Scary, scary, night

Me and my crate

Yesterday was a scary day for me and Melly. And for Coral, Sheldon and Elizabeth too. We were all scared and I was the one doing the scaring.

Here’s what happened. Round about 4:30 pm, Melly came looking for me. I was sitting on the threshold of the back door, one of my favorite places. But I wasn’t right. There was something terribly, terribly wrong with me. I was shaking like a leaf in a hurricane and I looked like someone had poured a bucket of water over me that only got the ridge of my back wet and I was drooling a clear viscous liquid like a rabid rodent who was only drooling and not frothing. And I was breathing very quickly and very shallowly.

Melly panicked! After what happened to Caplin Rous, she’s a bit paranoid when it comes to capybara health. She immediately decided that I needed to go to the vet. She didn’t want to take me all the way to the A&M vet school though because she knew the exotic animal vet (who is helping us set up the ROUS Foundation), was on vacation. So she decided I could go to the local exotic animal vet. While she was figuring that out, she called Sheldon but he didn’t answer his phone. Then she called Elizabeth who said she would be right over. Then she called the vet who said I had to get there within the hour. PANIC!

I know I’ve been living with Melly and Rick for quite a while now (Rick was in Houston in case you were wondering), but I still am not good about the harness and the leash. And I wasn’t feeling well and I just didn’t want to do it. So Melly had to chase me all over the house trying to get the harness on me and I was struggling and shaking and hot and cold and wet and miserable and just not feeling up to the whole thing so… I kind of hate to admit this part. I hope none of you will think less of me. Remember, I was sick. I was really stressed out. And I hate the harness anyway.

I guess I might as well come out and say it. I bit Melly.

It wasn’t much, just a little nip. But capybaras really aren’t capable of giving only little bites. Our teeth are razor sharp and big as daggers (only not shaped like them). So the bite was still pretty bad and blood was everywhere and Melly had to stop chasing me and go bandage up her arm.

I nipped Melly a little bit on her upper arm

I’m not proud of what I did, but you have to understand that I wasn’t myself.

After that Melly decided that I needed to go in my crate. That’s the same crate I used to fly down here from Ohio. I went right in it so I don’t know why she didn’t do that to start with.

Elizabeth came soon after that and they bundled me into her van and off we went to the vet’s office. It was scary in the van because my crate was rocking pretty wildly as Elizabeth went as fast as possible within the law (for the most part).

I was ever so good at the vet’s. You won’t believe it but I let him listen to my lungs and take my temperature (and that was NOT pleasant) without biting anyone! They wrapped me in a blanket and that helped. And they kept me in the crate, just removing the lid.

But the vet said my lungs were good and my temperature was 98.4! So I was normal. Only I wasn’t normal. I was still shaking and still sweating but now no one knew if that was because I was sick or just because I was nervous (hint: it was because I was sick AND nervous).

The vet sent me home and told Melly to watch me and take me to A&M in the morning if I wasn’t better.

At home I was still sick but Elizabeth and Sheldon stayed with us until it looked like I was starting to recover. Melly slept where she could check on me every time she opened her eyes. I didn’t eat much and I didn’t do much and I didn’t poop at all for a long time. Round about 4:00 am, I started feeling better. I ate my dinner from the previous night and I pooped a little bit.

It took me all day to recover to my old fun-loving self.

I recovered enough to roll in my green pool

I’m okay now and Melly says she learned some important things. First that the local vet doesn’t know *anything* about capbyaras even if his name is Gary and second that when a capybara shakes, sweats and has rapid, shallow breathing, that means he is in pain! Melly figured that out for herself, the vet didn’t even say that.

It’s a secret about why I was in pain though. I’m not telling anyone.

YouTube Preview Image

This is me this afternoon. You can see I am recovered.

24 comments to Scary, scary, night

  • Piggymama

    Do capybara’s have gas really bad? Could he have had some sort of tummy upset? Poor Gari! Glad you’re feeling better, but don’t give your mommy those sort of scares!

  • Joann


    I posted on your facebook page…I was wondering if it was possible that you might have passed a bladder stone?
    As I said, I don’t know much about capy’s but guinea pigs buffer their urine with cations (not urea like we humans do). As a result, they can be prone to bladder stones. Don’t know if that is true with capy’s… When our guinea pig passed a stone (big enough to cover Lincoln’s head on a US penny) it was a very painful ordeal. After she passed it, it was like nothing had happened. With GP’s and stones (or bladder sludge), they will often squeak a bit when they pee and there may be a trace of blood. Male guinea pig physiology makes it more difficult for them to pass stones. They may need to have then surgically removed depending on size and the likelihood that they may get stuck…

    Feel better!

