Pet Assassin

When I became a mother, I was prepared to face all kinds of nuttery: spit-up, vomit, excrement on the floor/walls/furniture…you know, the typical stuff.

A job I was completely unprepared for? Pet Assassin.

Not a coveted job, Pet Assassin.

When I got the call for the hit, I was nursing my mother after her bladder surgery, because my father cannot be trusted.

“Honey,” my husband hissed into the phone. “We have a situation.”

“I’m already in a situation, dork,” I said. “Just deal.”

“No, really. Uh, you know how it’s late start at school today?”


“Well Miss M. (the little one) took the hamster out to play with him and…um…both of his back legs aren’t working and his head is listing to one side?”

“Hold on,” I tell him. I Google it. Apparently, hamsters can have strokes. Who knew?

“I’m an hour away,” I remind him.

“No, you don’t get it. She’s freaking hysterical. I have to drop them at school and go to work in half an hour. She can’t come home to a dead hamster in the cage.”


I threaten my father with death if he neglects my mother, jump in the car and speed recklessly home.

Damned if that sucker still be alive.

Google: How to Humanely Kill a Hamster.

There is a startling amount of Internet information re: hamster slaughter. And nobody seems to agree on the subject.

After I wade through the angry PETA rants about how wrong it is to kill rodents, I weigh my options.

Take him to the vet?  I am so not paying 50 bucks for this.

Freeze him?  I don’t think I’d be able to use my freezer again after Iceman Rodent.

Place in a pillowcase and whack him violently against a wall?  What sadist recommended that?

Put  in a cooler of dry ice?  Ditto the death of the cooler after that.

Stuff in a glass container, duct tape him to car tailpipe, turn on ignition and carbon monoxide it to death?  WAY too complicated.

Poison?  Jesus!

I look at the clock and startle. The girls are due home from school. In. Fifteen. Minutes.

Terror-stricken, I grab a Ziploc baggie, dump the sleeping hammie in Ziploc, seal, and…

Crush the dude violently with a Le Crueset Dutch oven. Then I vomit all over the whole business.

My name is Dana. I am a Hamster Slayer. The shit we mommies have to do…

Hubs comes home that evening singing Psycho Killer by the Talking Heads, but it’s “Hamsta killer/dada dadada/Smack flat with a Le Crueset.”  He laughs hysterically.

I’m gonna need a bigger Dutch oven….

About the Writer
Dana Talusani is a former teacher and former personal chef; she gave up both careers for the glamorous life of wiping butts and digging out boogers. She writes and snarks at


Photo Credit

About Guest Writer

Would you like to be a guest writer at Aiming Low? We offer keys to the Cool Kids Club and empty promises of fame and fortune. Find out how to get your hands on all that here.


  1. Jane says:

    Oh how I love this story. Hi. I’m Jane. And I’m a goldfish killer. (And not the cracker kind.)

    It’s nice hanging with such great company!

  2. OH.MY.GOD.

    First, am I a Terrible Humanoid for laughing at this?
    Second, who knew The Google was expert even in This?
    Third, I am so not eating anything you make in the Dutch oven.

    Twitter Name:

  3. I say levy one AWESOME new Dutch oven out of your husband for your services and hope never to have to use it for such purposes again.

    One of my former roommates from college has had to kill rodents on a regular basis in her lab (for her research). She says the most humane way to do it is to grab the tail and crack the rodent in question like a whip to break the neck instantaneously. I could. not. imagine. doing that.

    Of course, she couldn’t handle it either, so she went for the alternative: grabbing the head with one hand and pulling the tail with the other for the same effect. Reasons I could not do what she does for a living …

  4. Your post makes me think that we moms should get a sash for all the badges we earn in the trenches of motherhood. I wonder what the Hamster Euthanasia one would look like. Would there be a way to capture the movement of the Dutch Oven as it swooped down upon the little guy?

    And I’m with BLW: count me out for any stews at your house for quite some time to come.

