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Everything posted by Tsukino_Rei

  1. Hamsters are surprisingly interactive. There's one game in particular that every young mammal I've met, from hamsters, to kittens, puppies and humans will play. They all love to run up to my feet, tag them, play with them, and run away again. Then come back, tag, play, and run away again. For a hamster that means rolling up to you in their ball, bumping into your feet, being picked up and put down again with a gleeful sound effect, (such as wheeeee!) and then rolling away and coming back to do it again. It's amazing how they react to tone of voice. If I clap my hands and say 'wheee, wanna play! Is it play time?' in a silly voice I've seen some hamsters literally dance in place in front of their door, or get so excited they're not sure what to do with themselves, like a puppy dancing back and forth. I must admit though, I've never trained a hamster to fetch, and they can't keep up with me if I go for a jog.
  2. I separate out the bits of beddings and hand it to him/her. They just stuff as much as they can in their cheeks then toddle off to unstuff their cheeks and arrange their bed how they like it. I put a bit of extra bedding in the cage for them to find and add to their bed later. My hamsters have really enjoyed this ritual as it satisfies part of their foraging instinct. I can often tell when they fancy more bedding as they snuffle around looking for it when they sit with me. I think that different hamsters have different preferences, if your hammy was happy (and it sounds like your hammy was happy) then you did the right thing! I had a bad experience with a bag of store bought scented shavings, and have been scared to use it ever since. But that's just me.
  3. Okeedoke. To shell or not to shell, that is the question. The answer is I give both shelled nuts and seeds, and unshelled nuts and seeds. A good reason for giving some unshelled (I have a bag of pre-shelled seeds) would be to encourage the hamster to eat more of them with less effort. Another good reason is to keep the cage tidier/free of an excess of shells. But it is also a good idea to provide some food that he/she has to work for, both because it's fun for them and because it's good for their teeth to have more grinding to do. Hamster teeth are constantly growing, and when they don't have enough to gnaw on or if there is problem with their teeth they can grow until they can't close their mouths and even grow painfully through the roof of their mouth. I hide peanuts in their shells in his hay throughout the cage, his food mix includes some sunflower seeds in their shells, and every now and then I like to give my hamster a walnut. They'll spend a couple of days working on it, then I crack it a bit for them and they can do the rest. A hamsters teeth is not strong enough to get into a walnut on their own, but some of them sure will try. >.< Although I did have one little girl, Maggie, figure out that if she just left it alone I'd open it for her. Then she started bringing her peanuts to me to open as well. Lazy cow. So I guess it does also depend on personality. But most of my hamsters have made a game of getting into the nuts themselves. Of course, when a hamster gets older they can need more help with things like that. But until then it's good for their mental and physical health to keep doing some things for themselves. Another good activity to give a hamster to do is make their own bed.
  4. Argh, I just accidentally deleted a really long post with the back button on my mouse! I need to go restore my chi, do some chores, and be back in the evening to try again!
  5. Thank you guys. I appreciate your support! And I bet Rover eats up all that play time, Fawzo. I've had six hamsters over the years, most of them female. My current little guy is the one that's teaching me more about hamster old age than any other hamster I've had. He's three and half years old! For a species that normally lives to the ripe old age of two he's incredible. His energy is still good, now that I give him the cod-liver oil, but if you look at his face really closely you can see little wrinkles under his fur. It's so hard knowing his days are numbered. Especially since he was super hyper and loved to just explore all over the place when he was young, and then just as I had my miscarriage he suddenly became very cuddly and began to cuddle against my arm and let me stroke him while I watch TV throughout my sleepless nights. Anytime he heard me enter the room he just came out to his door and waited expectantly. He has been the best, most supportive, fuzzy companion a girl could hope for.
  6. I suppose as in sex, so in spirituality. Questions of size, length of time, degree or frequency, and measures of intent or intensity are all eclipsed by the question of an intimacy born of trust and love.
  7. There's nothing quite like kitty glee! The empty bathtub has become his personal slip and slide, and I know that somewhere in our apartment there is a box of styrofoam bubbles because every now and then he shows up with a new one and he beats it around until it's pulverized, then he shows up with another one!
  8. (Always check with a vet asap if your hamster is unwell. Illnesses progress very quickly in small animals. But if the diagnosis is creeping old age then try some of the tips below.) 1. If possible, use a single level cage as climbing can become more difficult and tiring as they get older. Otherwise, make sure all the important things are on the bottom level of the cage. ie, water bottle, litter box, house, and food dish. 2. If your hamsters fur looks a bit dull, or he is a bit low on energy (aside from checking with your vet) try adding more nuts and seeds to the diet. Sunflower seeds are my hamsters favourite. The added natural oils in their diet seems to brighten them up. If this doesn't work as well as you'd like, or you notice some fur thinning try a little bit of dried bread with a drop or two of cod-liver oil. 3. Extra cuddles! This is the time when hamsters really begin to appreciate sharing their owners body warmth, maybe sitting on the sofa with you while you watch TV. Rubbing along the back and around the joints in slow circular motions can lull my hamster for up to an hour, sometimes more. This helps with the stiffness that the elderly are prone to, and so helps our furry friends to get around their cages with a bit more ease. 4. Daily Health Checks! Cuddle time can also be used to give your hamster a quick health check. Check their teeth to see that they are not becoming overgrown. Some hamsters have difficult chewing in their old age. You or your vet can manually trim the teeth when this happens. Fortunately I've not faced that issue yet! Also check eye brightness, and check the bottom and urinary area for any signs of infection. Generally, if the hamster has bright eyes, is curious, and is eating there should be no cause for concern. 5. Cage checks. Things to watch out for when you are cleaning out the cage are; is the litterbox filling more quickly, is the water bottle emptying more quickly (these can be signed of diabetes), is his dry food/nuts not being eaten? (This can be a sign of a tooth problem, in which case check his teeth) 6. Alternative food. If your hamster is unable to manage is normal food mix, because chewing is too much effort or because of a problem with his teeth, alternatives include; Oatmeal, or a variety of baby foods. At this point gently warming the food will most likely be appreciated. 7. If your elderly hamster is normally very relaxed with you, then starts acting a bit frantic like he's looking for something, I suggest giving him a little break in his cage. I learned the hard way that my little boys bladder control just isn't what it used to be. =o) -. incidentally, at any age this is often sign that a foraging instinct has kicked in. Check the cage to see if he/she has run low on water, or food, check the litter box to see if it's been filled up already, and finally offer your hammie some clean bedding to pouch and carry home. Odds are high that he or she is looking for one of those things. 