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Old 11-08-2019, 01:43 PM   #1
sushi_78
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Location: England
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Default Roborovski hamster isn't very active

I adopted a Roborovski hamster 9 days ago. She seems very healthy and is becoming more tame. However, she isn't as active as I was led to believe a Robo should be. She spends her time sleeping, sitting in one corner and running on the wheel (which is quite active of course, but she doesn't explore the rest of her cage much). She doesn't dig at all, despite having enough bedding to do so. She doesn't chew apart from occasionally biting a pumice stone. She's had paper and tissues in her tank since the day I got her, still completely untouched. I know it's still early days, but is this all normal?

She's in one of those tanks with glass shelves at the moment, which doesn't seem to be working for her. She seems very nervous of the top shelf. I think this may possibly explain some of the inactivity. She's going to be upgraded to a Marrakesh terrarium next week. I'm hoping a larger tank all on one level will help her, but I'd appreciate any advice.
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Old 11-09-2019, 04:48 AM   #2
Ria P
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Default Re: Roborovski hamster isn't very active

I rarely see my Robo during the day and he gets up around midnight or even later meaning that he is most active when i'm asleep. That is normal though.

Do you expect your Robo to be active during the day or do you stay up during the night and watch her?


The new tank should make a difference and she should be much happier in there. I know the tank with the shelves you have now which i personally don't consider to be a suitable and safe habitat for a Robo. I can't see how they would manage to climb onto these glass shelves and why they would want to. Make sure that everything she needs is on ground level within easy reach. House, food, water, wheel and toys.

She may start to burrow when she's living on one floor level but saying that, one of my hamsters never burrows and never has. He perches on little shelves like a parrot. Hamsters have their likes and dislikes just like humans and don't always do what humans expect them to.

As long as she's healthy i wouldn't worry.
Wait and see what happens when she gets her new tank. The Marrakesh. Lucky girl!
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Old 11-09-2019, 08:14 AM   #3
sushi_78
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Default Re: Roborovski hamster isn't very active

She sleeps in the day of course but I watch her for a few hours each night and isn't very active then either.

I realise now that her tank isn't suitable for her at all (I'm going to get rid of it because it didn't work for my gerbils either). The bedding is high enough that she couldn't hurt herself by falling, but she definitely prefers being on the ground.
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Old 11-22-2019, 12:10 PM   #4
sushi_78
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Default Re: Roborovski hamster isn't very active

Just a quick update. I moved Pumpkin into her new tank, and she's doing much better. She wakes up a little earlier and spends less time on the wheel and more time pottering around the cage and generally exploring more. Of course she still spends the majority of the night on the wheel, but I think that's normal?

I have attached a picture of the new tank. Pumpkin seems very content, but I'm not sure if it is a little bare? Are there any other kinds of enrichment items Robos enjoy? She just has the one shelf now for her sand and food, and she is using that fine.

An unfortunate side effect of the move is that we have gone back to square one with taming. But hopefully with a little time she will calm down again.

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Old 11-22-2019, 06:57 PM   #5
Engel
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Default Re: Roborovski hamster isn't very active

That tank looks fab. Plenty deep enough to burrow. I would say it's a tad bare on top so maybe add some more hides and toys. Have you got a sand bath? Robos LOVE them. In the wild they'd be on the edge of deserts so there'd be sand and dry vegetation so maybe add some dried herbs or something for her to forage in.

I've added a pic of my current set up for ideas. I hope it helps
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File Type: jpg IMG_20191122_185659546.jpg (4.62 MB, 4 views)
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Old 11-23-2019, 02:27 AM   #6
Ria P
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Default Re: Roborovski hamster isn't very active

Lovely big tank! Lucky Pumpkin.

I agree with Engel. Robos love a sand bath and millet sprays to nibble on. I use a biscuit tin for a sand bath which has his wheel in it. You can order millet sprays online and the ones for budgies in the pet shop are suitable too. Pet shops sell plenty of herbs for enrichment. My Robo loves the log with the holes in it and zooms over and under the long bendy bridges.

Remember to support a large sand bath underneath because sand is heavy and a Robo may burrow under it. I use the Ferplast guinea pig houses minus the front panel as supprts. There's one burried under the substrate on each end of my Robo's tank to support the sand bath and ceramic mushroom. Here's a photo of my set up.
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Old 11-23-2019, 06:54 AM   #7
sushi_78
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Default Re: Roborovski hamster isn't very active

Thanks for the feedback. I will try to collect a few more hides and tunnels for her. She has some millet now which she loves.

She has a bowl of sand behind the wheel, on the shelf. I might see if I can get her something bigger though so she can really dig about in it.

Next year I will be growing a herb garden so she will be getting fresh herbs, until then I will try her with various vegetables and see what she likes.
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