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Old 10-24-2012, 09:55 AM   #1
elly
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Question New hamster taming / jumping off bed

I have noticed a lot of people can 'snuggle' with their hams, and act as if they actually want to and enjoyed being picked up and handled. I have had Maria for two weeks, and she has never bitten me, comes to my hand to sniff me, and will lick/eat food off of my hands but tries to scurry away when i try to pick her up, and squirms. She tolerates it, but I can tell she does not enjoy it. She even urinated on me once, which might be my own fault since I didnt give her a chance to pee before i picked her up, but how have other people tamed their hamsters to the point of them actually enjoying interaction?

Also, I had Maria out on my bed lastnight, and she seemed to do rather good, just slowly poked around under pillows and stuffed animals and blankets, and everytime she got anywhere close to the edges id block her, but i kept her at a good distance. Has anyone had any of their hams jump off the bed or any other height? My other hamster would run as fast as he could to get away and attempt to jump off the bed, and Maria is more cautious, but I am still worried to have her play about my bed without my hand right next to her at all times.
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Old 10-24-2012, 10:09 AM   #2
kyrilliondaemon
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Default Re: New hamster taming / jumping off bed

Practice. The more used they get to being picked up the more they learn to relax and to see it as a chance for more playtime instead of being scary.
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Old 10-25-2012, 05:36 AM   #3
Nush
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Default Re: New hamster taming / jumping off bed

Sometimes hamsters would pee on someone as a way of defence. It takes time to train your hamsters and she might have been scared when you picked her up.

If she doesn't bite, try to put treats on your hand and see if she'll walk on it to get the treat. Do it gradually, extending the distance between the treat and her until one day she'll feel confident enough to walk on the hand. Once they get comfortable with the hand, it's easier to scoop them up.

The other thing that worked for me is I put Maximo in a book shelf to explore. Whenever he wants to climb on top of the books, I offer my hand as a ladder. Now every time he wants to go in the book shelf, he goes to sit on my hand
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Old 10-25-2012, 06:25 AM   #4
HollyHamster
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Default Re: New hamster taming / jumping off bed

When I first had Holly, she managed to get out of her ball and was wandering about on the floor of my bedroom. I went to pick her up and she urinated on me, a natural fear response, then promptly chomped down on my thumb to further show her fear. It was my fault because I went to quickly with my movements and made more of a swift snatch than a slow and gentle cupping and picking up movement.

Since then she has become quite tame, to the point where she is quite relaxed when I gently pick her up. I can even give her a little snuggle and a soft little kiss on the top of her head and she is fine.

My preferred method is the bathtub method. Take a towel and spread it on the bottom of the bathtub. Then put some toys and/or climby things in there, the hamster, and finally yourself. Let the hamster explore your legs and arms at his/her leisure and comfort level. Make sure to be relaxed, speak softly and gently, and to make slow and deliberate movements. Also, do plenty of coaxing with treats too. After a few sessions, your hamster will be more comfortable with your smell and start to realize your large size and whatnot aren't to be feared because your not out to eat him/her and they will be relaxed when handled.

To get the hamster out of the cage to begin with, use a hamster ball, cardboard tube (toilet paper tubes might be too small for a syrian), or cup. I don't recommend using gloves as the method that goes along with that is rather forceful for my taste and doesn't allow the hamster to move at a pace they are comfortable with. This also increases unneeded stress, which only complicates things.

Another thing to remember is to wash your hands before handling a hamster as you might have the scent of food on them. This entices the hamster, and because they don't have very good eyesight and a very good sense of smell, they might mistake your fingers for a tasty treat and take a nibble.

Last edited by HollyHamster; 10-25-2012 at 06:37 AM.
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Old 10-25-2012, 07:19 AM   #5
cactus
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Default Re: New hamster taming / jumping off bed

I can't think of much to add to the advice already given but I know with my boys that they were very different in their taming process'. Thor was already tame when I had him as he was a rescue at 6 months old. I waited until he was comfortable in his cage before I started handling him, he still hates being picked up at first but I'm very gentle with him and make sure to safely cup my hands when I pick him up. As soon as he's been cupped for a moment or two he stops wriggling and realises it's a good thing to come out of his cage. He's started coming to my hands to sit on them now when I put them into the cage. As for Loki, I have to let him play in his ball first and then I let him crawl out of his ball and onto my lap. He'll play happily there for a while and then it's back into the cage where I let him play with my hands a bit longer and then he's happy to play by himself after that. It's just a matter of getting to know what your hamster likes doing, I'd never try to pick up Loki and haul him out of his cage like I do with Thor, he's get frightened and run off so I scoop him with the ball and he's happy with that. Just have an experiment and see what your hammy would rather do and have plenty of patients too, though it seems like you're on the right track already
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Old 10-28-2012, 08:30 AM   #6
elly
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Default Re: New hamster taming / jumping off bed

Quote:
Originally Posted by cactus View Post
I can't think of much to add to the advice already given but I know with my boys that they were very different in their taming process'. Thor was already tame when I had him as he was a rescue at 6 months old. I waited until he was comfortable in his cage before I started handling him, he still hates being picked up at first but I'm very gentle with him and make sure to safely cup my hands when I pick him up. As soon as he's been cupped for a moment or two he stops wriggling and realises it's a good thing to come out of his cage. He's started coming to my hands to sit on them now when I put them into the cage. As for Loki, I have to let him play in his ball first and then I let him crawl out of his ball and onto my lap. He'll play happily there for a while and then it's back into the cage where I let him play with my hands a bit longer and then he's happy to play by himself after that. It's just a matter of getting to know what your hamster likes doing, I'd never try to pick up Loki and haul him out of his cage like I do with Thor, he's get frightened and run off so I scoop him with the ball and he's happy with that. Just have an experiment and see what your hammy would rather do and have plenty of patients too, though it seems like you're on the right track already
She has begun to be more calm already, and also, my neighbors dogs are named Thor and Loki :P
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