The Care of Hamsters – A Choice of Standard Or Dwarf



Every species of hamster, whether it's a standard or a dwarf, requires pretty much the same level of care and maintenance. However, the biggest surprise has to be in the amount of food required by both, which is the same the same, even though the physical size of the dwarf hamster is just a fraction of the Syrian hamster. The highly active metabolism found in the dwarf hamsters accounts for the relatively large volume of necessary nutrition. In fact, a typical hamster will generally eat the equivalent of one-tenth of their body weight each day.

The bulk of the dwarf hamster diet will consist of a high quality blend of assorted seeds and grains, as well as, specialized food pellets, containing a well balanced mixture of nutrients, vitamins and proteins, all targeted to the primary requirements for maintaining your hammie's optimum health. Food pellets are vitally important in the care of hamsters, since they contain all of the essentials, whereas seed and grain mixes too often facilitate the picking and choosing of the most liked components, which in the end, leaves the diet missing in one or more vital ingredients. Fresh fruits and vegetables will also supplement a well-balanced diet. And, it's extremely important to ensure the availability of clean drinking water, by providing a plastic bottle with a metallic sipper nozzle will prove to be both convenient and sanitary.

Dwarf hamsters generally behaving quite socially when kept in same sex pairings, however fights can break out and separation may be necessary, so you should certainly be prepared to accommodate the individuals. Males and females should definitely be kept apart, without of course breeding and caring for the resulting larger family is planned. And, while this may be difficult to believe, dwarf hamsters will often mate once again within 24 hours of giving birth. So, as you can see, separation of sexes is a genuine necessity.

Your choice of cage will necessarily depend upon your choice of hamster. The Chinese hamsters and Russian dwarf hamsters will still need as much room for their active lifestyle as their larger Syrian cousins, but care must be given to a bit more security, as they do have the reputation for escaping from enclosures designed for larger inhabitants. The Roborovski dwarf hamster is aptly named "the escape artist" for good reason. At roughly two inches in length, this little rodent can squeeze through the bars of a standard "wire-barred" small mammal cage. So, if you intend to make the Robo hamster your choice of pet, the best advice is to utilize a 10 or 20-gallon aquarium for safety and peace of mind. You'll also want to secure the top with a locking cover or lid to prevent intrusion by small kids or other house pets.

Hamsters are by nature, burrowing animals who live in holes and tunnels in the shallow underground in their native habitats. Consequently, they love a thick layer of bedding material covering the bottom of their cages. A two to three inch layer provides a depth that facilitates tunneling around in any direction. The safest type of bedding and nesting material should consist of non-aromatic wood shavings such as Aspen (no cedar or pine), hay, cellulose or dust-free paper products that are void of any chemical dyes or inks, thereby avoiding issues with allergies Egypt or respiratory irritants.

Rounding out the essentials needed to maintain your dwarf hamster's optimum health is the hamster wheel or ball. In the wild, these little critters will travel up to an incredible eight miles per day in search of food. Consequently, lots of exercise is critical, as an important daily ingredient in the health maintenance program for all captive hamsters. It's also helpful to allow them time out of the cage, whenever possible. It's an opportunity for them to do what they do best, by exploring their surroundings. Such out of cage interacting will also strengthen the bond between you and your affectionate little pet.

Copyright 2010 Walter Tekman. All rights reserved. Please feel free to share the entire contents of this article with your friends or post it on your site as long as it is left intact with all links unchanged, including this notice.


Source by Walter Tekman

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