Bud Hangs in There

Sometimes you find a work of art just lying around.
All you have to do is claim it and frame it.
I found this in the Bellingham HERALD, 1/7/90, A4

SALEM, Ore. (GNS) — Cats may not be the only critters with nine lives.

Take Bud the hamster.

Bud defied death last week, to the delight of his 6-year-old owner, when he survived a night in the family food freezer.

“I thought he would go up to heaven, and my mom would buy me a new one,” Bradley Snoddy of Salem said Friday.

Bradley and his mother, Mary Ann Snoddy, were certain Bud was spending his last days on a death bed of wood chips in the corner of the cage. Bud was 4-years-old, far beyond the average life expectancy for a hamster, which is 1-1/2 to 2 years.

Snoddy and her son were looking for a way to put Bud out of his misery. She called a Salem pet store and was advised to put the

sickly hamster in the freezer, where he would “fall asleep and not wake up.”

“I thought that was the best way to dispose of an animal without causing any suffering,” she said, describing how she bundled Bud up in cloth Wednesday night, putting him in a paper bag and placing him in the freezer.

“We had a very rough night. We were totally devastated. My son was in tears all night,” she recalled.

But Bud refused to lay down and die.

The rodent chewed his way out of the paper bag. The would-be death chamber became an arctic all-you-can-eat smorgasbord for Bud, who spent the night munching on frozen hash browns and a brick-hard loaf of bread.

The next morning, Snoddy went to dispose of Bud’s


“I opened the freezer door, and flop, onto the floor fell the hamster. He sat up on his hind legs, and looked at me like, ‘Why did you do this to me?’” she said.

Since then, Bud has had a new lease on life. In fact, he even has a new exercise wheel. “He’s just fine. Just the regular, normal hamster that we had before,” Snoddy said.

Salem veterinarian Stephanie Hazen said Snoddy got bum advice on how to euthanize a hamster.

“You can't kill animals putting them in a freezer. They live and live for days,” she said.

Because it is a slow, often painful death, she recommended instead that people take dying animals to the Humane Society to have them euthanized painlessly.