Prince holding a pecan!
Sometimes the sweetest things in life arrives in a small package! That is certainly the case with this teeny squirrel, who is the size of two fingers, and who has arrived just in time for the holidays! Now, you might be wondering how I’ve come to be the mommy of a baby squirrel. Several Sundays ago, Jack and I were chatting while standing in the kitchen and I heard what I believed was a baby screaming. Since I don’t know of any babies living near to us, my imagination went crazy. Jack, who believes I get overly emotional over human/animal dramas, said it was the refrigerator I was hearing, that the frig was going out! I know the difference between a squealing machine and live cries, so I rushed to follow the sound. I dashed out the back door, leaving Jack to protest! It was dark but I saw something small squirming on the back lawn — dreading the possibility that my darling cat Paris had done a dirty deed and caught one of our many lovely birds. I jumped off the porch. Birds were safe, but one teeny weeny baby squirrel was not. He was crying loudly while having seizures. That’s when I knew that the little baby had either fallen out of the nest, or had been accidentally pushed out of a nest by his siblings. (Mother squirrels give birth to 3 or 4 babies at the same time.) Jack arrived with a shovel, thinking some poor critter was dead. But, little limbs were moving and tiny vocal cords were getting a work out! I grabbed the baby and ran in the house, wrapping him in a washcloth after giving him a hurried visual physical. There was no blood, thank goodness! Then, the seizures quickly stopped.
Jack’s heating pad loss was the squirrel’s gain! I had a few kitty beds around (Paris will only sleep on human beds) and set the baby squirrel up with a warm environment, hoping for the best. (There’s nothing as heartrending as a vulnerable baby, whether human or animal.) The next morning I fed him cream with an eye dropper. He eagerly sucked the cream. Later I did a lot of research, finding out more than I’ve ever known about squirrels. Cream is a no-no, but thankfully Prince survived my ignorance! (I’ve had 40 pets in my life, including birds, ducks, chickens, turkeys, dogs, cats, and one horse, but never a squirrel.) I assumed the little fellow would die (It was easy to see little boy equipment). But with tender loving care, and feedings every two hours (yep, during the night I’m setting clocks and getting up every two hours), this baby has thrived! After a week, one eye opened. I considered an eye patch, just to make him appear dashing, but then the second eye opened the following day. (I later read that “one eye at the time” is a squirrel thing!)
Now Prince is a happy little boy. He squeals with joy when I walk into his room (I can’t let him roam the house freely due to Miss Paris, who would want to play with this little baby, and would surely harm him in the process). He eagerly takes a bottle, which is filled with a special formula for puppies who have lost their mother. Over the past day or two, he has begun to experiment with his food, eating apple sauce off my hand, and tiny pieces of banana from my fingers. He has also enjoyed two pecans, holding them very carefully between his little paws, not certain just how to tackle the problem. (His teeth should come in next week, according to the squirrel brochures!)
I’m over the moon with joy that I’ve saved this little life, and hope that soon he can be returned to live in the trees. (I now know that he needs to go to a squirrel rehab center and that they will slowly return him to the wild when he is six months old.) I can barely think about giving him up, but it is actually illegal to keep a squirrel as a pet long-term, plus, I am not an expert on squirrels, and must do what is best for Prince, rather than what I want to do. A rehab center will give him the best chance at life. But, I can’t bear to turn him over to anyone else until he is eating all solid foods, and no longer needs a human to hand-feed him.
Here’s a pic of tiny Prince the morning after I found him. He is drinking cream.
(I can’t resist this message: Now, to all those hunters out there. Unless you are hungry and can only eat if you kill such creatures, please stop and think that squirrels want to live their lives as much as you want to live yours. It’s horrible to think that some thoughtless person might shoot Prince one day, just for the heck of it.) LAST PHOTO BELOW of Prince perching on a shoulder.
Now, after only two weeks of tender loving care, here is Prince happily sitting on my niece Kayleigh’s shoulder. What joy! He loves his little life and wants to be around for as long as possible.
I would’ve taken him in myself. Giving him up will be so difficult.
I know! I’m NERVOUS about it…
Actually, as “he grew older” I discovered that “he” was a “she!” This probably explains why my little baby was NEVER aggressive in any way…
You are right Valerie — you would not be able to resist this little fellow…
You are right, also, about how difficult it will be to give him up. My stomach sinks when I think about entrusting him to anyone else. He is receiving tender loving care here, getting all sorts of special love and special food. He is SO cute when I enter the room — he squeals with joy and jumps around, waiting for me to pick him up and he runs up my sleeve and sits on my shoulder, waiting for the baby bottle! (smile)… Every day is full of fun surprises. Last night he and I played with a cat toy — he would leap on it those feathers and slap at it with his little paws and then leap up in the air — young life is so precious — learning new things and enjoying the good life! Thanks for your note. I’ll keep everyone updated! For now, have a happy day, Jean
HE IS SOO CUTE JEAN!
