Do hamsters make good pets?


When it comes to buying a pet, you want to make sure you have a rough idea of what you are getting yourself into.
Its like with a dog; you know you have to be around a lot of the time to train and look after it, as well as be active and take it for walks and jabs and all that malarkey!

Well people want to know the same for hamsters so I have devised an easy guide to what owning this pet requires, who its good for and all that kinda stuff. This is based on Syrian hamster, there are differences if you are looking to buy a dwarf hamster!
So get a pen out and take some notes!

Owner Requirements:

  • Patience (Hamsters can sometimes take a few weeks to get tame and that’s with regular handling so as long as you are persistent with holding your hamster then there wont be any problems here!)
    • Energy (Hamsters love to be played with so you need to be enthusiastic and have lots of energy to do so! This is why hamsters are perfect for children as kids always have lots of energy)
    • Cleanliness (Hamsters will lick, chew and nibble anything they can get their hands on so making sure they have a clean environment to explore is essential. Chemically cleaned surfaces can seriously damage little rodents because as they clean themselves they transfer all the germs from their feet onto their mouths and all over their body. Pet-safe disinfectants are widely available)

Hamster Requirements:
  • A small amount of space(As long as they have a suitable cage and an exersise wheel or ball to run around in, they will be happy! You dont even need much floor space because sealed-up-wheels are available to put your pet in if you dont have the space for a ball.)
  • Food and water (Water bottles should, ideally, be changed daily and food topped up if needed over the week. Replacement of hoarded food is necessary but thats only to stop mould growing! As long as you can provide these, then you are good to go! The standard hamster food  is approximately £2.39 for a whole kilogram so its doesnt need to be bourght weekly!)
  • Attention (Hamsters are playful creatures and need to be handled as often as possible to break boredom and keep them healthy and active! Again, this is why hamsters are perfect for children!)
  • An exercise wheel/ball (This is the most important thing for your hamster. They need to be stimulated – how would you like to be cooped up in a cage with nothing to do all day! Wheels are well known for being noisy at night so keeping your hamster in a separate room is recommended if you want a good night sleep!)

NOTE: Hamsters tend not to need pet insurance because they have a short life expectancy and also because the more common ailments are cheap enough to solve without.

Things to consider:
  • Have you got the space? 
    This isnt just for a hamster cage itself, but remember you need somewhere to keep all the bedding/sawdust/food whilst its not in use as well as a small amount of space for a ball.
  • Will you still be around in 3 years time? 
    For Syrian hamsters life expectancy is between 2-3 years. Any older than that and you have done VERY well indeed! Will you be around in 3 years time to still be looking after this pet?
  • Can you afford to buy food/bedding/unexpected vet bills?
    Making sure you have a little money left over before payday is essential. If your little hamster needs a trip to the vet can you afford to pay the vet bill on top of all your other spendings?
Checklist for beginners:
The total, not including the price of the hamster, should cost around £30 if you get a starter kit cage which includes free sawdust/bedding/food etc.
Hamster prices vary up and down the country but here in the UK, you can buy them from around £9.50.

Still unsure if a hamster is right for you?

Positives:
  • They only take up a small amount of room
  • They are friendly and brilliant for kids once tamed
  • They are cheap to maintain and care for
  • They are easy to look after
  • Dont need supervision during the day so can happily go to school/work
  • They love to be played with
  • They dont need to be taken out on walks in the rain
  • They teach responsibility to young people
  • They are a good starter pet if you’ve never owned a pet before
  • They are superduper cute
  • They dont need to be insured
Negatives:
  • They have a short life expectancy (2-3 years, suppose this could also be a positive)
  • They need to be tamed
  • They can bite
  • They can be noisy at night – running on a wheel or gnawing the bars etc.
  • They can poop or wee on you (what animal isnt that true for though?)
  • They are masterful escape artists so need supervision whenever outside of their cage
  • Need cleaning out weekly
Any further questions about what owning a hamster entails; contact me! :D 
P.S. do you like the new picture at the header of this page?? 

Categories: animals, FAQs, General, Hamsters, Pets | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

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7 thoughts on “Do hamsters make good pets?

  1. Your new picture in the header is showing us a very healthy hamster. Good one ! Btw, check out myy latest entry, I’ve got names for them ;) http://nurulafiqahshahrulnizam.wordpress.com/2012/06/18/45-days-old/

    • Awww they are gorgeous little babies, I bet you are one proud owner!! :D keep up the good work with them, they are turning out great! Are you planning on keeping them all or have you found buyers for them??

  2. Mya

    How much do hamsters cost

    • George Caldwell

      7-15 dollars. They are the best little pet in the world. But you have to really love them. It is hard to be a hamster owner due to life span, but the time you get with them is precious. When a special furry friend has to go to heaven, I pay it back the favor for the time spent with me by saving another furry friend from the pet store.

    • +Mya babies cost $13.00 and Adults cost $30.00 in Singapore.

  3. George

    Hammi like pizza and demands whatever I am eating, And she likes to boss me around. She rarely bites but when she does she never clamps hard enough to break the skin or to even hurt me, She just does it to prove she can. She sleeps next to me in her hammi house on the bed at night too. And if there is a night I forget to bring her upstairs with me I get the cold furry shoulder all day. She also goes by a strict schedule that starts with her waking up at 7:30-8:00 PM , She wants fed what I am eating then she watches tv on my lap until 10:30 to 11:00 and then I put her in her house and she runs on her wheel and does Hamster stuff until 4:00 am then and I swear its almost on the dot 4:00 am she wakes me up. She does it by slamming her bowl or by sliding her bowl next to the wheel so it makes a loud sound when she runs it. And if I still do not get up she gets louder until I do. Then I turn on the lamp and the TV and put her in the recliner that she claimed as her’s. She sits in the corner of the recliner and cleans herself while I am making coffee and a broccoli & Cheese Chicken lean pocket. She loves the broccoli and cheese. After I make the coffee and food I walk back into the tv room and sit in the recliner next to her. I make a cardboard plate for her from the lean pocket microwave liner and squeeze out cheese and broccoli for her. She eats it up while I eat the rest of the lean pocket and drink coffee. Then after we eat and watch TV I play with her until 8:00 am then she starts to get tired. I put her in her hammi house and go to work. And when I come home at 3:30pm she gets up just long enough to greet me and eat some of my dinner. Then she goes back to sleep untill 7:30 to 8:00 pm and it starts all over again.

  4. elena

    they bite!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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