Russian hamsters are small round-bodied hamsters. They are loving pets, and they need to socialize. They are one of the fastest hamsters, which sometimes makes it difficult for their owners to hold them in their hands. In the wild, they dig deep burrows, which they line with different tissues and herbs to keep warm in winter. Over the years the young are of a wide variety of colors and coat patterns. Do you want to know more curiosities of this friendly rodent? Stay reading

Life, behavior and character of the Russian hamster

Russian hamsters are nocturnal animals, but they can also be active for short periods of the day. They make excellent pets, but can also bite if threatened. Because they are small and fast, they can be a challenge to handle, especially for young children.

Unlike Syrian hamsters, another type of hamster of the same size, Russian hamsters are social with their species and can be kept in pairs or groups of the same sex, if they get to know each other at a young age. When they are adults it is not always a good idea to put them together, since it can cause fights between them.

Russian hamster care

While it is possible to house a Russian hamster in a typical wire hamster cage, it may not be escape proof. This is why an aquarium or other solid-walled cage with a secure, ventilated top is preferable. Just place a substrate of unscented natural cellulose fibers or wood chips at the bottom of the cage and always keep it clean to avoid the accumulation of ammonia in the urine.

Hamsters generally sleep in a nest box that you will need to provide. The best option will always be a ceramic hut for hamsters. These are bite proof and easy to clean. They also come in a wide variety of shapes and colors.

Also, you can offer your hamster tubes and compartments to explore inside his cage. This system generally works well for a single hamster. With multiple hamsters you would need more space. Narrow spaces lead to a higher likelihood of territorial behaviors or fights.

Provide your hamsters with chew toys and an exercise wheel to keep them entertained and fit. Hamsters like to keep warm and can exercise as a way to increase their body temperature.

You can also offer your hamster a “sand bath” container, which is a small, shallow container of sand for the hamsters to clean up.

Russian hamster feeding

Hamsters must have constant access to their food and water. Ceramic food containers work very well as they cannot be chewed and are too heavy to tip over. Keep a container of water attached to the cage and check the spout regularly to make sure it works. You will have to ensure that it never lacks fresh water.

Pellets will make up the majority of your hamster’s diet, but you can also offer treats or fresh foods (grains or vegetables). These supplemental foods should make up no more than 10 percent of your diet (1/2 teaspoon every few days). And, if your pet begins to have diarrhea, remove the food immediately and go to your trusted vet for an examination.

Always avoid fruits that are high in sugar or products with honey, as hamsters are prone to diabetes.

Common health problems

Russian hamsters are susceptible to diabetes, but if you catch the problem early, you can avoid it by changing your pet’s diet. Signs of diabetes include excessive drinking and urination, poor coat condition, low energy, chills, and unusual behaviors.

Hamsters and most small rodents are also prone to “wet tail,” which is a diarrheal disease caused by an overgrowth of bacteria in the digestive system. It is highly contagious to other rodents and must be treated with antibiotics quickly, otherwise it could die.