Some sad news from our pet’s corner of the Mad House of Cats & Babies. Our smallest furry friend, Scruffy the Hamster, died, last month.
He was much loved, even if he was small, grumpy and had a tendency to be slightly smelly despite me cleaning his cage often. He was very comical in his grumpiness and we were terribly sad to loose him.
He was over two years old, which is supposed to be good for a hamster.
He sadly was suffering from a tumor, which I had noticed growing, very small at first, under his front leg. This is quite common for the type of hamster he was. The vet and I have been monitoring it, and the vet was concerned that removing the tumor surgically may have been too much for his little body as he was quite old and also so small. So whilst he seemed pain free, and was eating and moving about normally, we kept an eye on him and had regular updates with the vet to see how things were. In the middle of August, I noticed he was moving less, and wasn’t eating as much (and he loved his food, but wasn’t even getting excited by his favourite fresh blueberry treats) and he seemed a lot more sleepy. I rang our vet who said that it may be good for him to be checked out and see if there was any more we could do, but it may be time to think about letting him go and putting him out of his pain. So the plan was for the husband to take the children out for the day, with my mother in law, and I would take Scruffy to the vet, and we would go from there.
Life got in the way, and the day I was due to take him to the vet, I had a child home with food poisoning, our new niece was back in hospital and various other things happening. So, I rang the vet and he kindly agreed to come out to our house. We have known our vets since Layla was a tiny kitten, they are so kind and caring. He was unfortunately in the area that day, to sadly put a dog to sleep, who was also very unwell, so he said he would come to us after he had finished there. Not a nice morning for our poor vet at all.
He arrived and after gently examining Scruffy, who was very sleepy and not moving and not eating, despite my tempting him with all his favorite foods and giving him the pain medications the vet had prescribed, and the tumor had grown a lot, over a short space of time. So the vet said that he felt it was best to put him to sleep, he was suffering, there was little we could do. Sadly, that was the best option, and Scruffy was given some medicine to make him sleepy and then then vet gave him an injection which stopped his heart. He went to sleep sitting on my lap, and didn’t feel any pain. I cried like a baby, I have never had to experience a pet of my own being put to sleep and even though I knew what was happening, it was still hard to watch. He is free of pain and eating all the fresh fruit he wants in Hamster heaven.
We miss him very much. He was my deskmate, chuntering away at me for treats whilst I worked, from his little blue cage next to me, making the children laugh with his acrobatic antics in his wheel and exercise ball, and generally fitting in in our crazy life. He was my hamster and I feel silly for feeling so sad, but I really have been quite upset by his death. The children were also very sad, about it, as they loved him too, and we have all felt his loss quite hard.
The loss of pet can be quite a hard thing to deal with, I think even if they are small. Funny how emotional we get up these little creatures. I still can’t look at his cage, sitting empty, at the moment.
RIP little mouse (my joke name for him) we miss your funny antics!!