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Old 06-12-2019, 08:09 AM   #1
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Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Manitoba, Canada
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Unhappy How much squabbling is too much? (Time to separate?)

I recently rescued a Male Campbell's dwarf pair from an accidental/unwanted litter. They were weaned and turned over to me at 3.5 weeks, and I did not witness their first squabble until a couple of weeks into ownership.

I have been keeping a very watchful eye on their fights and they seem to be over dominance (no signs of injury). However, I find it seems the dominant hamster doesn't know when to stop. He will flip the submissive ham over, let him squeak, then not 5 minutes later he will do it again, chasing him around constantly. And doing this multiple, multiple times in the night (the cage is near my bedroom, so I hear everything that happens very easily.)
To me, this almost seems like it's happening too often? I have doubles of everything, and they have over 1000 sq. Inches of space. I also have a backup cage ready to separate at a moments notice.

They still play together, bathe together, and sleep together approximately 50% of the time.

Although there hasn't been any blood drawn, I feel as though the submissive ham is probably stressed with his brother constantly doing this to him. It is also annoying for me to hear this 5 times per night, and have to get up each time to see if all is okay.

What are you guys' opinions? What would you do?
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Old 06-12-2019, 08:21 AM   #2
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Default Re: How much squabbling is too much? (Time to separate?)

Just separate now and never have to worry about a hamster dying or being seriously injured! Pairs falling out is so common that it seems to be the standard, no matter what steps people take to prevent it.
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Old 06-12-2019, 09:07 AM   #3
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Join Date: May 2019
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Default Re: How much squabbling is too much? (Time to separate?)

I would split them. Less stress for them, no risk of them hurting or killing
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Old 06-12-2019, 10:35 AM   #4
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Location: UK
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Default Re: How much squabbling is too much? (Time to separate?)

Yes I think they do need separating. It is only going to get worse from here on so separating them earlier rather than later is going to be in their best interests. They will settle just fine within a week or so living by themselves.
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Old 06-12-2019, 12:08 PM   #5
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Location: Hampshire
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Default Re: How much squabbling is too much? (Time to separate?)

I had a pair of roborovski hamsters and they behaved in a very similar way to your two.

I separated them and one was immediately muchnhapoier ( the less dominant one), the other was fine within two days.

Not woth the risk imo.
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Old 06-15-2019, 03:47 PM   #6
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: North of England
Posts: 20,075
Default Re: How much squabbling is too much? (Time to separate?)

The dominance submissive behaviour is stressful - I agree separate them now. One day it can be a bit of squabbling and the next day you can find a seriously maimed hamster or a dead hamster. They will do fine separately. You'll need another cage asap. If you have a plastic storage bin like an Ikea Samla bin (the 78cm one) that would do as a temporary cage with the lid off, until you can get another cage or make a bin cage.
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