Thursday, May 06, 2010
Neighbors found an abandoned baby woodchuck in their driveway over the weekend and came to us for help. Likely, the Mama had abandoned this little runt. When we got him, he was cold and lethargic.
We hate woodchucks around here. It has something to do with waging war with them for our garden harvests-but who can turn down a dying baby? Against my better judgement, we adopted him.
I kept thinking "WHAT is going to happen when he grows up?" Then I would think "Well, he'll be tame by then and we can feed him garden scraps instead of first fruits." Then I would think- "He's a WOODCHUCK, for goodness' sake! He won't wait for scraps when he has a whole garden and fabulous claws to get him there."
Then I would forget about the "what then's" and hope that he would eat, I would wrap him in blankets and burrow him in a teeny basket and hope he would get warm and forget about worrying over "tomorrow". What good is worrying about tomorrow when I didn't expect him to live through the night?
He liked to snuggle into a bear, too.
I tried not to get attached, but when you are feeding the little guy with an eyedropper every hour and a half or so, it tends to happen. At least for me. I named him Digsby.
I was in charge of the feedings, the children were in charge of petting, kissing, and tromping him around in his basket.
Adele was pretty adament that he was hers and threw a royal fit if she wasn't able to get to him.
His little claws were so little and he would hold the eyedropper sometimes as I fed him. (awwww) He curled up in the cutest possible ball ever. He never opened his eyes but eventually worked up to making little squeaks. Funny-even woodchucks can be cute. Especially wrapped in terrycloth blankets with their paws peeking out.
Sadly, he took a turn for the worse on the third day. I was sad to see him go. (I admit it~ I cried over a woodchuck.) But truthfully, the little guy could have died on the driveway in the hot sun all alone the day we found him (and would have had we not brought him in) but instead we gave him three glorious days of coddling, food and comfort. It was worth it.
And in return, Digsby gave us an upclose and personal witness of one of God's wee creatures, a deep interest in learning and studying about him, and the chance to love on some baby wildlife.
So we had a pet woodchuck named Digsby for three days. Who wudda thunk?
Maybe someday, when our children are old, they will say "Hey! Remember when we had a pet woodchuck?!"