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Old 07-29-2021, 01:29 PM   #1
Shadow Cat
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Default Tips on making life easier for an older hamster?

Hello all

I haven't posted in a while.

My little syrian girl Peggy is coming up to 23 months. A good age for a hamster, I think. I think she's had a nice life, but I've definitely noticed signs of old age creeping in. Her fur has thinned, she's lost a little weight and she's generally slower on her feet and less active.

She used to love climbing but she finds it harder now. I took the level out of her cage a wile back as I was scared she would injur herself. She still has some things to climb if the mood takes her, but they're not high.

She's not as keen to come out for playtime as she was. I miss the cuddles but that's fine, I don't want to make her do anything she doesn't want to do.

She has a lot of toys and cardboard to chew (her favourite thing to do!) and I make sure to feed her plenty of the food she likes, including fruit and veg.

There's nothing specifically wrong I don't think, of course I would take her to a vet if I thought there was someting specific that was treatable, she's just an old lady. I don't want to take her to the vet if it isn't necessary as the journey will stress her out (especially as I don't drive so have to get public transport and it can be very loud)

I'm content to let her live out her days chilling in her cage, as much as it saddens me.

Does anyone have any tips on anything else I can do to make her happy?
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Old 07-29-2021, 01:52 PM   #2
Ria P
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Default Re: Tips on making life easier for an older hamster?

I think that you're doing everything you can for her already.
I also moved mine in a bungalow when they got older where everything was on one level and easy to get to.
She may enjoy a bit of soft food like porridge and baby food.
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Old 07-29-2021, 02:14 PM   #3
Shadow Cat
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Default Re: Tips on making life easier for an older hamster?

That's a good idea about the food. What ingridients in baby food should I look to avoid?

Thank you
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Old 07-29-2021, 03:45 PM   #4
Serendipity7000
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Default Re: Tips on making life easier for an older hamster?

Onion, spices, tomato mainly. If you get the age 4 months ones most of them are free from those. I used to get a couple of main ones that were safe. Cow and Gate Chicken Sunday lunch and Hipp Pumpkin and Chicken. Our hamsters loved both. Also Ella's kitchen peas peas peas. Most of the rest of the Ella's kitchen ones have lemon juice in though so I avoided those.

You can also make normal porridge in a mug with a bit of water and give it on a teaspoon. Or (a bit easier to make and hamsters go bonkers for it). Ella's kitchen strawberry baby porridge

You just add boiled water to a bit in a mug - no cooking. A bit of tasty fun doesn't do them any harm at that age.

Buy Organic Strawberry Porridge | Ella's Kitchen

What cage is she in? What I did when our hamsters were older, was not just remove levels but add a lot more enrichment at floor level. So they can still be active "on the flat" without climbing.

I didn't actually remove the shelf, I moved it to the very top of the cage - so no space between the shelf and the cage and not possible to get up there. So they can still sit "under" the shelf Overhead cover.

I then moved some of the things from the shelf and roof to floor level - a rat tunnel tied across one end of the cage at substrate level and a cork log to climb over and run through. Plus a special pot for the baby food (an egg cup actually). Pushed into the substrate. Also maybe adjust the wheel so it's completely level with the substrate so easy to get in and out of without them tripping or getting a leg caught.

This was my first "bungalow" adjusted set up

Older Syrian Hamster cage set up - YouTube



This was a later version. So he couldn't even do "low" climbing then (eg onto house roof) and food and water at floor level. I just removed the ramp to the house roof.

2016 bungalow resized.jpg
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Last edited by Serendipity7000; 07-29-2021 at 03:52 PM.
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Old 10-12-2021, 06:50 PM   #5
GhostBella
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Default Re: Tips on making life easier for an older hamster?

Only other thing id suggest as your doing everything else id of advised is make sire shes in a quieter room and put classic fm on. Mines young but if im out in the evening thats wat she has on, apparently its really good at relaxing them. Bella has separation anxiety if shes up, even if i go to the loo she'll stick to the side of her cage closest to the door and start 'bruxing' i have to soft click bk to her (see her ears just about in the pic). If shes out free running the min i get up shes on my heels circling my feet and follow me!
She destroys everything in the cage if im out but iv found that classic fm and a pair of my socks does make her relax more@
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