by Donna Matthews
Having dealt with ferret comfort, walked the dog, fought the battle of Sainsbury's then fed the husband and sent him back to the office, it was time for me to get some lunch before the bi-weekly ferret court clean out. 'Picking up' is a daily duty but twice a week I do a full clean out, so a little 'me time' over beans on toast would be decidedly well earned. However, half way through this gastronomic delight the phone rang. A nice young lady asked "Are you the local ferret rescue lady?" She went on to announce that she was a WPC from Ashburton Police and that she had a ferret in her custody.
Well you can imagine the thoughts going through my mind! A polecat with his bandit mask holding up the local post office, a jill propositioning hobs on street corners or even a feral ferret gang in hoodies dooking insults and beating up some show ferrets outside the pub!! But no, nothing like that.
The ferret's owner had been arrested and would not be in a position to look after if for quite some time!! It appeared that there had also been a number of complaints about this ferret as it lived in a box underneath a shed and would go just where it wanted, scaring pet bunnies and householders alike.
The Police were very unhappy about the manner in which this poor creature was being kept and said that he could not, quite rightly, be left to fend for himself. Dilemma; although I really couldn't take in another rescue I was won round as this was a case of neglect and an emergency.
I explained that my car, Harriet the Chariot, an 18 year old Ford Bonus, boiled after a few miles and I couldn't get to Ashburton as it was too far; the Police could not come out of their area but we did manage to arrange to meet about three or so miles away.
So gourmet lunch forgotten, off Harriet and I went to meet up with the Police at an industrial estate in the car park of Prestige Pine. Of course the girls in the office were all looking out of the windows (like you do when a marked patrol car appears unexpectedly!). The two young constables were charming and were worried about the young man's fate as they didn't know of anyone who could take him on.
As it turned out the ferret was a young polecat hob with such a cute cheeky face that I fell in love with him immediately. In spite of his upbringing he was very tame and well handled. So a satisfactory ending and a successful rescue. Even Roger thinks he's cute!!
This youngster has been named Bobby Fuzzball and in his first fortnight he got into quite a bit of mischief, but more of that at a later date.
First Published January 2009