caring for a Syrian hamster, *pics*

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by bock, Dec 19, 2010.

  1. bock

    bock Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My sister is getting a Syrian Hamster for a christmas present. It isn't like we suddenly just decided to get it for her though, she is coming to pick it out with us and she has had two hamsters before. She knows how to take care of a hamster and is very responsible. Our last hamsters were dwarfs. One passed away from old age when she was 3 and the other lived to be about 3 and a half. At first, we kept them in a plastic cage with complicated tubes going in every direction. It was tons of fun to watch and it gave them lots of exercise, but it was just too hard to clean. Then, we bought them a 10 gallon glass aquarium from Petco. I am sure their lives wan't quite as fun, but their cage was much easier to clean! We also found a silent wheel at Petco, and it actually works really well. This time, we are going to go for a bigger, solitary breed. We chose the Syrian, or teddy bear hamster. I have been wondering about a few things. First, should we get a male or a female hamster, is there really any difference? Second, what kind of cage should we get? I think a cage with less complicated tubing might be okay, but I won't be the one cleaning it. I worry about a wire cage too, since we have cats who might enjoy messing with the poor thing. A 10 gallon tank would be safest and easiest to clean, but it wouldn't have anything to climb on. And, do you recomend a bowl for them to drink out of or the hanging waterer? Finally, does Petco or Petsmart have healthier hamsters with more cage selection and more reasonable prices? Thanks for the advice! [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2010
  2. halfwaynowhere

    halfwaynowhere Chillin' With My Peeps

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    i highly recommend bin cages for syrian hamsters. while they aren't as "see through" as an aquarium, they are cheaper, you can provide more space for your hamster, and sooooo much easier to clean. i made mine for under $15, using a sterilite bin (90 quart). i cut holes in the top and installed 2 air conditioning vent covers for circulation. it gives them lots of room to run around in, and lots of room for toys. Cleaning is super simple, just remove toys and other objects, dump bedding into a trash bag, and wipe it out with a paper towel damp with a vinegar/water solution. Its been awhile since I've had hamsters, but Rex, my rescue boy, absolutely loved his bin cage. He had come in one of those cages with all those tubes, and had to go up the tubes to even access his water. He was a big boy, and he barely fit!

    As for male or female- I have limited experience, but I think males are more likely to be calm and laid back, and females tend to be more uptight. Syrian hamsters aren't always friendly, they do have a tendency to get mean or nippy, so you'll want to pay close attention to their temperaments when picking one out.

    be careful with the silent wheel. I've used them without problems, but they can be dangerous. they have a tendency to fall apart, and can trap or injure a critter if that happens. there is also a seam running down the middle of the wheel where tiny toenails can get caught. and after awhile, they really aren't any quieter than a regular wheel. I recommend a solid base wheel with no crossbar, and every so often, i spray inside the center part with cooking spray to keep it going smoothly and quietly.
     
  3. bock

    bock Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you! I actually have a storage bin that I could use! I am not sure how big it is though, it seems pretty large. I also have an old 10 gallon I found in the garage. It must be the one I used for our old hamsters.

    In, the past, our hamsters were both females. This time I think we should go with a male. I am still not sure though, I might change my mind when I get there.

    As for the silent wheel. the one I have now seems to be holding up pretty well. I might just get another one though, just to be safe. [​IMG]

    Thanks again! We will go get him/her soon!
     
  4. babyblue

    babyblue Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would honestly not put any rodent in a plastic cage ever again. we did that with hamsters thinking they'd love the room. yea well they chewed right out and ran around the house for days till we caught them again. glass tanks with wire cages over top worked well for us. a 20 gallon long makes a nice cage and you can find wire cage toppers that can make it a two or more story. lots of room and no escaped hamsters.
     
  5. bock

    bock Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well.....we got one! We ended up with a cream colored male, we named him Buddy. We ended up getting him from Petco. He is very tame and seems very healthy. He is a short haired Syrian, the woman there said he was 10-12 weeks old. We were wondering if he would continue growing still. We are keeping him in the glass aquarium, and we will keep it very clean. We also had to get a 7.5 inch metal wheel, since he is so much bigger than our other hamsters were and the silent ones can be dangerous. He seems to be settling in great! He loves his wheel, and he certainly doesn't act like a nocturnal animal! He will be much loved here! [​IMG]
     
  6. bock

    bock Chillin' With My Peeps

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  7. JustAChickenLittle&More

    JustAChickenLittle&More Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 25, 2010
    Florida
    He's adorable. [​IMG]
     
  8. bock

    bock Chillin' With My Peeps

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    JustAChickenLittle&More :

    He's adorable. [​IMG]

    Thank you!

    P.S. that is a raisin in the corner, I just saw that. [​IMG]
     

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