I aimed for two weeks and we made it past four. But after much thought, I’ve decided to let Schnecke go. And I know know it’s for the absolute best.
We went away this weekend, but before leaving I gave Schnecke a huge pile of crunchy green lettuce, new water and cleaned her tank. I was a little worried about leaving her because she seemed to be growing some kind membrane around the lip of her shell. Doctor Internet couldn’t come up with a diagnosis — so I arranged for someone to look in on her after 24 hours and hoped for the best.
Yes. I actually got a snail sitter.
From all reports, Schencke seemed fine. But when I returned home I knew something had happened. Nothing bad mind you. Nothing horrible or terrible. Schnecke was fine.
She was just in a state of estivation.
She grew a little membrane, withdrew into her shell and secured herself to a safe place in her makeshift “cave” and went to sleep. Over the next two days I bathed her shell, misted her tank, and kept offering plums, her favourite food. But Schnecke was just not happy enough to wake up.
I’m certain that it was because her tank was too warm and probably too dry despite my effots. So I made the decision to let her go this morning in the hopes that better environmental conditions would wake her up again.
Eryn was disappointed — but very understanding of the situation.
Before saying good bye we sprinkled her with water and placed her cave in a pretty flower section of the garden where we first found her. Then of course took copious pictures to record the event. And much to my surprise, after about 10 minutes she woke up.
I think my actual response was, “Subhanallah! It’s a miracle!”
Over the next 15 minutes she delicately ate away her protective membrane and tested the moist air with her tentacles. She then rested before taking off — I imagine drawing up plans on where to go and looking through her contacts to see if she had any friends in the area to hook up with.
I’m sad to see her go because I really love pets and she was a fascinating little thing. I loved watching and hearing her eat.
When she came to us she was hungry, deficient in calcium and eating her own shell. Now she’s a little bigger, has darker, healthier looking stripes, and I know she’s happier being out in the garden.
I hope to see you again one day Schnecke. Please don’t get stepped on.