    Twitter Name:

  5. Katybeth says:

    You were under duress. I understand, you did what a mom has to do. BUT, I liked the stories were you get locked in the bathroom so much better. :-D

  6. Lisa says:

    OMG Dana, you never cease to crack me up. I’m a total wuss and would have either tried nursing it back to health or gone to the vets, I just don’t have your killer instinct!
    We did lose two hamsters a couple of years ago within a month of each other.
    Freakishly hot weather + south facing window + mother with newborn + forgetful five year old = severly dehydrated hamsters which frankly nearly mumified within hours of departing their mortal coil….. No more hamsters since that in our house!

  7. Jennifer says:

    OMG. I’m laughing inappropriately so hard right now. I wonder if it would have worked if you had just sealed him up in the bag? Like does that cut out all the air? Do you have one of those vacuum seal thingamigs?

  8. Arnebya says:

    This be the reason we ain’t be gotten no pets! Also, I’d have calmly walked into the nearest PetSmart (with him in a bag because YOU ARE SO NOT GETTING IN MY PURSE, NEAR DEAD RAT), sat his ass beside the cage of the closest animal family, and walked the hell back out. And look! I’m not even charging for that advice!

    Twitter Name:

  9. See this is why I have a cat. He can take care of that side of the business…
    Also: I hope the Dutch Oven isn’t hunted…

  10. Alexandra says:

    Was this not just about THE BEST post ever?

    We all have the devil inside, don’t we?

    Whatever it takes to get them to adulthood (the kids that is)

    So cool to have you here, superstar KitchWitch.


    Twitter Name:

  11. Alex@LateEnough says:

    This is another way cats prepared me for motherhood. I had to put a small critter out of its misery with a shovel to the head thanks to a bored and well-fed indoor/outdoor cat. I’m an assassin black belt for when my kids enter the hamster phase.

    Twitter Name:

  12. Kristin says:

    Can I hire you to take care of some fish?

  13. CK says:

    If I provide the Dutch Oven(s), are you available to take care of mice, or is it a hamster-only service? :)

  14. Kitch,

    As a vegetarian, this situation would certainly put me in an interesting dilemma. Not certain what I would do!

    Motherhood always stretches us in ways we never imagined.

    Congrats on your debut here!

    Twitter Name:

  15. Gibby says:

    Hey TKW!! This is great news to hear of this talent! Do you hire out??
    We have an annoying woodpecker problem…

    Twitter Name:

  16. Robin says:

    I’m sorry the dirty work fell to you. Bravo for doing what was best, even though it repulsed you to the core. We once had a guinea pig that lost the use of its legs because we weren’t giving it Vitamin C. We took it to the Vet; it got a shot; we got vitamins and did physical therapy; then we gave that cute little guy to someone else.

    I doubt it will make you feel better, but I once killed a whole tank of tropical fish on New Year’s Eve. The tank was my husband’s, and he was out at a gig (he is a musician). I wondered why the fish kept slamming into the sides of the tank, but what do I know about fish? Turns out, I had the heat up too high in the tank and cooked the poor things to their death. I am much better with dogs :)

  17. denise says:

    Oh you make me laugh. A lot. And I’m with Kristen–motherhood patches are in order. Fo Sho.

    Twitter Name:

  18. Jamie says:

    Oh good god, woman. That shit is NASTY!! You rock for sparing your children from grief, though

  19. Paula says:

    The things we do to spare our children. I to have had numerous toilet burials of my boy’s favorite goldfish, our old cat that was found behind the couch, etc… but I would have to draw the line at having to put down a rodent. I’m so sorry for your loss and I haven’t had a good laugh like this in a long time. Bring on the Super Sized Dutch Oven!!!

  20. Heather says:

    OMG!!! You just gave me reason number 527 why I will NEVER have a hamster for my boys! That and hermit crabs (they freak me the hell out!). You are amazing woman! I couldn’t have done that I don’t think. As I was reading this my mind was screaming put the thing in a ziploc and bury it in the back yard, dead or alive!!! Guess I’m a get rid of the evidence quick kind of girl… Hmmm… Never had to ponder my inner assassin before…. Thanks for the insanity laugh!!!


  1. [...] ever hang out there, and I get to frolic on their playground today! Pretty please come say hello here? If you need incentive, I’ll share a secret: I’m talking about my budding career as a [...]

Speak Your Mind