PROLAPSE IN A HAMSTER
A big bloody lump on the backside of a one-year-old female
hamster. Could it be the womb or the rectum that is coming out?
Gas anaesthesia to immobilise the hamster for a closer examination.
The rectum had come out of the anus and was about 3 cm long.
Black tissues indicated cells were necrotic.
She was the 13-year old boy's favourite hamster. She would not escape,
unlike the other hamsters. She would just sit on his lap as he
watched Manchester United and all football and basket ball games.
She was one year old and had given birth to 2 babies 2 months ago.
"The babies died with bloated stomach, " said his Owner. Now,
she has a lump at her backside which was tainted with blood.
"The lower part of the large intestine, called the rectum, had
everted out from the anus," Dr Melissa Chua said. "This could be
a result of difficult birth, parasitic infections of the gut or diarrhoea."
However, the pre-teen did not know what was the triggering factor.
"Could the lump be cut off?" he asked.
It was too late for surgery as the rectum had gone necrotic with the black
tissue indicating that the cells were dead. The hamster's eyes were
half closed, showing signs of it was very ill. Hamsters normally
have big bright eyes if they are healthy.
"Why didn't you come earlier?" Dr Chua wanted to say but did not
do so. The boy was already in tears.
In any case, how many owners would notice the anus of a hamster in the
case of a rectal prolapse? It would be a small ring of red
tissue. The hamster would be irritated and tried to pull the
intestine out and get rid of it. In this case, it managed to pull
out a long piece of the large intestine.
Now it was too late. The hamster could not be operated on unlike rectal
prolapse in the dog as she was too small and would die under
anaesthesia. The boy had to decide. To relieve his best companion of further
suffering. Euthanasia was the only option to prevent further
suffering and pain for the hamster.