The Passing of Edward ....

Let folks know about the loss of a precious furball who has joined others over the Rainbow Bridge.
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Beverly
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The Passing of Edward ....

Postby Beverly » Tue Apr 17, 2007 2:20 pm

With a heavy heart, I am writing to advise of the demise of one of my flyers ... and to offer a hard, bitter, 'hindsight' lesson.

Edward is dead. Edward chewed his way inside the cover of my loft bedroom queen size comforter, made of a heavy damask fabric on 'top side' and light cotton on the 'off side'. He chewed a hole on the cotton side, and evidently could not find his way back out. For whatever reason, he didn't just chew his way back out. I found his lifeless form, today, on the 'cotton' side of the comforter, so it wasn't that he was on the damask side, too tightly woven to gnaw through easily.

I rarely sleep in the loft bedroom. I had mostly been camping out with the other boys, in the den, as that's where I kept this computer. I'd usually just fall asleep on the den couch, while watching the late show. On Sunday morning, I moved the boys up to the loft, anticipating some trouble with this weekend storm.

While up there, I did a head count of the closet nestboxes; Edward generally camped out either by himself, or with Elizabeth and Mary. Pipsqueak and Mini Scule nest together in another box, and Iota nests alone, most times. I checked all the boxes (6 in all) , but could only find 5 flyers. I thought it was Edward that was missing in action, although it was difficult to be sure. Sometimes, I'd find him sleeping around the bedroom windowseat, which has loose pillows and two seat cushions. I'd move a pillow, and there he'd be, looking startled. Sometimes, if I was up there early, he'd still be awake, perched on the window draperies. I checked the draperies. I checked behind all the furniture, under the bed, everywhere I could think to look. No sign of him. But today, doing some cleaning, I found a 'lump' on the cotton side of the comforter, and realised immediately what it was. Edward may have been dead for up to a week -- I'm really not sure. I often spend a few moments, in the evening, in the loft, when I change the water, and bring the flyers fruit, but I don't often take the time to tell 'who's where', and make sure I'm seeing 6 individuals, and not just three individuals, two times ... (those of us who have a 'group' setting, with flyers, will know what I mean. Without spending a good bit of time, it's hard to tell who's who.)

The lesson I take from this, for those of us who give a flyer a full room, is to avoid having bedding or pillows in such a room, particularly comforters. As I'm going to have to do some remodeling work, anyway, I think I'm going to remove all bedding, including the mattress and boxspring, from the loft bedroom, until such time as I can get the loft balcony repaired, and build the flyers their aviary. It's too late, for Edward -- and there's not much sense in beating myself up, for his loss.


I've allowed flyers, since Molly, to be wherever they wished, for the most part, and have never lost one in this fashion. It may be that something else was troubling Edward, and that's just where he chose to be, at his end; for there didn't seem to be a reason for him to not just chew his way out as he'd chewed his way in. Life has no certainties -- and all living things die. Sometimes, we take a lesson from their passing -- and all too often, the lesson is bitter and hard. So it will be with this loss, of Edward. I will take the lesson that upholstered furniture can be a danger. Thank you all in advance for what I know will be your heartfelt condolences.
{D {D {D Lots of Acorns to you, from
Beverly and the Denizens of
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What the world needs now are MORE SQUIRRELS! Then there would not be so many NUTS running around loose!

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Postby Yolanda » Tue Apr 17, 2007 4:10 pm

I am sorry to hear about the loss of your Edward. A problem with having bedding is something I've never thought about.
Yolanda

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Postby voguemamselle619 » Tue Apr 17, 2007 4:44 pm

i am so sorry for your loss. i never thought bedding could be a problem either. but we all can learn from this as well.
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Postby Joan » Tue Apr 17, 2007 4:56 pm

So sorry Edward had to teach us this lesson. :(
"A lot of people spend time talking to the Animals, but not that many people listen. That's the real problem! ... Winnie the Pooh

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Postby Helen » Tue Apr 17, 2007 7:14 pm

