In Memoriam: Penelope Capybara

Penelope really knew how to accessorize

Penelope really knew how to accessorize

There aren’t many of us pet capybaras in the world, at least not ones that live in the house and the yard with our owners. But for those humans who have experienced the love of a capybara, there is nothing like it. And that is why it is especially sad when one of us dies. So many hearts are broken. Especially if the capybara is as cute, as sweet and as loving as Penelope Capybara.

I never had the opportunity to meet Penelope personally although we were related. I believe she was my half-first-cousin-once-removed, or something like that. But I followed her life from a distance via email and FaceBook and so I know just how special she was.

Penelope was the runt of her litter, so tiny that her breeders, Mary Lee and Amos Stropes, didn’t think she should go home with anyone until they were more sure of her health. But when Lisa and Anthony came to pick out a baby capybara, they couldn’t leave with anyone but Penelope. There was no way Mary Lee could convince them to take home a different ‘bara. And Penelope loved them right back. She’d never been handled and yet she immediately found warmth, love and comfort in Lisa and Anthony’s arms.

This is what love looks like (when it involves a capybara)

This is what love looks like (when it involves a capybara)

Penelope settled into her new home and immediately molded it to her liking. Like the famous Capyboppy, Penelope loved a shower. Lisa was shocked at first by how a motivated Penelope could jump high enough to get into the shower with her, but soon it became a common occurrence.

And Penelope loved Anthony too, listening to him play his electric guitar, she’d poof up to show her contentment. Apparently folk/rock agreed with her.

But her winning ways didn’t stop there. Penelope was also the favorite of Delilah, an 8-year-old rabbit with an attitude. Before Penelope, Delilah didn’t get along with any of her co-pets. She chased and bit at the guinea pigs and other bunnies. But Penelope changed all that. She used Delilah as a pillow and the rabbit even shared her food bowl with the young capybara.

Penelope and Deliliah-Pillow

Penelope and Deliliah-Pillow

Not that Penelope couldn’t be a pest. It’s hard to do anything when a little capybara insists on following you everywhere, sitting or standing between your feet, looking up with those big dark eyes and wiggling ears and eeping to be held. Especially if the capy’s face is covered with yogurt (she got that from my side of the family!).

Penelope’s life was much too short. She died suddenly and without a long illness, probably due a congenital problem that stunted her growth. She will be missed terribly but she brought love, beauty and comedy to many, many lives. And for all her five months, she knew she was loved by her humans and her best friend co-pet Delilah, and by a wide network of people who cannot own their own capybara but dream of one just like Penelope.

The scrathes were worth the humiliation.

The scrathes were worth the humiliation.

Please leave a comment for Lisa and Anthony.

29 comments to In Memoriam: Penelope Capybara

  • Jo An

    I am so very sorry for the loss of the beautiful Penelope! She will live on in all that is beautiful.

    Lve Jo An and the Crew!

  • LP

    Really touching entry. Looks like Penelope lived a very wonderful, loving life. Death never really makes sense and in Penelope’s case, it certainly didn’t. Rest easy knowing that her time here was wonderful and she felt love like nothing else. RIP Penelope.

  • My sincere condolences on the loss of such a cherished member of the family.

    Although your hearts are breaking, please do not forgot Delilah in this time of loss. Rabbits can bond for life, usually with other rabbits but it sounds like Delilah and Penelope were very close. When a rabbit loses its companion, it can become severely depressed, to the point where it may stop eating and die. Keep a close eye on Delilah to monitor her mourning. She will need extra affection from you while she grieves — as I imagine you may need from her, as well.

  • DottieGP

    What a sweet little capybara! I’m so glad she had so much love in her short life. I’m sure she was matched with the perfect family-it was meant to be!

  • What a treasure the memorial was to read..hear to tell you the tears did come when I read it. Penelope was such a sweet baby that I knew she would be the chosen one. She loved Lisa so much from the first time they met. The photo On my face book of her giving Lisa a kiss the first day was priceless…it had “thank you” in her little brown eyes. I know for a fact that she was so happy. Lisa please keep her memories in your heart as I will always keep her photos in my possession.
    In loving memory of Sweet Penelope and her fishing hat
    Mary Lee

  • Trish

    Lord Byron wrote this eulogy for his dog.. but I think he would find it equally fitting for a capybara:

    One who posses beauty without vanity; strength without insolence, courage without ferocity; and all the virtues of man without his vices.

