Does it say something particular about me that, lately, anytime I've had a picture taken of me, there has been a hamster involved? My 'accessory' in this picture? That's Spot. He's one of Lilian's pups. Lilian was our first and best hamster. Several months after she had her litter, she died. I will admit, it was one of the more traumatic deaths we've experienced with a pet. I adored Lilian. She had the best little personality. When she got sick, I was resolved to fix her. Unfortunately, small critters do not fare well with illness and despite my efforts, after a week of sleeping in one to two hour stretches in order to force feed her fluids and protein supplement regularly- it became apparent that I was only prolonging her suffering. The last stretch was the worst but I suppose that it was at least some cold comfort that she ended her sweet little life cuddled up, warm and as comfortable as possible(courtesy of some hamster narcotics from the vet) in my hands. I still have a hard time talking about her without crying.
It has not been a good year for the pets. Missy passed away earlier this year. She was 19 years old. We came home one day and found that she had slipped away while dozing in one of her sunning spots. Talk about the end of an era- she was one of our first pets- and Dean and I have always been surrounded by pets(sometimes much to the dismay of our poor college roommates- sorry, guys, we're much better pet-keepers these days).
Phoebe will likely be the next to go since she is almost as old as Missy was and being a big dog... well, I am amazed she is still hanging in there.
Chocolate has become my best bud. He pretty much goes everywhere I go. He is always exceptionally excited about pretty much anything- going to the car to grab the iPod? Going to walk six times around the lake in a frigid hurricane? Bathroom break? Iced tea refill? Yep, he's always there, underfoot. He barks at everyone that goes by the house, even if they are in a car. The postman is terrified of him and so has begun chucking our mail at the front door from the sidewalk. Yep. Choco the wonder dog. Seriously, though- I do love that the little guy sleeps next to me each and every night, and is content to curl up on my lap for long car rides and, wow, he is pretty awesome at making me feel like a rockstar just for coming back to the car after running into the store or coming in the front door from a brief trip to the school or wherever. He barks, his happy bark, he wags his tail so hard his entire body flops from side to side, and he jumps up on his hind legs and dances around, leaping at me every couple seconds until I swoop him up and give him some love.
I do love me some hamsters, though. Maddie is my current fave. She's the color of a creamsicle- orange and white. She is just the busiest little critter. We're hoping that she'll have some pups soon, courtesy of Spot! These are a couple pics of Lilian- one with her pups when they were just a couple days old. So cute! I do miss her sweet little self...