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Old 01-09-2016, 04:01 PM   #1
Hekomi
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Default Miss Little Pumpkin Spice Latte

So... I had been saying for some time we wouldn't be bringing in any pet hamsters so to allocate all our resources towards the hamstery... but about a year ago we had seen some adorable Chinese in the pet store. I'm loathe to shop from a store, and so we left it. I had said I would love a female dominant spot Chinese... Chinese are a relatively new species in Canada and as such only a few stores have them (for about $30 each) and only ONE store has said they'd seen a "funny coloured Chinese". So I thought it was a pretty huge goal.

A few weeks ago my friend showed me a page where a rescue (All Creatures Rescue) in the area had advertised a strange little hammy with a tail... and sure enough there was a dominant spot Chinese female! After filling out their application and getting the go-ahead (stressful for me as I know many rescues are very anti-breeder - of course she will never ever be bred here and I understand their hesitation), we went to go pick her up. She was called Pumpkin by her fosters and the rescue - my partner wanted to keep her name and just add "Spice Latte".

We hadn't really expected to add another "just pet", and we also hadn't intended to add another hamster so soon after Mocha passed (we'd had this in the work for a few weeks!).

Here she is!





She is going into one of our bins and will stay in QT for a few weeks. She is pretty timid, but very sweet and didn't shy away from a few pats. That being said she is jumpy and it will take some time for her to come around. She seems to quite like meal worms too.

We would love any tips you have to offer on keeping Chinese! She's lovely but did had a rough start in life so hopefully we can make her feel at home here and very much loved!
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Old 01-09-2016, 05:04 PM   #2
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Default Re: Miss Little Pumpkin Spice Latte

She's lovely Hekomi! I'm so pleased you found one. Chinese hams are adorable, aren't they? I'm longing to own a little chinesey again. I can't offer any useful advice though as the only time I had them was BHC -Before Hamster Central but I've seen some really useful advice by cypher & Fluffagrams amongst others I hope little PuSpLa settles in well.
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Old 01-09-2016, 06:56 PM   #3
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Default Re: Miss Little Pumpkin Spice Latte

Thank you! She is lovely. I really love Chinese already! I sent Vectis a message and Olympus Hams gave me a wee bit of advice. I also joined a Facebook group. Excited to learn more! She is so precious.
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Old 01-09-2016, 08:18 PM   #4
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Default Re: Miss Little Pumpkin Spice Latte

The first Chinese I had was a rescue from a Pet store who had no clue on proper anything for the poor little ones. They gave me a female(Penelope) who had literally ate the tails off 4 males kept with her and of course she was heavy with pups. After she birthed a woman came into the privately owned pet store I deal with and begged them to take her beloved male hamster as she was being forced to move out of Ohio and into California where her Hamster is not allowed legally. The store called me and asked if I could help this girl and Musheu came into my life. I also kept a female pup of Penelope's and named her Mulan. The basics are high protein diets, sand baths and mealworms. Routine testing for high blood sugars, and taking everything slowly. Penelope was very nervous but successfully raised 8 pups to weaning. It took months for her to even think of trusting humans and was more a watch me hamster then a handle me type. They love to burrow in bedding, and they love love love to have toys they can climb. The few Chinese Hams I have had were all very sweet once they got comfortable with me being about, except for Mushu who was a cuddle bug from the start as he was very hand tamed and human accepting. I used to take him out and let him climb about my huge Hibiscus plant. I suspect Penelope and her daughter had Diabetes cause their urine always had a very nasty stink to it which is why I eventually re-homed her and her daughter as at that time I was not on any forums and had no idea they could be diabetic. I just assumed they had a mouse like smell and it was just them. Musheu lived to quite and old age and died curled in my hands asleep at around 3 1/2 years old IF his owner was being truthful on his age when she gave him up.
A very pregnant Penelope
Penilope-g.JPG
Mulan and Musheu who had no issues with other Chinese with him when out playing. Had I known the risk back then of putting two Chinese together I know I wouldn't have done even in hand photos of these two together.
Mulan and Musheu-a.JPG
Musheu when he arrived out for play time
Musheu-DOB 10-10-08-f.JPG
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Old 01-09-2016, 09:49 PM   #5
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Default Re: Miss Little Pumpkin Spice Latte

