Cuban Couple Keeps Rodents Called Hutias as Pets

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In this November 17, 2014 photo, Congui, a domesticated huitia, rides on the front door of an American classic car driven by its owner Rafael Lopez, in Bainoa, Cuba. Five years ago Lopez and his wife Ana Pedraza adopted Congui, their first pet huitia, a large rodent that lives in Cuba, Jamaica, Bahamas and some of the smaller Caribbean islands. More than a half-dozen more of the furry animals have been born at their home after occasionally bringing in a male huitia in to mate with Congui. (Photo by Ramon Espinosa/AP Photo)

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In this November 17, 2014 photo, Rafael Lopez sticks out his tongue infused with rum for his pet huitia Pancho, in Bainoa, Cuba. While some huitias can be aggressive, the 50-year-old Lopez and his wife have found the huitias to be pleasant companions. Lopez, calls the huitia “a precious, curious and very intelligent little animal”. (Photo by Ramon Espinosa/AP Photo)

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In this November 17, 2014 photo, Pancho, a domesticated huitia, confronts a camera, in Bainoa, Cuba. With their rope-like, dark tails, long front teeth, and whiskers that appear to be vibrating, huitias look like giant rats. They measure nearly a foot long (about 30 centimeters), with the largest ones weighing in bigger than a small dog. (Photo by Ramon Espinosa/AP Photo)

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In this November 17, 2014 photo, Rafael Lopez strokes his pet huitia Pancho, in Bainoa, Cuba. While some huitias can be aggressive, the 50-year-old musician and his wife have found the huitias to be pleasant companions. Lopez, calls the huitia a precious, curious and very intelligent little animal. (Photo by Ramon Espinosa/AP Photo)

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In this November 17, 2014 photo, one of Ana Pedraza’s pet huitia, listens to her sing at their home in Bainoa, Cuba, Monday. Pedraza lives with her husband in a large home with a patio in this community about 25 miles (40 kilometers) east of the capital of Havana. They built a special cage for their pets after discovering that letting them loose only resulted in the destruction of telephone cables and furniture. (Photo by Ramon Espinosa/AP Photo)

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In this November 17, 2014 photo, Ana Pedraza gives her pet huitia, Congui, a drink of coffee, in Bainoa, Cuba. Five years ago Pedraza and her husband Rafael Lopez, right center, adopted Congui, their first pet huitia, a large rodent that lives in Cuba, Jamaica, Bahamas and some of the smaller Caribbean islands. More than a half-dozen more of the furry animals have been born at their home after occasionally bringing in a male huitia in to mate with Congui. (Photo by Ramon Espinosa/AP Photo)

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In this November 17, 2014 photo, Ana Pedraza gives her pet huitia, Congui, a drink of coffee, in Bainoa, Cuba. Conqui and her brood like to drink coffee and munch on crackers, greens and root vegetables. Her son Pancho every once in a while likes a little nip of rum. (Photo by Ramon Espinosa/AP Photo)

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