Five years ago last fall, I was driving down a country road on my way home, when I saw something small and white running alongside the road. "Um, that's not natural," I thought. Now, anyone who knows me knows I couldn't possibly keep on driving at that point. I turned the car around, went back, and stopped where I'd seen the critter.
Turned out to be a baby pink-eyed white Guinea pig, no bigger than a hamster. Some yahoo must have tossed it out of a car, but not before snipping the poor baby's eartips off. I hope karma has something special in mind for the perpetrator.
I looked around for any other babies, but the white one was all that I saw. As I happened to have a box in the back of the car, I put the baby piggie in the box and took it home.
Pink eyes, li'l pink ears, li'l pink nose -- Pinky would have been a good name if it had been a girl, but as it turned out to be a boy, he was named Pinkerton.
I knew nothing about Guinea pig care, but quickly found the Guinea Lynx site, which has terrific advice on diet and medical care. I bought the largest cage I could find at PetCo, which was fine when Pinkerton was a baby, but I then found the site for Cavy Cages and used their plans to build a cage twice that size at half the cost.
A steady diet of Oxbow hay and Guinea pig pellets, plus fresh veggies daily and crushed Vitamin C tabs on his food, kept him healthy and happy. His only ailment was an infected foot, that the vet treated with antibiotics. For a while he had a companion, a piggie we adopted from a shelter and named Webster, but poor Webster passed away after just a couple of years.
A couple of months ago I noticed Pinkerton was slowing down. He was still eating his food, but not running around his cage as much. Then in the last couple of weeks he was getting fussy about his food.
Finally, last weekend, he stopped eating. On Sunday, Pinkterton passed over the Rainbow Bridge.
He's now laid to rest under the pear tree that he could see from his window. Farewell, Pinkerton. You'll be missed. I hope you're happily wheeking in the heavenly clover right now.