Dwarf hamsters make the cutest pets – but if you wish to own one, you need to be well versed with dwarf hamster care. They are basically not difficult in maintenance. In fact, it’s relatively easy to look after them. The tiny pets are sociable, super adorable, and have never been a pain in the ass.
However, their life span is usually up to 3 years only. So if you are one of those people who has difficulty cope up with separation, you might want to think carefully before adopting them. Although, in the normal days of Dwarf hamster, all they need is proper shelter, food, and water, plus an additional outlet where they can exercise.
Dwarf hamster can be divided into three types – the Roborovski hamsters and Russian hamsters, with the latter can be further categorized into Campbell’s hamsters and Winter White dwarf hamsters. Apart from them, Chinese dwarf hamsters were usually mistaken as a dwarf when in fact they technically can’t be characterized as one. Chinese hamsters are smaller in size and have a similar appearance.
- Are Dwarf hamsters easy to raise?
- Pet-savvy tips for the new owners
- One cage for each hamster is preferable
- Talk to a veterinarian before breeding your hamster
- Provide your dwarf hamsters with food that are rich in nutritious value
- Vitamin drops for hamsters isn’t always necessary
- If you notice your hamster continuously has a wet tail, you need to get them checked by a vet
- Perfect Housing for the Little Friend
- How to trim your hamster nails with caution
- Keeping baby hamsters at home
Are Dwarf hamsters easy to raise?
Caring for dwarf hamsters is quite easy. When compared to other popular pets like dogs or cats, they take up little space and are less noisy. These rodents are also inexpensive and will cost you $15- $20 only. There are several other benefits of owning this tiny pet over other conventional animals.
If you got a small space where you can’t keep bigger animals but still wish to be a pet owner, these hamsters are the perfect pick for you. But don’t get fooled by their size, dwarf hamsters are extremely energetic and fun loving. You will love playing with ‘em! Also, you don’t have to worry about their cleanliness as hamsters are naturally clean animals. You can find them grooming and sprucing themselves a lot.
This grooming is usually adequate enough to keep your hamsters feeling, looking and smelling clean. However, make sure not to give your hamster bath frequently. Water can take away critical defensive oils from their coat. This can cause them to catch a cold that can be dangerous. Dwarf hamsters are cute and adorable, but are they the right pets for your kids?
Before buying a hamster, you must understand that they are not toys. They depend on us for their survival and need a steady commitment from our side. Most people treat hamsters as starter pets – something that doesn’t need much attention or commitment, But that’s completely untrue.
They are important and need the same level of love and attention as we give to other pets like dogs and cats. Due to their small size, dwarf hamsters are a popular choice for children as pets. There are some things you need to consider, though.
Hamsters are nocturnal animals; which means they wake up when it’s time for your kids to go to bed. Children especially those who are younger than 8 years old would naturally want to play with them during day time. But if you abruptly wake a hamster up from their nap, they can actually bite. To avoid hamster bites, Dwarf hamsters need to be gently stroked and should not be roughly handled – which is something kids usually don’t do.
That’s why we do not advise dwarf hamsters as a good choice of pets for small children. Also, young kids might not wash their hands after touching hamsters and can get exposed to salmonella virus as hamsters have been known to carry salmonella bacteria.
It is quite easy to raise and keep your hamster safe. They are independent and can take care of themselves. You need to provide them with a clean cage with ample space to roam about. All the doors need to be secured properly so that they don’t escape.
Clean their cage weekly and you are all set. Make sure that your dwarf hamster cage has enough cage toys as hamsters are active. These toys don’t have to be fancy or expensive. You should get a running wheel that is proper for your hamster’s size. Arrange for fresh food and water.
Hamsters eat a variety of food, but you should go for hamster specific meals that you find at pet stores. Other than that, you can feed them kale, broccoli, celery, apples, strawberries, cherries, mangoes.
Pet-savvy tips for the new owners
If you are a new dwarf hamster owner and are skeptical about how to care for these little munchkins, we’ve got some useful tips for keeping hamsters you definitely don’t want to miss out!
One cage for each hamster is preferable.
First, keeping two hamsters that aren’t the same sex, in the same cage is gonna bring you bunch of new babies who may not stay alive for a long time.
Second, putting two hamsters from the same breed without a proper introduction is dangerous. The last thing you want is to deal with your fighting hamsters.
Third, having hamsters from different breeds in one cage is a big no. You definitely don’t want to see them dead the next morning.
Actually, it may depend on the breeds. Larger hamsters called Syrian hamster – also known as Golden hamsters – must be kept alone.
If they are placed with another, they will fight - most likely to death. That’s why recognizing which hamsters species you raise is essential. If your hamster is a dwarf hamster, they can be kept in pairs, but some still prefer to live alone.
Generally speaking, keeping two hamsters together is not recommended unless they are from the same litter, and even then keeping a spare cage is important – in case you need to separate a fighting pair of hams! The best thing to do is to get another with its own cage. This eliminates the risk when you don't know what kind of hamster you kept as pets.
Talk to a veterinarian before breeding your hamster.
Look, two Satin hamsters must not be bred, nor must two hamsters with the 'White Bellied Gene'. It applies to hamsters with neurological disorders or kinked tails as well.
We advise you to do a lot of research before you even consider it. In case if you didn't know, hamsters might be one of a few animals with iffy parenting skills. You might’ve never heard of it, but female hamsters eat their young babies sometimes.
Yup, you read that right. It ain’t mistyped.
Many of us believe that female hamsters do it only when their litter becomes too big. In other words, they’re just making sure the babies have enough nutrition to live on.
However, if you still insist on breeding them, it’s better to get yourself decent information about their reproduction process. Get yourself some up-to-date books, talk to hamster breeders near you and make sure you get reliable information.
