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Old 01-02-2016, 04:00 PM   #1
Newborn Pup
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: Dorset, England
Posts: 6
Default Bar chewing?

Hello everyone, recently my Syrian has been chewing the bars of her cage. I know this is just her keeping her teeth short, but I have provided her with lots of chews but she doesn't use them? Wondering if it's just maybe the taste of the chews? Any advice would be greatly appreciated
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Old 01-02-2016, 04:13 PM   #2
Hamster Overlord
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: United States
Posts: 693
Default Re: Bar chewing?

How large is her cage? I've read that bar chewing can also be a sign of distress if their home isn't large enough.
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Old 01-02-2016, 06:49 PM   #3
Hamster Pup
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: UK
Posts: 83
Default Re: Bar chewing?

Hi, my Syrian is a big cage chewer, we have upgraded her cage three times now, she has two cages connected along with going in her ball every day for exercise, she has one place in specific she chews, we recently put a dangly toy blocking the area she chews and she stopped for about a week but today she started chewing somewhere else, we are trying to get a bigger cage but are not sure if this is the cause as we have upgraded the cages a lot, we have 7 cages for our hamsters at the moment which is killing space in our house aswell haha. I suggest trying to put hanging toys in the area your hamster chews ( if they have a specific place ) and try moving it to their new spot if they get one, this is what I plan to do.
I tell her off when she does it ( I know it sounds silly haha but she usually actually listens and stops chewing the bars for a bit atleast )
She also has about 12 chew toys in her cage and barely touches any of them! all different kinds of chews aswell, some flavoured some not etc. I've found that my Russian dwarf and robos don't chew, but Syrians are bigger chewers.

I hope this helps a bit atleast with what I have been practising and will let you know if I work out anything that helps

Stay safe x
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Old 01-02-2016, 11:36 PM   #4
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Join Date: May 2014
Location: Wales UK
Posts: 23,561
Default Re: Bar chewing?

Bar chewing can be a sign of stress, boredom or can happen when the cage is too small or unsuitable in some way, it may well damage her teeth so you need to try to stop it as soon as you can.
The best chews are Whimzees (antos dog chews) most hams go nuts for those so worth a try, also a dog biscuit like Biscrok can help.
There's a good thread that should help here.
Managing Bar Chewers
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Always loved, never forgotten, forever in my heart
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Old 01-03-2016, 03:51 AM   #5
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: North of England
Posts: 19,670
Default Re: Bar chewing?

A bigger cage can solve it - but it has to be big enough! Minimum 80cm by 50cm approx continuous floorspace. 3 joined cages of 60 x 40 wouldn't work. One cage of 80 x 50 or bigger is best!

I don't know what cage you have but it is common sense that if a Hamster is not happy in their environment they will try and chew their way out, no matter how many chews you give them

I would look to sorting and enriching her environment - this is the main thing that allows hamster to develop normal behaviours. If she is already in a large cage, it could be an intermittent thing that has been triggered. Our hamster has only chewed bars twice. The first time was when he was in a small rotostak set up. He was desperate to get out! The second time was after he had been in his current cage for a long time but we had been away on holiday and he had been taken somewhere else for a couple of weeks where there was a female hamster on heat. He was quite stressed for a week or two on his return and chewing the bars. This became a habit as we would open the door. So we broke the habit by ignoring him when he started doing it, turning the lights out and going to bed early. And he stopped bothering!

Nine times out of ten though it's usually because the cage isn't big enough, the wheel is too small or there isn't enough depth of substrate, or all three.

If you post a photo of your cage we can advise on possible solutions.
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chewing, chews, greatly, lots, wondering, bar

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