Thank you for this bit of information, and to Edward for teaching it to us. I'm very sorry we had to learn this way. I never even thought about it as a problem, but I will be taking this under advisement. Best wishes to you and your other flyers!
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Postby gloryaf88 » Tue Apr 17, 2007 10:53 pm

I am so sorry for your loss and I also thank you and Edward for giving us this lesson, even though I hate it had to be learned this way.
Glorya, Owned by Pistol Pete, owned partly by Martie Monster, whose heart will always belong to Amy, now owned by Count Dracula Monsterpete--Drago, and Little Foot MonsterPete.
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Postby peep » Tue Apr 17, 2007 11:17 pm

I'm so very sorry that you've lost Edward. It's so hard to say good bye to a long time friend.

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Postby Judy C. » Wed Apr 18, 2007 12:20 am

Beverly, I am so sorry to hear of Edward's death. I know that empty, helpless feeling when you lose one, and my thoughts are with you.

Judy

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Postby RaVeRiNaBuBbLe » Wed Apr 18, 2007 12:22 am

i'm so sorry for your loss. i used to let P.O. out in my room all the time, and the thought never crossed my mind that such a tragic thing could happen. it's a good thing to know, but a sad way to find out.
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Postby Mary » Wed Apr 18, 2007 6:53 am

It is very hard to lose one of our babies and I am very sad for your loss.

Mary

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Postby The Rock's Laura » Wed Apr 18, 2007 8:23 am

Beverly, I'm so sorry Edward has passed. You have my sympathy. :(
:love7: I was joyfully owned by
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ROCKIE, a gift in my life.
Rest in Peace my baby boy 9/4/2002 - 5/24/2009
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Postby marilyn » Wed Apr 18, 2007 11:33 am

Beverly,
I'm so sorry to hear about Edward. I wonder if the reason he didn't chew his way out was that he was already dying from other causes. There have been quite a few sudden, unexplained flyer deaths. Maybe Edward sensed that death was coming and wanted to crawl somewhere private? I know this doesn't lessen the grief of loosing one of these extraordinary creatures. I just always try to figure out a mystery.
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Comforters ...

Postby Beverly » Wed Apr 18, 2007 12:23 pm

Greetings, and thanks to all who responded here, and also to those who didn't write, but did sent their condolences by reading, and sympathising.

I do have my doubts about the comforter actually being the 'real' problem, of course, because the dear little flyer was not on the 'tightly' woven side, but on the same side that was chewed open. I will say there was no other evidence of trouble, and both the flyers from that litter seem perfectly normal. But, I do think that a comforter, particularly a 'channel stitched' comforter, could present a danger, if the flyer gets inside, and cannot find its way back out, before becoming exhausted, and dehydrated.

I've had flyers since 1996, and all have had plenty of opportunity to gnaw their way into a comforter, or pillow, or couch. Indeed, Molly Kule and my current crew made a habitat inside the back of the couches that were in the Den Drey, back on LI. So, I'm not saying that any upholstered item presents a clear danger.

One thing that made the comforter 'different', and might have caused the problem, is that the entry hole was on the side of the comforter, which hangs over the bed. Thus, there's no 'weight' keeping a flyer 'pressed down'. Now, the comforter is not heavy enough to prevent a flyer from moving around -- they all often hide nuts under the comforter, between it and the sheets -- but, when inside the comforter, with the filling and the heavier cover material on his back, perhaps Edward could not get enough 'loft' to gnaw a hole in the cotton cover -- and perhaps he got so tired, looking for his way back out, that he just gave up. He was pretty much in the center of the comforter, when I pulled it back, not on either of the 'hangover' sides.

If I'd made a daily habit of pulling the comforter back, and removing the hidden hazelnuts, I might have prevented this loss. So, again, my post is a 'head's up' warning of another possible danger, to our sweet, but mischievous, companions.

Also, while I usually made a daily habit of checking the nest boxes for a 'head count', this past week had some problems that made me too careless. I've had a problem with two of the roofs on this house, and it's caused considerable damage, and anxiety, for me. (You can view the photos of the damage here:
Den Damage Although I was going up to the loft daily, to check their water, I was not being careful enough to check all the nests for all 6 of the loft residents.

