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Old 02-08-2022, 10:59 AM   #11
ShadowNinjaHamster
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Default Re: Losing fur on belly

I went to the vet today. I don't want to talk about it…
I'm just a bad owner. It's all my fault.
My hamster is healthy, but he's obese and I need to change his diet immediately. I got a list of food what to feed him and ordered it online.
His penis is 'sunk' into his fatness and the reason he's losing fur is because when he walks his stomach is always bouncing against the ground.
I don't want to tell you guys his weight… He's extremely obese but other than that healthy. They couldn't tell me his age because he's so obese.
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Old 02-08-2022, 01:38 PM   #12
Ria P
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Default Re: Losing fur on belly

They couldn't have told you his age anyway, obese or skinny.

Come on, be brave and tell us his weight. Was it over 80g?
I'm asking because i'm not convinced that he is obese.
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Old 02-08-2022, 01:45 PM   #13
ShadowNinjaHamster
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Default Re: Losing fur on belly

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ria P View Post
They couldn't have told you his age anyway, obese or skinny.

Come on, be brave and tell us his weight. Was it over 80g?
I'm asking because i'm not convinced that he is obese.
He was 107gÖ
He's supposed to be 40-50g.
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Old 02-09-2022, 05:24 AM   #14
ShadowNinjaHamster
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Default Re: Losing fur on belly

I bought a kitchen weight so I could monitor his weight.
I also purchased the food the vet told me to buy. It's some kind of 'special' food and I'm waiting for it to arrive.
Other than that he's healthy. He was running on the wheel today as well. I don't see him having any food though. The vet told me not to feed him salads, carrots or what they sell at the store. So um… What am I supposed to do now?
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Old 02-09-2022, 07:48 AM   #15
Lilafernim
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Default Re: Losing fur on belly

I am not sure what to advice based on the vet advice. I donít really understand why they said no salad, as this is really important health wise and isnít very calorific. I personally would give a tablespoon of food a day maybe even slightly less but you donít want them to drop weight very suddenly. Iíd give some green veg like broccoli in a small amount. But unsure why the vet has said not to.

Iíd lay off any nuts or seeds for now as these tend to be high in fats. Not sure what else to advice or say really.
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Old 02-09-2022, 04:44 PM   #16
AmityvilleHams
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Default Re: Losing fur on belly

To me it seems like you've encountered some extremely unsound dietary advice with this vet. Vegetables, especially leafy greens, are incredibly healthy and would NOT be contributing to weight gain and especially not to the level of obesity.

Even seeds and nuts in moderation are extremely healthy foods that hamsters should definitely be getting. That's a part of their natural healthy diet, and they provide valuable nutrients like healthy fats as well as important vitamins and minerals.

The idea that fat inherently leads to more fat being stored or created in the body is honestly a very dated one in humans and pets. Any food being consumed in unhealthily high amounts obviously won't be good, no matter the food it is, because dietary balance is important for good nutrition.

The thing that would really be unhealthy for hamsters in the long run would be added sugars, especially refined ones. These are generally found in low quality foods, but also many treats that are basically just pure junk food. They are nowhere near the same thing as the sugar content of a bit of carrot or even fruit(which many dwarf owners choose to avoid anyways) - these are processed added sugar with no nutritional value, completely unlike healthy fresh whole foods. This sort of thing isn't good for humans either or pretty much any animal for that matter though!
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Old 02-10-2022, 01:22 AM   #17
ShadowNinjaHamster
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Default Re: Losing fur on belly

Quote:
Originally Posted by AmityvilleHams View Post
To me it seems like you've encountered some extremely unsound dietary advice with this vet. Vegetables, especially leafy greens, are incredibly healthy and would NOT be contributing to weight gain and especially not to the level of obesity.

Even seeds and nuts in moderation are extremely healthy foods that hamsters should definitely be getting. That's a part of their natural healthy diet, and they provide valuable nutrients like healthy fats as well as important vitamins and minerals.

The idea that fat inherently leads to more fat being stored or created in the body is honestly a very dated one in humans and pets. Any food being consumed in unhealthily high amounts obviously won't be good, no matter the food it is, because dietary balance is important for good nutrition.

