Health

“My Hamster Has GROWTHS On His Hips?!”

So I have received this question and concern SOOOOO many times, I figured it was about time I addressed this concern.

There are lumps/moles on my hamsters hips. Are these tumors?!  What are these and should I worry?!”

Excellent question and the very simple answer is NO you do not have to worry at all.
These ‘moles’ on your hamsters sides are scent glands.

They often aren’t covered by fur and can become more apparent as your hamster gets older and their fur thins out anyway.
On Banjo they aren’t too obvious but take a look at the picture below. You can see the parting in his fur and a ‘mole’ smaller than a penny on his hip.

hamster scent glands - hamster moles

These glands are nothing to worry about and are for marking territories and attracting a mate.

Hamsters can be prone to Scent Gland Infections.
This can cause your hamster to be unfriendly and nippy. Keep a close eye on their movement – if they are really struggling to walk or curl up, it could be a warning sign of an infection.
If your grumpy hamster lets you close enough, check their hip spots for any inflammation or puffiness. If there is any fluid or any noticeable swelling, you should take an immediate trip to the vet to get checked out.

Here is another picture of my late hamster Dexter. You can see the disturbance on his hip where his scent gland is.

hip spots on hamsters

So basically the long and short of this is, there is nothing to worry about.
Make sure you know what is NORMAL for your fur baby so if there is ever a change or problem, you can catch it quickly and get it sorted.

We love happy and healthy hamsters here 😉

CUDDLES AND SNUGGLES.

Categories: animals, blogging, Hamsters, Health, pet health, Pets | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Hamster Treat Recipe #3: Hamster Pasta

Pasta?! Hamster Pasta?!I let Banjo run amok on my worktops the other day in yet another desperate attempt to capture some non-blurry photos.. It didnt quite go as planned.
Turns out he has a fascination with PASTA?!
Well the picture of pasta at least.
I’m not sure quite how well the real thing would go down but now the less this seemed to capture his attention for long enough (just)!

Well after a little bit of interweb research, turns out pasta and hamsters in the same sentence is not uncommon. This is a REAL thing.
Lucy the Hamster eating pastaThis photo is of Lucy the hamster tucking into an adorable spaghetti meal for 1 :’)
It is beyond adorable if you ask me!

Well after the success of the hamster pizza, I thought it only seemed right to go one step further in this culinary adventure and make Banjo a little pasta dish just like Lucy 😀

It doesnt take as much step-by-step guidance on this one. I cooked some noodles up, let them cool and then added some Pasta for Hamsters! :D baby corn and some raspberry for the sweetness (I would have used tomatoes but I didnt have any in my fridge – and seeing as homemade treats are all about making use of what you have, there was no need to trek to the shops just for Banjo’s treat!)

It went down juuuuust as fabulous as the hamster pizza 😀

He loved every little lick and mouthful!
There is something very satisfying about making food for hamsters which looks like human food! 😀 I think I am becoming a little crazy with this. I keep thinking up entire menus for him… Never had such a spoilt ham ;D

I really recommend getting creative with your hamster treats too. The stuff in shops is all well and good and easy too – I get it. But using the left over Hamster pastafresh stuff you have laying about is a neat little way to keep you hamster interested and engaged. 🙂

Plus its pretty satisfying when you see your hard work devouring in front of your eyes! 😀 As long as you’re careful with your ingredients using only hamster safe foods, you can literally go to town on your rodent-menu 😀

If you fancy showing off any of your own hamster culinary delights, feel free to email me snaps to hamsterdiaries@yahoo.co.uk or you can post it to the HamsterDiaries Facebook page for yourself. Or if you have any rodent-recipes of your own, let me know and I’ll try them out for little Joey 😀

Love love love!
xxx

Categories: animals, blogging, food, funny, Hamsters, Health, Pets | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

As Silent As A Hamster

A cheeky cleanYou may recall a post a week or so ago about the noise this little fella would make!

He was a very nervous little hamster, sqwacking and squealing at the top of his little lungs.
Well this is a little update for you, to reassure all those hamster mummys and daddys that your little hamster is absolutely fine!

Joey has settled into the routine of being a furry-celebrity and is now as silent as a mouse hamster!

We haven’t quite got the knack of sitting still yet but we can work on that!
Makes me think back to all them times I’d sit with Casper on my lap and he’d just curl up and sleep! I really do miss having sucha soppy little ham!

