A Syrian hamster cuddling in a human's hand.

How to Care for Your Hamster

How to Care for Your Hamster

The Golden, or Syrian, Hamster is the best known and most widely found. Larger and chubbier than their counter parts, the Golden hamsters offer the ability to keep a singular companion. Golden hamsters are loners. They are nosey, fearless, and friendly. A Golden Hamster who receives daily interaction builds a kinship with their humans.

A Golden hamster playing in his coconut hide and running on his wood ladder.
The Robo, or Roborovski's hamster is a smaller version with a bigger attitude. They prefer groups of themselves and can show aggressive behavior. Their activity level with attitudes are not as friendly as their counterpart, the Golden.

Robo hamster eating from a spoon.
The Chinese, Campbell's Dwarf, and Russian Dwarf Hamsters need a same gender partner for happy living. But all three breeds tend to have off and on attitudes. As a companion they are more hands off than hands on. You'll need to keep an eye on your pairs for aggression and arguments over territory. For these three hamsters it's best to have the largest cage possible and create multiple feeding and water locations to keep territorial bickering to a minimum. Being smaller and more fragile than the Robo and the Golden these three hamsters are not a good choice for smaller children.

What you need for your Hamsters to be Happy.

  • The biggest wire cage with a plastic bottom you can afford and fit. Hamsters are adventurous travelers. They need room to roam. They also need ventilation for fresh air, and you need easy cleaning. The deep plastic bottom and wire cage topped cages are a perfect solution.
  • Burrowing layers of bedding. Recycled paper bedding is the best. Hamsters love fussing with their bedding. Don't be afraid to layer the bedding up to three inches. They'll make mounds, and hills, and sleeping spots.
  • Homemade for Hamsters has 20 great DIY hamster toy building ideas.
  • Water bottle to hang from the side. Don't skimp on the price for a good glass water bottle. Glass is easier to clean well than plastic. You can also see the quality and quantity of their water with just a glance.
  • Food bowl(s). More than one bowl is always appreciated by a foraging adventurer.
  • Hamster treats for hiding around their cage.
  • A litter box. Yes. Hamsters can be litter trained. Wait to see what corner your hamster prefers to use. Then take some of the wet bedding and put it in the new litter box. Place the litter box in the corner your hamster chose and add some more bedding. They'll follow the scent to their own wet bedding and use the box. From then on, it will be normal for them.
  • Hamster food.
  • Wood toys and coconut toys to chew
  • Bathing sand. Never give a hamster a water bath.
  • Bathing sand bowl.
  • Hamster climbing and tunneling toys.
Teddy Bear hamster cleaning his paws.

    Hamsters are a great companion to bring into your life.

    Kathy LaFollett is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

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