Toys and Teeth
Thanks to Nonya and Cor for allowing me to use some of their ideas to make this article more fun.
The days in Neopia have become dark indeed. All our sweet faeries have been turned into stone. As if that weren't enough, now we are overrun by Wraiths and Spectres.
Is it a wonder that this has cast a pall on the spirits of our lovely pets? The constant battling is going to lower the mood of even the most courageous of pets. This is of course a great problem for all Neopians, who have pets to care for. True, I have heard rumors that there are owners out there who don't care about their pet's happiness, but I give them little credit.
Besides, even if there were such owners out there, wouldn't they fear that their carefully painted pet would turn into a simple blue or red out of sadness or anger? So it's time for us to battle sadness and depression, while our pets valiantly battle those monstrosities.
Raising a pet’s mood
The easiest and cheapest way to make your pet smile again is playing with it. Buy a cheap toy, if you don't have one. A Blue Kacheek Plushie for example can be found for only 1 NP at the shop wizard. Now take the time to play with your pet. Even the most battle weary pet is going to be happy again quickly.
Tiki Tours or allowing your pet a ride on the Merry Go Round will raise your pets happiness much quicker, but you'll have to pay 50 neopoints per pet and ride.
Don't forget to groom your pet! Fighting is dirty business and getting your pet cleaned up and pretty again will go a long way into making it feel good once more.
How many toys does a Neopet need?
I don't know about you, but my pets keep asking me to buy them more toys. Being a loving owner, I have indulged them for a long time. Finally our Neohome was filled so high with toys that I couldn't buy food for us anymore.
At this point I decided to put my foot down and banned most of the toys into the safety deposit box. I left each of my pets four toys. Since I hate egoistical and self-centered pets I made them share their toys with their siblings, so in fact each of them had access to sixteen toys.
During recent events my pets played with those toys so much that our Gumglobe broke. I gave in and took eight more toys out of the safety deposit box. And I bought a new Gumglobe too. Unfortunately, not even that kept my pets from whining, because all the other pets supposedly had more toys then them.
I had a hard time believing that and decided to ask around in Brightvale, where anxious owners watched their pets battle against wave after wave of Spectres.
A lot of Neopians told me they had exactly one toy to keep their pet entertained. Others had no toy at all and relied on Tiki Tours and the Merry Go Round. Some had half a dozen or more, but believe me: Neopia isn't exactly overrun with owners who have more than twenty four toys lying around for their pets.
One reply will stay forever in my mind: "I don't care if my Neopet is depressed. What is the worst that could happen? She will hold her breath until she turns blue. Then I'll go and dip her into the Magma Pool. That will teach her to stop being such a primrose."
I laughed until I saw her Neopet. The pet's eyes were burning with bright fire and it was dripping magma left and right. I don't think she had been joking after all.
Actually come to think of it, that solution IS going to work. But not for me. I am pretty conservative and don't like it when my Neopets burn down our Neohome on a regular basis.
Don't forget the teeth!
While I was still thinking about the Magma Pool, a kind Neopian told me that she made sure to always brush her Neopets' teeth after battle.
It took me a moment to understand why. I thoroughly discourage my pets from biting and scratching, when they tussle with each other, but if Neopets hesitate to bite a Wraith or a Spectre they will soon find out how being bitten by them feels instead. Those foes aren't exactly in the running for Miss Manners. They don't taste that good either. Using a toothbrush could indeed be beneficial.
While I was puzzling that out, the kind Neopian explained that even before the Faeries had turned to stone, she had made sure her Neopets were brushing their teeth each day, because they couldn't be trusted to do that on their own.
Oops. I am not sure my Neopets could have brushed their teeth, if they had wanted to.
I went to my safety deposit box to check, if I even owned a toothbrush. Yes, there was one! Last year the Advent Calendar had given out Festive Holiday Toothbrush and now it was rotting in a forgotten corner of my safety deposit box.
Quickly I brushed my Neopets' teeth, which made them squeal in delight. Apparently brushing teeth was even more fun than breaking the Gumglobe had been.
I pretended not to see the ensuing fight, when each of my pets tried to gain possession of the toothbrush. Sunsaphir is the strongest and was winning until his two sisters and our fosterpet joined forces against him.
Quickly I left the Neohome and walked back to Brightvale to watch the fight and talk with the other owners.
Basic dental care
The kind Neopian was still there and discussing with someone else that tooth brushing could become unhygienic quickly unless each Neopet had their own brush.
I tried to hide my guilt and decided to buy three more toothbrushes as soon as possible. Maybe I could get a rainbow toothbrush. I love rainbow items.
The kind Neopian told us that her fondest wish was getting the Tooth Faerie Toothpaste, which was the best toothpaste money could buy.
Toothpaste? Ahm... Now that I think of it - A bit of toothpaste might have been a good idea when brushing my pets' teeth.
Obviously I wasn't dedicating enough effort to this. I went to the trading post and checked the prices for Tooth Faerie Toothpaste. I could have gotten one for around 300000 neopoints. I decided I didn't want to be that dedicated.
Instead I picked up Sparkly Toothpaste and hoped it would work as well.
The kind Neopian must have seen my pale face, because she gifted me Tooth Faerie Mouth Wash. Even if my pets' teeth were rotting - their breath would not smell bad!
I returned to my Neohome.
The dangers of Mouth Wash
Remembering the toothbrush battle, I sent each of my Neopets into the bathroom separately and meanwhile kept an eye on the three others.
Alara, my Grundo, was just as delighted with the Mouth Wash as with the toothbrush. Obviously she is a tooth cleaning fanatic.
Himemaya, my Xweetok, told me she wanted to play games when she returned. It's a relief to know I have at least one pet who prefers playing to teeth brushing.
Sunsaphir, my Uni, informed me that this Mouth Wash made me his favorite owner.
"I didn't adopt you out of the Pound," I said. "I should be your first and only owner."
"You don't know everything," Sunsaphir replied.
I am almost sure he was joking. Almost.
I didn't have time to ponder Sunsaphir, because my fosterpet Flower came through the door. Flower is currently a Cybunny and hopes to find a kind Neopian who will take care of her forever.
"Thanks. I really needed that," she said. "I had a bad fur day."
I stared at her. Flower had rubbed the Tooth Faerie Mouth Wash into her pelt. I made a mental note to buy some shampoo, because if she had thought she had a bad fur day before using the mouth wash, I can well imagine what she is going to say after it dries.
I made another note to read some books to her. If Flower gained enough intelligence to realize that something labeled Mouth Wash was supposed to go into the mouth instead of on the pelt it would be a good thing.
What I have learned
Conversing with other Neopians taught me a lot, some of which I haven't reported yet.
For example: If your pet refuses to play with your yellow uni plushie that looks exactly like its sibling, then they probably don't like each other.
If the pet refusing to play with the yellow uni happens to BE a yellow Uni, it is trying to tell you that it's time for a Paint Brush or even a Morphing Potion.
But the most important lesson was this: If your Pets tell you they need more toys, despite having twenty four toys already, it means they need their teeth brushed.
Keeping that in mind I dedicated a whole hour of dental care to my pets and then started playing with them again.
"All the other pets have more toys!"
Ungrateful pets! I'll dip you into the magma pool!