Pagliacci




Pagliacci was a siamese dumbo.

Paliacci was one of 8 baby boys I took on from a member of the public who had been sold two rats by a pet shop which she thought were boys, and had popped in with her resident boy as friends.
They turned out to be female, and two litters were born. Originally, I said I could only take 4 of the babies, but when I arrived, all 8 were loaded into my carrier! In fact, I had no idea how many I had until I got into the car and counted them up.
The owner had told me there were originally 9 babies, but one had 'gone missing' during a free range, and was presumed to be roaming the house somewhere, but to the best of my knowledge, he was never found :(

So, as well as Pagliacci, I took Captain Morgan, Wiggles, The Comedian, Trilby, Nikita, Wisher and Captain Metropolis.

From the start, it was clear Pagliacci was the most shy boy in the group. He was timid about being handled, and didn't like to be away from his group. It was often easy to tell which rat he was, because he'd be the one spooking at every sound, or huddling in the corner.
He came out of his shell a little as he aged, but it wasn't until he was very old that he became genuinely relaxed being handled.

Pagliacci suffered from general 'old rat' issues in his final months: he developed HLD and eventually lost almost complete usage of his legs, he got cataracts, and he had to had daily baths to keep him clean as he would no longer wash. Despite this, he really never did seem to feel sorry for himself, and he surprised me with how well he coped, and how tenacious he was. But in the end, he began to develop abscesses on his face, and had lost almost all muscle tone in his hind end, so I made the decision to have him put to sleep. His quality of life was diminished, and he found doing normal rat things a struggle.

Why Pagliacci? This name had also been on my name list for a while. In the movie 'Watchmen', Rorschach tells a joke about Pagliacci the clown, and as most of the babies from this rescue had Watchmen inspired names, it seemed a good time to use this name.

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