A very memorable case from years ago was that of a hamster that presented for just not doing right. In vet lingo we use the acronym ADR (ain’t doing right) and upon exam the hamster was a little thin but distended in the belly, not as active and energetic. We initally tried some medications but this didn’t help and at the recheck visit, the hamster was much thinner and it’s belly was bigger. Radiographs (X-rays) revealed a mass affect in the abdomen that appeared to be the reproductive tract. Based on the rest of exam and diagnostics it appeared to be a possible pyometra and the recommendation had to be a spay surgery which is risky enough in a larger pet, but in a hamster it has the additional challenges of being such a small pet. The owners opted to go forward and we scheduled surgery for the next day. The next morning, prior to surgery, I called the owner to give an update on the pet’s status and the plan and the owner revealed to me the importanced of this hamster. It belonged to their daughter who was diagnosed with epilepsy and this hamster was given to her at the time of diagnosis. It was a source of emotional support for the daugher and family. After this, I felt more pressure than normal to do my best for this family. We proceeded with the surgery and the hamster remained stable under anesthesia. The uterus took up most of the abdomen and was filled with white fluid. I was relieved to remove the entire uterus without it opening up and potentially releasing bacteria throughout the abdomen. Once the ovaries and uterus were out, I flushed the area liberally, sutured her closed and we woke her up. The hamster was a trooper and did amazingly well. Two days later it was able to go home and continued to thrive. The recheck visit was such a great visit in that the hamster was doing so well at home and had recovered. It is amazing to think how much impact this tiny little critter had on so many people. These are the cases that make it all worthwhile.