What a surprise! I never expected to see a little chinesey when I looked at this thread, she is totally adorable & her DS colouring is so beautiful, congrats & welcome to Chinese hams!
I'm sure Vectis will give you the best advice with all her experience, I've only had two but have found them different from my other dwarf hams, they are far more agile so love to climb, they also enjoy burrowing like no other & given really good deep substrate their little burrowing systems are a wonder to see, makes me wish I had x ray vision lol!
Diet wise you do have to bear in mind the potential for diabetes but other than that they just love small seeds, mine do enjoy mealworms & other small treats but will always ignore them in the hope that they might still get more seeds! I'm sure some people feed them on pellet/block type food but in my limited experience they do better & are happier with a dwarf mix with those small seeds in it. They love to hoard too, far more than most!
They are a timid species but really do come out of their shells with a little patience & time, once they get to know you they really are the funniest, cheekiest & most adorable little things, you can probably tell I'm totally hooked!
I got my first Chinese by accident really when she just kind of adopted me but once smitten there's no going back I really can't live without one now
Really looking forward to seeing more of your new arrival as she settles in
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Old 01-10-2016, 10:04 AM   #6
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Default Re: Miss Little Pumpkin Spice Latte

No advice to give as I have no experience with Chinese hamsters but ... she is GORGEOUS!
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Old 01-10-2016, 01:06 PM   #7
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Default Re: Miss Little Pumpkin Spice Latte

Oh my! Such a beautiful girl

I've had five Chinese hamsters over four years and they're a lovely species to own. Often a little shy to start with they do need a bit of time to come out of their shells a bit but they have a lot of personality, charm and intelligence packed into those tiny bodies. They can be very good climbers so they like toys that allow them to do this but it's also important to give them lots of substrate, both as a soft landing and for them to dig in. Both of my current chineseys love their hammocks which I have suspended from the roof of their cages and they like toys with lots of holes in so that they can dart in and out.

All of my chineseys have loved to eat seeds and all but one has loved mealworms. I tend to find that these will go first from the muesli mixes and the bigger pieces are more likely to be left a little bit longer however I have one exceptionally fussy Chinese at the moment who will not eat anything other than the seeds out of a muesli mix and as a consequence is fed primarily on pellet food. She's happy enough to eat this but most aren't!

Something I've noticed is that some Chineseys are happier in bigger cages and others seem quite skittish when given too much space so with my latest addition I've upgraded his cage size gradually, making sure he's got his favourite toys and hideyholes when he has moved. All of mine seem to have liked a bit of familiarity and I'd never have been able to change all of the toys in their cages to suit themes or anything like that and most have gone looking for a favourite toy if they've noticed it is missing.

I'm looking forward to hearing more updates on this little beauty in the future.
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Old 01-11-2016, 10:24 AM   #8
Hekomi
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Default Re: Miss Little Pumpkin Spice Latte

