July 8th 2010 9:13 pm
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.... but there are only 3 of the original 4 at the Rescue tonight!
What a night! I have never seen my family so edgy, excited, nervous and then happy!
I heard that the Rodent Rescue founder, her husband, my Mama & Papa sat waiting in a car and the Humane Officer who had met them all at the Rescue prior to leaving was in his own vehicle. All together from their vehicles they watched and awaited the "throwing out of the garbage" - Finally around 9:15pm the backdoor of the store opened and out walked an employee with the store's bagged garbage. The employee put the bags in the dumpster and returned to inside the store. The humans sprang from their vehicles and descended upon the dumpster carefully taking out the bagged garbage and opening it.
Happily and sadly... thrown in with the garbage were the two wounded hamsters and they were alive! They were transferred 1 each to their waiting cages. At this point the Humane Officer (who was a really, really BIG guy) released the care of the hamsters to the Rescue (although, they are technically now living *evidence*) and went around to the front of the store to request entrance. *Our* part in this Rescue was finished for tonight. (Although I'm quite sure Mama would have liked to have heard what went on inside the pet store with the hulking Humane Officer and the pet store staff and management.)
The two wounded boys have veterinary appointments set up already for tomorrow where they will officially have their condition documented and treated. (The little guy with the bite on his testicle will probably need surgery, the other guy should just need some wound care and possible antibiotics.)
They may not go up for adoption as long as the case against the pet store remains open.
(Which doesn't matter, they need time to heal, and since the Rescue is a No-Kill, they could live out the remainder of their lives there, if needed.)
Of the two "aggressor" boys (both of whom do not seem aggressive at all with humans, only their own kind) there is now only one remaining at the Rescue. Who didn't see this coming? Mama fell in love with the one cinnamon boy earlier tonight and after the two wounded were settled in back at the Rescue the founder (who must have seen Mama's *lovestruck eyes*) asked Mama if she would like to give a home to either of the two "aggressor" hamsters from last night. The Cinnamon guy had earlier sniffed Mama's hand curiously then stretched to take a pumpkin seed from her. (Both "aggressors" need some 'hand taming' - I don't think they got much if any of that at the pet store...)
But Mama just loves that type of thing! She answered that she had really had fallen in love with the cinnamon and since we had not brought a cage along, the little cinnamon was put into a small animal carrier and brought home with Mama and Papa. Tomorrow before Papa goes to work he will return the carrier back to the rescue.
Here, the little cinnamon is now named "Ancho" - after Mama's favorite chili pepper and he is settling in nicely to his new home! After he adjusts to the stress of moving twice in 2 days I'm sure there will be some pictures of him.
Mama, Papa, the Rescue Founder and her husband were all talking tonight... How can we prevent this from happening again? Samoa's point was also brought up. How much cheaper and ultimately hassle free would it have been for the pet store owner to simply have enough adequate caging on hand? Even seeking veterinary care for the two wounded would have been cheaper than the resultant fine or judgement for denying the wounded veterinary care and cruelly "throwing away" two wounded hamsters alive?
Should there be legislation that regulates the number of small animals a pet store is allowed to "house" to the number of adequate housing that they can provide? - How to enforce that? Routine random inspections and fines?
Should an Educational Outreach Program be mandated to be completed successfully for all stores and employees who sell and deal in small animals?
How to enforce that? It would be easy enough for a store (and employees) to conduct an instructional, factual, training program, but once completed - would the points truly be followed? How to ensure that new employees would be educated. A checklist can be 'checked off' without a single item on it actually ever having performed.
Several small steps could have ensured both the pet store's name and the safety of these hamsters long before we ever got into a situation like tonight...
Understanding the solitary nature of the Syrian and providing individual housing for animals who don't sell by the age of 6-8 weeks would have prevented the wounding and ultimately prevented tonight's situation.