If I'd realised someone was MIA sooner, I might have found him in time to save him. For that, the comforter is no more the blame for Edward's loss than a handgun is the blame for the death of a murder victim. The comforter was only the instrument -- much like a toilet, or a door, can be the instrument of a flyer's demise. A 'free ranging', or even roomed (in a furnished for humans room), flyer, has (imho) a richer life than one caged -- but a caged flyer has a safer existence. Giving a caged flyer a few hours in a big flyer safe room might indeed be a better thing than allowing a flyer a full room, to itself, when one is not there to intervene with any possible danger. I know it would also have saved my bedroom furniture, if I was only allowing the flyers a few hours of 'out' time from the walk-in closet drey (which is only 'furnished' with nest boxes, shelves, and log sections -- nothing in the closet offers any place to get 'trapped').

I'm more anxious than ever to have an aviary for my flyers. When the roof of the loft bedroom balcony (which is the roof over the downstairs den) is repaired, an aviary will go up, and the bathroom window will be changed to provide the aviary residents with a way 'indoors'. Then, when I'm in the loft bedroom, I'll be letting the flyer in for an hour or so, at night, to play with me in the bedroom; but closing them back out, when they return to their nest boxes for the day.

Either way, I accept the responsibility for my flyer's loss, and will try to be forgiving of myself, but keeping the lesson, and the spirit of my sweet flyer, close to my heart. :smt090 Again, I share the story in that spirit -- there are some dangers for a flyer that we may not recognise right away, but can share with one another. Bitter lessons often carry important messages.

Thanks again to all for the condolences offered, and for the thoughts for Edward's spirit.
{D {D {D Lots of Acorns to you, from

Beverly and the Denizens of

The Den Drey at Phantom Farm

What the world needs now are MORE SQUIRRELS! Then there would not be so many NUTS running around loose!

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Postby The Rock's Laura » Wed Apr 18, 2007 1:39 pm

It's sad Beverly. I have an incident with Rockie that I can relate to that just shows how easy things can happen if you don't watch.

I used a pillow shame at the bottom of Rockie's cage with a teeshirt on top of it. I always use two layers of something at the bottom of her cage.

Every morning I clean her cage. This one morning as I was taking out the teeshirt to replace it I noticed a lump in the pillos sham that was underneath. She was sleeping and I fully believe she got caught in there and couldn't get out. You know the way a pillow sham overlaps itself in the back. She got in but couldn't figure out how to get out, so she gave up and fell asleep. I could tell she hadn't eaten that night so I'm sure she was stuck in there most of the night. You should have seen her face when I called her and she realized she was free of it. Had I been away from home there is no telling what could have happened.

So sorry about Edward. We understand.
:love7: I was joyfully owned by
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Rest in Peace my baby boy 9/4/2002 - 5/24/2009
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Postby gwsgrand » Wed Apr 18, 2007 2:16 pm

Beverly I am so sorry to hear of the loss of Edward. This has really opened our eyes to what we have on our beds. We have a single bed that only the grandchildren sleep in and when they do come it never fails that they are going to have nuts in between the sheets and under the pillow. When we have an over flow we open up the sleeper sofa's and sure enough there are nuts between the folds of the matt . How they get in these spots is beyond me but they sure do. We are really going to be a lot more careful now. I just wish we could have found Velcro,Jr. in one of the spots. Still no sign of him any where.
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Postby yubman » Sat Apr 21, 2007 12:10 am

I'm so sorry for your loss Beverly. :(
tony

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Postby krups1110 » Sat Apr 28, 2007 10:46 pm

Bev, I am just reading this now. I am so sorry about Edward. That is so sad.
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Postby aminal lover » Sun May 06, 2007 9:23 pm

Beverly, I am soo sorry to hear about Edward. This is a valuable lesson for us all. I too have had a very close call with Boo Too and Bitsy Boo, mine was made just like a comforter but only downsized to fit the bottom of their homes. Rainbow Bridge is where he is now I'm sure having a ball with all the many fur Angels that are awaiting the arrival of their beloved Hofs.Prayers are with you! God Bless


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