I know everyone's dying to know why there was a murder scene in my dining room last night during raids.
So, for those of you playing along, I have a zoo - it started with me asking the new hubs, "hey... can I get a dog?" and him countering with, "uh... okay.. if I can get a cat." One cat turned into 2, then my daughter brought home another cat, and then she started working at a pet store and brought home 2 rats.
She spent last week in San Diego, so a friend of hers cared for the rats. Bringing them home, she put them in the living room on the coffee table - we already know the other animals in the house won't hurt them - they're a curiosity, but no attacking, hissing, barking... nothing like that. So, we thought the living room was okay, and I didn't press her to put them in her room where they belong, behind her closed door so they wouldn't have to look at free-range animals, while they're stuck in a cage.
Well, my dog - who wouldn't hurt a fly (seriously, he tried to resuscitate a fish once!) is curious and wants to sniff them and doesn't like to see anyone in a cage (he does the same when the cats are in a crate, or my mom's dog, etc - he sits next to it and whines, and tries to get me to open the door). So, there's Star, my dog, sniffing the cats, and trying to get me to let them out... but no, I was logging in to raid. At one point, I heard him give a slight yelp and he ran off to the kitchen.
During raids, I noticed he was in the dining room, and wouldn't come when I called him, and he was making funny sounds, as if he was eating/licking something off the floor. The minute I got a chance to walk the 3 ft to the doorway, I saw it - the dining room floor, covered in quarter-sized blood splatters, a bunch of smears, and the dog desperately licking it up, yet making more somehow. There was blood on his paws - he's black, but has a white belly, chest, and legs (German shepherd/husky).
We thought, at first, it was a front paw - we wiped off the blood, put a sock on it, and taped it up gently. Then I used his leash to tie him where I could see him from my desk, but he was not on the actual carpet - but he had the kitchen carpet, which is an area runner rug, no problem to take it outside and hose it down, if it came to that. Yes, it's come to that.
No blood on the sock. More blood on the floor, and on the carpet, although it's less blood than before (which my daughter already mopped up). All other pets - including the rats - were checked for welfare, they were all very calm and blood-free.
Thinking maybe it was another paw (we ran our hands ALL OVER HIM and found NO BLOOD ANYWHERE), we swapped the sock to another paw, and kept him tied up. He's loving the attention, but was nervous about his paws - he HATES nail trims, and that's usually what happens when he's tied up and folks are investigating his paws, right? ...still no blood on the sock. Even less "new blood", but just any blood is a cause for a concern, right?
At several folks' insistence, I checked all his teeth - no problem there. We tossed a sheet down to see if we could better tell where the blood was coming from, by the way he laid vs any new spots. Even less spots, and they seemed random.
After raids ended, and I was getting ready for bed, I remembered his interest in the rats, and his quick yelp, shortly before the murder scene. I checked out his nose, and, sure enough, he's got a tiny rat-teeth-sized chunk out of his nose. Was not bleeding at that point, of course, but I'm sure a nose injury would bleed like when a kid hits their cheek on a coffee table and has a cut - like... a murder scene. No vet needed, he was happy through the whole thing, and didn't seem to be in pain. He's running around being his usual self today, is eating well, and seems no worse for the wear.
As for the rascally rats, well... we had noticed they were bitey when they came home from their visit with friends, where they never tried nibbling us before, but we hadn't thought they could actually take a chunk out of a dog nose! They are back in my daughter's room, safe and sound, with the door closed, as usual, so no other pets in the house can bother them. I hope, with enough handling and care, their bitiness will abate.
Thanks for reading the saga! Here's a pet tax!