder weather would soon be moving in soon. She could not bring them into her mother's home because she kept dogs that would kill the rats. She did the right thing & got in touch with us.
We were really full up with rats at this time & really had no where for the boys to go but I decided to go get them anyway & put them & their cage somewhere in my rat room shelter. All my community groups were full then. I made the arrangements to drive to the woman's mother's house to get the three rats about a 45 min drive from me to a town that I had only been to once in my life. To my surprise when I pulled into the driveway I found that this was the house of the dog breeder that I had purchased my beloved Siberian Husky from 10 years earlier. He ( Zorro )had just passed away that Spring. I decided right then & there these three rats were meant to come with me forever. I had my husband build me another table & I made room in my rescue for yet another group.
From the beginning Monty was very special, very friendly & outgoing. Fink his twin brother on the other hand was completely opposite of Monty & was his own rat he just kind of kept to himself or Monty. Then there was Leroy. Leroy was very skittish & afraid & I could tell right away that the other two rats didn't care for him that much. In a short amount of time Leroy bond to me like no rat I have ever seen. He fell in love with me & I was his whole world. He seemed never to sleep but the minute I entered the room he was there to be picked up by me & to get my attention. I added other rats to their group in hopes of having him bond with a rat but it never happened.
All the rats that were in their group passed away this Easter Season of The Sendai Virus except for Leroy & Fink. Leroy actually was one of my first rats to get The Sendai Virus & he was one of only two of my rats that fought it off & lived. That virus claimed 17 lives in my colony. Leroy was my miracle. His brother Fink never seemed to be affected by the virus & he is the last one I still have now that my Leroy has gone from that group. Leroy wasn't sick right now he had made a full recovery. I fed him a apple slice this morning, two pieces of banana bread & some colored spiral noodles as extra treats this morning because I was just so glad to see him. I had been out of town for a few days & missed him terribly. I went shopping this afternoon & when I came back I went up to his table to pick him up & he was gone. He was a very special boy,
My Heart Rat Leroy.
Lisa D & Rat-Nation