Day 8 - December 1
Eight days old—babies drinking milk from their mother.
I hear some loud squeaking, so I peek in at the babies to see
what is happening. One of the babies is trying to find milk from Pikachu in the
wrong place, Pikachu's chin! I know she is a female since she has two rows on
dots on her tummy. Pikachu moves around a little, and the baby finds the milk.
I give Pikachu a piece of apple, which she enjoys eating immediately. Then she
puts the apple aside and goes back to sleep. One of the babies moves over to the
apple and tries to bite it a few times. Since he is biting on the apple peel,
his teeth aren't strong enough, so he gives up and heads back for some more of
his mother's milk.
I think Pikachu knows that the babies will soon be eating the
seeds. She frantically hoards food from both food dishes and looks at me for more.
I put three big scoops of food in a big container and set it in the cage. She
happily sits in the container and hoards more food to stash in one of the corners
of her nest . She is getting a huge stockpile ready for when the babies are able
to eat solid foods.
I find out from a book that baby hamsters are called kits, just
like foxes. [Note: Later, I read in other books that they are called
pups.] I also read that a normal litter size is 6 to
8, but as many as 14, or more,
may be born, but that is rare. So, I guess our litter of 13 is fairly large.
So far, all the babies are still quite healthy, which is very lucky.
The babies are really squeaking a lot more and loudly too. I can
never tell which baby is making the noise, even when I'm watching. Sometimes,
when the squeaking is frantic, I think it's probably the baby who is squirming
around a lot, looking for milk.