My Daughter with ME and her Pets

Pet Therapy is under rated

Elizabeth has always preferred to be around animals than people. She has had pet goldfish, cats, hamsters and guinea pigs but has always wanted a snake. This is where I own up to being terrified of snakes and admit to having the ‘ when you have your own home you can have a snake’ conversation.

Early in 2019 when she was quite poorly with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (though we didn’t know that is what it was at the time) she pulled at my heart strings saying she wished she had a snake. I tried a compromise, reminding her that with her health looking after another pet may not be possible. So my compromise was we had 2 Albino Xenopus Frogs ( African Clawed Frogs). They are fully aquatic and pretty low maintenance.

For her birthday in July 2019 I surprised her with a new pet. An African Pygmy hedgehog. She adores him and makes sure he is well looked after and has time with her every day. However poorly she is she always manages some pet snuggles.

As she became more poorly and I was searching for ways to make her short amount of awake and alert hours fun and happy I had a spur of the moment, moment of madness and decided to get her a snake. We chose a gorgeous 16 month old Californian Corn Snake. I can honestly say I have not seen her happier. even when she was unable to get out of her bed for more than 10-15 minutes she spent time with her snake and he brought her such comfort. We have had our snake for just over 2 years now, I am still terrified and have not even been able to touch him yet. He has grown a lot. He has the most gentle nature and is really calm.

I really don’t think Elizabeth would have survived severe ME without her pets. The limited energy she was able to find she got to enjoy because of having them here at home with her.


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