Adopted: October 2006
Passed: July 2013
Personality: sweet, adventurous
Special skills: made artwork each day out of a paper plate
We got Noriko and her sister Saki on October 29, 2006, after we had lost Aya and Hazel. We visited many different pet stores until we found just the right guinea pigs for us. In the store, when I held Noriko for the first time, she just melted into my hands - she was so cute and tiny and was so comfortable with being held. Their coloring was so pretty, and since they looked so alike we're pretty sure they were from the same litter. When we got them home, Noriko made such a silly first impression by running straight into the wall of the cage.
Noriko was probably the more dominant one out of the two because she was a little more outgoing and vocal, and it was fun to have another guinea pig that wheeked for food again. As our guinea pigs get older they seem to get a little lazier and just want the food without having to work for it! Noriko and Saki got along really well most of the time and could be so sweet with one another. The only issue they ever seemed to have is when Saki would try to go into the same sleeping bag as her sister. Noriko would whine and squeak until we would eventually go over and pull Saki out of the bag. Sometimes we would catch them being especially affectionate towards one another, and we would see Noriko grooming Saki and would licking her ear - it was so precious!
Aside from Muffy, Noriko was pretty much the only pig of ours that really seemed to enjoy floor time, and she would get quite adventurous from time to time! She would wander around and try to go to all the places we would block her from, and she learned to do figure eights around us while she walked around. She would also run towards me and climb up on my lap when I'd shake the treat jar. In the cage, one thing that was always fun to watch was when we gave them a paper bag to play with. Noriko would immediately walk inside and start to chew her way out, and Saki would help from the outside. They always looked like they really accomplished something when they made an opening big enough for Noriko to come out through.
Usually during the day, Noriko could be found spending the majority of her time lounging around in her sleeping bag and sometimes wouldn't do anything but poke her nose out to get some food. She could be so lazy and seemed perfectly content to just lay around doing nothing. One thing she would do every day, however, was so chew up the paper plate that had their food on it into thin strips. She would make piles of the strips and we always told her how lovely her artwork was!
As Noriko aged, she became even sweeter and more mellow, if that was even possible. We had to start giving her frequent baths to keep her clean, and she seemed to love every second of it - she would literally just lounge back in my hands when the water started running. In December of 2012, I brought her to the vet because she had a large lump on her lower back. The vet didn't know what the lump was and recommended that we let her live out her life as comfortably as possible without operating because of the location and her advanced age. After the appointment, Noriko provided us with six more months of purrs and affection. We made the extremely difficult decision to have her put to sleep in July 2013 when she could no longer comfortably move around the cage. Noriko was always such a sweetheart and we were lucky to have her as a part of our lives for almost seven years.