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"Hello! My 10 year daughter (Ryan) just got her first male golden hamster and all the goodies for christmas from her 20 year old sister. His name is Chester. She was so happy and we loved the fact that Ryan was so involved in the caring and knowledge of what to do and what not to do. On New Years Eve, I was examining Chester and I realized that he had gained a lot of weight within a short time. I asked the girls if they were feeding him too much. Out of no where I decided to ask my daughter how she knew that she had gotten a male. She said that she asked for a male hamster at the pet store. I looked the sex details up on the internet and discovered that Chester was NOT a male hamster and that SHE was definitely pregnant. We had decided that night to return her to the store in the morning and trade her for another male hamster, since we knew nothing about hamsters or taking care of baby hamsters. Needless to say, it was TOO LATE! Overnight she had 14 pups. I quickly got on the internet to search for information on what to do. My daughter was not about to let us get rid of her hamster(Rosie) now that she had the babies. I was completely shocked when I saw them. They looked like little pink worms with feet. I can't explain my amazement. Now it has been 10 days since birth and I have to say that I am the one in the family that is most interactive and amused with Rosie, the hamster babies and their needs. I get excited to watch the growth of the babies daily because it is so fast. I have taken pictures daily and plan to put them in a photo album for my daughter to remember this experience because it is not going to happen again in our household. I am going to let her keep one of the babies and it will be another female. However, the sad part of the story is that we are down to 11 pups. We know that one suffocated the first day. Rosie threw it to the side, it turned blue and we pulled it out with tongs. It is now buried in our garden with a proper cross marking and neighborhood child funeral (which was quite cute). I did have to explain the cycle of hamster life and a little more than I was ready to explain with this experience to my 10 year old daughter. The other hamsters were naturally disposed of by the mother, we are guessing. This was again, very heartbreaking to my daughter. She has since gotten over the fact the she thought she was somehow guilty for their deaths because she looked at them through the cage and I have been preaching to her NOT to touch the babies or the mother will kill them if she smells your scent on them. I was kind of harsh. It is amazing to see how much the mother hamster, Rosie wants out of her cage, wants in her ball or to interact with me ONLY! It has become a morning routine with her and I before I leave for work. I worry that she wont settle back to trusting my daughter. This is why I have agreed to let her have the pick of the litter. Any suggestions on what type of cages we should use to separate the babies when the time comes would help. I really don't want to go out and buy anything, but I don't want more pregnant babies. Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed our New Years experience."
"Michelle & Ryan"

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