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Old 08-12-2019, 06:18 AM   #1
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Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 3
Default New Home

So we recently purchased a Robo Dwarf hamster and had her in one of the CritterTrail habitats. Being a new hamster owner, you think that the pet store has their best interest at heart, but after perusing through this forum and doing more research, I found that these enclosures are not suitable long term for a hamster.

Over the weekend, my daughter and I constructed a Hamster Bin. When we transferred Grace from her wire enclosure to the bin, she was a totally different hamster! Her ears were straight up and her little eyes were about to bug out of her head! She was so happy! I'm glad I found this site! Now we have one super happy hammie!!!!
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Old 08-12-2019, 06:23 AM   #2
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Default Re: New Home

Originally Posted by watersfam17 View Post
So we recently purchased a Robo Dwarf hamster and had her in one of the CritterTrail habitats
It look good I love it.
I would also like to post mine but I can't figure out how to post.
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Old 08-12-2019, 08:17 AM   #3
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Default Re: New Home

That's a really lovely bin cage you have there. I think it's great enough for her basic needs if you have enough floor space (although I am no expert, by the looks of it, it should be fine).

I think it's really good enough for a basic bin cage, but if you wanted to do more, here are some of my suggestions (personal opinion and of course, others can feel free to correct me or add on):

1. I've heard that an upright wheel is better than the flying saucer wheel. Hopefully others can comment on this. If you do decide to get one, be sure to get one that is at least 6.5 inches.

2. You could mesh the other side for added ventilation. It's pretty good already, but I would personally prefer at least both the sides (length-wise of the bin) to be meshed, because it will give your hamster more air at "hamster-level".
The air from the top might not reach "hamster-level" that easily.

3. I love that there are a few hidey holes for her. Mine has a few too. Maybe you would like to add a small platform for her? She would be more comfortable running around if the space above her is more covered, and she can do a little climbing if she wants to. Do ensure that the platform is low enough and that there are no hard objects in the vicinity at ground level, so it doesn't matter if she falls off. My Robo insists on jumping off her low platform all the time, so I stuff hard objects like her pebble directly under the platform, to ensure there is no way she will be able to fall onto it. You gotta expect she will jump off it even if she doesn't have that habit, she may fall off accidentally one day so it will be good to take precautions.

Oh, and a platform gives her some place to run to if there is an "accident" on level one. There was once when I came home to find my naughty girl had somehow piled all substrate against the tip of her water bottle, causing the bottle to be tricked into thinking there was a drinking. The bottle had dripped bit by bit until that entire patch of substrate was soaked! Though thankfully there was still plenty of space around my bin cage that was not affected, and my hamster was happily snoozing away at another end.

4. While we are at it, maybe you could give her a sterilised pebble. I can't see any from the photos but I may have missed it. Mine uses her pebble to file her teeth and claws, and sometimes she curls around it to sleep if she feels a little hot but doesn't want to use the chilled hideouts I have prepared for her.

5. I personally like to keep two filled water bottles available to her in the cage at all times, just in case something goes wrong with one of them, because I am really paranoid about her not being able to get any water. My bottles are relatively small and I only fill them up to 40ml each per day so it's not that bad if it an accident happens and it leaks, because I will be at home every evening to check on it and I can provide new water on a daily basis.

6. Sand bath! I heard Robos love sand baths so you might want to give her one, but you have to be very careful about getting safe sand for her. Please do not buy bathing dust, and a lot of the hamster sands in the pet store are not suitable. My Robo's sand is in a commercialised "hamster bathroom", the biggest I could find (still very small but it's ok for me since she is a Robo and not a Syrian), not that ideal but hopefully others can suggest better bathroom substitutes. I only use it because it does prevent most of the sand from being kicked out when my Robo rolls around in it. My Robo loves her sand bath and uses it multiple times a day.

That being said, to emphasise again, I think what you have done is already very good and she will already be very happy with you, I'm just adding some suggestions for your consideration. I'm so glad to hear that your hamster perked up instantly. Mine also changed in temperament drastically for the better, especially after I upgraded her to a bin cage. There is definitely a noticeable effect when it comes to floor space and you can see how much happier your hamster is now.

Last edited by 10Minutes; 08-12-2019 at 08:26 AM.
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Old 08-12-2019, 10:21 AM   #4
Ria P
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Location: Wiltshire, UK
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Default Re: New Home

That looks nice! Love the floral decor too. Grace will be happy in there. Yes, i'd add a sand bath then you can watch her roll around in it!
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Old 08-13-2019, 07:20 AM   #5
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Default Re: New Home

I love what you have done...also love the floral. If you can...go and look on this forum for threads about bedding or substrate. Hamsters love to burrow and you could add more bedding to allow that.

It makes me so happy to see people being so open minded and willing to learn. So awesome!

10 minutes is right about the ventilation but just double check on this forum...if you put ventilation along the bottom or the middle side of the bin you will then be limited to adding more bedding. Bedding is so so so important and the best way to enrich and entertain a hamster...besides all the other things. If you want to add more ventilation cut above the level of depth for the hamster you have. I own a Syrian so am not sure for other hamsters.

10minutes mentioned platforms...awesome can use the platforms on top of the raised bedding level...or do what has been mentioned.

10minutes has really enriched this thread with well thought out ideas on how to make this awesome habitat even more awesome. Really like it! Well done!
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Old 08-13-2019, 05:55 PM   #6
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Location: Ontario, Canada
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Default Re: New Home

this looks great! 10minutes and others have suggested lots of great things already, but i definitely want to second (third?) that more bedding point. you need loads of bedding since hamsters like to burrow. i have a syrian so not sure about depth for a robo. probably 4+ inches.
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Old 08-13-2019, 06:49 PM   #7
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Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 186
Default Re: New Home

I read that Robos need lots of bedding too, about 6 inches minimum. As Schwartzie said, the ventilation window should be just a little above the proper level of substrate.

Your current side ventilation window is better than mine, because it looks like there's already space for a lot of substrate! My own side ventilation windows are sadly too low, so I've had to add to it by propping a cardboard box against the window to ensure she can burrow in it without the substrate falling out. On the bright side, she gets to climb on the box and I get to place a few things on the box for added enrichment.
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Old 08-13-2019, 11:59 PM   #8
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Default Re: New Home

Can’t wait to see more pictures of your setup☺️
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