We have a new addition to the family. A syrian hamster that we bought for our daughter for her birthday recently. Small, cute and fascinating to observe, this little animal has enchanted us all particularly our daughter who has become like a little mother to her pet. It is wonderful to see her growing attachment to him and how serious she is taking her caring responsibilities and it is also lovely to see how he is helping her in other ways too.
The difference he is making to her started almost from the moment we got him. No sooner had we brought him home that I started to talk to him in a high pitched voice, similar to how we talk to babies. My daughter asked me why I was talking in such a silly way and I replied that her hamster was cute and dependent on us in a way a baby was and so it was natural to talk like this. She said nothing and the subject was dropped but then a few days later I heard her also adopting this ‘babytalk’. This may sound very ordinary to many people but for my daughter this is quite significant as she usually talks in an unemotional way which you could describe as ‘flat’ at times. Too see her expressing herself like this and to shower love on a little animal is so lovely.
Even more wonderful has been her newly found confidence and an interest in learning about hamsters. Such is her animation that, with some help from me, she has set up a little ‘hamster’ blog. It is a very new blog and is currently only open to comments from family members but with her permission I have included an extract from her blog describing the day she got him.
On the 24th of June I got a new hamster and I called him Skittles. I called him Skittles because I was making a cake and it had chocolate fingers and skittles on it and I thought Skittles was a good name because I love skittles.
Skittles has orangey coloured fur. He has a cute nose, small ears and a mini tail. When I got him he was in a box trying to nibble out. We got him a cage with a tube. The tube goes inside then goes outside the cage. We got him a wheel to run on. He loves the wheel. We got him a food bowl and a water bottle which all caged animals need. He has a mini house with bedding inside. He has hamster meusli but he doesn’t like the round green and red food.
I have never had a pet hamster before so I don’t know what he does. A few days later we cleaned his little house out. He went and made another nest in the tube. We didn’t know what he was doing so we looked up hamster behaviour on the internet and it came up with a funny story about someone’s hamster who always runs up and down his tube. On July the 4th, he took every bit of his food up his tube. He did it all night and in the morning we all laughed because he stored all his food in the tube.
I am so proud of her. She has had such a difficult year that I have really worried about her health and whether she would ever reengage with learning but it seems that this little animal is helping her to find some confidence at long last.