When Zach was 6 or 7 we got him his first pet, a uromastyx lizard who he named Spikey. Uromastyx lizards come from the driest, hottest and most barren parts of the world. They thrive under extreme conditions unsuitable for a lot of other lizard species.
Given our household is pretty extreme it was no surprise that Spikey thrived - even after the kitchen accident that cost him half his tail and the use of his back legs. Dude was a fighter.
Zeus and Spikey had a real love affair and Zeus would often go nose-to-nose with Spikey when we put them both out on the grass. Spikey wasn't exactly a soft and cuddly pet and I admit I wasn't head over heels for him the way I love Zeus. But he was a part of our family and had been with us a long time. He'd heard our laughter and felt our tears and now I say goodbye to him with the memory of the way he chased the crickets we'd feed him and how he'd stare into Zeus's eyes on a warm summer day.