Hippie had an inoperable tumor in his belly. We knew for a while and kept an eye on him, knew that at some point he would stop enjoying his life. Well last week he turned a corner and we could tell he was near the end so last Monday morning we said goodbye and took him to the vet. I can’t even write about it without crying all over again, we both miss him a lot.
Here he is sleeping on his favorite rug. He used to luxuriate on this rug all the time, which means squirming around and rubbing his chin on the shag fibers. It was next to the litter box and in front of his beloved hammock and next to his laptop bag, which he also loved to be in towards the end of his life.
His Cheerios box and his pet taxi in the bathroom were also favorite hangout spots, both positioned near the food and close to a litter box. He also liked the “dry bag” in the closet, which is an old Army laundry bag with an old sheet in it. Also Ben would hold Hippie when he was having a seizure, would put him in the pocket of a hoodie sweatshirt and hold him for an hour at a time while he worked on the computer.
Yes, Hippie was all about the wonderful array of sleeping spots available to him in his home. We had him for almost three years, and estimate that he was at least three years old when we adopted him from the SPCA. He had spent several months there locked in a cage (sorry, no offense, I know folks at SPCA do their best and work hard) so having access to our entire apartment was exciting for him.
He learned to fight Bun and Pig, two very playful ferrets. He went from being the limp peaceful Hippie which inspired his name to a pretty good fighter. He learned to use his immense weight in his battles, like a Sumo wrestler.
Hippie also learned about the “Magic Spot” on the kitchen floor where I would leave ferret treats. Always after first waking up Hippie would bound out in his characteristic schlumpy awkward run, and check the Magic Spot for treats. His favorite was a little bit of Crisco left on a big spoon after I’d baked something. Don’t judge! He also liked American cheese singes. He wouldn’t eat any other type of cheese so when Ben switched from American to Swiss singles, there went the cheese treats.
He was a good boyfriend to Pig, who loved to sleep under his giant belly to keep warm. He also had a good friendship with Bun and sometimes it was the two of them in the blue Walmart hammock. (We have a fancy black faux fur hammock from an expensive store…it was Macchi’s and since she died no ferret has so much as touched it).
Hippie hated being in the bed and if we lifted him onto it he would scramble to jump off the edge as soon as possible. Suicide leap!
He would beg to get into the shower or bath and then once in there he would do anything to get back out. There are some clips in his movie showing him doing desparate leaps from one edge of the tub to another.
Hippie also liked to sleep in the couch and before squeezing underneath he would “soften up” the rug at the entrance by digging for a few seconds…maybe trying to make the entry larger for his giant body? Now Bun does that too. Ferrets learn from each other.