8. When it's time, let the hamster go peacefully. When you take your hamster to the vet for the last time you will be asked to sign a form giving permission for the hamster to be put to sleep. It's not very expensive. Most vets offer special lower rates for small animals. First the hamster will be given an anaesthetic. Then a lethal injection. This is normally done in another room. The most recent hammie that I had to have put down was a sweet girl named Kaylee. She had organ failure. The vet had said she might have a couple of weeks before her final appointment, but it progressed faster than expected, as these things often do with small animals. She'd already had two months of steady appointments. It started with a sniffle, progressed to a flu. This progressed to an infection. The bad luck was that this particular infection was a strain which shared a very similar protein to her own nervous system. So the anti-biotic to treat the illness also damaged her nervous system. This is a known condition in hamsters. The net result was partial paralysis in her hind legs, followed by kidney failure, followed by total organ failure. Through all this there as no sign that she was in pain, and she still enjoyed time out and cuddles, so the vet didn't recommend lethal injection yet, but expected it would be some time within the next two weeks. Sadly over the weekend she took a turn for the worst. I spent two nights sitting with her, moved her cage into the bedroom so I could watch her while I was laying down. Heated up my microwaveable bean bags and set them around the corner of the cage where she slept. I practically had her on life support. When she was thirsty I had to hold her up and hold the bottle for her because she couldn't lift herself to reach the cage. She needed help to get into her litter box and back out again. I had to hold the oatmeal up to her mouth to help her eat. I couldn't bring myself to stop doing these things for her because I didn't want her to suffer. When I was finally able to get her to the vet on Monday morning she didn't even get as far as the lethal injection. The anaesthetic overwhelmed her. I tell that story to try to convey to you that, while it's a difficult and horrible thing to have to do, putting your pet to sleep when it is time and is recommended by your vet is an act of love.
  9. Thank you for the designs! I made an uber scratching post out of carpet rolls I rescued from a local carpet store. The manager was happy to give them to me, and even gave me a scrap of carpet that was going in their bin. I cut the carpet roll into three pieces. Two about the height of a door frame, and one about knee high. I wrapped them in two different types of string, and some slender blue rope. I also cut the legs off of two old pairs of trousers. One tweed, and one jean. And I cut up an old wicker shopping bag. I used all of these to vary the surface of the tubes. Next I obtained two pieces of thin scrap ply wood from the local DIY shop. These I covered in the scrap carpet. One I put on the bottom as the base, the other I used as a shelf. I bought some simple metal shelf supports, taped them to the poles, and attached them to the base, again using tape. I used more scrap wood, narrow bars, with tape and string, to create a frame, to stabilize the poles and create a place for the shelf to rest on. I glued on the shelf. Included on the frame was a bar stretching between the two tall poles, from that I dangled one of those multi-layered toy/laundry nets that are designed to hang in a closet and has lots of compartments. I trimmed off all but the top two compartments and cut a hole between them to make them one net tube. I attached a dangling toy to the inside, and put crinkly paper in the base. Also dangling from one pole is a squeeky mouse toy, and from the other is a shoelace with a bell. Happy Kitty. =o)
  10. I see your point, and meant no offence. I drew the comparison only for the purpose of illustrating that synaptic variances can be expressed through a form of cognitive awareness , which I find quite remarkable.
  11. http://en.wikipedia....entity_disorder There is a condition that can occur in which the brain incorrectly wires to parts of the bodies, usually limbs and most commonly the white leg of white, middle aged, males. This incorrect wiring translates to the individual suffering this as a strong sense that the limb is not truly part of them and should not be there. They know that their brain is telling them that their body is not right and that their body will not feel right until this limb is gone. http://www.biid.org/ Remarkably, these individuals know very clearly EXACTLY how their brain has patterned their body and what alterations need to be made to match their bodies to that pattern in order to achieve that sense of wholeness and rightness. Now, given this, I would point out that there are many many ways in which an individuals biological gender can be medically in question regardless of their outward physical appearance. It may be as difficult to see as an extra chromosome, or additional male or female organs that have grown inside an individual which only come to light when a doctor has reason to go exploring internally. Rarely it can be in the form of being born with additional visible organs which these days parents will often choose to have operated for removal asap. It seems apparent to me that these individuals brains would pattern accordingly and that these individuals might very probably gain a very strong sense that they are not as they should be and will not feel whole or right within themselves until their bodies do match what their brains have patterned. These people would know exactly what gender alterations would bring them to the point where their brains will allow them to feel comfortable within their own bodies. Growing up within religion I was always taught that God made me exactly as I should be and that I must see myself as beautiful because of Him. But, the reality of procreation is that a lot can go wrong. Human procreation is extremely hit and miss. At least 1 in 4 pregnancies end in early miscarriage due to genetic problems. Doctors now believe that miscarriages are much more common than that, but are thought to just be heavy or late periods. Pregnant women are traditionally discouraged from telling their families until after the heart has developed and a healthy heartbeat is found. In many cases the heart just doesn't grow. Once the second trimester is reached, and a healthy developing heart is found, the chances of miscarriage drop much lower. But there is still a very long list of genetic conditions which can cause a late miscarriage and which doctors watch for the signs of. There are some genetic conditions which may not cause miscarriage, but which doctors can also watch for, such as down syndrome. Other genetic conditions include colour blindness, the ability to see additional colours, various forms of dyslexia, autism spectrum disorder, all prove even further that minor differences in our dna, or in the way our bodies translate those teeny instruction manuals, can create amazing differences in our development as human beings. As many genetic errors that can occur by simple accident, so very many can also occur because of exposure to environmental toxins, or lack of diversity within a population, hence why inbreeding is really unhealthy. Given all this it seems unjustifiable to look upon another human being that feels a wrongness at their apparent gender and tell them that they're wrong to feel this way. What decides what a person was meant to be? Is it possible to recognise that the biological process of reproduction is extremely fallible without pointing a finger at God and accusing Him of making mistakes?
  12. Thinking about Gnosis through Agnosis

