If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook then you might be aware of my recent rollercoaster ride of pet ownership.(if not, then darn those algorithms!)
Unfortunately, after a week cough/sneeze thing that she just couldn’t shift despite my best attempts to force feed her the world’s most disgusting antibiotics (somebody oughtta make Calpol for pets!), my beautiful little Aurora died. I cried a lot and I cuddled her in my bed as she took her last tiny little breath. My heart broke into a million pieces yet again, and my Mum ever so correctly described it as “this is the bit I have always hated about having a pet”. It doesn’t matter what kind of pet you have, when your baby dies it is going to affect you and the people around you. For a year and a half Aurora was my family’s baby.
After the heartbreak of Cornelius’ death, I was surprised with a new little hamster to love just two days later. That was my little Aurora, and admittedly she was about the only good thing to happen in my life last April as it was a month with hit after hit. That was part of the major heartbreak of losing my little fluffy princess, in all the calamity of things going wrong in life she was always there looking for nothing more than a little attention and some treats. This time though, it wasn’t practical to get another hamster straight away – for one, I had to sort out the pet living situation (Aurora never actually moved into my new house); secondly I had a lot of trips upcoming, including the guts of a week away to Mallorca, where I wouldn’t be able to care for a new fluff and finally, we were all too heartbroken.
It just wasn’t the right time, but that doesn’t mean that there wasn’t a massive hole in my life.
A few weeks passed and all of my trips and things had passed. I had briefly thought that maybe I would get myself a new pet soon, but I still wasn’t sure that the time was right. Then one Friday night I went to my bed, like normal. I had at least three hamster related dreams. Three that I could remember when I woke up in the morning. Including one where I was trying to catch a wild hamster. I couldn’t stop thinking about those dreams. I went about my day as planned, I went to see some NEOS artists (posts to follow!).I just couldn’t shake the vividity of my dreams, however, and next thing I knew I found myself in the pet shop. There were no hamsters. In act, there was nothing but birds and fish. So I went back to visiting NEOS venues, accepting that my dreams weren’t a sign and I wasn’t mean to get a new pet that day.
As the afternoon drew to a close, I found myself in Pets At Home in Inverurie. Why was I there? How did I event get there? I don’t even know if I really knew, I just knew that I had succumbed to doing what felt right in my heart. I found myself wandering up and down the tanks, peering inside. If I was going to go home with a new pet I couldn’t have one that looked like Aurora. In fact, I had my heart set on a black one. There were no black ones. I spoke to a stranger about a really cute bunny. I spoke to a shop attendant about two bunnies that were up for adoption – it genuinely looked like I was going to come home with a totally different animal. Then just as I was making my decision, this little face popped up in what I had previously assumed to be an empty tank.
Marvin was a hamster up for adoption. Now, adoption can be a bit iffy. Why is this animal up for adoption? Are they old? Are they difficult? Were they abused or neglected and now have issues that I might not be able to handy. He didn’t even look at me, and he looked exactly like Aurora. He wasn’t what I wanted at all.
Something told me I had to ask about him. So I did.
As it turns out Marvin was up for adoption because he was older than the other hamsters for sale and he had a scar on his nose. When he was first put on sale he was the victim of a vicious attack from another young hamster and he had to be removed for vet treatment. That’s why he now has a scar, which I have to say is hardly noticeable. He just looks like he has a particularly pink nose to be honest! As for older – at 10 weeks old he is old for a hamster being sold as new (recommended 6-8 weeks I believe) but for an animal with a 2+ year expected life span, he wasn’t old at all. He was so chill, I just couldn’t say no. My heartstrings were well and truly tugged. The shop assistant was delighted. I wondered what on earth I had just done. Marvin was equally as confused.
That was more than a week ago now and I am delighted to report that Marvin is settling into his new home in my new house very well. He is the gentlest soul and has a fantastic personality. Mother and baby are both doing well. I love him. That hole in my life is filled.
TLDR; listen to fate and ask about the animals who are up for adoption because it is 100% worth it.