About a year ago we adopted Spock. Our first Israeli pet.
In retrospect we should have called him Flash. He is super fast, never sits still for a moment and eats everything in site.
He is also the sweetest little rodent ever. He never bites, unless you wake him up and is happy to climb on your hands and run around exploring.
Last Friday I noticed he had a lump at the top of his hind leg. It didn’t seem to be bothering him too much, he was still running on his wheel and eating and drinking, so I wasn’t too concerned about getting him to the vet until Sunday (by the time I noticed it all the vets were closed and they are not open on a Saturday so we had to wait).
On Sunday I asked a colleague to help me call the local vet who deals with rodents and make an appointment, except it turns out she is on maternity leave and her replacement doesn’t deal with rodents.
They referred us to two other vets, both of them quite far away for someone who doesn’t have a car. The one would require a taxi to get to and the other would require a 30 minute bus ride.
We called the one that was on a bus route and made an appointment for that night. Except then my bus didn’t arrive and I had to cancel the appointment and then it turns out the vet that deals with rodents only works one night a week and if I wanted to take Spock to them it would have to be during the morning.
So the next morning we called the vet that needed a taxi to get to and they do deal with rodents just not with rodents that have lumps on their legs.
So in the end I convinced Paul (who really doesn’t like rodents) to take him to the vet this morning.
Apparently the lump is something that older hamsters tend to get. Turns out that even though the pet store told us Spock was only a month old he was actually closer to a year old when we got him. The vet said that looking at his teeth, the loss of hair on his legs (they are almost bald) and the presence of the lump indicate he is closer to 2 years old now. And at two years old, she doesn’t recommend biopsy or an operation to remove the lump as long as he is not in pain.
While Paul had him at the vet they noticed his one eye was not open properly and they think there is an infection so they gave us drops to put in 4 times a day. I can see this being akin to bathing a cat.
So, in a nutshell, the hamster is OK and my husband is amazing for taking him to the vet for me (and for taking him back this Thursday for his follow up).