We teach our kids that all life is precious.
Friday morning, as we left the house, we saw a tiny little infant field mouse on our porch. I figured he was stillborn or something and continued on.
Saturday morning, the kids were playing on the porch and found this same mouse. Using two sticks, I attempted to move the mouse off the porch, and it moved. It opened its eyes, moved its legs, and tried to walk. Oh, crap. The darn thing is alive and the kids saw it.
Of course, they started in right away with "Can we keep him? Can we keep him? We can feed him and everything!" Right.
So I went off to work on my woodpile, but I couldn't get this stupid mouse out of my mind. I started thinking about that kids story Stuart Little. In the meantime, the kids are pestering me with "Daddy, you aren't going to let this poor mouse just die, are you? What is he gets too cold? What if a cat eats him? What is his Mama is looking for him? "
I remembered this guy in town, David Sparks, who rehabs injured animals and releases them. I called him with my tale of woe. He said to bring the mouse down to his house and he would do what he could. So I put the mouse in a salad bowl, strapped the kids into thei car seats, and off we went.
David was great. He gently picked the mouse up and stroked his fur. He said he would pop the mouse into the incubator, feed him with an eye dropper, and when the mouse got stronger, David would release him into a field.
My kids were beaming and so relieved. "You promise?" they said. And they asked if they could come back and see David's other animals some time.