Rafaella, animal lover that you are, you would go head over heels crazy about my little Prince. He is getting cuter by the minute. Last night he played so much that he finally fell over asleep from an upright position! FUNNY!
It’s time for his noon feeding (we are up to every 3 hours now) so I’m off and running! Thanks for loving my little fellow!
Jean, You are such a humanitarian!!! You and animals are just a natural. Your kind and loving nature are evident in your books as well. God bless you in all that you do. Donna Jean
You are too sweet to say so. Honestly, I believe that most people really love animals – it is just easier to walk away and hope for the best rather than take on these lost babies… I never walk away — I think that is the difference. I know even with my friends, when we are riding down the road, if we see a homeless dog or cat, most will say “Somebody will get it — don’t stop.” or something like that — I can’t do that — I am the one who always picks them up and either finds them their original home, or another home. FUNNY STORY: I was at my father’s grave visiting him when a beautiful black dog (Labador) without a collar, came running through the cemetary — was very happy to see me! She was very hungry, so I loaded her in my car and took her to my mom’s home. We hunted everywhere, but no owner! Then, I loaded her up to take her back with me to Atlanta — then to the vet to get her spayed and her shots, etc., which is always the first thing I do — lo and behold, upon examination (right before the vet made the incision) it was discovered that she was already spayed! A few weeks later I got a call from my sister saying that the owner of the dog was looking for me! I called and asked some pointed questions. She had been told by someone in my mom’s little hometown: “Don’t worry. Your dog is enjoying the good life, I saw Jean Sasson leave town with your dog in the front seat!” (EVERYONE in my small hometown knows that I am an avid animal lover and take really good care of all animals I find.) The lady called, telling me that her dog had gotten lost a few week before. Truthfully, I was very reluctant to give her the doggie back because she had been running around without a collar! But, we worked it all out, and became friends in the process, and I went to visit her home on occasion to check on that beautiful doggie. She never again got out! (smile)… So, I have a lot of really fun animal stories — plan to write about them in a book one day WHEN I GET TIME! Thanks, Donna. I miss you! Tell our friend Gary I said hello! HAPPY HOLIDAYS TO YOU AND YOURS! Love, Jean
Jean, frankly speaking, this is my first time reading novel completely finished all the chapters, ” Growing up bin Laden”. I’ve just realized that reading novels is really enjoyable.
Marvelous! The joy of books and reading has been a treasure in my life and I love it when the books I’ve written brings another person into the “I love reading” society! (smile) I hope you get to read more of my other books. Please check them out on http://www.jeansasson.com if you have time. For now, here’s wishing you a wonderful and healthy 2012. Jean
I have a startling confession to make! Prince is a PRINCESS! I thought I checked him out when I was bottle feeding (every two hours) for 8 weeks. I got something wrong! I learned last week that my darling little guy is really my darling little girl! A princess rather than a prince. I’m rather red-faced by my mistake… The only good thing is that I have read that little boy squirrels raised by humans have a tough time being accepted as other male squirrels are VERY territorial. But female squirrlels have an easier go of it. The males in the neighborhood bring the new girl on the block flowers, ask her to dances and take her out to dinner, hoping they will be the ONE to win her affections! So, I’m a bit relieved that my little Prince is really my little Princess!
r u confident that is definitely correct?
Hi, Tell me, to whom is your question addressed???
Okay, when I sent my question below, I was just looking at your question and didn’t know which link. Oh yes, HE is a SHE most definitely. I feel rather dumb, in fact to have missed it up until she was a few months old!
You’re are amazing . You are so much like me with all the animals and helping a baby squirrel.
I love you’re note to the hunters!
Keep up the great work . The world needs more people like you and there could possibly world peace !
Reblogged this on Thoughts of Kat Canfield and commented:
It’s Christmas, a time of joy, giving and getting. but it is also the time to give and care for the ‘least of these’. Jesus gave us instruction to care for the least of these. So no matter if it is human or animal, give comfort to those less fortunate than yourself this holiday season. The season is about giving regardless of what religion you are or non-religion. This time of year is for taking care of the less fortunate, human and animal. It is a time of peace and love; and that includes your enemies. Love to everyone in the world, human and animal (but especially the animals!!) Kat Canfield
Reblogged this on lydia7777's Blog.
Reblogged this on lydia7777's Blog.