Note: a blogger has to start somewhere, and this blog is under two weeks old as of this page’s publication on November 20th, 2010. I am in the process of constructing a page for each individual at Dovetail. Please check back in a few weeks for a more comprehensive gallery of profiles. Thanks for your patience and your interest!
Here they are: the dramatis personae, the characters in the story of Dovetail Rats. Full profiles appear under each rat’s name in the menu on the lower left side of this page. Some are veritable babies, some in the prime of life, and some have gone on to their rattie rewards–one hopes to a heaven in which the streets are paved with cream cheese and the houses shingled with yogies.
Rats live short lives by most standards. Actually, their lives are not so much short lived as they are sped up. A human month is about 2.5 years for a rat, which means each 24 hour day is the equivalent of roughly a month in a rat’s life. In light of their extremely high metabolic rate, this makes perfect sense. We probably look like statues to them, moving so slowly as to appear stationary! What this means, however, is that our beloved pets come into our lives, make an indelible impression, and depart sooner than we would want.
Therefore, this gallery of profiles includes those beloved individuals who now reside in the front garden beneath the lily-of-the-valley and the statue of St. Fiacre, but who are ever scampering about in the bloom of youth and health in memory.
All of these rats are pets. None is currently registered, though I intend to register them with the North American Rat Registry for a mere $2: http://www.ratregistry.org/forms/Individual.html. The fancy is in its infancy, and the more rats whose ancestry can be traced, the more that breeders and geneticists will have to work with when deciding how to proceed in the best interest of the fancy. None of my rats are from breeders of note at present, though I’d like to change that eventually: some are rescues of unknown origin; some were bred as pets and come from independent pet shops in the area specializing in hand-raised babies; one or two probably started life in a feeder mill and managed to escape their sad origins relatively unscathed by disease or temperament issues, largely through extensive physical and behavioral rehabilitation. Wherever they came from, each and every one is loved and cherished.
My apologies for acting so much the indulgent parent, but what can one do? We live in an age wherein phones have cameras built right in to them and can be carried in one’s pocket. Or so it seems. Consequently, a girl who never took pictures now takes pictures. The profiles are as much a tribute and a record for my archives as they are material to share: hence the details of births, illnesses and deaths (where applicable).