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Old 11-22-2017, 10:52 AM   #1
Duffy
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Default My hamster is acting weird

My Syrian hamster(male, 17 months) has been acting weird. He keeps moving in and out of his house and won't eat chocolate treats or anything (he usually stuff as many as he can into his cheek). His ears are down, eyes are half open and his head is on the floor. He looks down and ill. What should I do?
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Old 11-22-2017, 11:20 AM   #2
Serendipity7000
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Default Re: My hamster is acting weird

How old is your hamster? If he isn't very old, then you should take him to the vets as he does sound unwell. They don't charge a lot usually for general visits. If he is old it may be he is in his twilight time and ready to go.
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Old 11-22-2017, 10:51 PM   #3
cypher
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Default Re: My hamster is acting weird

He does sound unwell if this is still happening & there's no possible problems like him being cold for example then I would take him to your vet as soon as you can.
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Old 11-23-2017, 05:33 PM   #4
Duffy
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Default Re: My hamster is acting weird

Quote:
Originally Posted by Serendipity7000 View Post
How old is your hamster? If he isn't very old, then you should take him to the vets as he does sound unwell. They don't charge a lot usually for general visits. If he is old it may be he is in his twilight time and ready to go.
To be honest, I can't be 100% sure of his age because when I adopted him, I was told that Duffy is a girl and is 4 months old but I later found out that Duffy is actually a boy so there is a chance that Duffy is either older or younger than 17 months. I did take him to the vet and they charged 22 and said that he seems healthy for his age and could be acting weird because he fell from some places high and injured himself (could be when I was at school ). His cage has 2 levels and the difference between them is about 25cm so I wouldn't really call it a high place. However, he seems totally normal again after 20 minutes. Should I be worried?
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Old 11-23-2017, 07:33 PM   #5
Serendipity7000
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Default Re: My hamster is acting weird

18 months is considered old for a hamster really - it's the equivalent of about 60 in human years If the vet has checked him and said he seems healthy for his age, I assume he means there may have been some neurological damage as the result of a fall? Some vets don't know much about hamsters and that doesn't seem much of a diagnosis.

Regarding the levels - if there is 25cm between them then presumably the cage is at least 50cm tall. That is quite a drop for a hamster, from the top, particularly if they monkey bar across the roof bars at night. They can bounce off shelves on the way down as well. If you have lots of deep substrate in the cage, and make sure any hard toys are under a shelf, then it can cushion any falls, but it doesn't stop them getting caught on a shelf or landing on a hard ladder, when they fall.

Do you have a photo of your cage and we could suggest some tweaks to the set up or shelves to help prevent fall risks. Although my feeling is that if he has not been himself and he is getting older, it might be better to remove the levels or just have one low level. They can fall when they get older, either from weak back legs and losing balance or similar. It would be good to see your cage before changing anything though as changes can cause stress as well, so planning them out first can help.

Does he still look down and ill? He may be in pain - especially if his ears are down - and I am surprised the vet didn't prescribe any pain relief medication if they suspected a fall.

Try googling exotic vets for your area- there is usually one not too far away. They tend to specialise more in small furries and be more experienced with hamsters. Most good vets would think pain relief an important thing at his age. It's a drug called Metacam that is usually prescribed. If he hasn't improved I would suggest going to another vet for another opinion and at least some pain relief for him to help him keep comfortable. I know it costs, but we had the benefit of them throughout their lives, and in old age sometimes there are some costs involved.
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