If a hamster dies a natural death in old age, then it typically can live between 1 and and 3 years. Unfortunately, not every family's pet lives that long because there are a multitude of important factors that can cause premature death in a hamster.
For a pet hamster, probably the number one cause of early death is trauma. How long a hamster lives in a family's home depends on a great extent on how cautiously the hamster is handled and what precautions are taken when the hamster escapes.
Because hamsters have notoriously bad eyesight, they can easily walk right of ledges – such as tables, beds, chairs, platforms inside their cages – without any knowledge of how far they are about to fall. Before they are sure tamed, these little critters also can easily jump out of a person's hand and fall straight to the ground. Thus, it is important for hamster owners to take precautions.
When handling your pet, it is best to be sitting firmly on the ground. This is a rule that should especially be enforced with small children. Keeping the hamster low to the ground prevents a pet from falling any more than about 12 inches (30 cm) if it was to be dropped or if it makes an unexpected leap into oblivion.
How long do hamsters live when they escape from their cages?
This depends very much on the measures that their owners take after the escape occurs.
To begin with, if there is an escaped hamster on the loose, then everyone in the house needs to pay attention to where they are walking. Sadly, many hamsters have died when they were stepped on.
Next, all of the electrical cords must be moved off the floor. It is important to keep in mind that your hamster does not know that gnawing on an electrical cord can cause him to die.
It is best if the escapee can be defined to one room, where other pets can be kept out. If not, then all cats and dogs must be kept tethered lest they notice your hamster and decide that it would make either a good meal or a soft toy.
Next, family members must exercise great caution when using furniture. Hamsters like to hide in small enclosed spaces. A lifted couch could crush a hamster that is hiding between it and the wall. Similarly, the household members should look underneath each cushion and in the crevices of the furniture before they sit down. A small space can lead to death by suffocation when a person's bodyweight is added.
Finally, all laundry items must be taken and then individually put into the washing machine. A pile of dirty clothes makes and ideal hiding space, and you do not want your hamster to die due to drowning.
So, as you can see, how long a hamster lives can depend very much on how adeptly hamster owners handle their pets and what precautions they put in place in the event that their pet hamster escapes.
Source by Matthew A. Boreau