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Fostering Daisy the Hamster

Staunton-Augusta Family YMCA members Tim and Sarah Morton thought they’d have Daisy for spring break.

So far, it’s been all spring.

And the Mortons’ two sons – Walter and John – couldn’t be happier with the living arrangement.

A Shorthair Syrian Hamster – often referred to as a Fancy Bear or Teddy Bear Hamster – Daisy is a class pet at Staunton Montessori School.

“Daisy stays at the school normally,” Sarah said. “We volunteered for spring break, which was the week school closed.”

So far, the kids are loving the hamster life.

“The boys take her out regularly for social time on their laps,” Sarah said. “They feed her the stem ends of carrots, cut into discs. She also has a hamster ball that can be locked from the inside, and she runs around the house in it. The hamster attends kindergarten class by Zoom along with Walter.”

There may be mixed reactions in the Morton home once quarantine restrictions are lifted, and Daisy is returned.

“Walter and John will certainly miss her,” Sarah said. “We parents, on the other hand, are on janitorial duty because Daisy needs housekeeping every other day. Parents at Staunton Montessori are expected to do a certain number of school service volunteer hours each year. Taking the class pet home counts as a few of those hours. So now maybe Tim and I are set until the boys hit middle school.”

But not if John has any say in the matter.

“Daisy is the class pet in Walter’s class,” Sarah said. “Now, of course, John is asking when we’ll be taking home his class’s pet rabbit.”

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