I love dogs. I like most animals. I detest rodents! I have two storage barns and I despise cleaning up after pack rats. They don’t know the difference between newspaper, bedding, and toilet paper.
Several years ago, before Baby and Haylee Grace came to live with us, I was down in my older barn cleaning out when I was startled by a big burley rodent. She was startled also as she started moving about with 3 small babies attached. I just wasn’t ready for that.
My heart sunk. In an instant I no longer saw a pest. I saw a mom. My heart went out to her. I just closed the door and let her be and care for her new family. I felt like a heel. For a split second I felt like building her a mouse barn.
As I processed this encounter, I thought, “This is still a rodent. Some day she will hit the trap, and she will be gone. And because of my inaction, there will be 3 more to deal with and then 10…”
I am not sure what the take-away is here. I haven’t really changed. I still want all pests gone from my barns. But for a minute, I did see things from Mama Mouse’s perspective and my heart did go out to her.
PS: I guess animals do animal things and people do their people things and occasionally both do the same things. So, I must confess, I do feel a little hypocritical calling any animal a “pack rat” considering the magnitude of “stuff” I have squirreled away for a rainy day…or a Noah flood!
My better half Judy gave me the greatest ‘human’ gift in 1987 when she said “I do”. Don’t try to reconcile the math, but I have 3 teen age grandchildren now. Hannah, the oldest gave me the name “Papa John” and was disappointed when she found out that all those pizza places were not mine.
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