By Sara Morris Swetcharnik
The Central American agouti, also known as an Indian rabbit or guatusa, is a medium-sized, tailless, brown mammal. It looks somewhat like an oversized rabbit with short ears.
Every evening George and Gloria would lift up a stone slab from the kitchen floor, put their pet guatusa to bed in the old plumbing hole, and place the stone slab back over her bed. In the morning they would take off the slab to let her loose. When they went up to their office, the guatusa would follow them hopping, rabbit-like, up the stairs and into the office. Then she would hop up on Gloria's desk, sniff around, make sure everything was in order, then squat and pee. Then the guatusa would hop on to George's desk, sniff around, make sure everything was in order, then curl up to sleep.
Eventually, Gloria gave up trying to toilet train the creature. She just left newspapers on her desk every day after work. "But it was a tranquil, pleasant pet. I think it was intelligent too," comments George. "It knew enough not to pee on my desk."
(Based on field experiences of anthropologists George and Gloria Hasemann.)