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Scrambler

Mink berkshire

15 May 2003 - 20 March 2006

About Scrambler
Photos of Scrambler
Tales of Scrambler


About Scrambler

We adopted Scrambler (and his littermate Grub) from Ann and Emma at Rock-a-bye Ratties.

Scrambler was so named because as a ratlet he zoomed all over the place like a ScramJet (an air propulsion rocket invented here in Qld), and he scrambled over and in and around and under and between everything.  He was virtually impossible to remove from your shirt once he finds a way inside... something he did way too easily.  He was always demanding attention... the first to be poking his nose through the cage door when someone came to visit.  He leapt about like a rampant fuzz, and was always in your face (up your nose, in your ears, nibbling your eyelids, etc)... thus the nickname "Scram!".

He always looked so perfect... perfectly groomed minky fur, perfect spray of white whiskers, perfect sweet expression on his face.  And he had a personality to match, but always that little bit of mad mink under the surface which made him act silly and boisterous.   He and his brother Grub were inseparable... I can't count how many photos we have of their matching minky faces poking out of hammocks or nest boxes!  He was a very thoughtful and sensitive rat and always looked after his cagemates when they needed him, offering himself as a pillow, a blanket, or just a supportive furry presence.

In old age, he was a very special old fuzz.  A gorgeous minky squish.  So sweet and calm and with the softest of fur.  He lived for cuddles, and would park in my lap or under my chin for hours at a time, licking my hands or neck in appreciation of my scritching the part he couldn't reach anymore.  He loved chocolate with a passion and would join us on the sofa each night for his cuddle and his chocolate treat.  He become known as "The Ambler" as his back legs weakened in old age, but it never slowed him down!  He was healthy and happy and full of life until the very end.

Whenever we enjoy some chocolate, we will smile as we remember our sweet old minky Scrambler.  


Photos of Scrambler


He perfected that cheeky innocent grin


His gorgeous white belly star


Grub and Scrambler - partners in minky mischief


He had charming rattitude


Scrambling on a zebra rock


Berry sweet


Framed!


He was a big fan of any treat off mum's finger


Enjoying a digging box


Wet and whiskery after fishing for peas


Tales of Scrambler


Security Scrambler

The mink brothers work together all the time... they know that if they pair up in their cuteness they can get anything they like.  But the other day I saw the most amazing bond between them!

We're currently trying to integrate the big boys with the little boys, so every now and then we let them sniff each other through the cage wire.  Rumps climbs up there all the time and pokes his nose through and the little boys sniff him and know he won't hurt them.  But Schnapps instantly gets all huffy-puffy-fooffy and the young boys squeak at him and stay well away.

The other day the minks had been "meeting" Uncle Rumpy for awhile.  Soonafter I brought Schnapps up to see them.  They were in their nestbox and Grub immediately ran out and cheerfully headed for the cage wire to say hello again to Uncle Rumpy.  But he stopped suddenly and started going backwards.  Scrambler had grabbed the skin of Grub's back in his teeth and was wrenching him back into the nest box with a "NO!!  That's not Uncle Rumpy!  That's the BAD rat!".  Scrambler was protecting his brother from the big bad alpha Schnapps!

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Quirky facts about Scrambler

His berkshire belly has a perfect 5-pointed white star with a tiny little minky dot in the middle - a kissing target of course!
He's my constant companion rat... while the others are off wreaking havoc during free range time, Scrambler will be with me.  It's almost like he says "It's OK, mum. I'll stay and play with you".
His fur is as soft as a girls fur... a sensory delight of soft thick sweet smelling minky sheen.
He's a chin groomer.
He scrambles.  Up/in/under any item of clothing you're wearing, up furniture, under blankets, over his cagemates, etc.
He can scale the inside of your pants leg effortlessly.
His ears are low set, which is particularly charming with his adorable slightly worried expression.
He's a bit of a scaredy wuss when it comes to new things.
When you feed him creamed cheese, he clings to your finger with both hands and refuses to let go until he's nearly licked your fingerprints off.
He's an ear snuffler and whiskery tickler.
He is *always* waiting at the cage wire and is without doubt our most enthusiastic and successful beggars.
He dunks his whole head in the water bowl to groom.

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Scrambler's motto

"No clothing is too tight to tunnel into"

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Arggghhhh is...

Arrgghhh is... a minky Scrambler fresh from swimming in the water bowl going straight up your pants leg in mid winter.

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Scrambler, Support Rat

Scrambler is such a sweetie.  Lamington had a sudden bad allergy flare-up last week and was not feeling very well.  After the vet had xrayed him and dosed him with just about everything, he came home and parked in his nest box exhausted.  I asked Scrambler to look after him for me.  He immediately trotted into the nest box and curled up beside Lammie.  He stayed there all day, keeping him warm, acting as a pillow, and basically just being the perfect support rat.  I was so proud of my Scrambler. He got lots of extra treats along with Lamington.

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The Mink with Kaleidoscope Fur

The Scrambler just gets more adorable with age.

He's pushing 2 years and 10 months and he's weak in the rear end, but he still has all the enthusiasm and alertness of youth.  He loves his free range time, ambling (rather than
scrambling) about all over the house.... his current nickname is The Ambler.  The only thing he loves more is having his back end held in my hand so he can *run* all over the house,
his face alight with excitement, with me trailing behind him on my knees.

There's something very special about old rats.  I don't know if it's just because you've known them for so long, or if it's the charming way they seem to want your attention and cuddles
more.  But Scrams simply lives for cuddle time.  He's nicely squishy and his fur is oh so soft... I just want to pick him up and cuddle him all the time.  He will park in my lap and writhe
in delight as I scratch and massage and rub and scritch him all over.  As long as I'm scritching, he's licking my hands madly and thoroughly.  I've never known such a licky rat!  

Then I flip him over so he's sitting upright in my lap and he has a little groom of his face and belly.  This is amidst laughs of  "You're grooming me, Scrams!  You're supposed to be
grooming you!".

He's developed an addiction to chocolate, and he gets a little piece every night when he's having his cuddle.  At the sound of the wrapper being opened, my sweet old cuddly rat will
powerfully claw his way out of my hands to get at it. 

Scrambler always had the most perfect minky fur... a stunning show quality coat of shimmering silver-grey.  In his old age this has become delightfully mottled to a combination of dark greys, light browns and mink.  And his coat is ever-changing, like a minky kaleidoscope.  Each morning we awake to a new minky canvas... he is so beautiful!

I can't imagine loving this rat more than I do now.  And yet he surprises me every morning.

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More tales of Scrambler and his friends on the Ratty Ramblings page.


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