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Old 12-02-2018, 07:36 AM   #1
Join Date: Dec 2018
Posts: 1
Default Pet store - Hamster Tumour after 3 months

We bought our Syrian Hamster from a well known pet store on August 22nd, she is such a good little girl, such a sweet and friendly nature. We have grown very fond of her. Sadly this weekend we discovered she had a large lump on the side of her belly, the size of a large marble. Grew very quickly. She is alert, eating, toileting fine. She had stopped using her wheel for a couple of weeks but assumed she was slowing down for winter. Now having seen a vet we discover she had a tumour. The vet says it is likely on her adrenal gland or kidney but needs an ultrasound under sedation for a full prognosis - £230! If surgery is an option it would be £700-£900!! We have some pain relief drops for her for now.

The vet said they rarely see this but by more than a coincidence another Syrian Hamster of the same age came in 2 days ago, same problem bought from the same store. Looks like a genetic predisposition is likely.

I spoke to the customer service line and they could not give me any guidance on their ongoing responsibility for the pets they sell. Suggested I send a report from the vet so they could consider if they would reimburse any veterinary fees, offering no guarantees or guidance.

I called the store and spoke to the deputy manager (store manager was not in). He wasnít sure either but said that the Hamster would have been born with this problem (is this correct?) and they may have a responsibility due to this reason. Needs to speak to their area manager and vets for clarification. Is going to call me back tomorrow.

Has anyone else had any experience with hamsters purchased from a pet store developing a tumour after 15 weeks of purchase and did they receive any support from them?

Last edited by souffle; 12-06-2018 at 07:50 AM. Reason: remove store name
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Old 12-06-2018, 08:02 AM   #2
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Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Yorkshire, UK but my heart lies in Scotland!
Posts: 26,276
Default Re: Pet store - Hamster Tumour after 3 months

I'm sorry to hear of your hamster becoming ill.
Sadly this is not uncommon in hamsters bred for pet stores as they are born in rodent mills and the parents will not have had the chance to be kept for a while to establish if the lines have any health issues.
Unfortunately this type of tumour can be very aggressive and it is unlikely to be operable if it is in one of the major organs. Personally I think palliative care is best and keeping the hammy comfortable and spoiling her for what time she has left always watching to see when you feel that life has become a burden. The price quoted by your vets sounds way over the top and if you decide you want to go down that route it may be best to call around and see how much other vets would charge.
I always feel that if a hamster only has a short time they won't want to spend it trying to recover from an operation.
I took on a little hamster of a similar age from a pet store who developed a similar problem and sadly she did not live long after diagnosis. This was a kidney tumour. Her story is here : Sparkle's last chance
I hope you find an answer. Report it to the pet store / customer services as this is the only way it will get back to the suppliers in the rodent farms that they need to look at their lines.
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