Taming and handling

January 7, 2010
Before you handle your hamster you will need to tame it, which means overcoming its fear. You will enjoy doing this as long as you understand it will take time and patience. Do not put it off, because it will be easier while your hamster is still young.

Talk to your hamster all the time you are taming it. It will get to know your voice. Move your hands gently - they must seem large and frightening to a small animal.

You should be able to tame your hamster in less than three weeks, if you follow the described method. Do not rush it, or you may have to start all over again.

1. First watch your hamster for a few days to find out when it is awake and active - the best time to start taming. Note its favorite foods so you can use them to overcome its fear.

Now start putting food straight on the cage floor, so your hamster gets used to your hand and learns that it means no harm. Do the same routine for few days, leave your hand there while the hamster eats.

2. When your hamster is confident enough to eat beside your hand, put the food in the palm of   your hand. It may be some time before the hamster will eat from your hand without fear. When it does, you can stroke it gently with one finger along its back, the way the fur grows. Never stroke its head.

3. Next, get your hamster used to being picked up. When it is eating from your hand, cup the other hand over it, and lift it gently a little way off the ground for a few moments at a time.

After a few more days, if your hamster seems happy being lifted up, you can take it right out of the cage in your cupped hands.

4. Play with it over a table, letting it run from one hand to the other. Soon it will be confident enough to run along your arm.           

Remember
+ Play with your hamster at the same time every day.
+ Speak to it softly all the time.
+ Play with it for short times only, but often.
+ Handle it over a table or near a the ground, so that if you drop it, it does not have far to fall.  

Do hamsters bite?
Only if they are frightened. A nip from a young hamster is not really painful, and not harmful. If your hamster does nip your finger, try not to frighten it more by jerking your hand away or screaming.

Source: Taking Care of Your Hamster by Helen Piers.
 

Feeding 2

December 11, 2009
Extra Vitamins
To make sure your hamster gets the vitamins it needs, you can buy vitamin drops for animals at the pet store.

Water
Never leave your hamster without fresh water to drink. It is wrong to think it can go without because it is a desert animal. In the desert, hamster drink the morning dew and find water in water-storing plants.

Fruit
You can feed pieces of apple, pear, grape, and tomato, all in small amounts only. But fruit decays quickly, and if a hamster eats bad fruit it well be ill....

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Feeding 1

December 8, 2009
Hamsters eat seeds, grains and nuts, vegetables, and a little fruit.

Hamster mix
Hamster mix is sold in pet store. It is specially prepared to provide a hamster with a well-balanced diet of its essential foods - grains, seeds, and nuts.

Vegetables
Both root and green vegetables should be given, always raw.

Give fresh water every day.

How often should a hamster be fed?
Feed your hamster once a day, in the late afternoon or evening.

How much food does it need?
Give a small handful of hamster mix and a s...

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Taking the hamster home

December 6, 2009
Before getting your hamster, wash the cage with a few drops of mild disinfectant in water. Rinse amd dry it well.

Cover the cage floor with a deep layer of sawdust and throw in a small heap of nesting material - hay, white paper, cotton material, and cardboard. Put a little in the nesting box to encourage your hamster to make its nest there.

Lastly, put some food in the cage and set up the drip-feed water bottle. Put in the gnawing wood, the exercise wheel and perhaps a cardboard roller for you...

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Things you will need

December 4, 2009
Checklist

 - Cage
 - Nesting box
 - Exercise wheel
 - Coarse sawdust or pine bedding
 - Nesting materials:
    > hay      
    > white paper
    > cotton rags
    > cardboard
 - Food dishes
 - Drip-feed water bottle
 - Food:
    > packet hamster mix
    > vegetables
 - Small branch or piece of hardwood for gnawing on

The cage

Pet stores stock various types of cages, or yo may want to build your own.  Your hamster is going to spend all its life in the cage you provide for it, so choose carefully.

How big sh...
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Understanding Hamsters

October 22, 2009
To understand your hamster better, you need to know a little about how it would live if it were wild.

Golden hamsters come from hot desert lands, where they burrow under the ground to shelter from the heat of the sun during the daytime, and only came out to look for their food when it is cool in the evening.  That is why your hamster sleeps during the day, and is awake and busy at night.

Food is hard to find in the desert.  A wild hamster would travel far from its burrow, searching in the sand ...

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Hamster as Pets

October 22, 2009
If you have kept a pet before, a hamster is one of the best with which to start.Hamsters are gentle and good-tempered, and when handled kindly and patiently soon lose any fear of people, and become very tame.

If you decide to keep a hamster, you will need to buy or make a cage for it, but other that it will cost very little to feed and look after.  Its cage will be easy to clean, and it will not take up much space.

Some people think that hamsters are not such good pets because they sleep most o...

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European Hamster

September 29, 2009
The European Hamster, Cricetus cricetus, also known as the Black-bellied Hamster or Common Hamster, is a species of hamster native to Europe. It is typically found in low-lying farmland with soft loam or loess soils, although it may also inhabit meadows, gardens, or hedges. It is widely considered a farmland pest, and has also been trapped for its fur. The black-bellied hamster is found from Belgium (e.g. Bertem with a thriving population) and Alsace in the west, to Russia in the east, and R...

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Chinese Hamster

September 29, 2009
The Chinese Hamster is a species of hamster, scientific names Cricetulus griseus, which originates in the deserts of northern China and Mongolia.

Description

These animals grow to between 7.5 and 9 cm in length and as adults can weigh 50-75 grams. They live two to three years on average. The Chinese hamster is often kept as a pet or (in the past) as a laboratory animal.

A Chinese hamster's body proportions, compared with those of other hamsters, appear "long and thin" and they have (for a hamste...

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Chinese Striped Hamster

September 29, 2009
The Chinese Striped Hamster (Cricetulus barabensis), also known as the Striped Dwarf Hamster, is a species of hamster. It is distributed across Northern Asia, from southern Siberia through Mongolia and northeastern China to northern North Korea. An adult Chinese Striped Hamster weighs 16.7-31.0g, and has a body length of 74.2-103.6 mm with a tail of 21-36 mm. It is smaller and has a much shorter tail than the Greater Long-tailed Hamster, Tscherskia triton, which inhabits much of the same ran...

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