Would a pet store/rescue partnership be of best benefit? I promise you most of our "Rescues" are not this *dramatic.* Most animals are owner relinquished - Some come from the Country Humane Society (which is a kill shelter) and others come into the rescue as "Unsalable" which is when a pet store contacts us themselves with an older small animal or one who is a *biter* that just isn't selling for them. Often these *biters* can be 'socialized' and sometimes they are just *feisty* personalities. Either way they are all safe with us. Since first opening on January 22nd 2004, the rescue has been able to find 425 small animals great new homes.
... and it just "hit" me that all this comes about exactly to the day, one week after our Pie left for the Bridge.
Happy news indeed..And it seems your Mamma was guided to the hamster in need, Ancho..I am wiping away tears now..
Thank you all for caring so much..please keep us updated!
So glad that the store's employee notified your rescue as to what was going to be the fate of these two!! Purrs that they heal up quickly and live very pampered lives. And big hugs to your family and the others who rescued them and have rescued so many others! Hurray!
~hugs & love~
Joy! And horror, too. How could the people at the pet store do something so disgusting. To let those poor little guys suffer and then throw them away like trash to continue to suffer? It's hard to process that. Why would a person own or manage a pet store only to have such disregard for humane treatment? Money and greed, I guess. Horror.
But I'm SO proud of the employee who blew the whistle and of your parents, the rescuers, and the Humane Officer and organization that took this so seriously as to work late in the evening and dig through the trash. True angels.
Please keep us updated- I'd like to know the extent of justice for the abuse of Ancho and the boys.
OMC! What pawsome news. It is so nice to hear that the little guys are all safe now. Nobody should be abused no matter how small you are. Sound like Ancho found himself a wonderful forever home.
Mimu & Family
*happily dancing* now i only need to prrrrrrrrrrrrr for the two to recover :)) oh, and i do prrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!
i wonder if it was possible to beat humans with their own strategies? they "found" we animals learn best with rewards, right? what if a reputable organization (and i assume humane society really fulfills the requirement ;) ) invents a signet (comparable to "fair trade") that can be reached by pet stores that treat their living "wares" appropriately and suitable for the species' needs?! the signet could include partnerships, training courses, information, and much more. and should be renewable every few months... just for the case...
together with a campaign (and most media love that!) it could work... perhaps...
but now: prrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrs and give your pawrents kitty kisses for their efforts!
Oh hooray for your family! What wonderful news! Your parents are true heros!
Sweets, We've been following along your furmaly's diaries about the sad passing of Pie. Your pawrents surely are furless angels here on earth because we can all see how much they love the furbabies... no matter how little they may be! We're so glad to hear your furmaly has been doing so much to save ALL the furbabies from such horrific situations. Lots of loving purries & whisker kisses from me & my FAM! -Alexis, Abby, and woofer Ernie
That is wonderful news! We cannot wait to see pics of little Ancho ;)
It is good to know that the abused hamsters of this world have protectors. How like Humans:"They're just Hamsters,throw them in the dumpster.". They even do this with other Humans. It is not generally known,but we have a Rodent(or more accurately,a Lagomorph) living with us,a rabbit that Dad found on a jobsite some 7 years ago(who knew rabbits lived that long?). We know it's not a wild rabbit,it's black with tan around the eyes & on the underside & feet,an English Something rabbit(our rabbit book is in storage). We thought we would have to give him(?) up,but he is coming with us.
That is a wonderful story, Sweets. I had NO idea, and neither did Mom, that someone who runs a pet store would simply toss out an unsaleable animal in the trash. Wondering how many fish get flushed at the end of a business day.
Anyway, I'm happy that those two lucky hamsters will live to tell the tale. And happier still that I KNOW Ancho will have the bestest life ever from now on.
The one wounded boy (now named within the Rescue as "Nikolai" has been to the vet, and is back at the rescue, with antibiotic drops. The second boy "Ludo" had surgery today to remove both testicles. He is essentially now a neutered hamster and we can pick him up tomorrow between 8-11am
Our vet felt that the second testicle was swollen and probably due to infection and rather than risk him needing a second surgery at a later date, made the decision to remove both. We anticipate a 10 days course of antibiotics and pain medication for him. He may also have to go back to have his stitches removed, but he should be feeling much better very soon.
