Thursday, March 29, 2012

Bury Piggy Under the Apple Tree

I used to have a guinea pig named Piggy. Piggy was 12 inches long and 12 inches round. He was a gentle creature who loved his carrot tops and celery leaves and led a relatively charmed life for a guinea pig.

One beautiful spring day I had the brilliant idea of putting piggy out in the yard to graze in the grass. I took his cage outside and turned it upside down so he could roam in his own little corral for awhile and glory in the grass and the sun.

When I went outside to get him he was covered in about an inch of little white eggs. I didn't know what they were and I spent hours combing them out of his fur and I had to bathe him - a process he did not enjoy. The next day he was sick. When he wasn't better the next day I called the vet. He told me those little white eggs were fly eggs. Fly eggs are maggots. He told me that if any of them got inside of Piggy (and they probably did) that there was nothing he could do - Piggy would die.

In trying to be nice to my lovely guinea pig, I had essentially killed him. I observed him for 2 more days. It was obvious his condition was deteriorating. I woke up the next day to what I would call "death rattles". His every breath was labored. I decided he had suffered enough. I had never taken a pet to the vet to be put to sleep and I wanted to be with Piggy when the end came so I decided to put him to sleep myself.

I had a sleeping pill that if I took it then I would not wake up for about 24 hours. I thought if it was strong enough to make me sleep that long then it would surely kill Piggy. I crushed the pill, added some water and squirted the solution down his throat. I picked him up and put him in my lap and started to pet him. He lay there quietly as I waited for him to die peacefully in my arms.

He didn't die. Within half an hour he was racing around his cage and eating and drinking like I had never seen him doing ever in his life. He was obviously in no pain whatsoever and I couldn't believe that he wasn't dead. He was fine the rest of the day. The next morning he was in bad shape again. I had to leave for school.

On my way out the door I looked at Bobby and said, "Bury Piggy under the apple tree."

Bobby looked at me with distress in his eyes and replied,"But Piggy isn't dead." I looked him in the eye and repeated myself and he knew what I meant. When I came home that night Piggy was buried under the apple tree.

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