It's no secret we love Winston.
Neighbors and friends have heard over and over how he likes to sit on my desk while I type, that he loves cartoons and that he likes to be fluffed with the hairdryer after baths.
He is one sweet spirit who has captivated all our hearts.
But when the chance presented itself for Winston to have a better home, we decided no matter how much it hurt we loved him enough to let him go. How can a duck get anything better than desk sitting, cartoon watching, and pampering after a bath?
The truth is that for all his endearing characteristics, Winston is a poop-machine. And, the bigger Winston grew the bigger...well, you get the idea. The local wildlife center suggested--yes, this is true--duck diapers.
My husband didn't mince words. He had only one: NO. And it was brought forth with such force that I didn't argue.
He has more than tripled in size (Winston, not my husband) and his warm cozy home beneath our mudroom bench--a box a day that went from cereal cartons to freezer boxes--was often soaked through in an hour by Winston's love of playing in his water dish.
Last week we decided Winston had to be moved outside.
Our yard is not fully fenced, and the only option was to build a duck compound in limited space. Unfortunately that would mean right next door to our two Huskies, and part shepherd. Winston would have been the object of their constant, um, affection. If they see any bird in the yard, all three canines go crazy. Barking and howling aside, we live in a semi-rural area where other big dogs roam constantly, and skunks are always on the prowl. We decided Winston's life in the yard would have been one of constant trepidation.
Someone told us about a sweet lady across town who lovingly cares for ducks in her fenced yard. When we called she said she had a duck pond. Weighing everything we decided that, though it would break our hearts, we couldn't let the opportunity for Winston to have a better life with friends and a pool pass by. The place passed Mag's approval, especially when she was told she could have visitation privileges.
Though Winston no longer lives under the same roof, he will always live in our hearts.
Goodbye, dear Winston. We love you.