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Old 01-08-2017, 05:21 PM   #1
hamsterbasil
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Default New hamster behaviour- help! x

Hi, about a week ago I got my lovely syrian hamster called Basil. He was very nervous and jumpy so I left him to get used to his home for 3 days, then I started bonding with him- he started waiting for me at around 11pm every night. I thought we had quite a good bond, and he also didnt seem to mind at all when I put my hands in his cage. But today I tried to spot clean his cage and change a few toys as I felt he had settled in. He seemed okay, but a little cautious.
I had the door open and he approached it, so i put my hand flat out for him to sniff and take a treat, he sniffed it then went bonkers!
I have never seen this before (and I have had 3 syrian hamsters before!). He ran away and started frantically climbing his bars. His ears were up, and he didnt look scared but I just don't know what was up? Was he scared or something else?
I spoke to him softly for a bit and then left the room and he calmed down but seemed very different to the shy hamster I know! He seems very adventurous all of a sudden! But he also seems to trust me a bit less!
Im very worried- can anybody help me out?
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Old 01-09-2017, 12:23 PM   #2
Winterjay
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Default Re: New hamster behaviour- help! x

Did you have any scents on your hand like lotion, soap, food, ect? Hamsters are very sensitive to smell. Even if you shower or wash your hands with a scent free soap they'll act strange because you no longer smell like you.

Did you handle any other pets before touching him? Sometimes male hamsters will change behavior if they smell another male hamster (or any male rodent really).

Did you introduce anything new in the room, particularity around his cage? Nothing is too minor. What you put around their cage can effect them alot. I once put a lava lamp (its not bright) on the same shelf as Thistle and she had a behavior change (bar chewing, restlessness, awake at odd hours), and the lamp was at least a cage length away and was off more often than it was on.

How old is he? He could just be maturing or under going a hormonal change. I have a female winter white dwarf (Rose) that once she hit maturity began to act "abnormally". She's healthy, well fed and entertained, and has plenty of space she just changed her behavior.

Hope that can give you some ideas. Be mindful of Basils' surroundings and what your touch/do before you handle him or his stuff. Do you use a chemical cleaner to spot clean?
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Old 01-09-2017, 12:46 PM   #3
Drago
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Default Re: New hamster behaviour- help! x

It sounds to me like general settling in behavior. In fact, your hand being in the cage may have had nothing to do with it at all. Your hamster being adventurous may actually be a sign of stress, meaning he needs more time to settle in. Three days can be an okay amount of time to let them settle in, but every hamster is different and some may need a much longer time to settle. Maybe leaving him for a few more days would help? All in all, it doesn't sound too unusual to me as you haven't had him long so his personality might just be shining through and this is what you're seeing. Keep an eye on him and let him get used to you and living in your house
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Old 01-09-2017, 02:08 PM   #4
hamsterbasil
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Default Re: New hamster behaviour- help! x

I washed my hands with water only! No other pets were handled, but i did move a light so maybe that is what set him off! Poor thing I hope he wasn't too startled!
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Old 01-09-2017, 02:15 PM   #5
Winterjay
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Default Re: New hamster behaviour- help! x

I also agree with drago. Maybe just give him more time to settle (a week?). Then start working with him slowly. Let us know how it turns out!
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"Some of the best things in life are the smallest."

House elf to Brier-rose, Thistle-blossom, Willow, Holly, Birch, and Alder.
RIP Sir Henry of Bellevue and Molasses.
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Old 01-09-2017, 04:45 PM   #6
hamsterbasil
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Default Re: New hamster behaviour- help! x

thanks so much I was so worried I had done something awfully wrong! He seemed okay today, but I will just let him be besides giving him his food! Will let you know what happens! Thanks again x
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Old 01-09-2017, 04:58 PM   #7
Drago
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Default Re: New hamster behaviour- help! x

Alright, enjoy your new little one!
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started, hamster, scared, put, cage, bit, syrian, left, hamsters, ran, sniff, flat, adventurous, treat, sudden, shy, sniffed, bonkers, trust, worried-, hand, softly, spoke, bars, climbing

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