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nancy's Hamsters View Post
The first Chinese I had was a rescue from a Pet store who had no clue on proper anything for the poor little ones. They gave me a female(Penelope) who had literally ate the tails off 4 males kept with her and of course she was heavy with pups. After she birthed a woman came into the privately owned pet store I deal with and begged them to take her beloved male hamster as she was being forced to move out of Ohio and into California where her Hamster is not allowed legally. The store called me and asked if I could help this girl and Musheu came into my life. I also kept a female pup of Penelope's and named her Mulan. The basics are high protein diets, sand baths and mealworms. Routine testing for high blood sugars, and taking everything slowly. Penelope was very nervous but successfully raised 8 pups to weaning. It took months for her to even think of trusting humans and was more a watch me hamster then a handle me type. They love to burrow in bedding, and they love love love to have toys they can climb. The few Chinese Hams I have had were all very sweet once they got comfortable with me being about, except for Mushu who was a cuddle bug from the start as he was very hand tamed and human accepting. I used to take him out and let him climb about my huge Hibiscus plant. I suspect Penelope and her daughter had Diabetes cause their urine always had a very nasty stink to it which is why I eventually re-homed her and her daughter as at that time I was not on any forums and had no idea they could be diabetic. I just assumed they had a mouse like smell and it was just them. Musheu lived to quite and old age and died curled in my hands asleep at around 3 1/2 years old IF his owner was being truthful on his age when she gave him up.
A very pregnant Penelope
Attachment 34910
Mulan and Musheu who had no issues with other Chinese with him when out playing. Had I known the risk back then of putting two Chinese together I know I wouldn't have done even in hand photos of these two together.
Attachment 34909
Musheu when he arrived out for play time
Attachment 34912
Thanks Nancy! I imagine PSL is from a pet store - no idea which one. I think there is a Chinese breeder to the east of me... but I don't know much more and who knows how ethical he is. Pumpkin is on my mix (19%), HT 2018 (18.6%) and then oxbow (15%) as that was the food she was on at her foster mum's. I plan to wean her off onto just my mix and the HT 2018. I've read (and been told! see below ) they do very well on small seeds, which my mix does have a lot of but I may create a supplemental mix for her as well of just little seeds. She seems to like her sandbath though hasn't rolled in it that I've seen (keeping in mind she's in QT so not in the main part of our house). PSL has shown she likes burrowing (I expected that so she has nice, deep bedding) and is in a new nest everyday. Lovely little hammies.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cypher View Post
What a surprise! I never expected to see a little chinesey when I looked at this thread, she is totally adorable & her DS colouring is so beautiful, congrats & welcome to Chinese hams!
I'm sure Vectis will give you the best advice with all her experience, I've only had two but have found them different from my other dwarf hams, they are far more agile so love to climb, they also enjoy burrowing like no other & given really good deep substrate their little burrowing systems are a wonder to see, makes me wish I had x ray vision lol!
Diet wise you do have to bear in mind the potential for diabetes but other than that they just love small seeds, mine do enjoy mealworms & other small treats but will always ignore them in the hope that they might still get more seeds! I'm sure some people feed them on pellet/block type food but in my limited experience they do better & are happier with a dwarf mix with those small seeds in it. They love to hoard too, far more than most!
They are a timid species but really do come out of their shells with a little patience & time, once they get to know you they really are the funniest, cheekiest & most adorable little things, you can probably tell I'm totally hooked!
I got my first Chinese by accident really when she just kind of adopted me but once smitten there's no going back I really can't live without one now
Really looking forward to seeing more of your new arrival as she settles in
Thank you! I am usually a Syrian gal only (my SO loves dwarfies but I've put a big 'no' on more hybrids...!) but the little Chineseys have stolen my hearts! Vectis gave some awesome advice, as did you all! I was hoping to get her this: Living World Treehouse Real Wood, Activity Tree: Amazon.ca: Pet Supplies which she might like? We gave her nice deep bedding which she enjoys for sure, haha. She has some pretty nice looking burrows already! The only additional sugar we have given is a small bit of apple which has disappeared overnight, but will definitely avoid any processed stuff with her. I tend to feed fairly naturally. She also likes meal worms which is good.

I haven't examined her bowl too much to see what is and isn't missing. I may give her my more crushed lab blocks to encourage her to eat them. I have a homemade diet I feed alongside the lab blocks which has a lot of small bits. I mentioned possibly putting together something with just small seeds for her... any experience in which seeds they like best?

I hope she starts to relax even more. She's a very sweet little thing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by flowerfairy View Post
No advice to give as I have no experience with Chinese hamsters but ... she is GORGEOUS!
Thank you!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fluffagrams View Post
Oh my! Such a beautiful girl

I've had five Chinese hamsters over four years and they're a lovely species to own. Often a little shy to start with they do need a bit of time to come out of their shells a bit but they have a lot of personality, charm and intelligence packed into those tiny bodies. They can be very good climbers so they like toys that allow them to do this but it's also important to give them lots of substrate, both as a soft landing and for them to dig in. Both of my current chineseys love their hammocks which I have suspended from the roof of their cages and they like toys with lots of holes in so that they can dart in and out.

