Hamsters may be wonderful smallest pets, but they can also be more challenging to care for than you would expect. Based on the breeds, they have a short lifetime of just 2 to 3 years and therefore can grow to be 4 to 7 inches long and hold 100 to 150 grams. They are the kind of pets mainly nocturnal, which means they slumber throughout the day and are active at nighttime. As a natural outcome, they are excellent companions for those who want to stay up late. It also implies that you should avoid keeping their cages in your room since they will surely keep you awake at night.
Hamsters are adorable and fuzzy, but they also need a great deal of attention and care. If you’d want to learn how to take care of a hamster but aren’t sure where to begin, our hamster care guide may assist you in your endeavor. Taking care of hamsters for beginners is something you should know when you bring your cuddly little buddy to its new house.
Pet Hamster Care Tips for Beginners
Select a Habitat for Your Hamster Pet
Your little pet needs a secure environment in which he may start exploring and feel at ease. Colors, tubes, attachments, and add-ons may all be used to make a one-of-a-kind environment with many tunnels, hiding spots, and burrowing initiatives. Link two or more habitats together with various tubes to make an almost limitless number of configurations. Please make sure that to purchase bedding which they can burrow in and get the appropriate-sized water bottle, such as a 6 oz chew-proof water bottle, for them.
Know the Best Location for Their Habitat
As with several tiny creatures, a carefree pet must be placed in a suitable environment. Ideally, your hamster’s habitat should be near the noises of your family, although not in the midst of things. Its comfort will come from the noises of your everyday interactions, but they will be freaked out by loud sounds or a bunch of commotion right outside their place. Furthermore, make sure that your pet’s habitat is distant from every ventilation or draughty window to guarantee that they are in a secure, temperature-controlled setting.
Think About Getting a Hide Box or Hamster House for them
It will be preferred if your hamster has a quiet place to slumber. Simplified components such as a small cardboard box, which will need to be changed regularly but is cost-effective, a plastic hide box, a wooden box, and other such things as a coconut shell or a small clay potted plant could be used as a house or hide box. If you cut a door for your hamster out of an upside-down food container, such as a cream tub, ensure that there were no sharper edges on the container.
Maintain the Hygiene of Your Hamster’s Cage by Cleaning It Regularly
When it comes to maintaining your hamster’s surroundings clean and comfortable, there is a middle ground between doing so and causing overwhelming stress by cleaning excessively. Generally speaking:
- Keep the toilet area clean regularly.
- Clean bedding on an as-needed basis or when it becomes dirty or damp.
- Weekly cleaning of their food bowl is recommended.
- Water should be changed regularly.
- Clean their whole habitat on a monthly or twice-weekly basis.
- Replace clean bedding weekly.
- If possible, use soap and warm water and clean out the entire habitat after it has been cleared of beddings, toys, or other belongings on a weekly or biweekly basis. This additional step will help to keep your hamster’s environment smelling fresh.
Make Sure They Have Enough Free Time Outside of Their Habitat
The provision of good playing outside their housing every week is an appropriate means to get your hamster exercising while also allowing you to spend much-needed bonding time together. Our recommendation is to set up a small guarded area with plenty of toys as well as some goodies so that they may explore and feel connected to their human family members. Remember to note that you should constantly keep an eye on your hamster while they are outside of their habitat.
Spend Some Quality Time With Your Hamster
Commitment, timely feeding, plenty of out-of-cage playing, and gentle conversation will all go a long way toward fostering a strong connection between you and your hamster. Therefore approach your companion gently and speak to them in a friendly tone while speaking with them. They will learn to identify your smell and sound, and they will start to regard you as a comforting presence.
Take Special Care of Your Pet
Since they are smaller than most other small creatures, hamsters and gerbils must be handled with both hands and held in the palms of their hands. Similar precautions should be used while putting them down, but exercise additional care so that they do not inadvertently escape or slide between your fingers. Given that these animals are typically nocturnal creatures, you should be mindful of the time of day you attempt to handle your hamster. You wouldn’t want someone taking you from the comfort of your sleep, would you?
Things You Must Know
The ideal age for your kid to have a hamster is when they are in primary school or beyond if you are considering obtaining one.
Sad to say, this is not the ideal little pet for youngsters under the age of five. Hamsters need a tremendous deal of attention, maybe snappy, and are not usually comfortable in little hands.
On the other hand, a hamster may be a wonderful, entertaining, educational pet for families if your kid is ready to handle it safely and assist in cleaning the cage. Whenever you go to the pet shop, you should rest assured of the following:
- Your Hamster’s Nature: How many hamsters you purchase varies on your preferences and, more significantly, on the kind of hamsters you want to have. Syrian hamsters must never be kept in pairs because they will engage in aggressive territorial fights over the territory once they grow and mature. Dwarf hamsters, both Russian and Chinese, are among the most common pet hamsters. Even though they may be somewhat territorial, they are best kept if they are littermates or a mother and offspring.
- Food and Water: Anyone can purchase packages of hamster mix, which will often include a mixture of fruits, veggies, beans, and grains, but it recommends that you also provide your hamster with tiny bits of fresh fruits and veggies, and also whole fruits and veggies. Aside from that, you’ll want to make sure your hamster has constant access to clean drinking water.
- Hamster Cage: Purchase a spacious cage to be used for your hamster while also being escape-proof and straightforward to maintain. The modular cages with tubes are interesting, they may be hard to clean and provide inadequate ventilation, and the tubes can be too small for other Syrian hamsters. You should never overlook a hamster’s capacity to get away since it can squeeze through very tiny places and nibble through plastic walls in a brief period of time.
- Bedding: Generally, wood-shavings-based bedding is of poor quality and unhealthy. Make sure to look for beddings produced from cellulose or plant-based paper fibers. Avoid scented bedding, including cat litter, corn cobs, and newspapers that contain chemicals that can cause respiratory trouble.
- Toys: An exercising wheel is a must-have to keep your hamster from becoming bored, and you can also buy a ball for your hamster to roam around in a room while under your monitoring.
Avoid Common Issues When Taking Care of Your Hamster
Hamsters are fabulous pets since they are very resilient. The genuine concern is that a hamster’s size leaves it immediately open to adverse effects if anything is not up to snuff. Ensure to keep a watch out for an unproductive hamster that is not eating and exhibiting symptoms such as diarrhea, hair loss, sneezing, or watery eyes. Be sure that these symptoms may be caused by infections or even pneumonia in some cases. If your hamster is cold or in danger of dehydration, talk to your veterinarian about what you should do.
Another problem that often arises is a hamster escaping. If your hamster manages to get out of its cage, keep an eye on it near the cage, and afterward try searching to other rooms. Even though they are nocturnal animals, it is crucial to keep an eye out at night and inspect underneath and behind furniture. It is best to leave the cage opened with lots of food so that the hamster may find its way back to you.