Simple Tips to Keep Your Hamster Healthy

Many people enjoy having hamsters as pets. These small creatures make a unique and very friendly addition to your family. Hamsters are inexpensive, both to purchase and maintain, as well as being cute and cuddly, easily fitting into the palm of your hands. Hamsters are relatively easy to take care of. The downside to hamsters is their short lives. Most live only a year or two making it difficult for younger children.

If you choose to adopt a hamster, caring for them is easy if you follow a few simple guidelines. There are some things that you should know about hamster care that will really make a difference in how healthy your family pet is going to be. Here are some tips for your consideration that will help you to make the most out of your new pet hamster.

Perhaps one of the first things that you need to consider in order to make sure your hamster is as healthy as possible is to provide them with the right type of housing. There are plenty of commercial hamster cages on the market which can provide a lot of options for your new pet. Some people also build their own hamster cages, either out of wire or plastic tubes. One thing your hamster is going to enjoy, regardless of which type of cage you choose, is a lot of room to roam around and explore. This can help to keep your hamster happy and also provide him with a considerable amount of exercise, which is essential for good health.
Of course it is important to choose an efficient and suitable cage for your hamster, but equally important is choosing the “proper” location for your hamster’s new home. Make certain that you are not putting them in harm's way by putting their cage in direct sunlight or too close to a heater, both of which may provide unnatural and unsafe temperature extremes. Unfortunately, this has caused a lot of problems for many hamster owners, but you can avoid this dilemma if you simply plan for your hamster’s arrival in advance.
When it comes to feeding your hamster, commercially available hamster food and hamster treats will provide them with ample nutrition. If you plan on feeding them some vegetables or other scraps, you must absolutely make sure that there are no pesticides on them. Hamsters are very delicate creatures and even the tiniest amount of pesticide can have disastrous, even fatal, results. For this reason, you should never feed a hamster grass clippings, as well as many other things from your lawn that regularly come in contact with these dangerous chemicals.
The amount and quality of water available to your hamster is essential for his health. You will want to make sure a clean, fresh supply of water is readily available at all times. There are water bottles which attach to the side of the hamster cages and are a great way to provide them with the liquids that they need. However, water at room temperature does grow bacteria easily, so make sure you empty the bottle daily, rinse it out and refill with fresh water. Although your hamster is not going to drink a lot of water, it must always be clean and in sufficient amounts.
There are lots of hamster accessories. Hamsters, like other pets, need to have exercise regularly to help with digestion and overall health. Providing them wheels to run on or having a hamster ball to run around the house in is good for them. The tubing and cages come in a variety of colors, shapes and sizes. You can create straight pathways to other larger home areas or curve them around to reenter the same cage. Most of the caging is plastic and your hamster will try to chew or claw free. You will want to monitor their activity when you clean the cage to make sure they are not producing a hole. Some hamster owners go with a metal wire cage with tiny slits to avoid the chewing escape.

Hamsters make great pets. Although it's tempting to want to handle them often, this should be kept to a minimum. Hamsters can have a tendency to bite when they are scared or uncomfortable with handling, so it is important to handle them at least once a day. Remember to use caution with young children, and teach them to wash their hands before and after handling to help keep themselves and their furry friend healthy.

Do you have your own furry hamster? What other tips do you have on how to best keep your cuddly friend healthy and properly care for? Please comment and share your tips with us.

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