But just like any animal, they have their own personalities – each and every one!
Banjo is getting there. And if you remember the commotion this one caused on day one, you’ll appreciate the distance we have come!

Any one else think that Banjo looks like hes whispering a little prayer to himself!?
xx

Categories: animals, blogging, General, Hamsters, Health | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Help, My Hamster Is Crying!!

Banjo was just a little baby hamster when I got him and when I got him home for the first time, it very quickly became apparent that I did not have a happy hamster!

Introducing him slowly to his new home became a very stressful event and there was a lot of noise coming out of my little hamster!

The only way I can describe the sounds, were like a screaming and crying baby!

What you are about to hear on this video is going to sound distressing – you have been warned!

Please note I had left little baby Joey to get accustomed to his new home for a whole day.

As you can hear Banjo is really putting his lungs to the test.
The crying continued for what felt like hours!

What does crying mean?

Like with babies, crying is a sign of distress. Hamsters are solitary creatures and so they need to be vocal to be heard! Banjo being curious! :D And hamsters aren’t so good at speaking human 😉
It can also be a sign of pain, so if this is out of character behavior for your little hammy then take note – they’re trying to tell you something!

How can I stop my hamster crying?

Give them some space. You are big and scary, they are little and easily intimidated! It is going to be frustrating when you just want to cuddle with your new pet but your hamster is nervous and they will need time to adjust to their surroundings. Patience is the key with this one!

The main thing to remember is DON’T PANIC!
This will get better over time.
You just need to build up trust with your new furry friend. Every pet has their own personality. Some need a little longer to get used to people than others.

Taming hamsters can be a lengthy process. And little Joey here is going to be a challenge – but all shall be shared!

If you have a new hamster then make sure you subscribe via email, then you wont miss a thing. And with a new hamster there is plenty to talk about!
More of Banjo the hamster coming soon!! 😀

xxx

Categories: animals, Care, Hamsters, Health | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Casper’s Illness

In yesterdays rambling post, I explained that my gorgeous white Syrian hamster had passed away after fighting a mysterious illness. Well for the sake of all my hammy friends and all those who are worried about their little fur-babies, I want to explain what happened and the tell-tale signs that something wasn’t quite right.

So I was having a routine evening cuddle with Cas and I noticed that he didn’t look quite right. The first sign, bulging eyes...His eyes were really bulging and he was veeeeery slightly tilting his head to one side.
Now don’t get me wrong hamsters can be very bright eyed but this was out of the ordinary for my little Casper who as you may know spent the majority of his time with them shut!

As you can see from the picture, his eyes look very rounded and almost protrude from his face.

He kept on blinking normally and his behavior hadn’t changed at all so all I really noticed was he looked a little different.

All I could really do at this point was monitor it.

Over the next week or so the tilt in his head became more prominent. It was affecting the way he walked about too.
My first thought – inner ear infection.
The inner ear affects balance and can be treated with antibiotics.

I took my poorly baby to the vets and he behaved as good as gold! Only wriggled a tiny bit when they were examining him.

I always feel like a horrible hamster-mummy when I get the tank out. But it’s the best thing to take them to the vets in. Small and nowhere to hide so the vet can get them and treat them with as little stress as possible in my opinion.

So the vet gave Cas a thorough examination. And as is usually the case with hamsters, the vet couldnt do very much at all for him.

Vet Visit for lil CasperIts the sad thing about such small critters in that they are so small treatments such as surgery are next to impossible.

Never the less, the vet gave me the verdict.
There was something wrong with Caspers brain. A swelling, possibly a tumor.
It was this tumor/swelling that was causing his eyes to protrude and causing his behavior to change in terms of walking lop-sided.

They gave him some antibiotics in the hope that it wasn’t as serious as they thought and that it was an infection of some sort. The hope was that the medicine would improve the swelling and make him more comfortable.

Unfortunately, after 2 weeks there was no improvement on his condition. If anything he had deteriorated. He was still eating and drinking but his breathing had become incredibly laboured and his eyes were starting to get a little weepy.
My poor fur baby was not looking healthy at all. 😦

I moved his cage into my bedroom and kept a close eye on him. Poorly Cas, cuddles o'clock!Every available opportunity, he got cuddles and snuggles in warm blankets. I hand fed him water and moist foods to try and keep him as hydrated as possible.

