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RIP Sirius Black April 19, 2004

Filed under: Uncategorized — katy @ 8:22 pm

Our hamster, Sirius Black, died yesterday. He was a sweet little hamster who never bit anyone. Gracie loved him and is quite distraught. Sirius was an amazing escape artist. He never ceased to surprise us with his clever plans. Gracie’s aunt who is especially afraid of ‘rodents’ found him on her blow up mattress late one night. When under the dishwasher or behind the refrigerator, he liked to be coaxed out with a peanut. And there was the brief illness with the trip to vet after one of his escapes. Even the vet couldn’t get over how sweet he was. He had a cute little waddle as he ran across the room.


We bought Sirius after Christmas 2002. We had just moved back to New York and Gracie had written a letter to Santa in school. Here is the letter in its entirety:

December 17, 2002
Dear Santa,
There is one special gift I would like this year. It is a hamster. I want it because I’m board. I also want it I do not have a pet. Also I want it because I like small pets.

I deserve this gift because I’ve been nice to my brother. I should get it because they’re cute. I should get it because they’re nice. I should get it because I like them. If I get this gift I would be nice to every one.

Who could deny such a request? Not I. He was a big guy from the very beginning. He loved his peanuts and sunflower seeds and the occasional carrot. Unfortunately, Sirius was probably a bit long in the tooth before we ever brought him home. We cleaned his cage Sunday as we do every week. Looking back on it, he wasn’t as perky as usual. Who could have known?

After dinner, Gracie and I went to Frank’s Flower Shop. I gave Gracie the gift card Kevin’s mom had given me for Easter. It seemed kind of appropriate in the risen sense to use my Easter gift card to purchase a flower to plant over Sirius and while there we couldn’t pass up a beautiful stepping stone. We buried Sirius at dusk. We all said a few words and sang, “You are the sunshine of my life.”


Sirius Black
December 26, 2002-April 19, 2004


13 Responses to “RIP Sirius Black”

  1. Dava Says:

    A lovely tribute. Nothing is sadder than losing a pet, especially at Gracie’s age. It sounds like he had a very nice life. Perhaps you will come home from Maryland with a sheep?

  2. ann Says:

    Being a pet lover, I know how awful it is when they go. We have buried many pets over the years. Poor you – poor Gracie!!

    ps. Sirius looks more like a guinea pig than a hamster.

  3. jody Says:

    oh no. i am so sorry to hear about little sirius. you guys did such a sweet job of dealing with his death though. i’m sure it helped gracie to be able to say goodbye and to know that he’s closeby all the time.

  4. annie Says:

    Oh my gosh, I had tears in my eyes reading about poor Sirius. I’m sorry. What a beautiful ceremony for him though. I love the idea of a stepping stone and flowers to honor him.

    Give the kids an extra hug from me 🙂

  5. Heidi Says:

    Tears here too. What a lovely little service you held for Sirius! That will be a special memory for your family.

    The cat I have now (I’m almost 32, and he’s about 10) is the only pet I’ve had in my life and I so dread the day he leaves me.

  6. greta Says:

    Oh sweetie, I’m SO sorry for your loss. Extra hugs all around, especially for Gracie. This was beautifully written, a fitting tribute!

  7. Francesca Says:

    I’m really touched. Thanks for sharing.

  8. secret pal Says:

    sorry to hear about Sirius. i’m sure he was the most wonderful hamster. gracie and the rest of the fam are in my thoughts…

  9. Tina Says:

    That’s a tragic loss…He seems to have had a good life and loving owners. He was so cute too…you all have my sympathies.

  10. kimberly Says:

    My mother called me yesterday to tell me that our cat of 15 years had to be put to sleep. I can totally relate!!

  11. Linda Says:

    Oh HUUUUGS to you and Gracie – I know how you feel! Hang in there and know that paying a tribute and memorial to Sirius is not only wonderful, but a wonderful lesson to your children about loving for all of God’s creatures!!

    Have you ever read James Herriot’s books? I highly recommend them! May they help you during this difficult time!

  12. Christine Says:

    Hi! Just ramdomly came across your blog and this entry brought a tear to my eye! I have had (more) than my share of animal tragedies at my house, and it *never* gets easier! We have had many funerals in our garden (so many in fact, that I am afraid to put a shovel to the ground anymore!!!) My kids are teenagers now, but we still have an inventory of a chinchilla, two ferrets, 3 dogs, and 3 cats. Having a pet teaches a child empathy, for certain. The plant and stepping stone was such a lovely thought. I commend you for nuturing the love of small creatuers in your daugter! BTW: Your spring flig cardie turned out awesome!!

  13. godsend Says:

    Wow. I’ve been working on that sweater so hard, I haven’t gotten to see your posts. Sorry about your hamster.

    My first cat died when I was away at college. I was inconsolable for a long time. It took nearly ten years and a child later for me to be okay to get another.


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