Monday, May 11, 2020

Meet Baby Thomas!

If you've been following this blog (or my Instagram) for awhile, you know I've kinda got a bit of a reputation as a CRAZY SQUIRREL LADY! It all started in 2014 when our pit bull Maynard found a baby squirrel who had fallen from the nest in our backyard. We tried to find a local licensed rehabber with no luck, but someone recommended a local "squirrel guy" they knew. I reached out, only to find that he'd moved away from Memphis. He couldn't take the squirrel, but he did pass along instructions for raising the baby myself.

And so we did! Luckily, I've always had cool jobs where no one minded me bringing a baby squirrel to the office because they need to be fed every few hours. We released that first baby, Herman, when he was about 12 weeks old, and he came to visit every morning for a year (same time, 8 am)! Once you get a reputation as a squirrel lady, you're in for life. Every time someone finds a baby squirrel and doesn't know what to do, they'll message you, call you, text you. We've since raised Mable, Gertrude, Kevin, and Kathy! And now Baby Thomas is our sixth squirrel.

I turn a lot of squirrels down every year because I just can't always invest the 12 weeks it takes to raise one. When I can't take in a squirrel, I'll share instructions with others on how to raise them. We're building an army of squirrel caretakers here! But when my co-worker Tom texted me that he found an orphaned baby in his yard about two weeks ago, I couldn't say no.

I'm working from home and not traveling any further than my parents' house for the foreseeable future, so why not? I named the squirrel Sir Thomas Belvedere Edwards II after my co-worker.

Thomas' eyes were open when he came to me, and his little baby teeth were just coming in, so I estimated he was about 5-6 weeks old. Too young to eat solid food, so I quickly got some Esbilac puppy formula for him. They eat every four hours at that age.

When you first introduce solids, you start with very soft foods, like avocado and grapes. Thomas really loves his formula and hasn't quite taken to fruit yet. But he did nibble on some avocado on Cinco de Mayo. Such a festive baby!

He was still a very sleepy baby when he arrived at my house (Tom drove him over on his scooter!!). But in the past week and a half, Thomas is becoming more active. He's started climbing the bathroom trash can, and this morning, I found him sleeping in there! I made him a nest inside a cat carrier in my bathroom, and he was calling that home until now. I guess the trash can is his new nest.

We always raise squirrels in our master bathroom because there's very little they can destroy in there, and there's a window that leads to the backyard. At 12 weeks, we'll crack the window and let him explore as he feels comfortable. Until then, expect to see more cute pics of Thomas!


Hillary said...

I love him already!!!! I was thinking not too long ago that it had been awhile since you've mothered a baby squirrel!!

Susan said...

I have loved watching him on your Instagram posts. And all your previous SQUIRRELS as well. They are so cute!

Jennifer said...

The instagram squirrel photos have been the highlight of my lockdown lol