the passing of Aphrodite

After some green leaf lettuce, timothy nibbles & a carrot of two, Aphrodite crossed the Rainbow Bridge. I am comforted in knowing that she met her mother, Artemis, there after being apart these last couple of years. You see, they came to us from a rather bad situation. Not sure what, exactly, that situation was, but it could not have been good. They were housed in a chicken wire covered slab of pressboard filled with soaking wet shred. Their food & water were mixed in the shred as well. Shortly upon arriving home to find this "habitat" on our doorstep, we had them in a new, dry house with food in bowls, housing, water bottles and treats galore. That was about 4 years ago. However, not quite a year later, we noticed an issue with Artemis' feet... a black spot on the bottom of one of her front feet. So off to the exotics vet (Yes, exotics. Need a vet? We have FOUR as they go by species.) Turned out, the housing situation prior to their arrival had taken a toll on Artemis (she was old & therefore in that situation longer, we were told). Her feet had been cut from being on chicken wire; those cuts were infected because of the wet shred, feces, etc. The infection had eaten away her tiny little bone front leg bones (the equivalent being our forearms). Our option? Amputation or euthanization. Since guinea pigs use their front feet like we do our hands, we chose the 2nd option. And promptly brought Aphrodite in to be checked out as they had, to our knowledge, been in the same structure together. Sure enough, same issue but to a lesser degree. She got a 'medical pedicure', meaning the vet reopened the closed-over laceration on her feet & packed them full of antibiotics, wrapped her up & handed her to us for convalescence. Two weeks later we took her back to have wrappings removed. Other than a lifelong inflammatory disorder of the feet (poditis) she was given a clean bill of health. And so, for the last 3+ years, we changed shred twice a day in her flat bottom habitat (metal irritated her feet) as well as fed her kale, carrots, butternut, kiwis, timothy hay, etc. The good life. Tomorrow morning, when the knife hits the cutting board, I will miss her demanding squeal. But I will smile to myself, knowing that both Artemis & Aphrodite are restored to health and vigor, both made whole and strong again... and that they are together again, at long last.
Blessings to you both for allowing us to share in your lives until the end.

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