Meet C.J. (pictures galore~)

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by LittleYellowOne, Oct 19, 2008.

  1. LittleYellowOne

    LittleYellowOne Chillin' With My Peeps

    Before BYC, I never would have considered the Virginia Opossum to be a nuisance animal...

    Of course, before CJ, I never really would have thought about them much at all...

    I would like you all to meet Captain Jack O' Possum, known as CJ to those who loved him.

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    When my APBT (American Pitbull Terrier) Bosco found little CJ out in the yard in May of 2007, he was small, barely larger than my mother's cellphone, but my "vicious" dog was more than gentle as he picked the tiny little guy up and set him in the grass.

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    Immediately I fell in love with that little face. My mother said I could raise him until he was big enough to survive on his own, but she would have nothing to do with it. Uneducated, I did the best I could for the little guy.

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    I picked up some puppy milk replacer, and started feeding him a mixture of that and heavy whipping cream every few hours through a syringe. I kept him warm with heating blankets and towels, and helped him relieve himself using a cotton-ball dampened with warm water.

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    Every day my mother reminded me that he was most likely going to die. But I drove on anyways, waking up early to take care of him before school, and hoping against hope that he wouldn't die before I could get home to take care of him.

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    Much to my surprise, I had to be doing something right, because little CJ was flourishing. He was getting bigger, and fatter, and was becoming more and more excited to see me.

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    I had never raised a baby animal before, but CJ didn't seem to notice, and every day it seemed he was getting bigger.

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    I remember the sad day that CJ chose wet catfood over his formula, and no longer needed my help going to the bathroom; sounds gross I know, but now my "baby" didn't need me anymore.

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    My mother had long abandoned her case, and CJ became part of the family, never to be released outside. He was so sweet, so calm, she didn't think that he'd ever survive with the wild opossums outside~

    He went outside all the time to roam in the grass, and he never tried to run away. He never bit, or hissed or showed any tiny bit of aggression towards me, my family, or my pets, and CJ was with us for one whole year.

    One all too short year.

    CJ started acting funny, he wouldn't eat, was breathing too heavily, and just not acting himself. I took him to the vet, and he died that day of respiratory failure...

    He had never shown any signs of the pneumonia that took his life until it was too late to save him...

    Apparently that's part of their defense mechanism, to hide their illness so that predators can't get the, but it was this defense mechanism that caused me to lose my baby.

    I cried, I'm not ashamed to admit it, and I blamed myself for not noticing, even though the vet did his best to console me. I consoled myself, knowing that his life was far better with me in it, and at least he died knowing that he was loved.

    He's buried outside now, under a pretty tree in our yard, with his own tombstone and wildflowers growing on his grave. We planted them there, and it seems that just to spite me, he's only helped the orange flowers grow, knowing that I hate that color more than anything~

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    I'm in no way trying to guilt anyone or be mean to anyone who kills opossums to protect their chicken, I just wanted you all to see just what those "nuisance" animals are capable of, and introduce you to possibly the only opossum that was loved, and mourned, taken to the vet, and given a proper burial.

    RIP CJ
    5/14/07-7/16/08

    Thank you for reading this long long ramble! And please dun yell at me... I wasn't trying to be mean or anything...
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2008
  2. Ugly Cowboy

    Ugly Cowboy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 25, 2008
    Corn, OK
    I used to have one when I was a kid, he really was a neat pet. I'm sorry ya lost him, it aint your fault at all, they really are great at hidin sickness.
     
  3. Poulets De Cajun

    Poulets De Cajun Overrun With Chickens

    WOW! I've got a whole litter of them living under the house I think!
     
  4. LilRalphieRoosmama

    LilRalphieRoosmama Officially Quacked

    Oct 15, 2007
    Elyria, OH
    That was beautiful but I'm sorry you lost your friend. Thank you for sharing it with us. DBF rescues any animals he can find - we have a baby bunny living on the porch (that the cats got) until it is big enough to fend for itself. Just this morning we lost our squirrel. DBF saw it get hit by a car two weeks ago and brought it home. He faithfully fed and watered it through a syringe but it didn't make it [​IMG] All we can do is try.
     
  5. tiki244

    tiki244 Flock Mistress

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    C.J. is pretty cute(never thought I would say that). What sweet pictures. I am sorry you lost him.
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2008
  6. Chirpy

    Chirpy Balderdash

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    C.J. was a very beautiful animal - I'm glad you had him for a year and took such good care of him. I'm really sorry you lost him.
     
  7. Wildsky

    Wildsky Wild Egg!

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    [​IMG] Oh I'm sorry you lost him - he looks so sweet! [​IMG]
     
  8. LittleYellowOne

    LittleYellowOne Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks everyone~ I'm sure anyone who's lost a pet can understand... I still miss him everyday, and will always miss him, but I'm grateful for the time that I knew him, and all my memories.

    Yeah he was super cute! I always though opossums were kinda scary lookin', but sweet CJ didn't have a mean bone in his body, so I developed the thinking that he was so ugly he was cute~

    I always wondered if all opossums were so eager to give up their wild instincts, or if he was just the exception?

    Oh well, even if the rest of 'em are all "mangey-varmints", I'm an Opossum-Lover til the end!
     
  9. SpottedCrow

    SpottedCrow Flock Goddess

    We had a baby we called Hiccups for a day before I turned him over to the Wildlife Centre. Everyone thought he was a rat...[​IMG] but he was hanging off my finger when I was picking up my son at school...he refused to stay in his box.

    We had people working on my back porch and he was living there with his mom and 12 brothers and sisters...she dropped 2, and came back for one that I had touched, but wouldn't come back for Hiccups even though I made sure I didn't touch him...go figure.

    CJ's very cute...can't believe how huge he got...wow...sorry you lost him.
     
  10. keystonepaul

    keystonepaul Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 14, 2008
    Pocono
    Littleyellow, nice story, he sure got big in that year!! Thier fur is much, much softer than you think it would be isn't it?! Sorry for your loss. Keystonepaul
     

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