The Rat Who Came to Dinner


Weston hitched his ride back to Morgantown on Saturday at noon. I had been out, and came home just as my cousin’s son Madison, who also attends WVU, was coming down the drive. I stopped by the mailbox and got out. Madison stopped his car at the end of the driveway and Weston pushed open the passenger side door, unfolded his six foot frame, and gave me a hug in the middle of the road. Then they were off.

I walked into the house, set things down, looked around and saw this odd thing remaining in the post-holiday clutter….. A pet carrier, sitting on the hearth. Whenever Weston comes home, he brings his pet rat, Morwen, in a pet carrier. Back in Morgantown, she has a nice cage. The pet carrier is like her travel camper. He’s had Morwen for a couple of years and she always comes–and goes–with him. One time he found a vole in the yard when he was doing some digging for me. He brought the vole inside to be Morwen’s friend.

Morwen ate the vole.

Morwen doesn’t have any friends.

Anyway. Why would he leave Morwen’s carrier here? Was she riding back to Morgantown in his pocket? Where was I going to put the carrier in the meantime? Because surely you jest, it’s not sitting on my hearth until Christmas. I pondered this problem as I came closer and bent down to inspect what all was left inside the carrier that I might have to deal with–leftover food, doo-doo, remains of a vole, whatever.

This was right about when the rat scurried up to the wire door and poked her wiggly little pink nose at me.


First, I just screamed, then I started screaming for Morgan, who was upstairs.


Morgan, running down the stairs: “Weston would never leave his rat here.”


I was slightly hysterical.

I’m just being honest.

“LOOK!” I demanded.
She looked. “Weston left his rat here!”

“I KNOW!!!!”

Desperate attempts were made by phone and text and carrier pigeon to get hold of Weston and Madison, but to no avail. Weston’s back in Morgantown now, and Morwen is…..AT MY HOUSE.

I’m stuck with her till Christmas.

I have a rat.

P.S. Weston also forgot his wallet–drivers license, social security card, WVU Mountaineer ID, everything. He’s in Morgantown with no identification. Perhaps this is because he doesn’t want to be found….


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  1. Diane says:

    Sorry I”m siding with the rat. lol. Poor thing left alone with someone who does not want to care for it.


  2. GA_in_GA says:

    There is a lesson to be learned here . . . never leave the house unguarded when college kids are packing the car to return to college.

    It is not what they might take, but what they forget to take that is the issue.

    Poor Morwen. Which is worse, being a rat? Or being left behind and unwanted by your grandmother? πŸ˜‰

  3. folkwoman says:

    Oh, and I thought it was a problem that my son left his travel kit (toothpaste, toothbrush, deodorant etc) at home after Thanksgiving weekend! Sorry, hope you and Morwen get along for the next couple weeks!

  4. Jane L says:

    You could “accidentally” forget to close the carrier and let the cats take care of it. Otherwise, I would be making that drive to WVU pronto!

  5. lattelady says:

    When I first saw the title, I thought “WESTON!”. πŸ˜†
    Now, you have faced far worse things than a pet rat. Enjoy her company. You probably scared the bejeebers out of her. πŸ˜‰
    My DD’s second husband (now divorced), kept a large black scorpion. Wanna trade?

  6. wildcat says:

    Look on the bright side: at least Morwen is secured in a travel carrier, and not lurking around your house, waiting to jump out and scare the crap out of you at any moment!

  7. hazfam83 says:

    Good grief…
    It’s a rat.
    It’s in a cage.
    You get apoplectic out about some of the littlest things. I find it a bit weird that the idea of shooting and possibly killing another human being courtesy of the Concealed Weapon permit you’re getting doesn’t freak you out like a rat in a cage or driving in snow.

  8. DeniseS says:

    Morwen’s actually kind of cute in a furry little way. Since she’s been raised by Weston, she is probably quite friendly. Don’t know if you will get to the point where you hold her, but look on the brighter side. Morgan will most likely help you care for Morwen, and at least it is not a snake!

  9. Louise says:

    My concern would be the fact that at some point that cage will need to be cleaned out or start smelling. Just a thought.

  10. TerryMcC says:

    I apologize in advance for this Suzanne, I normally ignore stupid remarks but this one, well maybe I am just in the mood the let loose.
    To hazfam83, first to correct you a person does not,,and I repeat does not get a Concealed Weapon permit to go out and shoot another human being, it gives you the right to have protection on you in case an individual were to harm you, that being said I do not think of that individual as a human being, because human beings do not commit deadly crimes against another. Suzanne chose to get her permit, she chose not to be a willing victim, like others who got there permit. One question to you,,would you feel safe in todays world walking alone either in the woods or down a lonely country road without protection? Or would you just sit sheltered in a house without enjoying what life had to show you? Do not sit on your soap box unless you really know what you are talking about. On to another thing, I have seen grown men, big strong men jump and run for cover over the smallest of things. I have seen a few that were afraid of a flying bird, a worm and other harmless things. So I am about to finish and I will end this with my last thought,,if you do not like what Suzanne is doing or has,,then why are you here? This is a place where all come together and enjoy each other, help each, console each other and most of all ACCEPT each other, not a place to condemn another. With that being said I am finished and hope that you would consider to think before you speak. Your way is not the only right way! To each there own! If you don’t like what is there,,don’t come back!

