Tuesday, February 7, 2012

A Parade of Pigs

Last year was relatively quiet for guinea pigs (certainly not for anybody else). In the past few months, we've hardly had any pigs. But never fear, the past two weeks decided to make up for that!
Guinea pigs are not my favourite animals, but they are absolutely the best small animals in the world to photograph. If you put a guinea pig in front of the camera, nine times out of ten, she'll just sit there. You can move them into a better position, get group shots, do whatever you like. It's amazing, especially compared to rats, which never sit still, ever.
These two beautiful girls are named Ginger and Lola (the one in the solo headshot is Lola). They kicked off our guinea pig trend two weeks ago when they were surrendered by their owners. They're only 10 months old, so clearly someone did not pay attention to the fact that guinea pigs can live over six years. They are lovely girls, and we've shipped them off to Pet Valu King & Dufferin to find a home there. The staff are in love with them, so until they do find a home, they're being utterly spoiled.
They were joined a few days later by Raza here. He was also surrendered, but he was surrendered without a name, age or sex. I mean, if you literally don't bother to know anything about your pet, what's the point in even getting one? Raza is super skittish, but he is also at Pet Valu King & Dufferin to try his chances.
 When I arrived at the shelter the next day, James greeted me with, "Have you seen our newest shipment? Guinea pigs just arrived."
"What, again?" I said in surprise.
"They're on the floor, we haven't got a cage set up yet."
Now, usually that means the animals are still in a carrier, from being picked up by one of the drivers. Imagine my surprise when the box in the photo above started moving.
Three guinea pigs in a box!
Thinking this was a tad sketchy, I grabbed the driver, who was just leaving, and asked where he'd picked them up.
"At a subway station, in a Coffee Time." He said, shaking his head.
"In that box?"
"Yup. Left on the bathroom floor."
Well, that's one way to get rid of your unwanted pets.
The three girls are in good shape and all, but who does that?
Anyway, they are now looking for a real home and are named Mocha, Espresso and Latte (what, you expected me to resist naming them with a coffee theme?).
Espresso (the one with black on her face) is quite nervous, but Mocha and Latte are surprisingly easy-going for guinea pigs. They let you scratch them on the back and even come running up to say hello sometimes. If someone left me on the floor of a Coffee Time bathroom, I don't think I'd be quite so friendly.

And so, we find ourselves with six guinea pigs. Guinea pigs get adopted fairly quickly, so I'm sure they won't last long. It does kind of crack me up how, every time rabbit intake slows down, something else has to pop up to take their place. Keeps us on our toes!

I'm very happy to say that Boris has finally been adopted. Also, amazingly, all 21 of those dwarf hamsters have been adopted! It only took about a month and a half, and about 10 of them were in foster care for half that time. That's pretty impressive! No wonder people keep giving us small animals.


Caroline said...

Aww, the piggies are so cute! Guinea pigs make better pets than rabbits for children as they are awake during the day and are interactive with their whistles and squeaks. Their life span is also shorter which is better for our throw away society!

digby&sassy said...

Congrats Boris! We miss you buddy!