The Parrot household has a real moral dilemma and if you, good reader, has a solution to offer, we would be most grateful. It’s this — how to humanely dispose of two psychotic gerbils.
No, I really mean it. We have two killer rodents and we’ve had enough. And we want to get rid.
This obsession with small mammals began with Miss P and her guinea pigs. They were fine. They lived outdoors in a hutch, were pretty cute, especially the “wheep, wheep” noise they made when food was coming, melon rinds a particular favourite.
They also did a pretty good job of mowing the lawn, albeit in small sections with a caged top to a) stop them escaping and b) save them from our then dog, “Bingo Would Be Killer of Small Furry Things.”
But as little girls do, she outgrew the guineas and when the last one died, we mopped a tear and dug another hole in the flowerbed. Shoebox sized.
Then it was Master P’s turn, but outdoor living rodents were not his style, preferring central-heating loving gerbils. The first two were great, loved being picked up and residents of Master P’s bedroom. Then they died.
So we replaced them with two more and a more viscous pair you couldn’t hope not to meet. From day one, putting your hand in the cage was risking your skin. Teeth like mini-buzzsaws.
They reminded me of the one and only rabbit me and my sister had as kids. It was a buck and a monster. I remember my dad having to change its hutch wearing gauntlets (usually worn when he rode his scooter) because it had a kick and claws that could disembowel.
When he was brought inside our two Alsatians would slink away down the walls to escape. It was such a beast that I can’t even recall if it had a name. It could have been Attila the Bunny.
Anyway, I have digressed. What to do with two delinquent gerbils? Our plan is to let ’em loose in the wild, Survival of the fittest and all that. But you need a Plan B and, as yet. we haven’t got one. So ideas welcome.
Otherwise, someone else out there might have two lady gerbils to set free. And as Mike Harding had it, “If they meet up and breed we’re all buggered.”
And that would be my fault then if, in ten years time, the rats are dead and a gerbil is no more than 10 feet away.