    Thank you to all,, and I am sorry once again Suzanne if I stepped out of line on the platform that this forum is based on,,but I was in the mood to NOT let that comment pass without my two-cents on the matter.

  11. saitisntso says:

    Morwen is getting a whiff of you and hopes neighbor Jim takes care of him too. Ha! :moo:

  12. MousE says:

    What’s happening with the comment section lately? Why are people being so mean to each other.

    I guess this is the flip side of your book’s success. How unfortunate.

    And that’s funny he forgot his rat, and his wallet. Oh Suzanne, it’s always something :dancingmonster:

  13. RosieJo says:

    Let’s put this into better perspective. He dumped the rat and forgot his wallet…That’s why he was hugging you in the middle of the road. My guess he was just a little bit nervous about the ‘getaway’. Gotta love your boys.

  14. Claudia W says:

    I think he left Morwen and the wallet with everything in it because he just didn’t want to leave! I have always said that when I leave something behind it is because I want to go back. Too bad it will be a while before he can get back to you, Morwen and his wallet. I hope he doesn’t need any of it in the meantime! It actually isn’t going to be that long before all is reunited. Good luck with the vole eating rat!!!

  15. Southern Belle says:

    Ditto Terry McC! Thank you! It is so true that boys will be boys. I raised 3 boys all close in age and I dealt with all shapes and forms of critters down through the years (my sons are now grown men). Iguanas, frogs, hamsters, ewww!! Luckily no spiders or snakes! Dropoffs and forgotten wallets are normal. Believe me. Doesn’t keep us moms from worry or aggravation though. Good luck and Happy Holiday Season!! :wave:

  16. theo says:

    I’ve had several rats as pets. They’re smart, kind, playful little things and often love just to sit on your lap as you read or sew. So I’m on the other end. I’d be enjoying the little thing while I had the chance. But I understand. I do think that cage is a wee bit too small for her though. They need exercise. Which means you have to let her out occasionally 8)

  17. nursemary says:

    I ship live chickens all the time. Just sayin’. πŸ˜†

  18. Joell says:

    Do cats eat rats? I know they can open the door to go outside–can they open the cage door? Just wondering. πŸ˜‰

  19. stacylee says:

    Rats are great! My daughter used to have one and it would sit on the dog and they would watch TV together. It would also come out in the yard with me, and then go in when I did. Take a chance on a new friend Suzanne!

  20. emmachisett says:

    Morwen is just another wee creature as deserving of love and care as, say, Maia.

  21. emmachisett says:

    Morwen is just another wee creature as deserving of love and care as, say, Maia. Lots of people adore and feed squirrels. Aren’t they just tree rats?!

  22. denisestone says:

    I see a trip to WVU in your very near future to deliver wallet and rat!

  23. jodiezoeller says:

    I’m with the camp voting for a trip to WVU to reunite a boy with his rat and wallet!

  24. hawkswench says:

    Maybe his is hoping that you will bring the rat and the rest of his stuff along with some goodies to WVU? Sort of a since I have to go that way I might as well as take some cookies, etc. I know that would have been the thought running here.

  25. holstein woman says:

    Suzanne, you are NOT going to like this; but my dog would like to have her just for a second, and if she was at my house I would let Ellie have her. And NO to whomever asked, my experience is that cats don’t like rats to kill or play with. but give any of them to Ellie and she will give them the bite of their lives.
    I have a friend who put a bag of corn in a 55 gallon drum, put a 2 x 4 down into it and one over the top so the rats could get into it and eat, when he had collected rats for about 3 or 4 days he gassed them. He had 59 rats in the barrel and hasn’t had rats since. I also read that if you mix portland cement and cornmeal and let the rats eat it it will kill them. I’m thinking barrel, portland cement, board, 3 days and pull the board. The cement acts when it hits anything wet, so they will die without gas etc. You see, I have a rat problem and haven’t decided which solution I am going to use.
    You see, I’d tell him to come get the rat or it would be Ellie fun. Just sayin!

  26. Mandys says:

    Aw she is so cute! I love pet rats. I’m allergic to them though so once my two are gone I wont be having anymore. Give her a chance, don’t be mean to her πŸ™ I think you will end up loving her. I get some people don’t like rats/are scared of them and that’s ok, but give her a chance, and if not then make Weston come back and get her LOL

  27. Old Geezer says:

    Be nice to Morwen. Based on my experience with pet rats (we’ve had several over time) they only live about three years. It’s in its dotage even as we speak.

  28. Tucker DeRatt says:

    Being a rat owner, I hope you come around to the sweetness of Morwen’s personality. I have had decades of rats, each one is as different each human is.
    I am sad to see poor Morwen stuck in that tiny carrier until Weston is reunited with her. Rats need a larger space to live in. They are very neat creatures & want their food, sleeping & potty spots seperated. Having her in the carrier until the reunion is going to stress her, which can make her ill. I know you love critters so would want to see her happy. If you have access to a show bunny cage until Weston returns, it would be better for Morwen’s health & happiness. just line it with newspapers, add a food tray,waterbottle & an empty tissue box with a small handful of tissues outside it. You will have the makings of a very happy rattie.
    Either that or you are in for a road trip. Please give Morwen a scritch & a bowl of cooked oatmeal for me.
    Ratty Hugs. ~C8>

  29. Leck Kill Farm says:

    I also wonder about the cats’ and dog’s reaction to the rat in the house…..I would think they would view it as prey.

    Any hunting updates?

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