Pick Me!

A weblog by Laura Moncur


Yuki Died

Filed under: General — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

Click to see full-size comic.

Jin Wicked writes a webcomic called Crap I Drew on my Lunchbreak. It has been on my comics list since I started this website. This past week, Jin’s pet rat, Yuki, died.

Mike and I owned pet rats when I worked at UBTL. Perdita had been part of a teratological study, but had been kicked out when they found enough pregnant rats. That would have meant that she would have been a practice animal, but she was pregnant, so she was scheduled for euthanasia unless someone was willing to take her home. I did. She had 17 baby rats. We found homes for most of them. Cory and Kathleen took two of her sons and other friends adopted. We sold the rest to a pet store. We kept Perdita and two of her daughters, Gretchen and Elsie.

Laboratory rats have a life expectancy of two years. They are bred to live exactly two years. Perdita was a really young mother, so we lost all of our rats within the span of six months. It was so hard to lose each of them. Their personalities were so different. They were also bred for intelligence. For an animal with a brain the size of an almond, they were so smart and funny. Each death was like the loss of a beloved pet.

People are so stupid.

“You spent $40 on a vet bill for a RAT?”

“What’s the problem? Just buy another one for two bucks.”

“Yeah, she’s sad because her RAT died? giggle

When we lost Gretchen, I didn’t even tell anyone. Hearing Jin talk about her loss healed me a little bit…



  1. I am so sorry for your loss of Yuki. She sounded like one amazing rat that withstood many obstacles in her life.

    Despite rat’s short lifespan, they teach us a lot about life…

    How to endure the worse How to appreciate the good Living life to it’s fullest And never giving up.

    I’ve owned rats for 13 years now, and I always learn something new. And always morn for each rat’s loss.

    And for those who mock your love of rats shows how intolerant and blind they truly are about life, friendship, and humanity.

    Plus, my recently deceased rat… I’ve paid about 500 bucks for her care and it was worth every penny. :)

    Comment by Renee — 3/27/2007 @ 1:12 am

  2. I’m so sorry for your loss. I’ve had so many animals through-out my lifetime… My mom loved animals, and we have had everything from dogs and cats to tarantulas and parrots. But once I owned my first rat, I slowly started to realize that they were drasically unlike any other pet, and that I was only going to have rats for the rest of my life. I lost my very first rat two years ago, and it crushed me. I couldn’t believe anything could be so painful… And yes, I also had people saying ignorant things like, “It was only a rat. What’s the big deal?” I have ten rats at the current time, (my favorite of which is currently asleep on my lap) and I love them all emensely… I try to not think about the fact that all of them will have their time. But I did find a way of thinking about it so that it isn’t quite so unbearable… I like to think about how great they are, and how no matter what, they are going to pass when they pass. All I can do is make their [unfortunately brief] time on this earth as great as possible, and I do just that. ^_^ Wow, I’m rambling… I guess I’ll go to bed now.

    Comment by Jesse — 3/30/2007 @ 2:04 am

  3. Rats are everything once you get to know them. Randomly stumbled on the comic surfing the web and it crushed me all over again realizing that the cute images were her thinking of the better times while you take your animal on that last trip. I miss my little friends and I hope that I get the chance to see them again. The idea of nothing after death drives me insane when I think there is the possibility of all those sweet little rat bodies bounding over the bridge to see me someday.

    I miss you, Poe… Annie, Minnie, Petunia, Mr Black, Mr Brown, Precious, Fat-Boy, Lil-Bert, Socrates… even you, little Mickey. Hugs! (>’-‘)>

    Comment by Shane — 11/11/2008 @ 1:48 pm

  4. When I saw the last panel I just sat and stared at it and thought of how I’d said those very words to my pets and it nearly brought me to tears.

    Comment by Thomas R. Chavez — 12/28/2008 @ 3:37 am

  5. I had two rats, Pepper and LilC. I got Pepper from Petsmart (never go there in GA because they are all terrified and sick) and I got LilC from a friend who had too many rats (15) and needed to give them away. I loved Pepper because he was so shy with LilC that I had to keep LilC from potentially over shadowing Pepper with his personality by moving them into separate cages. One day, LilC got mites and they got into his heart. The vet said that the mites were nothing and gave me some medicine that ultimately made everything worse. I took him to a different vet and he said that the mites were eating him inside and out. I was so upset because I couldn’t hold LilC without having an army of mites crawling on my shirts or kiss him because a few got in my mouth and bit me. He died while I was away with a friend. I got to him just as he died and I cried for three days straight. Pepper kept me sane, but after a month he got sick and couldn’t walk around anymore. I was in pain and would squeak and squeal until you put him down. He constantly wanted to be held though. So the last night I had him, his tail stayed wrapped around my wrist and his head stood still. He licked my hand for the first time since I had him… I knew he was dead when his tail went limp. I cried for four days and my parents let me stay home from school regardless. They are strict parents by the way, so me staying home was a big deal. The last day I went to school and got in a fight because this kid insulted my music playing abilities. I got out of trouble because as soon as I got in the office I burst into tears and didn’t want to get out of the chair. I also never cry in front of people. I miss those two babies of mine and I always will. I have a new little girl, bella. She’s a fancy rat and is 7 months old. I love her so much and I’m not even thinking about the day she’ll die.

    Anyway, I’m sorry your rats died. =( But, since this was posted years ago, I know that everything gets better with time, yes?

    • AL

    Comment by AL — 5/26/2009 @ 9:20 pm

  6. I had those little babies for four years. FOUR! That fight won me a very bad reputation within symphonic band but the band director knew what the kid had said and he knew how upset I was. Those people who constantly mock the friendship between a rat and it’s owner are empty souls who think that just because a dog is big enough to run with them and keep up and big enough to save their life that they will always keep up. I don’t hate dogs, I have three… But they aren’t as loyal as TV portrays. Rats, though not long lasting, are the most valuable companions there ever could be. You know how those big moments in life never compare to the small ones? My babies made the big moments insignificant and the smaller moments worth every tear and giggle. <3

    Comment by AL — 5/26/2009 @ 9:25 pm

  7. I’m really sorry that your rats died. I had two pet rat, and when we moved to germany I couldn’t leave them here so we paid 500$ for each rat. But worth every dollar.

    Comment by Elisa — 1/24/2010 @ 6:32 am

  8. I am sorry about the losses. I have wanted pet rats since I was 11, and I have never been able to get any. :(

    Comment by Rebecca — 11/16/2010 @ 7:25 pm

  9. I know how you feel! I have to spend $55 dollors on my little Luna to see if she has a tumor (I’ll spend the hundred to get it removed too!if it’s there!) and everybody is all inconsiderate! Man! I’m so sorry for you loss! I know you loved her a bunch! :)

    Comment by Scarlet — 1/15/2012 @ 5:56 pm

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