You need to double check if your hamsters do not suffer from any of these things. Then, you should know their backgrounds and that they come from a responsible breeder to rule out disorders.
Provide your dwarf hamsters with food that are rich in nutritious value.Hamsters burn a lot of calories as they are really active and hence, should be provided with good quality food. Hamster Treats should only be used while training them. Hamster water should also be changed frequently.
Vitamin drops for hamsters isn’t always necessary.
A hamster that already has a nice, balanced diet and a few bits of fresh fruit along with fresh water will not need vitamins or supplements.
They won't need any additional store food, so you should focus on providing a good hamster diet instead.
Supplements are basically there to help hamster who is struggling with their unbalanced diet. If your hamsters live a good life already and got no problem with their food supply, it is better to stay away from supplements as overloaded with nutrition can lead to certain a sickness.
Though hamsters still need access to something hard to gnaw on, and sick or recovering hamsters may benefit from vitamins - just don't mix them with other medicines.
If you notice your hamster continuously has a wet tail, you need to get them checked by a vet.The main cause of wet tail is stress and can cause diarrhea. if it's not treated, it may harm your hamster.
Dwarf Hamster House for the Little Friend
While some time away from the cage is appreciated, it is vital for the hamsters to have a comfortable and clean cage. Make sure you choose a cage that’s sturdy and is easy to clean. The bars shouldn’t be too small and the flooring should be as smooth as possible to prevent any unwanted accidents.
The cage should be at least 24 inches by 12 inches with a height of at least 12 inches. When it comes to hamsters, the bigger the cage you choose, the better it is. There are different types of dwarf hamster cage available in the market. The most popular ones are the plastic cages, wooden cages, the wire cages and hamster tanks made of glass.
Due to dwarf hamsters being smaller in size than Syrian hamsters, wire cages are not a good option as they can escape easily. Still, if you buy a wire cage for your hamster, make sure it got narrow bars.
Plastic cages are a popular choice as they are expandable in nature and generally come fitted with accessories. However, they tend to not provide much ventilation as compared to other cages.
Glass tanks come in different sizes and with ventilation holes. They are beautiful in appearance but might be too heavy to move around. Make sure that the hamster cage has a litter box.
The next thing is the cage bedding.
Bedding helps cage to maintain cleanliness of the cage by soaking the hamster’s urine. It also helps them feel more at ease. The Dwarf Hamster cage should not be too empty either. You should add some habitat accessories such as litter box, toys, hamster wheel, etc. This is to keep your hamster from getting unproductive and bored.
Oh, don’t forget the water bottles too. Hamsters do not have strong suction skills so choose the right bottle for them. If you’re really fond of raising hamsters and would like to raise multiple hamsters in just one cage—no problem.
As it's mentioned earlier,, Russian Dwarf Hamsters are capable of living together with other companions in one cage. They just need an early introduction and some cage accessories to keep them playful and happy.
How to trim your dwarf hamster nails with caution
If you notice that your hamster nails have started to twist below his paws, it is time for their nails to be trimmed. Overgrown nails can cause a problem for your hamster. It can lead to infection or bleeding while your hamster scratches itself. Long nails also tend to split apart causing bleeding and pain.
You can take your hamster to the vet for its nail trimming session or trim on your own using a nail clipper. You have to be really careful as hamsters don’t sit still and there is fear of over cutting and hurting them.
Use a small clipper and ask someone to hold your hamster while you cut its nails. Make sure not to cut the ‘quick’ – which is in the blood vessel in their nail – or cutting it too near to the paws as you can end up hurting you hamster.
Always err on the side of caution and try to clip less, particularly if you don’t have much experience and just getting started. If you cut too much, you might leave that area prone to infection.
However, if you accidentally clip its nails too short and it starts to bleed, just apply some styptic powder on that area. You can easily get styptic powder from any pet shop.
A little tip: Hamsters aren't often fond of sitting still. So, if you can manage to distract them – with a helping of food, for instance – you may be able to try cutting their nails with a small pair of nail clippers or scissors.
But it's much easier to put an untreated brick or some stones in their cage that they can climb on. It will wear their nails down, free of charge, and it is a new climbing toy!
Keeping dwarf hamster mom and their baby at home
Hamsters are extremely vulnerable when they’re just born. Hence, those pups need proper care to survive. If your pet hamster has got pregnant, there are a few important things you should pay attention to.
You should ensure that your female pet dwarf hamster is indeed pregnant. Weight gain alone is not a definite indicator of pregnancy. There might be other signs such as hoarding of food, aggressive behavior, and nest building. You should take your hamster to the vet for ensuring the same.
Offer mama hamster with nutritious food and proper care. Remove the male hamster from the same cage as females tend to behave aggressively during their pregnancy period and might harm the male hamster. If you aren’t planning on keeping the baby hamsters, arrange the future homes for them.
You can find friends who want to keep them or post ads on Craigslist. Never keep the hamsters unless you are ready for the additional responsibility that comes with them.
For about two to four days after the birth, do not disturb the mother hamster. She might be stressed and behave violently. You might also not touch baby hamsters for a minimum of two weeks.
There is a chance of you leaving your scent on them which may cause the mother hamster to abandon them or even kill them. If you have to move the baby hamster for some reasons, use a spoon.
Do not interfere with the nesting cage for at least two weeks – this includes cleaning it as well. Check the cage frequently to ensure that there are proper food and fresh water for the baby hamsters.
After the two weeks period, you can start handling them and cleaning the cage. After around 40 days of birth, the hamsters are capable of breeding. Thus, ensure to check their genders and separate the male hamsters from female after this period.
Once the baby hamsters are 5 weeks old, you can start caring for baby hamsters and playing with them as adult hamsters.