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Old 04-19-2021, 10:39 AM   #1
wendybear
Newborn Pup
 
Join Date: Apr 2021
Location: England
Posts: 27
Smile Beginner Hamster Owner

Hi everyone!
Iím a new hamster owner and i got Wendy 3 days ago now. Wendy is a grey and white syrian short haired hamster and sheís 8 weeks old. i just have a few questions.
1. Because sheís new, how and when do i spot clean her cage? Iíve left her alone for now (apart from changing food and water) but iím nervous to spot clean as it could stress her out.
2. What can i do to get her used to me and my smell? Iíve researched it but i thought itís best to ask. Also when do i start to introduce my hand to her?
3. At the moment iíve got her in a cage but i think itís too small so iíve bought her a new and bigger one. However i donít want to move her yet in case it stresses her out. Any tips on how to and when to?
That should be all for now But if you have any other tips - please let me know
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Old 04-20-2021, 12:43 AM   #2
Salem13
Hamster Pup
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Location: Canada
Posts: 80
Default Re: Beginner Hamster Owner

I may be going against the grain here but I generally recommend introducing your hand and such pretty much from the get go. Yes it will stress her out a little but it will also get her used to it a lot faster. Introducing her to what you want your regular hamster routine to be early will help her establish that as a norm. Many of the people I have talked to advise against just leaving new hamsters alone for the first few days as it can establish that there is no contact and thus freak them out more when their established routine is suddenly interrupted again. Obviously if she shows signs of fear like screaming then take it slower, like putting your hand on the cage rather than in it.

Spot cleaning depends mostly on what needs to be done. My own hamster is a very tidy little man who only really pees in his sand bath and tends to hoard his poops. I generally will clean the sand bath once a week or so. When I see spots where he has pooped and not immediately taken it I scoop them out. I generally do a full clean when I think it needs it which thus far has never been less than 2 months apart.

For the most part people use tissue like napkins, toilet paper, etc. You'll want to put it somewhere against your skin like in a sleeve or a bra if you wear them. Then just put it in the enclosure, consider maybe ripping it up a bit to encourage it being used for bedding. Talking in a soft sing-song voice can get your new friend used to you as well- I like to say hello to my boy whenever I see him and just babble to him about how hes cute and everything. I also like to offer small treats when hes out. Typically I will put it on my hand and allow him to climb up but if your Wendy is too nervous you can put it on the tips of your fingers or put it down and move your hand slightly away.
If she's not showing signs of fear and you're feeling up to it you can also attempt to do tub bonding sessions or use a play pen if you have one. You could potentially use the smaller enclosure as a bonding bin if you want as well- basically put her in there with some toys and chews and such and sit beside it with your hands resting in it. Allow her to climb over your hands if she wants.

Personally I would consider moving her in the next few days. If she hasn't had time to get used to the original cage then it shouldn't be as stressful as waiting for her to accept it as her home then suddenly be moved. When you do though you can transfer the bedding and everything to keep what she has scent marked. Generally it seems to help if you try to keep a similar layout as well. Depending on the two cages you could potentially connect them or put the smaller one in the larger
If you really don't want to move her any time soon you can wait a few weeks for her to get her scent really into everything first. Then use that bedding as the top most layer in the new enclosure.
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Old 04-20-2021, 09:46 AM   #3
wendybear
Newborn Pup
 
Join Date: Apr 2021
Location: England
Posts: 27
Default Re: Beginner Hamster Owner

Thank you!
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