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Old 09-23-2017, 01:53 AM   #1
sophiedoe
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Default Worried about my ham's behaviour

Hi everyone,

I've been gone for a while, very busy with a new job, but things have been going well with Kalli. After lots of trying and lots of biting, we have kind of decided maybe she is more of a watching ham, and she has seemed pretty happy with her routine of playing in her big Barney cage, and coming out in her ball and in the bath.

But recently, she has been acting quite differently. We have always had some problems with her chewing bars, but using pegs mostly got her to stop. Putting in a free standing water bottle helped, but she kept knocking it over, so I have had to go back to one on the bars (so she wouldn't be all night without a drink) but this seems to encourage the bar chewing. It is now quite bad, she chews in various places along the front of the cage. I keep putting pegs on but it doesn't seem to be helping. I regularly give her new cardboard things to chew and she does chew them a lot, but now also the bars. I know this is a common problem not easily solved, but any more advise would be welcome. She also climbs the bars a lot and even 'spidermans' across the roof of the cage :/. Her wheel is working fine and she runs on it lots still.

Another strange thing is her sleep pattern. She used to have a fairly fixed routine of waking up at about 8pm, and she would always be asleep when I got up at 7am, and we wouldn't see a peep of her through the day. As the evenings got shorter, she started waking up a bit earlier, which I wasn't too surprised about, but recently she is often still awake at 9am! She is awake right now, nearly 10am. Is this something to be concerned about?

She has also stopped wanting to come into her ball - she always used to jump straight in as soon as we put it in the cage and run around, she seemed to enjoy it. But now she doesn't seem keen, she'll sniff it and then turn away. So she hasn't been doing ball time recently.

And lastly - we had a bit of an incident where I had the top of her cage open, turned around, turned back and she was climbing out. Her cage is on a table and I didn't want her to fall, so I gently lifted her around the middle and put her back in. This was the first time I've picked her up, and she seemed okay but I noticed some wet stuff on the bars - it looked like she had peed, but it was a different consistency and smelled REALLY strongly. Is this some kind of natural response, from the shock of it all?

Sorry for the millions of questions, thank you as always for your kind advice.

Sophie.
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Old 09-23-2017, 10:58 PM   #2
cypher
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Default Re: Worried about my ham's behaviour

Have you had a look through this thread?
Managing Bar Chewers
You might find some helpful ideas there.
A lot of hams don't enjoy being in the ball so it would be worth making or buying a playpen so she can come out & have somewhere to play & explore (put some toys in for her & maybe a wheel. you could hide a few teats to find too) & she can also interact with you in a playpen which she can't do in the ball.
If she's reluctant to get into the ball & you're not able to just pick her up then try to find something else like a tube or something she's happy to climb into to transport her.
I wouldn't worry about the change in her sleeping pattern too much, as long as she's ok otherwise, they do tend to change routines at times.
Wet stuff on the bars could just be from her scent glands.
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Old 10-03-2017, 10:42 AM   #3
SunnyOy
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Default Re: Worried about my ham's behaviour

My hamsters were having the same situation. My Dumpling used to chew A LOT, and I called him Destructor! However, I bought another cage and connect the current one with this one, he stopped bitting and enjoyed playing in the new cage. Sometimes, Dumpling still bites and that is because he wants to get out of the cage and to catch my attention.

About sleeping pattern, both of my hamsters they wake up much later recently and they stayed awake when it is 8am. However, there's nothing to be worried about, because they sometimes sleep in the night a bit so they become less sleepy in the morning.
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Old 10-09-2017, 12:54 PM   #4
sophiedoe
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Default Re: Worried about my ham's behaviour

Thanks both. We ended up taking her to the vet to be sure, but she was fine. We moved her into a different cage (two Samla boxes from IKEA stacked together) which I think is good in that she canít chew bars, but she seems to miss the climbing. She goes round the sides trying to jump up.

