Elvis the guinea pig breathed his last today.
He was a good guinea pig – smart, hungry – but not very friendly.
Ms Callie, TG’s 3rd and 4th grade teacher, adopted Elvis just before the 2011-2012 academic year. She thinks he was over one when she adopted him. We didn’t know Elvis that first year.
We met Elvis during the 2012-2013 academic year when TG started 3rd grade, because he was the classroom pet. Elvis quickly became like one of the family to us over the next two school years. At first when we kept him for long weekends and school breaks, we were one of several families in the rotation. Eventually, however, we were the only family that kept Elvis when he couldn’t be left at school for an extended period.
When Ms Callie moved across the country at the end of the 2013- 2014 academic year, she needed someone to adopt Elvis. Of course we volunteered. We already loved him, and we were all quite used to each other. Elvis came into our forever home in May 2014.
No one knows under what conditions Elvis lived before Ms Callie adopted him. His life as a classroom pet wasn’t bad, but we’re pretty sure that experience was why he wasn’t a very friendly guinea pig.
Or maybe it wasn’t so much that he wasn’t friendly but that he really loved his cage. He had plenty of room to run and hide and play and eat in his cage. One friend of mine termed it the Taj Mahal of guinea pig cages.
In addition to his cage, he loved lettuce – green leaf lettuce, thank you very much – no iceberg lettuce for him. And he loved cucumbers and tomatoes and grass. And of course he loved hay, but not PetSmart hay. He turned up his nose at store-bought hay and demanded only high-quality hay.
He was a guinea pig with discriminating tastes, and he died peaceful and happy.