As you can see from this picture, he really was starting to look unwell.

He had no energy at all.
Laying still and breathing was hard work for him.

He did manage to nibble at the food infront of him although it was never very much as his weakness was starting to really show.

It was at this stage I knew Casper wasn’t going to make it for much longer.
Watching him fight so very hard for life was torturous and my heart was genuinely breaking. I would put his tired body on my warm tummy and we would sit quietly together for hours and hours of an evening. He knew I was there and he knew I was watching him and he didn’t given up!

It was the third day of this very poorly Cas and I had booked a vet appointment. I didn’t want to let him go but it was cruel to let him struggle any longer.

It was on this very evening that he curled up on my tummy for the last time.
Struggling to breath :(He was really struggling to breath.
He took his last breaths while being stroked and snuggled.

It was a very very sad time.
Even now, months and months later, I miss this little hamster so so much. He was the perfect pet, friendly, tame and just the cutest.
He has left an unimaginable space.
I am beyond grateful for this blog and all the memories I have captured and shared.

To re-cap Casper’s symptoms for you worried hammy-parents;

  • Bulging eyes
  • Tilted head
  • Lethargic
  • Laboured breathing

I can’t stress enough, get to the vets! There is a million and one things that could cause the above. Chances are good with antibiotics! Its best not to waste any time.

RIP Casper
xxx

Categories: animals, blogging, Care, Hamsters, Health, Pets | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Are You Getting Your SEVEN A Day?

I read in the news a few months ago that apparently getting your 5 portions of fruit and veg is no longer good enough (I am on about humans now just so you know). It has now been recommended that 7 portions is what you should be scoffing!
And all I’m thinking is SEVEN?!
Its difficult enough to get 5 in on one single day let alone 7?!

Anyways to try and help my fellow mankind, Dexter and Casper are here to inspire you to eat 7 portions of fruit and veg like good little hamsters humans.
Pleeeeease do not go feeding your hamsters 7 portions of fruit and veg in one day because that is just silly and actually very bad for them! This is for us humans only mkay!

1. Broccoli
You know what they say, always eat your greens! You show ’em Casper!
casper eating broccoli

2. Sweetcorn
Baby corn is just as good as the big stuff, isn’t that right Dex?dexter eating sweetcorn

3. Strawberries
They sure are scrumptious!!casper eating strawberry

4. Apples
An apple a day keeps the doctor away? So why risk not eating one?!dexter eating apple

5. Banana
Bananananananananananana! Say no more!
Casper and the Banana

6. Carrot
They help ya see in the dark dontcha know! 😎
dexter eating a carrot

7. Cucumber
Its yummy, winky face!
Casper eating cucumber

Do any furries out there have a favourite fruit or veg? Us humans need to be shown what we are missing 😉

xx

P.s. Am I the only one who now feels a little peckish? 😛

Categories: animals, Care, funny, General, Hamsters, Health, News | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Paws Up For A MANICURE!

So I mentioned a few weeks ago (I forget the exact date) about Dexter’s TALONS.
I don’t understand how or why but Dexter’s claws grow at an incredible speed! With the amounts of running the little guy does, I don’t understand quite how they get to the lengths they do!

LONG hamster claws !<—- Check them out!!

They are stupidly long!
And way way back, when Casper had a long claw, it got caught and ripped and there was even a little infection to clear up! Remember that sad picture of Casper with a bloody swollen paw?!

Well basically, this has led me to keep a VERY close eye on both hamsters claws and paws as I don’t want any trips to the vet!

So when I see that Dexters claws have somehow managed to get this long, I realise its about time to have them clipped before he gets them caught anywhere.

I already have to be careful if hes crawling along any of my jumpers because he regularly gets his claws stuck and ends up panicking and freaking out! I have to then quickly and gently release his toe before he ends up hurting himself!

But anyway, onto claw-clipping.
You can of course take you hamster to the vet to have their claws clipped but to be perfectly honest, you at home can do an equally as good of a job as they can. You don’t need a Degree in Veterinarian Science to be able to clip hammy claws.

 As long as you follow a careful guideline you can’t go wrong. nail-cutting-pictureAnd all you need is a pair of normal human nail clippers and probably an extra set of hands to hold your hammy still.

