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Old 05-18-2019, 02:04 PM   #1
Amaranth
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Angry Annoying Little hamster

So, my fiance's hamster, Teddy, is always chewing on his cage bars and his ham tubes at night, even though we make sure he has chew toys and food in his bowl. He has a chew log, we've found several safe sticks for him to gnaw on, and he has a little hanging chew toy. Why is he still dead set on his cage and tubes?
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Last edited by souffle; 05-20-2019 at 02:01 AM. Reason: language
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Old 05-18-2019, 02:24 PM   #2
Shannonmcn
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Default Re: Annoying Little Jerk

Well for a start that wheel is much to small for him. Syrians usually need a 12" wheel to be comfortable or it will hurt their back. Without a wheel he can't run off any of his excess energy which absolutely explains the bar chewing.

He isn't doing it to be annoying. He's stressed. They're incredibly active animals, in the wild they run up to 5 miles foraging and exploring their territory so he absolutely needs a way to get some exercise.
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Old 05-18-2019, 02:27 PM   #3
mangoandmimi
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Default Re: Annoying Little Jerk

It's because there doesn't look to be enough enrichment or floor area, hamsters need more than just chews and food in their bowls to be happy. Not sure exactly what cage that is but ideally it would be over 100x50cm, my Syrians haven't been happy in anything smaller and like you're witnessing, have bar chewed out of frustration. Bar chewing is so very common it's not that he's doing it to be annoying or anything of the sort, it's a stress behaviour that stems from a lack of enrichment or things to do.
The wheel, I think I already mentioned on another of your threads but it needs to be over 11 inches in diameter. That size you have looks too small and will be uncomfortable if not painful to run on. Cannot see how much bedding you have either but again it should ideally be a bare minimum of 8 inches to allow for burrowing. Appropriate sized cage, wheel and adequate bedding depth are all essential for a happy and healthy hamster.
Apologies if that was a bit negative. Plenty to think about and an upgrade will be well worth it.
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Old 05-18-2019, 05:05 PM   #4
Amaranth
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Default Re: Annoying Little Jerk

I shall relay this information to my fiance
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Old 05-18-2019, 05:43 PM   #5
Serendipity7000
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Default Re: Annoying Little Jerk

I think he is trying to communicate that something is not right for him. It isn't fair to call the hamster an annoying jerk when he just needs the right environment to be happy. His cage looks a bit small and his wheel is too, as has been pointed out. If you were in a prison cell you might be chewing at the bars too! His cage isn't tiny, but it probably doesn't give enough enrichment or allow normal behaviours. So he chews the bars to try and escape because he is stressed and unhappy and can't enjoy anything.

He could do with a cage or tank at least 80cm by 50cm floor area -one large area. And a 10 to 12" diameter wheel, 4 to 5" depth of substrate, and a house that is dark inside and big enough to build a nest in.

They can't talk and tell you what they need, so bar chewing is telling you he is stressed, but you'll get plenty of tips on here xxx
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Old 05-20-2019, 01:19 AM   #6
Natasha95
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Default Re: Annoying Little Jerk

I noticed that he's being fed lab blocks. Those are good nutritionally, but if he's bored, a healthy seed mix and sometimes some fresh fruits and vegetables can add a little bit of enrichment by encouraging his natural foraging instincts, in addition to everyone else's suggestions.
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Old 05-23-2019, 02:43 PM   #7
Amaranth
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Default Re: Annoying Little hamster

We've been mixing some dried corn and sunflower seeds in with his food, and twice a day he gets a peanut
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Old 05-23-2019, 04:05 PM   #8
AmityvilleHams
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Default Re: Annoying Little hamster

Corn, sunflower seeds, and some peanuts really aren't adequate for dietary enrichment unfortunately. A proper seed mix(Higgins Vita Garden being the best in the US, with the addition of some Pure Bites freeze dried meats or shrimp for nutritional adequacy as it does need a small protein boost)is far superior to any pellet or lab block and is actually a species appropriate diet!
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chew, tubes, cage, safe, found, bowl, log, sticks, dead, set, toy, hanging, gnaw, teddy, chewing, hamster, fiances, jerk, bars, ham, make, annoying, toys, night, food

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