People aren’t always what they seem to be. Trying times often reveal peoples’ true colors. This is exactly what Daniel Veerman experienced recently. The 53-year-old lawyer had a meltdown when he was trying to find his missing hamster named Chester. By reputation, lawyers are known to be strict and always too busy for anything beyond their cases. However, Daniel’s daughter may have singlehandedly thawed that icy cold image by sharing their text exchanging during the ordeal.
According to his daughter, her dad is every bit the stoic lawyer people typically perceive. He’s conservative, Catholic and usually strict. But when it comes to animals and babies, “he has the biggest soft spot”.
The missing hamster wasn’t actually the lawyer’s pet, it was his daughter’s
Daniel’s daughter, Steph, is Chester’s real owner. However, the 19-year-old Sophomore at Emmanuel College in Boston couldn’t take her adorable pet with her so her dad ended up taking care of him. The lawyer said,
“At first, I wasn’t too keen on him. I grew up with German Shepherds. I’ve never had, you know, when I first got it, it was like a mouse. It wouldn’t be my first choice of pet. But then I got attached. And even more, because you’re taking care of it for your daughter.”
The lawyer’s tiny companion escaped while he was cleaning out his cage. When he realized what had happened, the hamster’s caretaker spiraled into full panic mode. “I had a meltdown,” Daniel said. “I was having a freaking heart attack.” He immediately let his daughter know what had happened. Luckily, his daughter took the news in stride and tried to calm down her distressed dad.
He sent her regular updates throughout the search and rescue operation for the lost critter
They never expected Chester to run away… Because according to Steph he’s a pretty chill critter. “He reminds me of almost a cat because he’s so laid back… Chester has never bit anyone and is very docile. [He] and my dad are best friends (especially because my dad is the person who feeds him since he’s taken over!).”
“It was a nightmare,” Daniel recalled. “I was calling him, screaming his name, thinking maybe he knows his name. I was looking with a high-powered flashlight.”
When calling out Chester’s name didn’t yield any results, the frantic father tapped into some more creative methods to find the hamster. “I couldn’t just sit there all day, I was going crazy,” he said. “So I set traps. I re-created his cage in my office, took his toys and treats all around. Put out water. I thought if I didn’t find him at least he wouldn’t die because he would have food.”
The panicked Daniel set up some pretty elaborate traps around in the hopes of finding Chester
Daniel pulled out all the stops when his initial efforts didn’t help him find Chester. He laid out familiar items on the floor to help the lost hamster find its way. There was a bowl full of hamster food, water and even a layer of flour dusted on the floor! All the while, the dutiful dad also sent updates and a constant apologetic stream of texts to his daughter.
Missing hamster Chester reappeared around nightfall
His efforts paid out after a few more hours. “Right after nightfall, I saw him run across the floor and said, ‘Thank god!'” Daniel said. “I came back and saw him standing on a book, cleaning himself, and I grabbed him.” We can only imagine the relief that Daniel must’ve felt when Chester reappeared!
This has got to be one of the biggest “Awww!”-inducing moments we’ve had so far. What can we say? We’re just suckers for happy endings, especially when it involves pets reuniting from their distressed owners.
His daughter gushed her appreciation for her dad after the ordeal. “I always knew he has a big heart and would do anything for me. This situation just proved it more!” Honestly, we kind of held our breath throughout this story. We’re so happy that Chester finally figured to reveal himself to his frantic caretaker.
Even Steph’s college has taken notice
— Emmanuel Alumni (@EmmanuelAlumni) November 28, 2019