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Old 09-20-2018, 04:59 PM   #1
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Default Elderly syrian hamster advice

So my syrian hamster is roughly about 2 years 3/4 months and lately she has just been sleeping all the time and has not been very active she is still eating and drinking and going on her wheel but only for a couple of minutes is this normal? I've never had a hamster to this age.
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Old 09-20-2018, 06:49 PM   #2
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Default Re: Elderly syrian hamster advice

This is all very normal. Whoa! You have a old ham! That’s amazing that she will still use her wheel at this age! When hams are older, you want to make sure that there is nothing they can fall off of that is high. You can also give your ham porridage (oatmeal), baby food (ham safe no spices, pork, ham, onions etc.), and scrambled egg. These foods are all soft and easy to chew. Hope this helps!
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Old 09-20-2018, 11:12 PM   #3
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Default Re: Elderly syrian hamster advice

As Sasha said this is normal for older hams, at this time of year they can get a bit less active if the temperature begins to drop too especially when older.
If she's still eating ok then I would only offer porridge or baby food as an occasional treat, it is good for them but it's important she still mostly eats her main mix to keep those teeth trim.
Making any adjustments to the cage as & when necessary so she can get around easily & everything is within easy reach is a good idea too.
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Old 09-21-2018, 05:12 AM   #4
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Default Re: Elderly syrian hamster advice

Our last Syrian Charlie carried on using his wheel right up to about 2 weeks before he died. As you say it was just for a few minutes. Good that they keep up their routine and exercise! He would hop on it run for a few seconds and hop off again - maybe 2 or 3 times. It does sound like she is slowing down and in her twilight time.

As Cypher said she may need some adjustments to her cage. Generally you don't want to upset her and change anything much - but for safety it's probably best to remove any levels and have all toys at floor level.

When Charlie was like this I moved the level right to the top of the cage - touching the top bars! Rather than take it out completely - it was so he didn't feel too exposed from above -he was still "under" the shelf but couldn't climb up to it. Make sure it's right up to the top bars though (ie not enough space to get onto the shelf itself) or it's possible she could climb the bars, get onto it and not be able to get down again.

I also hung a large hammock over the middle of the cage - again to give overhead cover - I knew he couldn't get up to it to climb on it.

I then added a few more toys at floor level to keep things interesting but left all the existing ones in the same place so as not to make too many changes. So the toys from the shelf were at floor level and I tied a long tube to one end of the cage at floor level (something to run through) and put a little hammock in the corner at floor level (he was beyond chewing hammocks at that stage).

I also added a little egg cup (pushed it down into the substrate) as well as his food bowl and would put a bit of baby food in the egg cup each day - he loved it and would lick it up. You need to remember to clean out the egg cup each morning though as it can go off and they still keep eating at it if it's there! So I'd put it out at night and remove it and wash it next morning then put it back with a bit more in.

The four months baby food is usually fine as they tend not to have spices, tomato or onion in (get the ones without those in). The chicken and pumpkin was a favourite. I think there was a grandpa's sunday lunch that was ok too.

And just talk to her You may need to move her food bowl and water bottle closer to her nest at some point so she doesn't have to walk so far but maybe not just yet if she is still using her wheel - but do have the food and water bottle at floor level.
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Old 09-21-2018, 05:13 AM   #5
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Default Re: Elderly syrian hamster advice

I'd also avoid doing any clean outs as well and just let her enjoy her cage. If she uses a litter tray just empty that. Charlie still used his litter tray almost till the end. He still liked to come out for a cuddle every few days as well but play that by ear.
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Old 09-29-2018, 09:04 PM   #6
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Default Re: Elderly syrian hamster advice

Yes, well in at least my cases I have had many Syrians and most of them did stop most activity at around 2-3 yrs old.

Last edited by souffle; 09-30-2018 at 12:26 AM.
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drinking, eating, hamster, syrian, wheel, advice, elderly

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