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Old 11-07-2021, 04:19 PM   #1
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Default Opinions on hamster shows?

I've owned hamsters for 5 years. (with a 2 year break in between!) and I found out about hamster shows through strong brew hamstery's instagram.. a month ago. Seeing "(animal)" and "show" in the same sentence irked me. Are these ethical or safe? What goes on in these shows?
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Old 11-07-2021, 06:14 PM   #2
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Default Re: Opinions on hamster shows?

I have seen these shows and am a big fan of Strongbrew so I may be biased but I personally see nothing wrong with them.
Strongbrew as a breeder take their ethics extremely seriously. Their mother hamsters usually only have 2 litters before they're retired and adopted out to suitable homes. They take extremely good care of their pets and are a huge part of the Ontario Hamster Club- a group that has a great reputation and works to spread accurate information and care guides for all hamsters. Considering all these things I do not see how they would participate in something that would be unsafe or unethical. If I'm not mistaken the Ontario Hamster Club actually is the one that runs the shows and SBH has been on the judge team in the past.

Here is more on the standards class judging.

Here is some information about the show from the OHC itself

There is a small entry fee for each hamster and for each visitor that goes towards prizes and the OHC to further gather and spread accurate information on hamster care.
Hamsters are looked over by a small animal vet and those that are suspected of neglect or otherwise poor care are immediately disqualified.

The standards class is judged partially based on the aforementioned previous OHC list as well as health and temperament. There is also a pet class where the hamsters are judged only on overall health and temperament. The way they test temperament is by lifting up the hamster and allowing it to walk from hand to hand. Hamsters that are very squirmy or bite are docked points while those that calmly walk along the hands are given higher rankings.

This is all specifically the one show so I'm sure not all shows have these exact rules and such. However I'm fairly certain most hamster shows are run by hamster clubs that are equally invested in furthering care and breeders working to produce happy and healthy pets. I'm sure there are shows that do things poorly or unsafely but I haven't heard of them as of yet. Hamster shows are a pretty niche thing too so it's a lot less likely for them to be run by random unqualified folks.
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Old 11-08-2021, 01:35 AM   #3
Ria P
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Default Re: Opinions on hamster shows?

Here's my opinion:

I went to a hamster show once and expected stalls with suitable hamster supplies and information about proper hamster care.

What i found was tables full of hamsters kept in small holding boxes and a row of small cages for sale.

It was interesting to look at all the different coat colours but i couldn't help feeling sorry for the hamsters who should have been at home and asleep in the comfort of their own nests.

The hamsters get examined by a panel of judges and get put on some kind of a rack thing for closer inspection. If the hamster scores enough points then the owner wins a rosette.

My opinion is that hamster shows are for the benefit of humans and interrupt a hamster's routine.
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Last edited by Ria P; 11-08-2021 at 06:13 AM.
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Old 11-08-2021, 05:23 AM   #4
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Default Re: Opinions on hamster shows?

Depends on your own personal definition of 'ethical'

I personally do not think it is 'ethical' to box up a hamster to take it to a show, during the day, just so people can show off their hamsters. It is not at all for the benefit of the hamster but the humans.
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