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Lovecraft Kazoku (RIP)

   
Lovecraft Kazoo
Origin: Born here - my second Lovecraft litter
Born: 22 October 2012
Died: 26 January 2015: Aged 27 months
Cause of death: Possible minor stroke (passed away quietly at home)
Colour/variety: Black Essex
Health: No health issues
Weight: 620g
Temperament: Sweet gentle buck with a heart of gold
Nicknames: Kazoo, Zoodle
   

26/01/2015: A fond goodbye to Kazoo. My big gang of lively girls kept him busy and happy, until yesterday when he lost the spark in his eyes. He was due at the vets this evening but had passed away in the cube, with a pile of girls keeping him warm. Kazoo was just over 27 months and stayed healthy all his life, and he got to leave in the best possible way, so this is a bittersweet goodbye to a tail-pulling clownboy who turned into a wonderful gentle old man who was loved by many, including all the people whose hearts he stole doing ratty PR at shows.

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Kazoo was born here in my second litter, and at 7 weeks he (and his 1-day younger cousin from my third litter) went to live with my friend Jemma and her boys. As a kitten he was insanely naughty and playful, extremely bouncy and busy, and very licky and affectionate. Very much a clown boy! He matured into a lovely active adult buck with attitude, a cheeky temperament and much lickiness. He eventually went on to sire a litter here, after which he unfortunately became a rather poor and insecure alpha. The group as a whole was clearly not happy and settled, and there were a number of minor injuries, so Kazoo was neutered to calm things down. Although the niggles and tiffs did calm down as he stepped down from alphahood, he never really fit back into the group in the same way - often sleeping apart from the others and not really engaging with them. Around this time his owners also moved house, and Kazoo is the type of rat that likes his routine and not being the most self-assured rat, he doesn't deal particularly well with upheaval. He gained considerable weight and mainly kept himself to himself. In early summer 2014 the two youngest rats in the group hit their main hormonal period, and the cage dynamics became even more up in the air. Jemma and I therefore decided that Kazoo would come back here to live with my big girl group - they would no doubt have him running around, and he also wouldn't have to deal with hierarchies in the same way. As another plus, he and his group have spent a fair bit of time here over the years, as I tend to rat-sit them, so it was by no means a new strange place he was coming to. This proved to turn out wonderfully for Kazoo and he lost a lot of weight (about 100g) very quickly just from the competition at feeding time and the generally much increased activity levels of the group. He also became much more alert and interested, and is now usually one of the first at the bars when I'm in the room. He's a completely gorgeous solid lad who loves pottering around the rat room, coming for a scritch and a cuddle, and curling up with his ladies! I'm so grateful to Jemma for letting him come here - it's so difficult if you have to give up your beloved adults, but it's very clear that in this case it was the best decision for Kazoo, and as we live quite close they still get to see a lot of each other :)

(click thumbnails for larger versions)

 

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