Hamster Care Information for Owners

Light brown and white hamster sitting on wooden surface closeup

It's critical to understand how to pick a hamster, what materials you'll need, and how to properly feed and care for your new pet if you're considering of obtaining a pet hamster for yourself or a child. Although hamsters are considered low-maintenance pets, they still need adequate care to be happy and healthy.

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Choosing a Pet Hamster

Hamsters are a common pet choice among both kids and adults. They are little rodents with an average lifespan of two years and do best when kept in isolation. There are several hues and breeds of hamsters, and each kind has its own unique characteristics.

  • These small hamsters are not as common as other kinds of hamsters. Many people often mistake them for dwarf hamsters but they are not true dwarfs. They only grow to be 4 inches long.
  • There are several varieties of dwarf hamsters, such as Roborovskis and Russians, and they're similar to Chinese hamsters, but much more commonly found in pet stores.
  • Syrian Hamsters: Syrian hamsters come in several color variations and go by different names, such as goldens, panda, and teddy bears. They are much larger than dwarf and Chinese hamsters and are the most commonly seen type of hamster.

Choose a Healthy Hamster

The health of every hamster in the pet shop varies. For young hamsters, the transition from a breeder or supplier to a store may be traumatic, and they frequently get sick as a result. Select a hamster that is active and doesn't appear to have moist fur or runny eyes. Ideally, the hamster will be eating or moving around the cage with both eyes open. Given how prevalent hamster illnesses are, it is definitely advisable to avoid purchasing any hamsters from a cage that appears to have a few sick animals in it.

Another thing to think about is selecting a hamster that is simple to train. Younger hamsters, who may have had positive experiences or have never interacted with people, will be simpler to teach and hand-tame than older hamsters.

Hamster Cages and Supplies

Both online and at pet stores, there are a variety of hamster cage options, but certain cages are unquestionably superior to others. Although some cages may be stylish, they aren't particularly useful and are quite difficult to keep clean (cages with colorful tubes are a good example of this). Fish tanks are also not a suitable choice for hamsters since they don't have enough ventilation. Given that cage wire spacing might affect a hamster's ability to escape, you may also need to take into account the fact that smaller hamster breeds have different cage requirements than the bigger Syrian kinds. Select a cage that will prevent your hamster from escaping, has adequate ventilation, is simple to clean, and has room for your hamster to run about and explore.

You must put soft, absorbent bedding, a water bottle, an exercise wheel, chew toys, a home, and a food dish inside the hamster cage. Wood, cardboard, plastic, and other objects that may be chewed may not last very long within the cage since hamsters prefer to gnaw on things and need to do so.

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Feeding Hamsters

The majority of people believe that a bag of hamster seed from the supermarket is the finest food for hamsters, but in order to be healthy and happy, they also require a range of proteins, fruits, and vegetables. Hamsters may choose what they wish to eat from seed combinations, therefore a balanced diet is not guaranteed.

But if you give your hamster a pelleted diet rather than a seed combination and add a range of other safe foods to it, you'll be giving it everything it needs to flourish. Offering greens on a daily basis is an excellent idea; parsley, kale, romaine, peas, and squash are all suitable choices. Your hamster's food should consist of 75% enriched pellets, 20% fruits, vegetables, and greens, and 5% treats.

It's also a good idea to provide hay in your hamster's environment to help with nesting and foraging. Most hamsters will also eat the immature seeds in the hay.

Hand-taming Hamsters

Hamsters can be trained to become quite lovable pets, but anybody who has ever been bitten by one can attest that aren't enjoyable. Young hamsters are usually simpler to hand-tame, but by being careful not to startle it, you may start training your hamster not to bite. Avoid rousing it and instead use a sweet surprise to convince it to crawl onto your palm on its own. Over time, doing this will help you win your hamster's trust and enable you to pet and hold your pet without risking getting bitten. Although hamsters are calm pets, they may bite if surprised or disturbed.

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Toys for Hamsters

To prevent boredom and weight gain, hamsters require stimulation and exercise. To keep their teeth healthy and clean, they also require chew toys. To properly care for your hamster's teeth, there are several chewable hamster toys available. A hamster may also run as much as they like on an exercise wheel. A hamster may be given special balls to run about in safety outside of its cage, and there are even adorable cottages and other climbable choices available to give your hamster plenty of exercise.

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Breeding Hamsters

The average hamster owner shouldn't engage in hamster breeding. It is best left to hamster breeders who are selectively breeding for particular traits and temperaments, although mistakes can sometimes occur. Many new hamster owners who weren't expecting it end up with a after buying it from a pet shop. A needs extra food and a peaceful nesting spot within the cage.

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CITATION

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