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Old 10-07-2019, 08:05 AM   #1
Creampuff
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Question Ways to Bond with Hamster??

Hello everyone,

Do you have any suggestions as to how I would bond with my hamster? I've had her since May 31st, so it's been a few months, but I feel like I haven't bonded with her at all, and I'm not really sure how to, because she hates cuddles. She likes time out of her cage, but she doesn't seem to like the playpen I got her. She likes treats and she'll sometimes eat them out of my hand, but most of the time she just ignores the treats.

Thank you!
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Old 10-07-2019, 08:59 AM   #2
LunaTheHamster1
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Default Re: Ways to Bond with Hamster??

I suspect many hamsters hate cuddles. Mine are mostly too active to sit still for cuddles, but I take what I can get. Have you tried laying/sitting down in a secure area and letting her roam around. You may eventually find she will start clambering all over you. I love it when my hammies do this. Another favourite is to sit on the floor and wrap myself in a blanket and they can't resist interacting with it, trying to get under it, over it, and up it. I also find when my hammies first wake up they are not interested in food, but when they have investigated their cages thoroughly and had a run around, when I put them back they like to take food off me then. So you could try giving food at different times. Goodluck.
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Old 10-07-2019, 09:15 AM   #3
Ria P
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Default Re: Ways to Bond with Hamster??

It depends on your definition and expectation of "bonding" and the personality of your hamster.

What exactly do you hope for and expect bonding with your hamster should be?

I think the majority of hamsters don't like cuddles and prefer to run and sniff about when out of the cage. Maybe you could sit in the playpen with her and let her run and climb all over you.

As for treats, she may not always be hungry enough to fancy a treat or simply not fancy the treat. What do you offer her?

Let us know what you would like your hamster to do or be so you feel that you have bonded and maybe then people can make suggestions.
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Old 10-08-2019, 08:01 AM   #4
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Default Re: Ways to Bond with Hamster??

Okay, thank you! By bonding I just want to get to know her better and for her to love me and I want her to become my little hammie companion!

Her personality is a "look, don't touch" type. She loves being watched, but hates being touched.

For treats, I mostly give her freeze-dried fruits and seeds. Sometimes she'll get a veggie. She loves zucchini! She also loves bananas.

I just want her to like me more, basically. The problem with free-roaming is that I don't have a safe room for her to be in. My room isn't safe (too many cords/things to chew on that are not safe), and we have 2 cats and one used to be an outdoor cat who's caught chipmunks and birds before. As far as I know, though, he doesn't know she exists - he never goes upstairs, where my bedroom is.
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Old 10-08-2019, 09:39 AM   #5
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Default Re: Ways to Bond with Hamster??

Yes, with cats about the house and a non hamster proof room free roaming is out of the question. Safety comes first.

I have three hamsters, two look but don't touch ones and one who tolerates touch when he's in the right mood. Cuddles? Nah, not his scene at all. Do they love me? Not likely but they love the food i offer when they happen to want it. Sometimes they turn their noses up and i watch their tail disappear down a hole.
That's hamsters for you.

My advice to you is to accept and enjoy your hamster for who she is. They are lovely little creatures to watch going about their business. I let my Syrian run around on my bed sometimes and he sits next to me or climbs over me but at other times he's on a mission running to the edge and i have to catch him to stop him from jumping off.

Your hamster is your buddy in her own hamster way and she trusts you otherwise she wouldn't take food from your hand.

You could share some stories and photos of her here and tell us about the things she does. I bet she is a very cute hamster who loves living with you.
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Old 10-31-2019, 09:18 AM   #6
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Wink Re: Ways to Bond with Hamster??

Here's my favorite photo of her. She loves to go out in her ball (she loves out-time) and she doesn't mind when one of our cats plays with her (bats at her, etc.). I don't mind when the cat does this because my hamster doesn't mind.

One story is that she escaped recently (I've had her back for a week now), and I was out of town when she escaped. I thought I'd never find her again, but I did! We found some evidence in my brother's room, the the morning of the day we found some shredded up carpet in the closet. That evening, we were about to eat dinner when one of our cats had something in his sights under the stove!! Guess what? It was my hamster! She is safe and sound in her cage now! I think she may have been a little traumatized though, as she is not quite herself yet (running all over, climbing everywhere, etc.). She still eats fine.

I think that's my most exciting story.
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Old 10-31-2019, 12:00 PM   #7
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Default Re: Ways to Bond with Hamster??

Aww, great to hear a happy ending to a story. So glad you got her back. She's lovely.

How do you know she doesn't mind the cat while in her ball? I'd keep the cat well away from her because hamsters are prey animals and very easily frightened. Stress can lead to all sorts of issues.

She probably got quite hungry when she went missing. Does she have a nice big hoard in her cage to help her feel secure?

Thank you for sharing your story and photo.
You must be so relieved to have her back.
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Old 10-31-2019, 01:11 PM   #8
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Default Re: Ways to Bond with Hamster??

Well, I guess I don't. She doesn't freeze or anything though.

She probably does, however I don't know where it is, but I feed a handful of her food to her every day.

Yes, I am very relieved!
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Old 10-31-2019, 04:18 PM   #9
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Default Re: Ways to Bond with Hamster??

I wouldn’t use a ball, they’re stressful for hamsters. Not much oxygen in there and very unnatural.

I give my hamster 1 or 2 sunflower seeds every day, so he associates me with this food he likes. I pick them from his food so they come mostly from me. I give it both inside and outside the cage.
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Old 10-31-2019, 06:46 PM   #10
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Default Re: Ways to Bond with Hamster??

Cats and all other predator species(including dogs) must be kept away completely from hamsters and other prey species. This needs to be done with a reliably secure door, and if you have an individual predator species that can open the door the door must be locking to prevent them from opening it.

I'd also not use hamster balls. As Dessi mentioned there's not much oxygen, but they also happen to block off pretty much all of a hamster's senses which is incredibly stressful. A playpen, play bin, or clean dry bathtub are all much better ideas that don't block hamster senses and actually give enrichment unlike any hamster ball!
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