Tracie L. Rodgers Children's Book Author and Lover of Wildlife

Marco The Garage Rat


“Will you be mine, won’t you be my neighbor?” I was reminded today one of my favorite childhood shows, Mr. Rogers and his wonderful welcoming song “Won’t you be my neighbor?” That is what we felt today when trying to rescue a precious rat that was living in our garage. At times, I think the wildlife friends around us, might possibly ask that question “Won’t you be my neighbor?”. There is a humane way to coexist and live in harmony with wildlife that may visit our yards.

Somehow one of the neighborhood rats made its way into our garage a few days ago. When I started seeing chewing and rat droppings from the storage items in our garage, I immediately told my husband that I would like to start feeding this precious rat that appears to be trapped in our garage until we are able to take time to gently guide him back outside and definitely make sure there is not a nest with precious babies somewhere. We believe that all life is precious, even the rats have purpose here on earth.

I put out scrumptious treats (carrots, apples and pecans) and a small water dish. This precious rat immediately devoured the food and gulped the water. Well, this was a great indication to me that this was my next wildlife mission to make sure this sweet rat felt loved and fed until we were able to safely get him back outside. Of course, I accepted this wildlife mission.

We decided to name him Marco (inspiration from the fun water tag game, Marco Polo), He was always hiding when we came out into the garage, yet we could hear him roaming around.

Within a couple of days and the fall weather finally arrived, we worked on cleaning the garage. After lots of moving and cleaning out garage stuff, we found our Marco! Marco Polo!

Well, oh my goodness, when we found him, he was in an open storage container and looked up at us with those pure cuteness eyes like he was possibly saying he did not want to leave, he would be so grateful to be a resident garage rat. Haha! LOL! It was the cutest thing ever! Maybe he was expressing gratefulness in his eyes that we fed him and kept him alive. To me, it was truly a special moment of a precious life that appeared to be extremely thankful. It warmed my heart that we extended kindness and compassion to Marco.

As he left the garage and back into our yard, my husband and I decided to make a little shelter outside along with some of his treats just in case Marco needed some time to adjust to his surroundings again. I wished I had pictures from this pure cuteness story of Marco.

And in the midst of cleaning out our garage, we found my Grandpa’s record collection and his record turntable. I decided to put it together and play his records. It was so calming and comforting to listen to.  Thank you, Marco for the wonderful opportunity to find my Grandpa’s record collection and enjoy his music.

This picture featured is one I took earlier this year. I think this is possibly the rat that I named Macie. We keep a small water dish out for the wildlife friends. It is a nice way to extend kindness and compassion to them, especially when it is in the heat of summer. This seems to be a favorite water source for the birds, rabbits and even the rats. I think this is a beautiful expression to show that these precious rats need food, they need water, they need love, and they need shelter, just like us. We all want to be loved and validated and so do these precious creatures.  My deepest heartfelt prayer is that we as humans continue to open our eyes to see that all life is precious and really consider the wildlife friends around us to be our neighbors. And also consider showing compassion and kindness to one another. We can coexist and live in harmony with each other. And, oh my goodness, they are simply pure cuteness!

That is KAPOW! Tracie


About the author


Tracie L. Rodgers lives in North Texas with her husband, Jeff. Her passion is writing children’s books and sharing her love of nature and wildlife with the world.

By Tracie
Tracie L. Rodgers Children's Book Author and Lover of Wildlife