Dwarf Hamster Care
The more you know about your pet – any pet – the better able you will be to provide the care it needs to thrive. Dwarf Hamsters are no exception. Even though they may be smaller in size than their cousins from Syria, they still require the same love and care.
Some things to be aware of… like many tiny mammals, Dwarf Hamsters are delicate creatures, nervous in temperament, and quick to escape if given an opportunity. When they do escape, they are more difficult to capture, because they fit so snuggly into the tiniest nook and cranny. They love the tubular plastic homes sold at pet stores, but be careful! These can often be too large for them. Look for these in a smaller size and your Dwarf Hamster will thank you for it.
When it comes to a dwarf hamster cage, they can do quite well in a ten to twenty gallon aquarium or wire cage, as long as the wires are VERY close together. No matter what, make sure your Dwarf has an exercise wheel. Studies have shown that an average hamster may run up to five miles on their wheel! Believe it or not, there are actually small wheels made especially for your Dwarf Hamster.
Since all hamsters like to burrow, and your Dwarf is no different, give them something on the floor of their enclosure they can burrow into. Absorbent and dust-free materials like wood shavings work best, but stay away from pine or cedar which can cause respiratory problems for your little guy (or gal!). Replace the material at least once each week. Also, give them something to build a nest in, like a box. This will provide them the privacy their shy natures crave.
Dwarf Hamsters have a very fast metabolism, and will consume nearly as much food as their larger Syrian cousins. Hamster pellets, seeds, and dried fruits and vegetables are all on the Dwarf Hamster’s varied menu. Make sure you provide them fresh food and water regularly, even if they hoard their food in their nest. That’s just their nature!
Also, since a hamster’s teeth grow throughout it’s life cycle, give them something to chew on, like a soft wooden chew toy. This will prevent them from chewing on something plastic or any other injurious substance.
Maintenance is important. As well as replacing their cage’s floor covering, wash their enclosure at least once each week. Use mild soap and water, and be certain to rinse and dry completely. Don’t use any harsh or caustic chemicals which would almost certainly injure or kill your pet. A little care can go a long way toward insuring you have a long, enjoyable relationship with your remarkable little Dwarf Hamster.
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