Hey, There’s a Bird in This Mirror!

Diversion Enthusiast Society, est. 2007


with 2 comments

My apologies, but I’m going to have to bring the room down for just a moment.

The problem with naming something like this after a living thing is that, eventually, said living thing is going to die.

We had to have Otis put to sleep last Friday afternoon.

I took him to the vet because he had been off of his usual happy parakeet game for a couple of days. The vet checked him out, ran some tests, and came to the conclusion that he most likely had some sort of tumor or congenital defect that had decided to manifest itself. Parakeets of about 5 or 6 years of age are very prone to such things. Otis was about 5 1/2. Part of taking a parakeet to the vet is that the experience stresses them out, allowing the doctor to see how well they can bounce back from being handled, prodded, etc. Otis didn’t bounce back. When the vet told me that it was unlikely that he would survive the weekend, and after I sat for about five minutes watching him suffer on the bottom of his cage while I asked the vet 5,000 questions, I asked that he be put down.

It was one of the more awful, depressing decisions I’ve ever had the distinct displeasure of making. I’m a little surprised by how guilty I feel about it. I know that he was very, very sick, but I am the softest touch in the history of soft touches when it comes to animals. Their total innocence and simplicity is absolutely awful. I can’t even eat chocolate Easter bunnies.*

After he was gone, I left the vet with Marvin in tow (screaming his head off for his missing cagemate, God help me), picked up Dave, went home, and spent the rest of the evening trying not too cry too much. We acquired a new cagemate for Marvin on Saturday (ladies and gentlemen, the Wicked Mr. Wilson Pickett) and went to Madison on Sunday, where we walked around Lake Monona with some friends. In retrospect, it was fitting.** I know that the decision I made was really the only good one available, but he was a truly excellent, clever, charming, and hilarious member of his species and he will be most sincerely missed. People who don’t have birds don’t understand birds, but let me tell you – you would have loved him.

* – Not a joke.

** – Again, get the embarrassingly solipsistic reference and you can stay.


Written by Raina

May 7, 2008 at 4:24 pm

Posted in Birds, Meta

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2 Responses

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  1. Sorry to hear about your loss, Zooey. Losing pets is always hard particularly when you have to take a somewhat active part in it.

    On the other hand, awesome name for a new bird!

    Ryan S~

    May 11, 2008 at 2:24 pm

  2. I know I’m totally late on this one, but sorry to hear about Otis. Congratulations on fitting Wilson Pickett in a cage, though!


    June 3, 2008 at 10:51 pm

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