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Old 08-18-2019, 07:54 PM   #1
Griel
Newborn Pup
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
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Default Possessive over nesting material

I have been giving my hamster a little bit of tissue and replace it once in a while (it does get dirty quite soon, as compared with the aspen shavings in her cage). I realised that she has been getting very possessive of all tissue! I experimented by giving her a little more, and it seems like she will take as much tissue as I give her and stuff it all into her nest for the night.

It's a bit too much, because sometimes her hide is so full that she gets a bit stuck and finds it hard to come out when I call her out with a treat, and I kinda worry she ends up blocking all the air inside.

Can anyone help explain this?

Would she become less possessive and only take what she needs if I gave her plenty of it (maybe a whole layer over her cage)?
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Old 08-19-2019, 10:51 AM   #2
Ria P
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Default Re: Possessive over nesting material

You could add a layer of paper based substrate now and maybe change to paper based substrate next time you have to clean her cage. Maybe she'd prefer it to Aspen. Just a thought.
What do you mean when you say it gets dirty soon? Do you
mean that she pees on it?
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Old 08-19-2019, 06:23 PM   #3
Griel
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Default Re: Possessive over nesting material

I don't think she deliberately pees on it. She takes the tissue everywhere she intends to sleep, so it looks very scruffy and icky to me, and it may get pee on it from all the dragging around, etc. I saw she liked it, so I gave her more, but she looks stressed now because she has to handle all of it whenever she wants to get in and out of her hide, or if she wants to move all of them to a different hide for a nap.

I don't want her to be so possessive over it.

I could give her plenty more, maybe cover her whole cage with it on top of the substrate, if that will be enough to convince her that she really doesn't have to hoard all.

Alternatively I was wondering if I should just remove the tissue gradually. I want her to enjoy it and maybe hoard some, not go all possessive to the point of stressing herself out by hoarding all of it, so if it's stressing her, I may have to consider not giving her any at all. She loves it, so I am quite loathe to do this, but I really don't want her to get too stressed and/or end up getting stuck/ suffocated.

She doesn't like paper substrate and pushes it all away.

To add or to remove? And anyone able to elaborate on this behaviour so that I understand her better - guesses as to what's going on through her mind, etc. She is a relatively tame hamster (investigates when called, can sit on my hand for treats, allows me to stroke her, but no actual holding and carrying etc).
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Old 08-20-2019, 04:44 AM   #4
Griel
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Default Re: Possessive over nesting material

I gave her a bit more tissue and she is still hoarding every last bit of it.
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Old 08-20-2019, 05:03 AM   #5
Ria P
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Default Re: Possessive over nesting material

Does your hamster have a nice big house?
They like a roomy house to build a big nest in and keep a hoard
Hamsters like torn up sheets of plain white toilet paper for nesting. I tear about three to four sheets into strips and put them outside my hamster's house and he then takes what he wants.
I don't think you can influence a hamster's natural instincts like nest building.
You could post a photo of your cage set up and people may be able to make suggestion if needed.
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