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Seven Reasons Why You may not Have a Rhinoceros as a Pet

M. M. De Voe is an interstitial author of weird, prize-winning fiction; also the founder and executive director of Pen Parentis, a nonprofit that offers resources to writers that are also parents. Social types might want to follow @mmdevoe on Twitter or like Facebook.com/mmdevoe or maybe even become a fan at mmdevoe.com.

1) They can't be housebroken. Who is going to clean up after him? Fifty pounds of dung per day. Hadley has his hands full with the unicorns. You can't expect him to go chasing around after a rhinoceros. Not even a baby.
2) They are loud. We can hardly stand the sirens and the succubus. When rhinos are happy they make a loud "mmwonk" sound. And a hungry rhino, whining for his meals? No thank you.
3) They make a mess and track mud all over the castle. Can we talk about the mold you grew for your last science project? That was repulsive and Mrs. Tucker says the maids are still finding vestiges in the royal bathrooms.
4) Our dragon might become offended. Grafyte has been our family guard-dragon for hundreds of years. Insulting him with a non-magical companion in the yard will only add to his list of complaints, and as you know that list grows longer every year. We are lucky to have a guard-dragon at all. You should go out and talk to him every once in a while, maybe learn something, instead of mucking about with non-magical creatures that poop more than they sleep.
5) A rhinoceros eats 120 pounds of plant matter per day. This will endanger the enchanted garden, not to mention the nearby Ent forest. If the Ents attack, I don't think even the dragon can save us.
6) Rhinoceri carry ticks. Do I need to elaborate?
7) And this one is very important. Before we installed the tank, your father and I sat down with you and told you it was your responsibility to feed the mermaids. You don't even look at the tank anymore. The red-haired one has been floating at the top with a bent tail for three days now and you haven't even noticed. If you can't take care of your pets, you certainly can't have a new one, and that's final.
The End
This story was first published on Tuesday, August 25th, 2015

Author Comments

I loved writing this story. It was a response to my daughter's constant begging for a dog, despite the fact that we live in an apartment in Manhattan and already have fish (that I feed) and an urban rabbit (that elicits a lot of moaning and groaning when it is time to change the litter box.)

- M. M. De Voe
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