  • rosenatti

    If there’s a downside to having a beloved pet, it’s scary nights like these. I’m so glad you’re feeling better and eating your corn. I watched the whole video, by the way, start to finish. Nearly five minutes of chewing. That’s how relieved I was.

  • So glad you are OK Gari. Whew!

    BZTAT and the Brew

  • Teresa

    Well, at least it was “only” a scare. Glad you’re feeling better, Gari.
    I watched the whole video, too–you look like you’re feeling better.

  • Teresa

    I know, I Know, you were scared and then you bit Melly–ouch, but that’s what animals do when they’re hurting.
    I know when I tried to recue my cat Popsicle when he got his leg caught–ouch–he bit me!

  • I know you aren’t usually a biter, Gari. When you are already feeling sick and scared, it seems especially mean to have to put on a harness. By the way, can I have the rest of your corn?

  • Oh poor baby 🙁 Make sure Melly puts an antibiotic cream on that wound and keeps an eye on it…Im not schooled in Capybaras, but I know cat bites can be quite nasty and cause a quick infection…if the area feels hot or there is a red line running up the arm please see the doctor right away………doing animal rescue i have experienced about a million bites lol. Good luck and feel better

  • Iz gotted skard just reading your story Gari. That musta skarded pore lil you so much fur you to put teh bitey on Melly. I know you iz sorry an Iz so happy you iz all betters! Duzn’t get sick annymoar okai? *softpaw*

  • Amber

    Gari! That corn looks delicious! So glad you’re okay!!!

  • Vickie

    Glad your feeling better Gari!! But it would be nice if you at least told Melly what was wrong, so she can help you fell better…that’s not a good secret to keep Gari. I’m sure Melly has already forgiven you. Please no more scary situations.

  • Cheryl

    This made me cry but I am happy that you are feeling much better. Stay well.

  • Vale

    I am so glad you are ok! that is so scary, poor Melly… I hope once you felt better you gave her a big kiss 🙂

  • Vale

    PS: that corn looks delicious!

  • Wendy and Emma

    So glad you are feeling better! Sounds super scary! Congratulations to Melly for holding it together and taking such good care of you! I know that sick feeling you get when you see your sweet baby in pain and don’t know what is going on.

  • Tammy

    I am so glad that you are feeling much better. Some exotic DR. do not know everything. Hope that Melly’s arm is better. The corn looks very yummy!

  • Heidi

    Oh Gariboy!!!!!

    What an awful scare. I’m so glad you’re feeling better. We pet parents worry so much about our babies!!!

    Was Melly’s ringtone an EEP??? I’m still trying to decipher capy talk.

    Stay well sweet boy. We all love you!!!!!!!!

  • Nic

    What are daggers?

  • Nic

    In the picture of the bite, there is also something that looks like a robot face.

  • Nice to know you re right now… what a bite!

  • francine

    Well that was a very scary story!! I wonder if it was bladder stones? I hope the REAL capy vet finds a solution.

    Poor Melanie!! I can only imagine how scared you must have been! ~hugs-

  • Gari, was there something scarey out behind the fence? It’s odd that the reaction was similar to your reaction on the trip to the REAL capyvet. Maybe you just don’t handle stress as well as Caplin did.

    You sure do love you some corn! Purrrrrrrr

    Miss Melly, some plastics don’t show up on x-ray. I hope he passed them already, not keeping them in the cecum. No idea whether capys can digest plastics. Capys can break down the cellulose in grass and corn husks so who knows.

    Please keep your body parts out of Gari’s mouth. MOL!!! Sisfurcat Chilipepper chomps like a shark when she upset. She is SKEERY.

    Nic, a dagger is a double-edged knife.

  • Kelly Chen

    I am just so glad you are doing ok!!! I can’t imagine if anything bad happens to you…. You better kiss up to Melanie and everyone that helped too!! but I don’t think any less of you, and I actually think we all learned a lot more about you because of that night!! you are just sooo cute and sweet… no one will ever think any less of you!!!

  • […] I now feel like everything I do is potentially deadly. This is one reason I am establishing the ROUS Foundation in conjunction with the vet school at Texas A&M University. It is also the reason I felt it […]

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