Politicians and their pets: Jeremy Balfour
The Scottish Conservatives MSP introduces his three guinea pigs Zeb, Chewbacca, and Haggis
Zeb, Chewbacca and Haggis.
Two years old.
How long have you had them?
Where did you get them?
A friend who could not look after them anymore.
What can they do?
Eat, poo and sleep.
What do you love about them?
They are very cute and they cuddle my girls a lot. Best thing is they do not talk back!
What special talents do they have?
Zeb can do some tricks, but the others cannot.
What’s their best trick?
Zeb can climb up my arm.
What are their most annoying habits?
Pooing everywhere!! For three small animals, they produce a lot of poo.
What’s the worst thing they’ve done?
They did lots of diarrhoea in their hutch.
Do you think of yourself as a pet parent or pet owner?
My girls think they are parents to them. I see myself as more hands off!
What’s the most ridiculous thing you have bought or done for your pets?
During the winter, the guinea pigs were given a hot water bottle to keep them warm. This meant heating it up and trudging out into the garden before bedtime in the cold to give it to them. They would then fight amongst themselves for the privilege of sitting on top of it while the other two got less benefit from it. On very cold nights they came into the house and never wanted to leave. Eviction was necessary but came with complaints!
What was the first pet you ever had?
What would be your dream pet?
A dog or a tortoise. I love walking a dog as it forces you outside in all weathers. I miss the time it gives you to think and have peace from everyone else.
If you could be any animal what would you be?
A polar bear, because it just gets on with life. It looks cute and cuddly (like me!) but when annoyed it attacks and takes no prisoners. It is a great survivor.