Bought as a lockdown companion for an animal-loving teenager, Bobby’s family soon realised they could not give the Syrian hamster the time and care he deserved.
He had been sold at a pet store and, as Blue Cross often finds, the would-be owners were not given the right advice on the minimum cage size needed, as well as important information on care and enrichment.
Sarah Miller, Animal Welfare Assistant, said: “Bobby was bought by his previous family during lockdown last year for company for their teenager who was lonely while not going to school.
“Within a month of buying him, his owners realised they couldn’t care for him as the daughter had lost interest, and they contacted our centre to see whether we could help rehome him.”
With our Hertfordshire centre closed for a rebuild at the time, our team worked to find the young rodent a place in foster care while we searched for his new home.
We found a foster home for him with one of our team and, within a couple of days, Bobby was in our care.
“It was clear that Bobby hadn’t been handled at all. His previous owners mentioned that he only spent time outside his cage when his accommodation was being cleaned, when he was put in a hamster ball, which Blue Cross advise against as this can be extremely stressful for hamsters."
It was clear that Bobby hadn’t been handled at all.
“Because of the bad advice given at the pet store, his cage was also bare and far too small for him."
“In foster, he was moved to a bigger cage with lots of things to explore, and was introduced to toys, handling and time out of his accommodation.”
Playtime for Bobby included setting up obstacles and plenty of enrichment activities in an empty bathtub, which he loved. He soon realised that being picked up meant getting treats – banana chips were his favourite!
And after a couple of weeks, Bobby had been found the perfect new home with a spacious cage filled with plenty of toys and levels for him to explore.
Katrina Goodair, Animal Welfare Assistant, who fostered Bobby, said: “The new owners were absolutely lovely, so excited to get him, and worked hard to ensure he had the best set-up in his new home.”
His new family has since updated the team to tell them that Bobby has settled in brilliantly and continues to grow confidence and curiosity every day.