The thing that would really be unhealthy for hamsters in the long run would be added sugars, especially refined ones. These are generally found in low quality foods, but also many treats that are basically just pure junk food. They are nowhere near the same thing as the sugar content of a bit of carrot or even fruit(which many dwarf owners choose to avoid anyways) - these are processed added sugar with no nutritional value, completely unlike healthy fresh whole foods. This sort of thing isn't good for humans either or pretty much any animal for that matter though!
I don't know. That's what she said and he was already 'big' when I got him, which is the reason I got him. Yesterday I gave him a salad.
I just felt sorry for him. But what's that YouTube video that said: "You don't have to worry about giving too much food to hamsters. They don't over eat. It might look that they're eating because they're stuffing their food to their cheeks."
Was this intended for different kind of breeds?
I am still waiting for my kitchen weight, so I could find out how much he weights, but again, he was big when I bought it and every vet I've been to has been telling me different things, which is weird. When I got him he also had bugs, but he doesn't have bugs anymore and I'm grateful to that vet. Someone here said my apartment might be infested with bugs, but I couldn't find any and now that they're gone after the vet visit I'm pretty sure I don't have bugs.

His new food arrived and I hope he'll eat it. He doesn't eat everything. I'm a bit scared, but I'll try my best to take care of him.

When he'll lose some weight I can go back and ask how old he is. I know Ria said that they couldn't tell his age regardless of his weight, but they said they cant tell me because he's obese.
I tend to believe Ria more. I don't think I can find a vet specifically specialised or rodents? I mean when I was at the vet I saw someone with a snake thereÖ
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Old 02-10-2022, 04:53 AM   #18
ShadowNinjaHamster
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Default Re: Losing fur on belly

I received the food. It's just in a brown plastic bag...
Edit: Oh my dear lord, he's actually eating that food. It smells like tea. I'm so happy that he eats it.
I gave him two tablespoons, even though the vet said to give 1.

Last edited by ShadowNinjaHamster; 02-10-2022 at 05:19 AM.
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Old 02-10-2022, 10:49 AM   #19
sushi_78
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Default Re: Losing fur on belly

I don't think rationing dry food is the best way to achieve weight loss. I've often had to slim down gerbils (as they get very prone to weight gain as they get older) and it's more effective to increase their fresh food. Increasing their ratio of fresh vegetables to dry food while keeping their overall food quantity the same reduces their calorie intake while not leaving them hungry or thinking there's a famine coming. Try to feed a variety of vegetables and especially highly nutritious ones such as spinach, kale, dandelion leaves, herbs, collards, rocket blackberry/strawberry/raspberry leaves and so on.

I have a dwarf hamster who was obese when I brought her home, and with both her and the gerbils, the key has always been to identify why they are overweight and reverse that. With obesity there always has to be a cause. So sometimes with the gerbils it's been because their main diet just wasn't right for their needs, and changing to a different diet solved it. With my hamster it was because her cage was too small and she was too big for her wheel, so she didn't have enough opportunity to exercise. It was fixed by correcting her environment. Sometimes it's just from too many treats and extra foods and cutting those out is enough. They have a kind of inbuilt normal weight which their body for the most part prefers to remain at, and will naturally remain at unless something internal (i.e illness, aging) or external (diet or environment) knocks them out of equilibrium.

I would recommend thinking about whether the food he was on previously might not have been right for him. That doesn't necessarily mean it's a bad food. The food that caused my gerbils to gain weight was Getzoo, which is a fine food, it just didn't suit them. It's always worth trying a different food if the previous one didn't seem to be producing good results.

Hamsters don't overeat in terms of volume (i.e they will eat until they are full and then stop, not keeping stuffing themselves as humans might), but they may pick out the nicest (and usually fattiest) bits from a mix and leave the rest. You shouldn't give them unlimited quantities of food as that encourages them to be picky, but only as much as they need to eat each day plus a little extra for hoarding. So another thing to look at would be whether the quantity of food he was getting was right for him.

You've probably already considered this one, but the other thing to think about would be all the foods he gets on top of his usual mix, which can add up. Fatty seeds are very healthy, they tend to be among the most nutritionally dense foods, but they're still a dense source of energy so could cause weight gain if fed in excess.

Lastly, and you've probably already got this covered as well, but look at his environment. Make sure his cage is big enough so he has enough space to move around, that's it's enriching so he has a reason to move around, and most importantly that is wheel is big enough for him and spins smoothly. If he's very big he might even need a larger wheel than a dwarf hamster would typically need. Even if his back is straight on his current wheel, he might still find a larger one more comfortable which would mean he uses it more. You can also try giving him more time outside his cage in a playpen or free-roaming, if he enjoys it (as some hamsters are stressed by it).
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