Registered: 1558572591 Posts: 1
Two years ago, I got a long-haired Syrian hamster as a service animal. She was to help me cope with my depression and anxiety. She worked wonders. June helped me more than I thought a little thing ever could. She passed away this Monday after almost two and a half years of life. She is the first pet I ever owned myself, that wasn't a "family pet." I live alone and she became not only my service animal but my roommate, my companion.
I'd be lying if I didn't say part of my grief is from guilt. Guilt that I'm so distraught over "just a hamster." Guilt for wondering if I should have seen signs sooner and taken her to the vet. Guilt of not knowing if she died peacefully or not (she died while I was at work, so I didn't find her until I came home that evening; it was devastating). No one in my life has strictly told me that I shouldn't be making such a big deal over it, but some people's responses insinuate it. I loved her so much, and it didn't matter what she was, be it a horse or a dog or a hamster, I would have loved her just the same. I don't know how to deal with losing her. She was an integral part of my life for over two years and to lose her so suddenly is heartbreaking. I don't know how to cope with the grief of losing someone so special and important to me.
Registered: 1557511919 Posts: 171
I'm so sorry for the loss of your pet. You have every right to grieve over your sweet little pet so please don't feel guilty about being distraught over her loss. You loved her. My daughter had pet rats over the years and when they died we both grieved.
Try not to be so hard on yourself, I know we always think we should have seen the signs when our pets are ill but sometimes they are not so obvious. It's not your fault. Please continue to come to the site and express your feelings, I have found it helpful. Again, I'm so sorry that your sweet girl is gone. It doesn't seem like it now, but in time it will get easier.
Registered: 1444060919 Posts: 639
June sounds like she was adorable. I can just picture her. My mother had hamsters when I was a teenager and she said she loved them and that each one had his or her own actual personality. I really relate to your words that June became your roommate and your companion. I also live alone. These thoughts that you are distraught over "just a hamster" isn't coming from you. Those are not your thoughts. Those are thoughts you think you should have because there are people who would actually think that. You had a living, live relationship with June who was a living, live hamster. June was your first pet. And this is your first loss. You have questioned whether you perhaps missed something and she should have been taken to a vet. Animals like people do die 'on the spot' with no warning. It's extremely common and it isn't rare at all. The fact June died without giving you any signals beforehand isn't an indication that she was neglected. I know finding her dead has been devastating for you. Anyone would be out of their mind. But I would like to say this. Having a beloved family member die in your presence isn't any better. You witness everything. It is not a soft and cuddly time. My cat Emerald died in my arms screaming at the top of her lungs and gasping for air. It all could have been heard a mile away. And then seconds later she was dead. I was holding the person who I had lived with for 19 years. A limp body. And I was alone in a dark apartment at 2 o'clock in the morning with no one to call. What is going to unfold for you is something called a process. A process is a series of gradual changes that are going to lead to you realizing and "coming to grips" with what has happened. Coming to grips doesn't mean you are going to feel all peachy keen. It's like coming to grips with say, if a boyfriend breaks up with you. You may not be happy but you will eventually come to terms with the fact that is has happened and is an actual fact. Right now June's death is not something you can come to terms with. But over time you will. You will not feel tortured forever. And by the way I am not saying this is the same as having a boy break up with you. Losing your life partner June is no where near losing a boyfriend.As you go through this process, you are going to feel emotions you have never felt before. Both in my mind and in your body. Your body is going to experience the loss as well. You will have aches and pains that were never there. You may become mentally disoriented and want to avoid others. Your behavior will not be what you are used to. Or it may be the same but exaggerated. When children first go to kindergarten there are so many things they experience during the process of going to school for the first time. Taking the bus, saying goodbye to Mom in the morning, being around other kids, being in a new building, having to listen to a new adult. Etc. etc. etc. These are things they "have to" experience as part of the process of becoming a kindergarten student. Your loss of June is going to entail things you are going to "have to" go through as part of losing your significant other. This might sound crazy but it helped me on some level with my own pet loss. I read some articles about losing a husband and losing a human child. Because all of my pets have been that close to me. Another thing I would suggest is using free pet loss hotlines. You can call as often as you want and you don't have to limit yourself to calling just one. You can call several a day if needed. And also regular hotlines. If you call regular hotlines and don't want to say you lost your hamster because you don't want to feel misunderstood, just say you lost your roommate and companion. This page here has a list of hotlines. If you aren't in the US, there are likely pet loss hotlines where you are. I am so sorry you have had to meet with this fate. Fate is just that. We don't bring it on. When someone we love dies, we think they are suffering to the same degree we are. But there is no proof of that. If you need to talk more, please let me know. Big hugs, Stephanie No one in my life has strictly told me that I shouldn't be making such a big deal over it, but some people's responses insinuate it. I loved her so much, and it didn't matter what she was, be it a horse or a dog or a hamster, I would have loved her just the same. I don't know how to deal with losing her. She was an integral part of my life for over two years and to lose her so suddenly is heartbreaking. I don't know how to cope with the grief of losing someone so special and important to me.