Thursday, 8 September 2016

Madhouse diaries : We have a new pet ... snail !!


On Sunday afternoon, Pierre found a snail on the patio. He named it Gary - you can tell he's a SpongeBob SquarePants fan ! - and spent the whole afternoon playing with it, watching it slithering around, examining it up close in his bug collector and just generally being totally fascinated by it. 


I sniggered and told him he could put his Scalextric racing track outside for his snail to race down then fell on the floor laughing when he did. I was laughing on the other side of my face when Gary happily slithered along from one end to the other and, when Pierre carefully pulled him off and pointed him in the other direction, slithered all the way back again. I don't know who was having the most fun ! When it came to bedtime, Pierre was begging us to let him keep it as a pet ! After telling him it was a wild animal and nobody keeps snails as pets, I went online to prove it to him ... and kicked myself when we discovered that actually they do ! I told him we'd keep it for one night then let it go in the morning then went looking for a suitable container with a lid. The jar for the sponge letters for the bath had drainage holes in the lid for letting out the water so that was ideal - it was also a pretty decent size for a snail.


We put in some lettuce and a twig with some leaves then it was time to brush teeth and get into pyjamas. I fell on the floor laughing when I went upstairs and Pierre was lying in bed watching cartoons with the snail jar propped up on the pillow next to him ! I said it probably wasn't a great idea to put him on the pillow and, when I came back from sorting out the washing, I discovered Pierre lying in the dog basket with the snail jar on his tummy !! They have been totally inseparable and it's actually ended up being a really enriching and educational experience. We've been looking up online what they like to eat and what they need.


We discovered that they actually tend to like living in groups, often snuggling up together to sleep, so we popped back outside the next day and got him a friend ... along with a tiny weeny baby snail that Pierre also excitedly popped in the jar ! The baby one is so small that we had to put a fine mesh over the top of the jar so that it can't escape through the air holes. It's been fascinating watching them slithering up the sides of the jar, Pierre loves watching them munching on the leaves and we've discovered that they do different coloured poo depending on what they've been eating ... carrots give them bright orange poo ! We've also had eggs on the side of the jar but I scraped them off because I didn't want a million more little pets to look after !


When you think about it, a snail is actually the perfect first pet. It's free, you can let it go when/if you get bored with it and if it dies, you could even replace it without anyone being any the wiser ! It's actually very cute seeing Pierre taking such good care of them, making sure they've got enough to eat and splashing water on the leaves so that they can drink, and he's totally fascinated by everything they do. It makes you wonder why we spend a fortune on expensive toys !!

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

16 comments:

  1. Wonder how long Gary will last as a pet great idea for a first pet

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    1. Well, it's been a week and he's still just as fascinated, which surprised me !

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  2. Replies
    1. It's been having me in hysterics watching him carrying them around everywhere and talking to them or watching TV with them !!

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  3. I agree, what a great idea for a first pet, what a lovely story too

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  4. Ha-ha very cute - I'm afraid snails don't live very long if we find one in our garden....

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  5. Aah it is so sweet. It is something my son would do :-)

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  6. What a lovely story and an interesting holiday pet! I think Pierre would have enjoyed some of the Coombe Mill sail racing contests we have run here. I do remember mine all building snail homes in cake tins too. When they got bored the sails just escaped and slithered back towards my greenhouse!

    Thank you for sharing your slithering tale on #CountryKids

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    1. Pierre would definitely love it at Coombe Mill ! I keep thinking he'll get bored of the snails (there are 3 now!) but he's still just as fascinated 10 days in !

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  7. I think it sounds a wonderful pet. My children tend to round up hundreds in snail hotels. They're then forgotten and gradually escape. Often wonder how many are recaptured over the weeks. I can almost hear them sighing and muttering "Not again". Hope Gary is still going strong. #CountryKids

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    1. Still going strong and he's slowly eating his way through the veg box of my fridge !

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  8. I love how he loves his pet! You have captured an amazing relationship and yes it does makes sense about to have them as a pet as they are easy to maintain =) #countrykids

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    1. It's been so cute to watch - and very educational too, even for me ! lol

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  9. Snails are an absolute favourite in our house too. Where we live they often scatter the path at school run time and Luca and I usually end up clearing the path so none get squashed by less caring/observant school runners. We also have pet snails in our fish tank. We love snails. #countrykids

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    1. Glad to hear we're not the only ones ! lol

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