|Last known photo of sexually confused Hamster, Nibbles|
No, no one has mistakenly eaten Kevin (my ancient pain au chocolat) and died a gruesome fusty-chocolate-related death.
No, our beloved Nibbles has moved on to that great hamster wheel in the sky.
She had been getting fatter and fatter in the past couple of months and I suspected that all was not well inside Nibbles, but she was a happy little rodent - swinging on the bars of her cage, patiently trying to escape at every opportunity.
On Wednesday we found her sleeping at the bottom of her cage, not in her bed. I thought she was dead, but apparently Sonshine checked and left us this missive, to ensure that we didn't tip her into the swing bin by mistake.
|It says 'just sleeping'. Can't we edit photos in blogger any more?|
By Thursday morning, the wee soul had been returned by me to her bed and she hadn't moved - although she was alive (I poked her regularly to check).
We were due off to Glasgow later in the afternoon and I was deeply unhappy about leaving the hamster. She might only be a tiny scrap of life, but she's still a scrap of life and she's our responsibility.
Tartarus has made it quite clear in the past that we would go to the vet for a dog or a cat, but not a hamster, so I was dreading working up to telling him that I was taking her to the vet.
'There's no way I'm leaving her here while we go away overnight. She might begin to suffer while we're gone and I'm not having that.' I said quietly.
'Want to phone the vet then?' he asked. He's a softy really.
I telephoned the vet and asked whether we could bring down a hamster for probable euthanasia. Surgery had finished for the morning, but he was happy to have us down.
And as I lifted Nibbles into the box, didn't the bastarding wee thing start scrabbling around and being active and NORMAL?! They KNOW, I tell you.
'We're still going to the vets,' I told her grimly.
Tartarus drove us down to the surgery and we were quietly ushered in to the consulting room where the vet took a good look at her.
I apologised: 'She seems to have perked up since I decided to have her put to death.' I joked, but my heart wasn't really in it.
He cast an expert eye over her and said that she was full of growths, but not suffering. However, things would only get worse for her and if we didn't have her put to sleep today, it might be a much worse scenario in a week or so. The word 'leakage' was used.
I agreed that she should be put to sleep and he injected her with anaesthetic with the view to giving her a little spot of Euthetal once she was sleepy. But the anaesthetic did the trick and within a few minutes she curled up into her usual ball-like position and went to sleep. Permanently.
She was wrapped up respectfully in a bit of tear-off paper towel and placed back in her box.
£11.00 changed hands.
Sonshine didn't find out about it until the Friday when he got home from school (he'd had an overnight with a friend so that Tartarus and I could have a night up in Glasgow). I wasn't there when he was told of Nibbles' passing, but his dad promised me, hand on heart, that he would do it with as much sensitivity as he could. And I believe that he did.
And Sonshine is ok about it. We have decorated a Kleenex box and the funeral is today, after school. Kevin and other close family members only, in attendance. There shall be due pomp and ceremony.
...and why was I not present to tell Sonshine myself? Well, I was getting a Brazilian Blowdry. On my HEAD. Which is a post for another day.