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Old 03-12-2021, 05:36 PM   #1
Shadow Cat
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Default Dealing with a chewer!

I have an 18 month old Syrian girl. She's a sweet little thing and I love her to bits. But Christ, does she half drive me insane.

I read all the time about how important space is for them. I built her the biggest playpen I could covering half my bedroom floor space, around 3x3 metres. I put her in it every night for around 2 weeks. What does she do? Heads straight to a corner and start manically chewing her way out.

I don't get it. It doesn't matter how much space I give her to roam in, how many toys and tunnels and boxes to hide in I put in the space, all she wants to do is chew the walls. I've had to stop using it as I was scared she would invest the plastic.

What does she want? Does she hate it and just want back in her cage? I've only ever had boys before, is it a female thing? Can I do anything to make her stop? Honestly, I'm at my wit's end. I just want her to be happy, but she never seems happy out of her cage.
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Old 03-12-2021, 11:11 PM   #2
Ria P
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Default Re: Dealing with a chewer!

One of our hamsters does not like out of cage time but is happy in his cage. I respect that. It's his choice.

I only take a hamster out of their cage whe they ask to come out and never force them to do anything. Some of ours love out of cage time in the evening and sit by their door waiting.

One comes to her door when she sees us and then either climbs on our hand when she wants out or turns around to go back to her wheels. She likes out of cage time in the morning but prefers to stay put in the evening.

Another is a daytime hamster so it could have to do with timing as well.

My advice is to listen to your hamster and go by what she wants to do.
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Old 03-13-2021, 12:59 AM   #3
Shadow Cat
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Default Re: Dealing with a chewer!

The thing is, she acts like she wants to come out of her cage. She will perk up when she hears me in the room and come to the door and come out by herself. But it's like she instantly regrets it when she does!

They're confusing little creatures!
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Old 03-13-2021, 01:31 AM   #4
Merlina
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Default Re: Dealing with a chewer!

Are you able to put the whole cage inside her playpen so she can have access back to her cage when she wants? That's what my hamster likes. He spends about half of his time in his cage when it is open in the pen. I take the top off and just leave the base which has his nest and favourite wheel in as it is a roof opening cage.
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Old 03-13-2021, 02:45 AM   #5
LunaTheHamster1
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Default Re: Dealing with a chewer!

I honestly feel it is a female thing. Mine have all tried to get under doorways or fixate on a certain spot to try and escepe through. My male syrian is not like that at all. I wouldnt worry so much about it. As long as she doesnt chew it, you could try putting a fleece blanket there for her to try and tunnel around in. That used to keep my females entertained and out of trouble for a few mins.
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Old 03-13-2021, 05:13 AM   #6
Ria P
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Default Re: Dealing with a chewer!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadow Cat View Post
The thing is, she acts like she wants to come out of her cage. She will perk up when she hears me in the room and come to the door and come out by herself. But it's like she instantly regrets it when she does!

They're confusing little creatures!
Yes, females can be very confusing and demanding. We have a mini diva.
What happens when you sit in the playpen with her and interact with her, distract her by handling and playing with her?
Luna's suggestion of a blanket is a good one. I roll one up and tuck it under the door where one of our hamsters would squeeze under. She now runs along inside the blanket.

I always said that i wished i could buy a book on hamster psychology to help me figure them out but no one has been able to write one yet it seems.
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Old 03-13-2021, 10:04 AM   #7
Shadow Cat
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Default Re: Dealing with a chewer!

Thanks for the suggestions. But she will just chew the blanket, guaranteed! I draped a towel over her carry case so it would be dark while I cleaned out her cage and she somehow managed chew a hole in that through the breathing slots!

I love her to bits, but I think she will probably be the last female Syrian I own. I spend much more time stressing about whether she's happy than I ever have with my boys.
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Old 03-14-2021, 03:35 AM   #8
Ria P
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Default Re: Dealing with a chewer!

Have you tried putting her straight back in her cage when it looks like she doesn't want to be out once out?

One of our dwarfs sometimes asks to come out and then as soon as she's out looks for my hand or nibbles my feet when my hand is out of her reach to be lifted back in.
Then she either goes to sleep somewhere or asks to be lifted out again. Usually the second time round she runs around for a bit before climbing into a shoe or basket for a nap.

I have no idea why she wants in out in out.
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