7 Tips on Taking Care of Hamsters ...


7 Tips on Taking Care of Hamsters ...
7 Tips on Taking Care of Hamsters ...

I remember begging my mom for a hamster when I was a kid. My friend had to go out of town for Christmas, so I ended up watching her hamster too. I’m sure you know where this is going. Yep, mine was a girl and her hamster was a boy. Needless to say, shortly after my friend got back from vacation and picked up her hamster, my hamster had 13 babies. If you or family members are thinking about getting one of these fuzzy little critters, then the 7 tips on taking care of hamsters listed below might be useful.

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Buy the Cage before You Bring the Hamster Home

Buy the Cage before You Bring the Hamster Home Photo Credit: derkruemel

It’s always tempting to do some spontaneous buying, when it comes to animals. Well, at least it is for me. I’ve seen cute little hamsters in the store that I wanted to buy right then. Thankfully I usually talk myself out of it. I remember what it was like taking care of all those hamsters and that I don’t have anything set up at home for the little guy. Getting the cage or aquarium purchased and set up before you bring the hamster home will eliminate the need for something makeshift that the hamster might end up escaping from.


Don’t Forget the Wheel!

Don’t Forget the Wheel! Photo Credit: ShawnMichelle72

As with most rodents, hamsters are very active and need some way to use up this excess energy. Be sure to supply an appropriate wheel for your hamster. There are specific sizes for mice, hamsters, and rats, so be certain that you are getting the correct size. Different styles are available for the various types of habitats too. Buying a wheel manufactured for a certain style of cage usually ensures a better fit inside the cage.


Give Them Things to Chew on

Give Them Things to Chew on Photo Credit: zaferina

Besides the hard food pellets made for hamsters, there are these cool little wooden toys and sticks for them to chew on as well. Some of them are even flavored like oranges. Granted, they will chew on anything that ends up in their cage, but it’s not a good idea to toss in a block of wood leftover from the last construction project you finished. There is special wood for small animals that won’t upset their digestive tract and they aren’t very expensive at all.


Change the Bedding Often

Change the Bedding Often Photo Credit: Hamzie

For as small as hamsters are, they can sure make quite a big stink. I used to change my hamsters cage each weekend, when I only had one. Once the babies were born, I think I was cleaning it 2 or 3 times a week. The pine bedding sold in stores is very absorbent and didn’t seem to get smelly as quickly as the other types of bedding pellets. That was just my experience though! There is bedding made from aspen shavings, old newspapers, and wheat that is formed into pellets.


Try out Different Hamster Foods

Try out Different Hamster Foods Photo Credit: pyza*

Believe it or not, some hamsters are picky eaters. Feeding your hamster a diet of pellet food will usually ensure he gets the right amount of vitamins, minerals and nutrients necessary to be healthy. A few hamster foods consist of seeds and not all of these are ones every type of hamster likes. If your hamster is picky, then he’ll choose the seeds he wants and leave the rest. Not only is food wasted, but your little buddy isn’t getting all the nutrients he needs. You might stick to the pellets or see if there are some treats he likes that you can supplement his diet with.


Change the Water Regularly

Change the Water Regularly Photo Credit: pico*

I don’t know about you, but I prefer fresh water over 3-day old water. Hamster water bottles are small, so changing the water daily isn’t that big of a deal. Also, mold can quickly start growing in the inside of plastic water bottles if it goes unchanged for a long period of time. It’s also helpful to invest in a small brush for scrubbing out the inside of the water bottle every couple of days or so.


Play with Your Hamster

Play with Your Hamster Photo Credit: romap

The more you handle your hamster, the tamer he will become. The baby hamsters we raised were played with from the moment they opened their eyes. They would sit in any one’s lap for the longest time and were perfectly content to be picked up and cuddled. I wouldn’t recommend cuddling a newly purchased hamster, unless you are willing to risk loosing a chunk of skin. Those teeth are sharp!

These 7 tips on taking care of hamsters cover just the basics. Different breeds of hamsters exist, so it might be a good idea to read up on the type you have purchased or are thinking about getting. I’ve heard that some are more aggressive than others and the littlest ones have quite the attitude at times. Most pet stores will tell you that males fight with each other, which they do, so putting two in the same cage is asking for bloodshed. Do you currently have a hamster in your home? Are there any additional tips you’d like to offer for hamster care?

Top Photo Credit: ? shhexycorin ?

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Where Thoughts and Opinions Converge

Pine and Aspen shavings SHOULD NOT be used. The dust particles in them can cause many upper respiratory problems in your hamster and eventually kill you hammy

thanks for the avise ! i am 13 and have been asking if i can have a hamster from my parents for 3 years. im keeping up the hope

Im getting a Hamster tomorrow im just stuck because i wont get my cage till after i get my hamster and i dont know what to bring it home in Please Help

gah! i've had two hamsters so far, did all this, and they STILL died in the space of three months! HELP!

Cages are too small for hamsters how would you like to live in your bedroom for the rest of your life? Consider making a DIY bin cage or getting a 60 gallon aquarium

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