I donít know if itís better for her to be in her old Barney, in which we tried everything to get her to stop chewing but couldnít succeed, but she could climb, or in her new Samla bins, where she canít chew or climb. Hmmm.
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Old 10-09-2017, 03:12 PM   #5
SunnyOy
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Default Re: Worried about my ham's behaviour

Quote:
Originally Posted by sophiedoe View Post
Thanks both. We ended up taking her to the vet to be sure, but she was fine. We moved her into a different cage (two Samla boxes from IKEA stacked together) which I think is good in that she canít chew bars, but she seems to miss the climbing. She goes round the sides trying to jump up.

I donít know if itís better for her to be in her old Barney, in which we tried everything to get her to stop chewing but couldnít succeed, but she could climb, or in her new Samla bins, where she canít chew or climb. Hmmm.
Congratulations by knowing she is fine.
LOL, how come you have exactly the same situation I had! I connected Dumpling's old bar cage with another plastic container and he jumps a lot on the side of the container. However, he still has the access to the old cage to climb. The thing is maybe your hammie does not want to climb, but instead, she wants to go out to explore? Female hammies are really more active in all sense and if you still want her to climb, you could simply place more wooden bridges, hurdles, puzzles, etc. for her in the new cage. She simply wants to exhaust her energy and entertain herself by jumping up, since maybe she has got not many toys to play with.
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Old 10-10-2017, 01:20 PM   #6
sophiedoe
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Default Re: Worried about my ham's behaviour

Thanks SunnyOy. She has loaaaads of toys in her new Samlas. The trouble is I donít want to put too many high climbing things in as it gives her access to chew the plastic edges where the mesh is. She is an unstoppable chewer! She does chew her things which are meant for chewing (wood and cardboard) but also tries to chew the plastic edges a lot.

I think the main thing is, should I put her back in the Barney, where she seemed generally happier, but chewed the bars, or keep her in the Samlas. She doesnít seem to go to the bottom Samla bin loads, which is where her wheel is.

It just seems impossible to make her happy and not give her bars to chew at he same time :í(
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Old 10-12-2017, 09:38 AM   #7
DrropS
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Default Re: Worried about my ham's behaviour

Quote:
Originally Posted by sophiedoe View Post
Thanks SunnyOy. She has loaaaads of toys in her new Samlas. The trouble is I donít want to put too many high climbing things in as it gives her access to chew the plastic edges where the mesh is. She is an unstoppable chewer! She does chew her things which are meant for chewing (wood and cardboard) but also tries to chew the plastic edges a lot.

I think the main thing is, should I put her back in the Barney, where she seemed generally happier, but chewed the bars, or keep her in the Samlas. She doesnít seem to go to the bottom Samla bin loads, which is where her wheel is.

It just seems impossible to make her happy and not give her bars to chew at he same time :í(
Are you keeping the samla boxes on top of each other? if so try to fix them somehow to be together on side ways and this way gain the floor space. Otherwise she doesn't have space enough to run, the floor space is what counts for her
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Old 10-13-2017, 07:42 PM   #8
SunnyOy
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Wink Re: Worried about my ham's behaviour

Quote:
Originally Posted by sophiedoe View Post
Thanks SunnyOy. She has loaaaads of toys in her new Samlas. The trouble is I donít want to put too many high climbing things in as it gives her access to chew the plastic edges where the mesh is. She is an unstoppable chewer! She does chew her things which are meant for chewing (wood and cardboard) but also tries to chew the plastic edges a lot.

I think the main thing is, should I put her back in the Barney, where she seemed generally happier, but chewed the bars, or keep her in the Samlas. She doesnít seem to go to the bottom Samla bin loads, which is where her wheel is.

It just seems impossible to make her happy and not give her bars to chew at he same time :í(
If she really chews everything she sees, maybe you should consider to let her out to run in the ball more often for longer time? She then will get more tired and probably reduce the time chewing? I also place the bath sand inside a round plastic box which was an ice cream container and I put it inside the cage for my hamster to dig whenever he feels like. I do find most of my hamsters do not really like the toys I bought for them. They are basically into wheels, corner digging, sand digging, and running ball, that's all.
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