Hello, Kenyon. Did you know I have dogs? Well, I do. I (Caitlin March ’19) have two of them. Their names are Polka and Dot. Polka is that small brown one that looks like an angry potato and Dot is that chubby white one with her little baby hand extended into the light as if she’s about to reach for your very soul. They came into my life over the summer and now they are here. This is their story.
Polka and Dot are a pair of adolescent American Shorthair guinea pigs. Guinea pigs are what you would get if you took a loaf of bread and gave it a spine plus some legs. Their hobbies include eating, sleeping, eating, zooming, being The Worst™ (I am only joking I really do love them lots), eating, and yelling when they are not being fed. I have witnessed them grabbing their food bowls with their teeth and dragging them into the depths of their guinea pig den so they can sleep, wake up, eat, and go back to sleep again without walking anywhere. They have also been known to yank veggies out of my timid human fingers and make said veggies disappear within a single second. They are capable of storing food in their cheeks for future consumption. Don’t you wish homo sapiens were skilled enough to do that?
Dot is a crazy child. She is the queen of the cage and Polka is her timid subject. Dot has been known to scale entire mountains and eat cardboard for breakfast. Polka likes to crawl into my shirt and go to sleep. There are two of them because guinea pigs are social animals that do not do very well on their own and these two have been bonded for life. I enjoy their company and I would like to say they enjoy mine but I suspect they’re just in it for the food. That’s okay. They are good for cuddling once I have scooped them unwillingly out of their cage and they squeak when I come home after class (they squeak for food but I like to convince myself that they’re saying “hello”).
When I say “squeak” I actually mean scream. Their woeful shrieks would make you think they haven’t been fed in their entire lives, but this is obviously a lie. I literally just fed them five seconds ago. Rodents are special because it takes some time to earn their trust, but once they decide you are a friendly source of food there is no escape. You answer to the guinea pigs now. Sorry, I don’t make the rules … they do …
Fun fact, Polka and Dot are not afraid of thunderstorms, TV noises, drunk college people yelling, or big ol’ trucks. However, if anyone coughs or clears their throat near the cage it is Time To Flee. I don’t understand. They don’t understand. Nobody understands. I suppose some mysteries aren’t meant to be solved.
Despite all of this, I love my bean kids very, very much. They are so, so special – tiny with big personalities – and they take up so much room in
my dorm my heart. I am looking forward to many more years of food and friendship. They truly are the best.