Sunday, February 1, 2009


Today began as a good day. The sun was out, the temperature was 60 unbelievable degrees, and everyone was seemingly getting along.

Late in the afternoon, our neighbor Lisa stopped by with her two kids, Little I and Baby B. Little I is two, and thinks that the sun rises and sets on Josie, so after a few minutes we all went upstairs so Little I could see Josie and play with Luke, Patrick's hamster.

Thank GOD Josie heard us talking downstairs and had gone to get Luke out, because she was able to hide Luke quickly back in the cage when we got up there. Luke was dead, in a very strange position, all stretched out like he was jumping, rather than how I've usually found hamsters, curled up in a ball. It was scary, and no way should any little kid see that.

While Little I played happily with some toys, and Lisa and I talked, in the back of my mind I was trying to figure out what on earth happened. Could his teeth have grown too long? He wasn't old, by any means, and he looked so strange... also, I was *not* looking forward to telling Patrick, who was playing in the attic with Ryan, his weekends-and-holidays-with-his-dad friend from up the street. I was glad to hear that they seemed to be playing fairly well together; since we spoke to Ryan's dad about a month ago regarding his behavior here (not listening, being rude, occasionally making Joshua cry) things have been a lot better. At least that was going well, and I decided to wait until after Ryan left to talk to Patrick.

Big mistake.

Imagine my shock, horror, and disgust upon finding out that the reason Luke looked so strange in his cage was because he didn't die naturally. When we all sat down on the floor in Patrick's room to talk about what happened, I first asked whether he was the one who had taken Luke's metal wheel out, because I was trying to figure out when the last time anyone had seen him alive was. Patrick's words were, 'I tried to tell Ryan to make different choices.'


'What choices was he making?' we asked.
'He was throwing Luke around my room. I tried to get him to stop, and then he finally did.'

Ryan killed Luke. On purpose. By throwing him around like a ball. Ryan is eight years old. He knows better. Oh, my God. Poor little Luke, who always just sat in your hand and looked around, never bit anyone, treated like that. I am sick over this, just sick.

DH and I turned on our heels and practically ran up to Ryan's house, but he and his father had already left to go to a Superbowl party. I hope they enjoys that party, because when they get home, Ryan's father is going to get an earful, and Ryan is going to be informed that he never to come to this house again.

I know that children do things to animals sometimes, and it doesn't necessarily reflect who they're going to be when they grow up, but it does mean that he can't be trusted around our animals ever again. It also says a lot about what's going on over at his house(s). I don't think there's abuse in his home(s), but I do think that he feels powerless and angry, and wants to take it out on something. He needs some help. I do not want Patrick witnessing anything like this again, and we all had a talk about the importance of getting us if something is going on that you can't control, like someone or something being hurt.

Patrick seems OK at the moment. I think DH and I are more upset than he is, really. Not only did something happen right under our noses, but it's one of our neighbor's kids who did it, and it indicates a serious problem that we now have to talk to his father about. I don't know how his dad is going to react, since no one wants to hear that their kid abuses animals, but he was appropriately upset the last time we had to talk to him about Ryan's behavior, so hopefully he will be this time as well and not freak out on us, or say that Patrick's lying, or some such thing.

Crapity crap crap crap.

Poor little Luke. I'm sorry I wasn't there to protect you. You were loved, and we'll miss you.


LoriD said...

OMG OMG OMG. That is just sickening. I can't believe a 8-year-old would do that. You're right that he needs help. I hope he gets it. In the meantime, I would definitely keep him away from Patrick.

Cherish said...

That's sick. I dont even know what to say

AndreAnna said...

Holy crap on a swizzle stick!

I don't even know how I would calmly handle that situation.

Poor Luke. Poor Patrick. Poor you.

Let us know how it goes.

Susiewearsthepants said...

That is very disturbing. I hope his dad will listen to what you have to say. Obviously something is very wrong.

d e v a n said...


Anonymous said...

I second what Devan said. That is un-freaking believable. That kid would never set foot in my house again. EVER. I am so sorry.

Marie Green said...

Wow, I don't even know what to say. I feel bad for the kid too, because he's obviously had a very... different? difficult? unsettling? SOMETHING- childhood. I cannot imagine what is going on with him that he would conceive of the idea of harming an animal. That's just.... awful! For the poor little hamster too, OBV.

Not Your Aunt Bea said...

I am so sorry about Luke. That is very disturbing. Even if he is having trouble at home, that does not excuse his behavior and it makes it more obvious that something is going on with him. There are some issues there that need to be addressed and quickly. I hope Ryan's dad does something for his son. Poor Patrick and Josie for finding him.

Kristi said...

OMFG. I can't believe that. An 8 year old? I wouldn't even know how to handle that.

Patrick saying " I tried to tell Ryan to make different choices" just kills me. How awful that he had to see that.

Kristin.... said...

Oh no. Poor Patrick. Poor you. And really, poor Ryan that he didn't know enough not to do that. Oh that's just awful.
Have you spoken to the father yet?

Which Box said...

Crap indeed. Just catching up. How awful.

Stimey said...

Oh, I am so horrified for you and Patrick and poor little Luke. This is such a horrible story all around. I feel so bad that Patrick had to watch that. I hope that your not letting this kid come back to your house makes an impression on him. I kind of want to cry now. I'm so sorry this happened to you guys.