Now the diagram to the right is actually for a doggy blog (click on it to go to that blog) but the method is essentially the same for hamsters. Except dogs obviously are a lot bigger to see this.

There are blood vessels inside of the nail so you can’t go lopping off the whole thing or else there will be a lot of blood and a very distressed hamster on your hands!

You need to cut just short of the tip, at a slight angle, about 45 degrees away from the paw. This will give you the best chance of avoiding this inner claw bit.

When me and my sister clipped Dexters claws a few months ago, we clipped one of his claws a little too short, and it bled very slightly for a moment. If you do this too its nothing to worry about, just maybe take a break from claw clipping and let your little furry relax a little before continuing.

I shall clip Dexter’s claws real soon and post the results.
xx

Categories: animals, Care, General, Hamsters, Health, Pets | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Eve’s 2nd Birthday

On this day, back in June of 2012, I introduced the blogosphere to a very beautiful little girl hamster called Eve.
(Click here to read that very first post!)

She was a brave little hamster, and when I say little I mean she was diddy!! She could easily fit into the palm of my hand and needed no taming at all! She was docile and friendly right from the get-go, which in hamster terms is a pretty rare thing.

The first picture of Eve on this blog back in 2012! The picture to the left is of Eve’s first exploration of her new home.
I hadn’t planned on getting another hamster at the time. Me and the boyfriend went to the pet shop to pick up supplies for Dexter and there in the cabinet was a gorgeous little hamster, paws against the glass and adorable speckled ears all alert!

She really was absolutely adorable!! 😀

I immediately knew she had to come home with us and next thing we knew, we had bought a new cage and she was mine!

Eve. A suitable name for the first girly hamster I’ve ever owned I think. 🙂 Plus she was completely full of beans so having a name that meant ‘life’ was 100% appropriate.

So there she was, Dexter’s new girlfriend 😉

If you haven’t followed the blog before then you won’t know that Eve has had an action packed little life. She died sadly too soon in February of this year 😦

As this is the anniversary of her joining the hammy-fam, I thought a little look over her cutest pics would be a fitting tribute to this beautiful pet 🙂

After being with me for nearly two months, Eve had very much settled in and become a comfortable member of the family.

We decided in the August of that year, to breed her and Dexter.13 pups is a BIG responsibility

Now it didn’t end up the most triumphant of tales with her litter of 13 pups sadly passing away over the following 2 weeks after their birth. Eve just wasnt quite the mothering material we had hoped for, shying away from the pups.
But due to the babies illnesses and birth defects which were really beyond everyones control, who could blame her for struggling. I don’t know how many people would cope fine with 13 hungry needy newborns!

Anyway she did her best.
There were 3 little survivors that battled on to their 2nd week of life, but sadly liver problems caught up and they too passed away.

Even though Eve wasnt caring for the pups at this stage you could still
sense the grief from her. She had become a very slow and meticulous hamster. She barely came out of her bed anymore and would continue to build the most impressive nests I have ever seen a hamster produce!
Eve, showing off her pre-mum bod!She really was mourning and I have never seen that side to a hamster before. Shocking how something so little can show such an emotion.

After many months and LOTS of love and attention, she slowly had come back to the brave little monster she became.

Don’t get me wrong she stayed slower, but it came across as more of a maturity thing now.

She had been through a lot of drama and hassle and now she was finally back to herself again.
And she really was the most beautiful little hamster.

She gave me a lot of reasons to boast about female Syrians, as I had always heard horror stories about them being angry and vicious. Eve showed me not only was I wrong but the vast majority of people who think that were also very wrong!
I tend to find hamsters reflect their owner in terms of friendliness.

I will never change my mind on the fact that I think she was taken to early from life.RIP Eve and happy blogging birthday! :D xx Today would have been her 2 year blogging birthday, and I would have expected a third birthday next year too but alas some things are just not meant to be.

I have never been more grateful for this blog in that respect.
I managed to document and capture her life in words which are now immortalized on the internet. She may have died but she lives on through this blog and through the pictures and memories. And that is nothing to sniff at!

So this is a happy post really.
A poignant day in my blogging diary.

I hope all the words and waffle in this post doesnt bore you to tears. I just felt today should be a post about Eve.
(And I hoped you all enjoyed a different furry face to ‘awww’ at today too!)

