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Old 11-12-2019, 07:09 PM   #11
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Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: AZ, USA
Posts: 98
Default Re: Help! Swollen limbs T-T URGENT

In a human, if multiple joints started to swell in the absence of trauma, you would typically be thinking about autoimmune disorders, like rheumatoid arthritis, or sometimes certain viral infections can cause these kinds of symptoms (but I'm wondering how your hamster would have been exposed, so I think less likely.) Lyme disease is also possible, but I doubt your hamster would have been bitten by a tick?
I googled if hamsters can get autoimmune disorders, and it looks like rodents like mice, rats, and hamsters consist of over 90% of the total number of animals used in research of autoimmune disorders, so that would be a yes.
Diagnosing something like that in humans typically involves bloodwork to look for markers. The type of doctor that does this is usually a rheumatologist.
Treatment usually involves steroids and immune modulating medications.
I don't know if if there are veterinarians that specialize in this kind of hamster medicine, and if it would be more traumatizing to Mochi to undergo the workup rather than to look for signs of discomfort and treat symptomatically.
I don't know much about hamster medicine, but I do know a bit about human medicine. Since a lot of human treatments are first studied in rodents, I think some things that apply to humans likely apply to rodents as well.
I hope this helps. Good luck, and keep us posted on your little cutie!
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Old 11-13-2019, 01:50 AM   #12
Ria P
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Join Date: Mar 2019
Location: Wiltshire
Posts: 1,034
Default Re: Help! Swollen limbs T-T URGENT


I did more research and found out hamsters can get arthritis? Could it be diabetes arthritis? She does drink and urine alot as compared to my other Syrian hamster..

I have a diabetic dwarf hamster who drinks and pees a lot. It's easy to do a test with keto sticks which i got from Amazon. Put your hamster in a small empty plastic box and wait till he pees (put him back after ca 15 mins and try again later if he doesn't) take him out and test the urine.
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Old 11-13-2019, 02:54 AM   #13
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: North of England
Posts: 19,281
Default Re: Help! Swollen limbs T-T URGENT

Good advice from mikatelyn and as Ria Says you can test urine for diabetes. Unfortunately most vets cannot do blood samples from hamsters as their veins are too small. Coco's vet is the only one I have heard of who can do it - it is highly specialised and means trying to find a vein in the ear.

So diagnosing is better from an exotic vet as they do specific study in hamsters and know much more about the conditions. Most vets see them as pets who only live 2 years so try antibiotics and pain relief and if they're suffering help them on their way - without any real knowledge of what could be going on.

If it is an auto-immune disease (and allergy also falls into that) then steroids would be the next thing they would try I think. But an experienced vet may know what it is straight away. If it is bumblefoot then the antibiotics may help.
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