How To Care For A Russian Dwarf Hamster
Russian Dwarf Hamsters make wonderful pets and they can be kept in groups unlike Syrian Hamsters which must be kept alone. I suggest separating female Russian Dwarf Hamsters from the males when they have young but some people leave them together with no problems, Females will attack males to protect their young so you should keep this in mind.
I have a large cage that has several built in tunnels and nest boxes and I never have a problem but the cage is quite large.
In The Wild This Hamster Changes To White In The Winter Months To Hide Its Self
In the wild the Russian Dwarf Hamster will change color in the winter to avoid predators trying to eat it. In the wild they dig burrows or tunnels that lead to large cavities where they raise their young , sleep, and hide from predators. These burrows can have as many as seven entrances but in the wintertime the Russian Dwarf Hamster will close up all but one entrance to their burrows in the winter to keep out the cold. By doing this and lining their burrows and den with animal fur they find they can keep their burrows and den at 65 degrees in the coldest winter months. With the outside temperatures reaching 50 below this is amazing.
Here's an interesting fact for you. Russian Dwarf Hamsters have fur on the bottoms of their feet which protects their feet from the cold in winter. The largest population of Russian Dwarf Hamsters is in western Siberia. Which is one of the coldest places on earth.
Russian Dwarf Hamsters Are Easy To Tame
Russian Dwarf Hamsters are easy to tame and they showed up about twenty years ago in American pet shops where they have become quite popular. The care of Russian Dwarf Hamsters is very similar to other hamsters but they can escape through much smaller holes than larger hamsters. So you have to be especially careful with the type of cage you try to keep them in.
Damage To The Hamster From Sharp Objects
You need to keep in mind when keeping Russian Dwarf Hamsters that sharp objects can damage their cheek pouches so you need to be careful of what you are offering them to eat. I put commercial hamster food in the food processor and chop it fine before I give it to them. Never give them anything that has sharp edges or can damage them. I also cut their wooden chew sticks down to about the size of a mans thumb and if I see sharp edges I discard that particular chew stick.
Breeding Time For Russian Dwarf Hamsters
It is only during breeding time and the rearing of young that you may see Russian Dwarf Hamsters show aggressive behavior. If your going to breed your Russian Dwarf Hamsters remove the female to her own enclosure after you know she is pregnant. I also fasten a cuttle-bone to the inside of her tank or enclosure for her to chew on. This helps to keep her healthy and gives her some much needed calcium.
Russian Dwarf Hamsters Can Breed And Produce Young At Two Weeks Of Age
You should know and make a note that Russian Dwarf Hamster females can breed and have young at two weeks of age. Yes two weeks of age so be sure to make a note of this. Hamsters can and do breed at a very young age. If you do not want lots of baby hamsters keep your male and female Russian Dwarf Hamsters apart. I keep one large colony for females and one large colony for males.
Her babies will be born after 36 days and she will attack a male hamster to protect her young. This is the main reason for moving her to her own enclosure or tank. In the wild the male will just hide from her. But keep in mind that male Russian Dwarf Hamsters will kill and eat the young. So you will want to keep him away until the young are at least 28 days old. After that the young will be able to protect themselves.
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Diet For Your Russian Dwarf Hamster
The diet for your Russian Dwarf Hamster is very important. You need to feed them on as natural a diet as possible. I can not stress enough that you need to slow down and read the label on their food. As with other hamsters you need to feed them a high quality diet of high quality hamster food, grains, dry corn with no additives or preservatives, sunflower seeds, and timothy hay. You do not want to feed your hamster any type of food with any preservatives or additives. Read your labels. This is very important. More important than you could ever know.
I know I keep saying it but be sure that you read labels and be sure that you feed any hamster including Russian Dwarf Hamsters as natural a diet as possible. You do not want
Water, No Chlorine Or Other Additives
You need to use bottled water for your Russian Dwarf Hamsters. Never I repeat never give them tap water. Only use chlorine free tap water. This is very important and you should always keep this in mind.
Eighty Degrees Or Lower For Your Russian Dwarf Hamster
Your Russian Dwarf Hamsters need to be kept between 60 degrees and eighty degrees. Below 60 degrees is to cold and above 80 degrees is to warm. So be sure to keep this in mind at all times.
Russian Dwarf Hamsters Love Lot's Of Room
You should buy the biggest tank, enclosure, or cage you can afford. While it's true that dwarf hamsters are small they love lots of room. In my large dwarf hamster enclosure I have several built in underground burrows for them to go in, nest, and play. I built my enclosure and my dwarf hamsters love it.
Bedding For Your Hamsters
I strongly advise against using wood shavings as they can cause problems with your hamster. Wood shavings also contain oils and these oils can also be harmful to your hamsters. I use shredded newspaper for my hamsters bedding but there are lots of commercial hamster bedding products being sold. Two I would recommend are CareFresh and Crittercare. Both of these are great products and both products are safe for your hamsters.
Clean Your Hamster Cage Or Enclosure Once A Week
You can of course scoop out any dirty or wet spots on a daily basis. You should put the hamsters in a safe place and clean their cage or enclosure thoroughly at least once a week. This includes changing the bedding and washing the interior of the cage or enclosure with warm soapy water.
Commercial Grade Hamster Food
You should buy and use a high quality commercial grade hamster food in a block or in pellets. You can offer a seed mixture also but only offer the seed mixture about every other day. If you can purchase it locally offer timothy hay about once a week. Never feed your hamster chocolate, alcohol, or candy. Once a week offer the hamster a little peeled apple or carrot. When you give a treat scatter it out especially if there are several dwarf hamsters in the cage or enclosure. Dwarf hamsters love sunflower seeds but only give them to your hamsters about every other week. Scatter them around and you'll see your dwarf hamsters gather them up quickly. The high fat content in the sunflower seeds is why you need to only give them to your hamsters about every other week. Remember that to keep your hamsters teeth healthy they need mineral blocks and wooden chew sticks to chew on in the cage with them all the time.
Don't Bother Your Russian Dwarf Hamsters Much During The Day
Your Russian Dwarf Hamsters are nocturnal so basically leave them alone during the day. Your hamsters are going to be active and noisy at night. Don't put your hamsters into your bedroom or I guarantee you they are going to keep you awake at night. Unlike pet rats or mice hamsters will not ride around on your shoulder. They will also run off if you give them the opportunity so always be sure you keep a close eye on any hamster that is out of its cage.
Wash Your Hands When Ever You Handle Your Hamsters
Some though not all hamsters can carry diseases so be sure to wash your hands well with warm soap and water any time you handle your hamsters or work with them.
Hamster Care Tips And Information
Never wake up a sleeping hamster and try to handle it. You will scare it or startle it and it may bite you.
If your keeping a group of Russian Dwarf Hamsters together in a tank or enclosure be sure to provide at least two nesting boxes that are dark inside and have only a small entrance.
Give your hamster lots of tender loving care and keep doing research on your Russian Dwarf Hamsters. Try to learn everything you can about your Russian Dwarf Hamsters.
Thanks For Reading My Hub Page On Russian Dwarf Hamsters
I appreciate you reading my Hub Page on Russian Dwarf Hamsters. I truly hope you learned something and I hope you have fun with your Russian Dwarf Hamsters. If you have questions, tips, or suggestions please feel free to post them now. Again thanks for reading.
Please Post Your Comments, Tips, Or Suggestions About Russian Dwarf Hamsters. And Thanks For Reading.
Addison on February 27, 2015:
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