Written By:  Sherri Chambers

My story began two years ago with a small little guy named Coty, my little monkey kid.  Coty came into my life with my kids and husband wanting a monkey knowing I wouldn't want one cause of the commitment involved in raising a monkey.   So my family bought Coty for me for a birthday present knowing I would let them have him that way.  (My kids are 20 and 15 years old).

They had been visiting Coty for weeks holding and getting to know Coty, they were just waiting for my birthday to bring him home.  They had all gotten very attached to him already, feeding and learning about taking care of him from the breeder, right down to changing diapers and cutting tail holes.

On my birthday I was presented with this little brown child like face monkey, that from first sight decided that I was his Mom.  Coty was not what I wanted with my busy schedule, but I've always been an animal lover, and my family took full advantage of that knowledge, so that they could have a baby monkey!

From that instant Coty decided that he wanted to spend his little life in my arms, my family was a bit disappointed, they wanted Coty and I to get along, but the plan was that Coty would be they're monkey in reality.  Coty had different plans, it was instant love with he and I, and I felt this bond like a mother with a child to some degree.  The more time I spent with Coty, the more I felt how much monkeys were like human babies, I'd raised two of those.

Coty became very dependant on me and it felt like I had a new baby again, but after a month I realized that my baby monkey was not real healthy, he would bloat up and get bad pain in his stomach, and lay very still, not good when your a monkey!

I called a friend I'd found who had some monkeys of her own, to ask her who her vet was, and called him.  We tried many things to help get rid of the gas, but this vet was not doing enough to help Coty.  He always had suggestions but no answers, yet he ran a test on Coty.

We ran across some things that gave temporary relief for Coty, but nothing that persisted.  That was enough of band aiding the problem, I called another vet in my area, and was very impressed with this man.  He relieved Coty's pain the first visit, and ran tests and X-rays, at least this vet was concerned with the baby monkeys pain and health, and the fact that Coty was behind in his growth due to not wanting to eat, because of the bloating and pain.  It took several months and medicines to find out the real problem.

Coty had to eventually get an operation, that has cured him totally.  You see Coty, for what ever reasons loves to eat hair, string, anything he could shred or peel and then he'd eat it.  Coty had a ball of hair in his large intestine trying to pass the size of a small mouse.  No matter how we try to keep him from pulling hair out of people and animals and eating it he still does it whenever he gets a chance, string will work if hair is not available.

We found out after surgery that Macaque's are known for eating hair, although nobody ever thought that, that was the problem when we were going through all the problems with Coty.  It was one of those things that people said why didn't I think of that, cause they had similar problems at one time with they're Macaque.

Coty is now doing real well and eating real good now, and playing catch up on his growing.  Although I don't think he will ever get real big cause his parents are only 8lbs $ 10lbs.

About 7 months into my life as a monkey Mom I ran across the breeder who sold us Coty and spotted what I knew in my heart right away to be related to Coty in some way, it turned out to be Haily, his biological sister.  I knew the minute I saw that face that was Coty's face only healthier and bigger.

Haily is now the latest edition to our family and Coty and Haily just love each other and are great companions for one another to play with, as well as fight with one another like true brother & sister.

Haily has taken a major liking to my husband and we call her daddy's little monkey girl, she truly loves him and hugs and kisses him, and wraps her little arms around his neck, and smacks her little lips a 100 miles an hour, simulating talking.

When daddy comes home Haily shrieks with excitement, calling to him, wanting him to come and get her, I get the same greeting with my boy Coty.   Talk about wanted and needed, monkey's are very dependant on you like a small child and show the same enthusiasm and excitement when you get home.

Every day life with monkeys are very much like with small children under 3 years of age.  They have very different personalities like kids do with individual likes and dislikes.  Coty loves to watch TV, anything with animals, puppets, or action, sometimes even a scary movie will catch his attention to the point of making him scream in the scary parts.  Haily doesn't have the same interest in watching TV, she'd rather play with a blanket and play pee-a-boo.

Holidays have to be as much fun with Coty and Haily as when my kids were little, we buy both Coty and Haily Christmas presents just like we do other family members, and this past Christmas was Coty's second Christmas and Haily's first.   Coty had the unwrapping gift thing down pat this year ripping bow's and paper and being smart enough to know that there were toys inside for him to play with.

He was as excited as any Child, Haily just kinda watched this year in wonder, like Coty did last year, I'm sure it's just a matter of time before she looks forward to ripping the paper to get at some new toys.  Haily does understand the food end of it with Holidays, she just can't stand all the good smells that come from the kitchen, she begs all day for goodies.