All of my chineseys have loved to eat seeds and all but one has loved mealworms. I tend to find that these will go first from the muesli mixes and the bigger pieces are more likely to be left a little bit longer however I have one exceptionally fussy Chinese at the moment who will not eat anything other than the seeds out of a muesli mix and as a consequence is fed primarily on pellet food. She's happy enough to eat this but most aren't!

Something I've noticed is that some Chineseys are happier in bigger cages and others seem quite skittish when given too much space so with my latest addition I've upgraded his cage size gradually, making sure he's got his favourite toys and hideyholes when he has moved. All of mine seem to have liked a bit of familiarity and I'd never have been able to change all of the toys in their cages to suit themes or anything like that and most have gone looking for a favourite toy if they've noticed it is missing.

I'm looking forward to hearing more updates on this little beauty in the future.
Thanks Fluffagrams! She is a bit shy, but shows definite progress thus far. Her foster mum told me she'd pee on her when held, but has not peed on me yet. I think she isn't quite so sure about the whole "handling" bit but she is definitely getting better. Not so keen on taking treats from me either. She has nice deep substrate right now - I posted a link to a possible climbing toy for her - thoughts? I have a friend who has rats so I've asked her if she will help me make her a small hammock. I assume one of the pouch like hammocks is probably best to give her a nice dark space?

Hah! Okay I will definitely crush her lab blocks a bit more. Any advice on what seeds they like best? I can balance a mix fairly well and make it primarily seeds if that suits her. All our mixes over here are all species - there is one dwarf mix (Versele Laga) but it's a bit inaccessible for me, and the protein is quite low on it.

We have her in a 66L Really Useful Box right now... hah might have given her a bit too much space at first. I'm not sure what I should do about that - her previous bin was a lot bigger so maybe this is okay? I do have smaller I could put her in as well. I don't really do themes so she should be happy with her bits and bobs. I'm very happy to have a hamster to spoil with all my dwarf sized toys!

Thank you all for your advice! Here are a few more pictures of her.





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Old 01-11-2016, 10:55 AM   #9
Ann
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Default Re: Miss Little Pumpkin Spice Latte

She's beautiful! Love her coloring.
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Old 01-11-2016, 12:42 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hekomi View Post
Thanks Fluffagrams! She is a bit shy, but shows definite progress thus far. Her foster mum told me she'd pee on her when held, but has not peed on me yet. I think she isn't quite so sure about the whole "handling" bit but she is definitely getting better. Not so keen on taking treats from me either. She has nice deep substrate right now - I posted a link to a possible climbing toy for her - thoughts? I have a friend who has rats so I've asked her if she will help me make her a small hammock. I assume one of the pouch like hammocks is probably best to give her a nice dark space?
The climbing toy you posted is something I could see Lady May playing with as she's got something a little bit similar that she likes at playtime. In terms of hammocks, something that gives them somewhere to hide is nice and both of mine will go up there in the evening just to chill. These are the ones we use and although they're a UK based company, it should give you an idea on what could work.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hekomi View Post
Hah! Okay I will definitely crush her lab blocks a bit more. Any advice on what seeds they like best?
Both of mine adore sunflower hearts and pumpkin seeds but they're also partial to a bit of millet, particularly if you leave it on the spray.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hekomi View Post
We have her in a 66L Really Useful Box right now... hah might have given her a bit too much space at first. I'm not sure what I should do about that - her previous bin was a lot bigger so maybe this is okay? I do have smaller I could put her in as well.
Both of mine live in 64L Really Useful Boxes and that suits them quite well and providing she's not too skittish and nervous then she's probably fine where she is providing she has lots of places to hide and retreat to.

Chineseys really do steal your heart don't they and those are beautiful photos. She really is a little stunner.
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