Aggressor boy 1 (now named within the rescue "Fidget")
is slowly learning that humans are friends.
Aggressor boy 2 (Ancho)
All 3 boys (Ancho, Fidget and Nikolai) are very active on their wheels. 2 days ago, they didn't even know what one was!
All 3 are very timid and jumpy - there was very little if any "hand taming" done at the store.
To hand tame, you don't even need to start with handling, it helps to just hold your hand still in their cage and let them become acquainted with your scent and investigate your hand. You can offer them a treat, which they may or may not take at first. - but eventually they will and you've formed the first good association between your monster sized hand and them.
The pet store...
Denying Ludo and Nikolai veterinary care is a Cruelty Summary Offense
(m.1) Fine for summary offense.--In addition to any other penalty provided by law, a person convicted of a summary offense under this section shall pay a fine of not less than $50 nor more than $750 or to imprisonment for not more than 90 days, or both.
18 Pa.C.S. § 5511 Cruelty to animals
While Nikolai and Ludo were undeniably cruelly thrown away alive - the pet store owner for denying them veterinary care will likely only face a fine,the permanent forfeiture or surrender of Ludo and Nikolai to us,a possible reduction of the amount of wholesale "stock" that can be ordered and a few *inspections.* - After which business will return to normal. This seems to be their first official "offense."
18 Pa.C.S. § 5511
Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes Title 18 Crimes and Offense, raises the cruelty offense to a Misdemeanor Third Degree if the animal involved is a "Domestic Animal" (and Domestic Animal is defined in the code as: Any dog, cat, equine animal, bovine animal, sheep, goat or porcine animal.)
Many state laws reflect the view that animals sold in pet stores are essentially "commodities." In some cases the cost of veterinary care can exceed the commercial value of an animal.
Unbelievably, there stands another case on trial in Chattanooga City. Pet Store Manager Punished Hamster For Fighting By Dropping It Down Garbage Compactor While Alive, Former Employee Says
Particulars in this case are very much different from our situation, but this case further demonstrates the need for consistent pet store laws and protection for the animals under their care.
Dad had a hamster a few years ago,a black "Teddy Bear" hamster. He picked it up from the bin(yes,bin) it was in,& it promptly bit him. Hard. Drew blood. He knew this was the hamster for him,& he bought it. He calmed down & was a well behaved hamster,but he died less than a year later. Maybe he was old,no way of telling. Pet stores are businesses,& in a Capitalistic society,if you don't sell(or produce for the Owner),you die(or are layed off). Hamster or Human,no difference to the Owner. Make $$$ or Die. Depend upon it!!!!
Cali, believe me ;) I know it! We had an albino Siberian Dwarf girl who came into the rescue from a Petco pet store. They contacted us because despite dwarves usual social nature, Gretel hated her own kind and was extremely nippy, rendering her (to them) as "unsaleable" - Mama seems to have an *affection* for "feisty" animals. Gretel turned out ok, with steady personal care!
Little Ancho is absolutely adorable!! What a little face ;)
Good fur your purrants in helping out with the rescue!! What horrible humans some are. :~( I'm happy Ancho has such a good home now. :~)
oh, i have to agree with the stupid pet store manager... this ancho boy really looks like a bloodthirsty, super-aggressive beast...
*mol* in fact you do not want to hear what noises human made when she saw the pictures ;) and - i knew this would happen :(( - this was her comment: "look ishtar, other creatures do not stuff their noses into food to inhale." humans!!! they're always tricked by big ears and big round eyes...
i hope the other boys will find a home that's as good as gretel's, pie's and ancho's!!!
Oh my cats...we feel faint just reading about such horrible hamster abuse. How lucky those little fuzzies are to be in your crosshairs. "Ancho" is the cutest name ever! Keep fightin' for the fuzzies!!!
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