In the first 11 days of 2020, hamster-loving volunteers have already dealt with a total of six cases of abandoned hamsters.
In the most recent case, a hamster was found abandoned at Boon Keng after developing a tumour.
Abandoned hamster in Boon Keng
In a Facebook post on Jan. 11, Hamster Society Singapore shared that the small rodent, which they had named Gatsby, was first spotted in a large transparent container with its wheel and bedding at Blk 8 Upper Boon Keng Road.
However, when the rescuers arrived at Boon Keng, the container had disappeared from its previous position.
They later discovered the hamster was dumped into a nearby rubbish bin, along with the container and accessories.
It is uncertain who moved and discarded the hamster into the rubbish bin.
Hamster was dehydrated and had huge tumour
When rescuers successfully retrieved the hamster from the rubbish bin, they found it to be "weak, dehydrated and smelly".
Photos shared showed the feeble hamster lying prone and unmoving.
The hamster also had a huge tumour, almost half its size, on its belly.
Here are more photos of the poor critter.
The hamster was apparently so sick that "he can't even clean himself".
Hamster Society Singapore lamented how the owners chose to "heartlessly" abandon it instead of taking it to the vet responsibly.
Benign tumours, which do not spread, are common in hamsters and only a small percentage of them suffer from malignant tumours. The hamster's condition might not have deteriorated to this extent had it been brought to the vet in time.
"This case is especially disappointing. Given his cage and accessories, it seems like his owners actually KNEW about basic hamster care. But they not only DENIED IT MEDICAL ATTENTION, they also heartlessly discarded it when it got too much. This boy is so sick he can't even clean himself. The worse part? If they actually bothered to take it to the vet early enough, it could have been treated."
Passed away later that day
Hamster Society Singapore said that the hamster probably did not have long to live despite the medical help sought.
Its tumour had grown so big that the lump could not be removed safely, they added.
The rescuers intended to place the hamster under palliative care, where "he will be loved and cared for till the end", but Gatsby succumbed to its illness that day.
The organisation updated in the comment section at 11pm that Gatsby had passed away.
A photo they shared showed Gatsby cozy in a cardboard box, surrounded by flowers.
Six cases of abandoned hamsters reported in first 11 days of 2020
In their post, Hamster Society Singapore shared that they had dealt with six cases of abandoned hamsters, despite it being only 11 days into the year.
That is about one reported case every two days.
The organisation thus urged everyone not to get a hamster, or any other pet, if one is unable to commit.
"Please do your research and REALLY THINK about whether you can commit the daily care and expensive vet fees before you purchase or adopt a pet."
Hamster Society Singapore added that they expected more cases of abandoned hamsters as this was the Year of the Rat.
Here's the full post:Top photo from Hamster Society Singapore / FB