We have a little 10 gallon fish tank that has grown on Leif and I amazingly, AB could take it or leave it. It houses two goldfish who apparently live in the lap of luxury since they are nearly twice their size compared to their purchase size. It also houses their faithful servant, "Cleaner Fish" named by Leif, our plecostomas. AB and I call him Pleco and are very grateful for his services.
Leif and I check out the tank daily, feed the fish and talk about what they are doing. Yesterday after work Leif and I were admiring the fish when I noted to myself, and a few minutes later to AB, that Pleco had gone belly up. AB and I both mourned his passing briefly, and agreed to not say a word. Then when Leif went into the bath, the person not hanging out with him in the bathroom would flush poor Pleco. (We think the tank may have become too cold for him this winter, our tank thermometer was reading between 68-70F.)
From very limited experience, I figured this would be least traumatizing to Leif. And I definitely don't want him to know about the existance of the fish net. When I was in 2nd grade I remember my best friend's little brother's guinea pig died. He was about 3-4 years old at the time.
"Well he definitely never gets another pet of his own," I remember his mom telling my mom, "I took the cage out and removed the animal and all, and he never even noticed!"
Apparently all kids are not the same. Right after work today Leif was in by the fish tank. He was quiet a little while as I repaired a section of the train track that I tripped over.
"Mommy," Leif starts, "where's Cleaner Fish?"
"I think Cleaner Fish went to visit his other Cleaner Fish friends," I fibbed... sort of... I am sure he is visiting other little Cleaner Fish in heaven.
"Daddy know?" Leif asks.
"Yes, daddy helped him pack his things for his visit," I told him.
"Ok," Leif says.