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Old 08-09-2018, 12:31 PM   #1
ol nipper
Newborn Pup
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 4
Default Chinese hamsters being sold in pairs?


I've just put down a deposit on two Chinese girls that are being sold as a pair. They're fifteen weeks old and the last of a litter of six -- according to the shop owner (a very knowledgeable woman who has a ton of her own hamsters and whose advice for my Syrian has always been excellent . . . which is why this perplexes me), says they've been by themselves for a long time now and she won't sell them separately.

The two currently live together and apparently like it that way. This goes against everything I've heard and read about them and I'm slightly concerned. I'm supposed to be picking them both up in the next few days and am very worried that I'm going to have to split them up. They're sisters and sleep in the same bed; when my fiancee and I went to see them they were very happy to play together, grooming each other, etc.

One of them is very, very laid back (sleeping a lot, etc) and the other is the more active of the two. They're both very healthy but apparently 'have scraps' and 'make up' afterwards. They're being sold as a sociable species . . . has anybody else had experience cohabbing two females? I'm leaving this one to you.
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Old 08-09-2018, 12:55 PM   #2
Dwarf whisperer
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Join Date: May 2014
Location: Wales UK
Posts: 24,001
Default Re: Chinese hamsters being sold in pairs?

Hi & welcome to the forum.

Chinese are considered a solitary species now, these two are still young so they may be happy to stay together for a while yet. Females do tend to be more territorial than males so the chances are they will want their own space as they mature & will need to be separated.
You could keep them together for a now & see how they go closely monitoring them for any signs of falling out or you could separate them straight away if you feel happier about doing it that way, it may take them a while to adjust but they will be fine living alone.
Slave to Míriel, Zak, Calyanwë & Gusto.
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Old 08-09-2018, 01:01 PM   #3
The Cuddler of Cuteness
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Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: United States
Posts: 3,288
Default Re: Chinese hamsters being sold in pairs?

Hi and welcome to HC! Congrats on getting two Chinese hams! I have never had a Chinese ham although I have always wanted one. Therefore, as Cypher is a true expert on all things Chinesey, I would personally follow all of her advice. I wish you and your two little ham sisters the very best. I look forward to seeing you around the forum and getting to know and see your hams.

"...she fell into a deep sleep, and dreamed the dreams of the dreamtree." ~Stephen Cosgrove
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Old 08-10-2018, 02:04 AM   #4
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Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Bath, UK
Posts: 3,552
Default Re: Chinese hamsters being sold in pairs?

I've had some experience of keeping Chinese in pairs. My first two, who were supposed to have been brothers were sold to me as a pair because I was told they were a social species and being brothers, they were better off left together. At the time I didn't know any different so I went with what they said. Unfortunately they fell out after about six months of living together and I don't want to be too graphic but when Chinese fall out, things can escalate very quickly and sometimes without warning. Two of my current lads Jack and Alex fell out very suddenly at seven weeks old and I've had a mother, who was cohabiting nicely with her daughter for a day or two suddenly change her mind so there is really no way of knowing how long they'll live together for.

The fact that they're already squabbling could be a sign that they are going to fall out at some point so I think it's best to be prepared to separate. Signs that it's more than just squabbling include one hamster being much larger than the other, fur loss around the tail area or the face and obviously any wounds would mean that separation should be done immediately.

Good luck and I hope you enjoy your Chineseys. They may not like each other's company very much but they can be very loving towards their humans.
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