Monday, September 11, 2006

Farewell, Feathered Friend

A few days after arriving home from our lovely vacation--this past Friday, to be exact--we discovered our beloved Quaker parrot, Sparky, dead in his cage.

We've been bird owners for more than 20 years, and one thing you never get over is the shock of a pet bird's sudden death. Unlike mammals, birds rarely show sickness until it's fatal, which means there's rarely time to take the bird to a vet and never enough time to prepare emotionally.

This fact held true in Sparky's case. Even when we buried the poor thing he still looked vibrant, almost healthy. Whatever happened remains a mystery--an infection, perhaps. He was about 9, which is a little young for a Quaker, but not unheard of.

We'll always remember Sparky for his gift of mimicry (much better than our other parrot, a yellow-collared macaw), his lovely green coloring, and his prodigious appetite. To my son, Sparky holds a special place as the first pet he ever had any say in choosing. Naturally, the Boy was devastated--a tough blow during the first week of middle school, which is already a stressful transition.

Every night, we said good night to our birds with "'Night, 'night, Sparky! 'Night, 'night, Cookie!" and they'd both answer back. It's going to be tough learning to say good night to just one from now on.


Blogger Rebecca said...

Oh,that's so sad....
Rest in Peace little Sparky.... :(

11:00 AM  
Blogger Alison Rose said...

Thanks, Rebecca. He was a sweetie!

12:06 PM  

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