  13. Gnosis through Agnosis

  14. It's amazing what can still be found, isn't it? That's why reading the Bible exegetically had to totally change my theology!
  15. http://reluctant-mes...nation-pope.htm The early Christian Church believed in reincarnation up until an Emperor decreed against it. Links to further research available here: http://reluctant-messenger.com/origen.html
  16. But, sects jokes! You're welcome. Discussions regarding sects and divisions always put me in mind of the Prayer in Gethsemane; the part where Jesus prays for Unity. Also the part in Corinthians where Paul says don't say you follow so and so. Even all the way back then it seems there were people grouping up under the teachings of particular men rather than tending to their own philosophical and spiritual development.
  17. All I really wanted was a cheap excuse for a 'sects' pun.
  18. *bursts into song* Let's talk about sects baby! Let's talk about you and me Let's talk about all the good things And the bad things that may be Let's talk about sects!
  19. Pete's right. I'm friends with some Liberal Jews and even they view Messianic Judaism as strictly a branch of Christianity, quite adamantly. The idea of Messianic Judaism as a branch of Judaism is actually quite anti-semetic to them, in no small part because these Christians have a tendency to waltz into Synagogues and claim that they have True Judaism and all these other Jews have been blinded by Satan.
  20. "Sects, sects, sects. Is that all you monks ever think about?"

    1. Rev-James


      I just now seen this. Good one ;^)

  21. Give me some of that old-time Religion! . . . HAIL ZEUS!

  22. Give me some of that old-time Religion! . . . HAIL ZEUS!

  23. simple, in Judaism that passage is understood differently than it is in Fundamentalist Christianity. Quoting passages will not alter the fact that the Jewish interpretation and understanding of the passages holds no relation to the Fundamentalist Christian or Islamic interpretation of the passages. Hell as a place of eternal torment, as defined by Fundamentalist Christianity, is against God's law, the Law of Jubilee actually. To allow any being to experience eternal torment would require God to sin against Himself.