They both are just like kids they get a new toy or baby, they play with it days one end over all the old toys knowing it's a new toy.  Just like kids they loose some interest after a week or so and start playing with all the old ones again too.

It really breaks my heart to know that they use small monkey's like Coty and Haily for experiments!  After seeing how much they are like us, and how they look at us to protect them and feed them.  It hurts to know after watching mine and knowing they know fear, poor little monkeys must feel in laboratories with no one who cares that they are hurting and scared.

I'm truly glad that I have my two monkey babies and can keep them from that kind of abuse.  I'm sure I'm not alone in those feelings with other monkey owners out there that love they're strange little kids "they're monkey kids".

The time is passing really quick, Christmas came and went, and we are almost to the 4th of July 1999.  Haily will celebrate her very 1st birthday on July 22nd, and I can't wait to give her presents for her to share and play with Coty.  She will get a TCBY strawberry yogurt cake, and the way she loves fruits and sweet things I'm sure she will beside herself with this birthday treat!  I know her brother Coty will be happy too, to share the toys and cake with her.

They both enjoy on a hot day to go to Sonic or Mickey D's for an ice cream cone to share, like little kids they know if we go after dark, it's for ice cream!  Talk about your good little monkeys, they try so hard to sit still ad not fight all the way to the drive thru, where everyone knows the, by names and gives them extra goodies to take home.  They really have them wrapped around they're little monkey fingers!

Our fist trip ever with Coty and Haily, Coty was so upset with Haily that she didn't get how to eat an ice cream cone without putting her hands on the ice cream, and making a mess.  Haily puts her little arms around the cone and got ice cream up to her little elbows, Coty reached around her with a look of disgust and held her wrists so she couldn't put her hands into the ice cream on the cone.  Then showed her how to do this task without getting it all over herself and everybody else too.   I watched in amazement that he actually taught her like an older kid would help a younger sibling.

Everyday I'm amazed to see the level of intelligence they handle everyday things with from eating sunflower seeds to spitting water melon seeds out of the water melon.  Or even figuring out how to take something apart, or even figure out the locks on their cages, those have had to be changed a few times.  It's like an article I read, most times you don;t know what they've learned till they are doing it.   That's an everyday thing with Haily and Coty, they show me daily things that they have learned to do like unbutton my shirt and button it up again, or showing me where my nose is, and then nipping it in play.

I've never raised monkey's before, so I guess I approach the whole thing with the same attitude in raising kids, except I know they are monkeys and have needs like growing kids, they want to ruff house, and bite in play, and jump all over the place, so I make sure Haily and Coty everyday get a chance to be monkeys.

I have an outside habitat that they play in and do just that, they have no rules there, just to be what they were born to be.  It makes for a better relationship inside, cause they have time to be wild and crazy little monkeys outside, it also gives me more time for me, and it poops them out with fun healthy play time.  It is understood that they have needs just like us, and like I heard once, all things are happiest when understood!

Time is really passing quickly with my monkey kids, and Coty will turn 2 this September 22, 1999, just one and a half weeks away.  Coty is suppose to be coming into more aggressive behavior being a male, but there is really no sign of this yet.  He is a lover, he gets very upset if he thinks he has hurt me in play, and kisses me and looks to see if he has left a mark on me from his sometimes rougher play.

He hugs me a lot and has certain sounds he makes when calling certain members of the family, my call is a sound something like an owl.   Coty is very verbal and communicates very good with what it is that he wants from me, like tapping 2 times on my shoulder when he sees something he wants, in getting my attention that way, so that I may attain for him the food or abject he wants.  Coty also knows no, and shakes his head vigorously when I've not attained the object or food he had in mind.

Like dogs, monkeys too know certain words after a while like, hungry?  Or want some juice?  Mine even know be good ot the boogie man will get you!    Funny but true, last Halloween Coty and Haily got very scared from the Halloween masks, and I told them that, that was the boogie man, and they remember that.  Now every time they misbehave, we tell them listen, here comes the boogie man, and they both instantly be good, for at least a little while.

They're intelligence goes so much farther that I could ever imagined, as well as they're feeling of love, fright, happiness, sadness.  Truly closer to what we are than I think most understand.  I look forward to my years ahead with my monkeys kids, and learning more about them.  They have truly touched my heart, as well as my families, we love you Coty and Haily!

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