Have a great day now! 
xxx

Categories: animals, blogging, Care, General, Hamsters, Health, Love, Pets | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Things That Go SQUEAK In The Night

If there is one thing everyone should know about hamsters, it’s that they are nocturnal. (Which is people speak for ‘blooming noisy at night!’)
If you want to get a peaceful night sleep then you are best off putting you furry friend in a separate room. There really is no other Me ? NOISY?! Never!!! way of dealing with this noisy issue because hamsters don’t listen to begging .. the heartless creatures😉
If you are thinking a hamster is a perfect present for your young child, think about it for a second… You want your kid to fall asleep at a reasonable hour? Well hamsters see this reasonable hour as time to get up and crack on making noise. And now you have one excitable child as well as one excitable hamster. Probelmo…
If you are completely unable to move your hamster into another room, there are a couple of things you can do to try and hush your hammy up during the night. But the sad fact is they are going to bash about their cages, its what they’re surprisingly good at!
  • If your hamster has a flying saucer that squeaks, rub a tiny bit of Vaseline on the metal spoke. This will stop that irritating high pitched eeeeek!
  • If it’s a noisy exercise wheel that bangs on the edge of the cage, you may need to invest in a free standing wheel. But please be aware this doesn’t fix the issue in some cases as it can be equally as noisy!!
    Sorry was I keeping you up??? I'll try keep it down in here...
  • If they chew the bars of their cage in the night, try putting a new toy in their cage. Bar-gnawing can be a sign of boredom. If they have something new in their cage, it could replace the bars as a new chew or even distract them completely.. for a day or two.
  • You should put your hamster in their exercise ball and let them have a half hour run around of an evening. This will mean they are more awake when they go back in their cages, sorry, but they usually tucker themselves out a little quicker than usual nights, which can mean more sleep for you.
Sadly hamsters are noisy. There is no silencer for these critters. But with a little interaction every day and new toys to play with you will have a happier hamster and hopefully a better sleep!
My two boys are either out on the landing or in the next door bedroom during the night – I was turning into a zombie with the lack of sleep! But even this hasn’t stopped me thinking there has been a burglar in the house on MORE than 1 occasion.. They call it ‘keeping you on your toes’ don’t they???
Do your furries keep you up at night? Or how do you get them to sleep soundly?!
Let me know, we ALL want to know! 😀
Comment below! Follow, like, share *insert blog blah blah here* 😉
xx
Categories: animals, Care, Hamsters, Health, Pets | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Deafness In Hamsters

Deaf Hamster
You may recall, I have previously posted about Casper’s uniqueness and specialness. We originally came to the conclusion that Casper was just unusual and quirky. He is a bit of a special hamster with special habits (I am waiting to see the comment ‘pets take after their owners…’ HAHAH you’re so funny… 😐 …) but after all this time we have absolutely no doubts at all that Casper is 100% deaf.

I have googled the subject a lot in the past and things I found arent greatly helpful. People suggest a veterinary examination but in all honesty I dont need a vet to look at him to tell me that he has no hearing.

How to tell if your hamster is deaf?

Deaf Hamster Hiding Cos He's SHY!!! :)

“You talking bout me?”

I am not an expert I assure you, but having more hamsters than I have fingers to count them on, makes it easier to conduct little experiments on their hearing.
I have come up with one simple little question  to ask yourself in a way to determine if your hamster is really deaf? Or just hard of hearing?

  1. If you clap or click behind your hamsters head, does he/she respond? Flinch? React?

As long as youre not about to punch your hamster in the face any sign of a reaction means they have a sense of hearing. It might be poor but they have it.
You could sound an airhorn behind Casper and he wouldnt even blink at you – that is true deafness. None of this selective hearing I hear a lot about 😉

What does it mean if my hamster is deaf?
It means nothing spectacular, just means your hamster has a unique little trait. He or she just needs extra comfort maybe to ensure that they feel safe. A world without sound can be a nerve wracking place, no way of hearing danger or anything like that. So they just need extra cuddles and maybe go gentle if you need to wake them up. They cant hear you coming remember! 😀

Anyone else out there have a deaf pet?
Let me know in the comments below! Also dont forget to follow via email o get your daily fix of hamstery cuteness!! 😀 

xx

Categories: animals, Care, FAQs, General, Hamsters, Health, Pets | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.