Pregnant paws as hamster delivers
A BUNCRANA schoolgirl got more gifts than she
bargained for when the pet hamster she got for her
birthday delivered TWELVE babies the very next day.
Evelyne Sitoianu got pet 'Mita' for her eleventh
birthday to replace her beloved first hamster who
Evelyne and her parents Dana and Larry noticed the
cute pet was a little fat around the belly and were
told she might be pregnant. But the family from
Buncrana, Co Donegal, didn't expect the
gold-and-white rodent to become supermum to a dozen.
Evelyne Sitoianu (11) from Buncrana
pictured with her birthday present, pet hamster Mita,
who delivered 12 babies the next day.
The Sitoianus who are
originally from Bucharest in Romania, are now
keeping Mita well nourished so she has plenty of
milk to feed her big brood.
"It was very exciting. When we took her home Mita
got very busy and began building a nest with lots of
soft shavings in her cage," said animal lover
"We will let her care for her babies for four weeks
and then we will take them back to the pet shop in
Derry," she added. Hamsters are prolific breeders
and can become pregnant from as young as four weeks
It was several days before Evelyne realised the size
of the litter because the pups lie on top of one
another and Mita keeps them hidden from view.
Evelyne is also careful not to touch them for fear
their mother might reject them.
At just over a week old, the pups are only an inch
long. They are hairless and will not get their fur
and markings for several more days.
"They are very small and if any of them fall out of
the nest, Mita picks them up and puts them back in,"
beams Evelyne who also has a jack russell terrier
called Mitu. Meanwhile, restaurant worker Dana (35)
and carpenter Larry (36) are happy to let the
supermum hamster do the parenting.
"She is doing fine. We might keep one or two of them
but the rest will have to go back to the pet shop,"