Sunday, January 14, 2007

My Bearded Dragon, Miller

My pet is a 6-year-old Bearded Dragon named Miller that I have written about on my Random Writings blog several times. Miller should really be called Millie because it's a female lizard, but we thought she was a he when my son first brought her home. She was rescued by him four years ago when he was on a carpet cleaning job for my husband (we owned a carpet and furniture cleaning business for more than 20 years). The man who had the little beardie at the time was going to get rid of it. Miller originally belonged to his son, and the son moved out and left Miller behind. One day I came home from work to find the tank set up in our extra bedroom and I went to the tank and peered in and Miller cocked her head sideways and looked up at me like "who the hell are you and where the hell am I?"

I never thought I could love a lizard, but I do. Miller has become my little friend. She doesn't make noise, she can't even hiss very loud (and I have only heard her hiss a couple of times in 4 years). Miller is supposed to eat crickets to maintain good health . . . LIVE crickets. However, she is terrified of them. When I put her in her feeding tank and put the crickets in there she tried to climb up the sides of the glass to get out. I tried this several times just to make sure she just wasn't in a weird mood that day, but no...she is indeed afraid of them. So, I have had to resort to buying canned crickets for her. She will eat those. Actually, she devours canned crickets. She also loves dried meal worms and eats those like we do potato chips. Other favorite foods are blueberries, celery leaves, beardie food pellets, and rare bits of toast crust. Her very, very favorite food, however, is fresh green beans. She attacks those, she loves them so much!

Miller can sleep in the most uncomfortable-looking positions. Tonight, for instance, I found her hanging by her armpits from her long branch with her body and feet hanging down, eyes closed.
Sometimes I find her with just her head in her plastic cave with her body hanging out as if she thinks we can't see her because she can't see us. In the morning when I uncover her tank, she is stretched out with her hind legs straight out behind her and her front legs down along her sides like people would sleep. She is a funny little thing.

One of her favorite things to do is to sit on my lap and watch television. She loves television and she knows my husband is the television watcher. She hears him come in and knows he is going to turn the television on and goes to that end of the tank that faces the tv set. Sports seems to be her favorite with lots of action, and championship wrestling really makes her happy. I think it is the flashing lights and colors that gets her attention.

Miller likes to sit outside on my lap in the summer, but is very wary of birds that happen to fly above us. She runs up my chest then and gets close to my neck as if that will make her safer. Normally, beardies in the desert of their native Australia survive only a couple of years at most because they end up being eaten by large birds, snakes or other predators. But the beardies like Miller are most likely bred just to be domestic pets. Miller would probably not survive very long at all in the wild.

Anyway, just thought I would write a bit about my little scaly friend. She's a little sweetheart.

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