Monday, June 7, 2010

Fancy & Russian

photo of Dumbledore (the light grey one) and Twitch (the black one) by Rachel Salois

When Allyson brought home a pair of fancy Russian hamsters (that’s actually what they’re called) last week, I was able to reaffirm my belief that I have no soul when it comes to cute animals.

What Allyson sees as cute companions requiring nurturing love, I see as living cotton balls that provide poop and a weird odor to the corner of our living room. I know it sounds harsh, but it’s part of my DNA to not enjoy the company of animals. My grandmother, Judy, hated pets, and my mom repeats the mantra “last cat, last dog,” anytime Milo or Fuzby acts out or pleads for food after she has already sat down to read the paper.

It’s not that I would neglect an animal or cause it physical harm; I just don’t see their point. I understand how a fancy Russian hamster can be cute, but not cute enough for me to want to pay $40 to enjoy its cuteness from the comfort of my own home. In fact, at this stage of my life, I can’t think of anything cute enough for me to be willing to pick up its poop.

It’s definitely the poop most of all that gets me. I sometimes lose my appetite when I eat too close to the hamsters, because I get a whiff of the sawdust from the bottom of their cage and can’t think about anything but tiny poop pellets. I am now paranoid of hamster poop being on the chair or coffee table from when Allyson takes them out to play.

I know I’m in the minority here. Most people have fond memories of childhood pets and many of my friends dream about one day being able to buy a dog for their apartment. But to all of the animal lovers in the world: know that just because I can stand your pet, doesn’t mean I love it. And just because I don’t love to spend time with hamsters doesn’t mean I’m not a nice person. Mostly I don’t want to be spending time with your pet because I would rather be spending time with you!

And to Allyson: thanks for cleaning the hamster cage. You have no idea how much I love to not smell those guys.


Liz Crawford said...

My brother got a pet mouse a few months ago and I absolutely hate it as well. I think you described these "pets" perfectly. Even though I would never choose a pest as a pet, I approve of the gray one's name!

RJ said...


Rachel Salois said...

To Liz: I'm glad we agree on important issues like this. I'm sure it will help us be the most bad ass Current editors ever.

To RJ: With the tank and food and stuff..