    I know you will see Penelope at the Rainbow Bridge some day! Blessing be.

    Twitter @MrsODemus

  • Alex

    Lisa and Anthony,

    if I could only take a part of your grief. Please keep her memory, I understand she was a love itself.

  • Only 5 months of age? She left much too young. We are sad for Lisa and Anthony and all those who loved Penelope.

  • Diane van Weelie

    Dear Lisa and Anthony,

    Please accept my condolences on the loss of your beloved, Penelope. She was a lucky lil’ capybara. If only everyone would love and cherish their pets like you do!

    RIP Penelope

  • rosenatti

    Lisa and Anthony, I’m so, so sorry for the loss of your little capy girl… but I am glad you all found each other. So much reciprocal love, such a sweet little life for a sweet little ‘bara. {{Many hugs.}}

  • Roary (@hoomin)

    I am so sorry to hear about Penelope. She’s at the Bridge, enjoying herself at this very moment. Take heart in that.

  • Bellemia

    It takes good peeps to choose the most needy over the others.

  • Neighboringwild

    What a beautiful baby!
    Her life was short but filled with love…

  • Jen

    Awwwww. What a cute little capybara! I’m glad she had such a good life, even if it was wayyyyy too short. 🙁

  • Heather Scott

    I’m so sorry for your loss. You will see her again one day though. Everything that is special to us lives on. *hugs*

  • Oh, what a sweet little girl she was! I’m so sorry for your loss.

  • Francine Rossi

    Penelope was such a beautiful and sweet capy! I know the heartbreak of losing a little companion. I am glad that she had a wonderful and happy life, however short.

  • Oh, how very sad. I’m sorry that Penelope only had a short time to spend in this world but it sounds like she made the most of it and had wonderful companions, human and furry.

  • Cat

    I am so sad for you. The depth of love we feel for these special friends–our animal friends–allows such grief to enter in when they leave us. . . but the love and connection lives on, and is worth it.

  • Renee

    She was adorable. So very sorry for your loss.

  • What a beautiful creature Penelope was! I’m sure she knew how much she was loved and that’s most important. Sorry for the loss of your friend.

  • Helen

    I’m so sorry to hear this 🙁 she was beautiful and i’m glad she found a loving home.

  • […] Capybara Madness » In Memoriam: Penelope CapybaraThere aren’t many of us pet capybaras in the world, at least not ones that live in the house and the yard with our owners. But for those humans who have experienced the love of a capybara, there is nothing like it. …Read More […]

  • dogafin

    thank you for sharing your life with us, penelope. <3<3<3<3<3

  • winstons step-grandpap

    What a touching story.Thank you for sharing.I recently got dog (bull terrier) he has the same type of behavior. Eugene Bressanelli

  • mike S.D.M.F.

    i’m sorry for ur loss .No love comes as pure and unconditional and honest as the love of a pet.It makes things brighter in the darkness of today.Penelope will be there waiting for you when u cross over .She won’t forget you as you’ll never forget her .R.I.P. Penelope

  • kylie simpson

    You were very priviledged people to have the love and trust of such an extraordinary creature. I have looked at the photos of your Penelope and she was just beautiful.

  • Janne Thiebaud

    I am so sorry to hear about Penelope. 🙁 She had a short, yet wonderful life, but I know you must miss her terribly. She is at the Rainbow Bridge now, waiting for you, and a happy, healthy girl again. 🙂 God Bless you richly. She was truly Beautiful!! <3

    Tasmania, Australia

  • Olliedog

    I know how you feel I am 11 years old and I have always grew up with animals. I have had 10 dogs die in may life time and sometimes on my birthday. Just last week my favorite dog and my first dog I made a real connection with died at 1 year old, from a one in a million blood disease. I am still very heart broken and at first I had a lot of regrets about loving him but I know that Ollie will always love me and I will always love him.i know that I have never had a capybara but I am saving up over 900$ to get one and may not be able to if my family doesn’t get the permit so I might not know exactly how you feel but I can relate

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