Our Pet Groundhog

Our Pet Groundhog

By Jay Sprinkel 

Nobody probably thought that Groundhog Day would have meaning beyond the new symbol for Rheumatoid disease sufferers. Wrong! Below is a picture of Roxanne holding our pet groundhog, Piggy. The picture is from the early 70’s and that was before the word “autoimmune” was even known to us. Roxanne would later become my mother’s caregiver when she developed Lupus, and 20 years later my caregiver when I came down with RD.Roxanne and groundhog

We rescued Piggy from a flood when she was tiny and fed her with a doll baby’s bottle. She was a spotless pet and used kitty litter. She whistled when we came into our apartment. She was affectionate and slept in the foot of the bed and we had to pay attention not to sit on her because she was happy burrowed in the blankets.

But Piggy was a wild animal…

We’d make popcorn in a large bowl to watch TV but she insisted on sitting IN the bowl. Once we were eating crackers with jelly and I finally gave her a cracker with no jelly and she was furious! Her teeth were so sharp and powerful we finally had to give her to a wildlife center.

Beyond our RD Awareness Day, I guess groundhogs have special meaning for Roxanne and me. I wish we all could have our own Piggy’s as service animals. Make sure you put jelly on her crackers though.

To learn how you can be involved in the first Rheumatoid Awareness Day, February 2nd – Groundhog Day – click here.

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