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Old 10-17-2019, 07:23 AM   #1
Newborn Pup
Join Date: Jul 2019
Location: Scotland
Posts: 7
Default Dwarf hamster spends a LOT of time in her burrows

Hi everyone My dwarf hamster is a super sweet little girl. She's a little fidgety but her temperament is wonderful and hand taming is going well. I do however seem to have run into a problem: she spends the vast majority of her time in her burrows when the lights are on, and she doesn't seem particularly interested in play time.

She has a very large bin cage that exceeds well over the recommended minimum, and about 7 inches of kaytee paper bedding all around the cage. Lots of wooden toys and chews and a nice 10 inch wheel. She LOVES to burrow. Loves it. She's got about 5 little entryways scattered all around the cage. It makes me very happy that she's able to fulfill her natural instincts.

She likes her burrows a little too much, though. To the point where I only get to see her for a minute or two after I turn the lights on before she dives back under. When I try to take her out the cage for play time she's very keen to go back to her enclosure. She paws at the walls of her play pen and does little laps around the parameters etc, so I end up feeling kinda bad for her and put her back after only 5-10 minutes. Granted, I've only done this maybe 4 or 5 times. Do you think she'd learn to enjoy play time if I gently forced her to try more, or...?

I am well aware that dwarf hamsters love to burrow and that they're mostly active in the dark, but I've never had a hamster that's quite as opposed to light as my little girl. I've had her for about 4 months now. Does anyone have any experience with hamsters like this and any tips for how to coax her out of her comfort zones without being unfair to her?
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Old 10-17-2019, 07:56 AM   #2
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Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Belfast, Northern Ireland
Posts: 3,147
Default Re: Dwarf hamster spends a LOT of time in her burrows

Short answer is food.

I have one just like that, she hates having the big light on. She will stay out a bit longer if I just use a lamp but the only way to get her to stick around is to scatter her food about so she has to search for it. If I'm lucky I can then coax her onto my hand with something delicious.

Honestly tho she was the same with out of cage time in a playpen, she just never enjoyed it. Hates when she has to come out of her cage on cleaning day. You could try yours with out of cage scatter feeding to see if it gets here away from just trying to escape?
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