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Rat Tales: Cage Side Story

IN THE December 22 ISSUE

FROM THE 2012 Articles,
andRebecca McLeod,
andRodent Ramblings
SECTIONS

by Rebecca McLeod

Rebecca shares with KRL another fun story from the perspective of her pet rats. This one may resemble a certain musical.

Gonzo’s Gang:
Gonzo: one tough mother of the other three rats. A hairless with one eye and a combative nature.
Wheeltail: the dedicated athlete.
Screamer: Don’t Touch Me!! Ahhhhhh!
Snowball: The nurse rat, her mother’s favorite.

Rescue Girls:
Tofu: Gonzo’s long lost daughter
Roo Roo: A cheerful little black and white hooded with a positive attitude.

The two groups of does faced each other across the kitchen floor. Their beady little eyes narrowed as they squinted at each other nearsightedly. On one side, this was merely curiosity. On the other side, rage was building.

“Dey don’t smell like anyone I know,” muttered Wheeltail, next to her mother Gonzo. On the other side of Gonzo, Snowball nodded.

“Dat is nobody I has ever peed on before.”

“Shut up babies!” snapped Gonzo, ruby eye glittering in rage as she glared across the kitchen floor. “Dose motherless does of hamsters is going down. Dis is MY out time place.”

Gonzo

Across the kitchen floor, a small group of does were under the impression that they were touring a new home, not about to engage in a turf war.

“Dis is very nice,” exclaimed Roo Roo. “I wasn’t expecting dem to has a swimming pool an everyfing!”

“Um, Roo?” nervously asked Tofu. The other doe ignored her.

“Look, dere’s even frozen peas in it for bobbing! Who wants to go first?”

“Roo? I fink we has a problem,” warned Tofu, nervously backing toward the corner.

Across the kitchen, Gonzo was organizing her troops.

“Ok babies, Snowball, you takes out the fat white one, Wheeltail and Screamer, youse flank me and remember, you gots to snap in time wif each other or the whole effect is ruined. I seen it in a movie an’ it was amazing!”

“Ok mom,” muttered the babies. They organized themselves, fluffed up their fur aggressively, turned sideways to the newcomers, and lifted their right front paws.

Snap.

Snap.

Snap.

“What’s that sound?” asked Roo Roo, pausing in her exploration of the water bowl.

“Oh Holy Cheeses, they’ve gone CageSide story on us!” whimpered Tofu, ducking behind the smaller rat. Roo Roo’s eyes widened.

“Oh dis is bad. Dis is very, very bad.”

Gonzo and her gang advanced sideways across the floor, snapping their right paws in time. Their fur was fluffed up in rage, their teeth were chittering, and from somewhere overhead, music was playing:

When you’re a rat
You’re a rat all the way
From your first bite of kibble
To your last hammock lay!
When you’re a rat if the poop hits the fan
You knows who to blame
It’s those gerbils and ham(sters)!
You’re never alone;
You live with your pack
You sleep on your head
Den comes out for a snack!
Then you are set with a capital R
You’ll never forget just who your packmates are!
We smells just the same
Thanks to gallons of pee
My sister is smelly
And she smells just like me!

Dramatically, Gonzo’s gang paused just in front of the newcomers: “And you don’t smell like me!”

“That might be a good thing,” murmured one of the newcomers, wrinkling her nose. “Who is you?”

“Da alpha of this place who’s about to rip you a new one,” explained Snowball. “She’s my mom.”

“Snowball! Did I say you could talk to dose interlopers?” snapped Gonzo.

“Hey, wait a minute!” said Tofu, cautiously peering out from behind Roo Roo. “You smell kind of familiar.”

Gonzo peered at the plump doe nearsightedly.

“Wait. . .is you one of my babies? You’re huge! I don’t remember having a huge baby.”

“I eat my feelings.”

“Apparently they were very filling!” wisecracked Wheeltail, who as a Tour De Wheel winner felt she could be judgmental about such things. Gonzo kicked her in the head.

“Shut up and don’t be mean to your sister! Fatty! Get over here! We about to have a rumble and you’re on the wrong side,” Gonzo explained, taking a minute to nibble on a nail in preparation for bloodshed.

“My name is NOT Fatty–it’s Tofu!”

“I know I did NOT name you Tofu–what a dumb name! Fatty is way cooler and more accurater!” argued Gonzo.

By this time, Gonzo’s Gang had lost a lot of their momentum. Their fur had smoothed down, teeth were no longer bared, and even the high-strung Screamer was washing her face. Roo Roo decided to go out on a limb.

“We was no trying to insult you, Alpha Gonzo–we didn’t know this place belonged to anyone else. We really don’t want to start anything violent–especially with such a tough rat.”

Gonzo preened. Roo Roo continued.

“Since we is all here, why don’t you shows us how you like to enjoy out time? I fink dere’s peas for bobbing,” hinted Roo Roo.

Gonzo looked at her daughters and then shrugged. “Why not.”
As the little group of does trotted away across the linoleum floor, Gonzo was heard to remark “Tofu, you got to tell me where you found enough food to become dat fat!”

The answer, of course, is unprintable.

Check out more of Rebecca’s rat stories in KRL’s rodent ramblings section.

Want to know how to see your ad like this at the end of an article? Email KRL at life@kingsriverlife[dot]com by replacing the [dot] for more info. 10% of all ad sales goes to animal rescue.

Rebecca McLeod, enslaved by the whimsical charms of rats in her early twenties, spends her evenings slicing up vegetables and fruit for the vermin, chauffeuring them to the vet, and bragging about their many accomplishments to anyone who will listen. She & her husband Matthew run Bec and Matt’s Rats, a hobby rattery based out of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan (Canada) and are an active part of the Canadian rat fancying community.Rebecca holds a B.A. Hons. in English from the University of Saskatchewan and is a freelance writer. Visit Bec and Matt’s Rats on

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