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Old 02-19-2024, 01:10 PM   #1
Fullcheeksandfullhearts
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Join Date: Feb 2024
Location: Manchester. Uk
Posts: 7
Angry My new hamster is demanding. Help!

Hello Everyone.

I currently own a Female tortoise shell Syrian Hamster. She is my first Syrian hamster after previously owning Russian Dwarves.

I've had her for about 7 weeks now and i haven't had a full nights sleep since. She is in a custom built IKEA cage and i made the bad mistake off putting it in my bedroom as we had no room anywhere else. She has multiple boredom breakers, a 26/8 cm wheel, about 6 inches of bedding (my dad made custom platforms before i had chance to put the bedding in) Cork substrate and plenty of Sprays and a sand pit, and yet she ignores all of these and just focuses on chewing the platform legs or dragging her big wheel about.

Is there anyway i can get her to stop dragging her wheel about? it weighs about 2KG yet she is able to pick it up and bang it against the wall. Can i super glue it to the platform? or stick anything on the bottom.

In terms of the platform legs, i got an old platform with identical legs and cut them off and gave them to her as a regular chew toy but i'm worried it will entice her to chew the other platform legs.

It's getting to the point where i'm putting her in an old cage (a small one from Pets at home) and leaving her in the bathroom during the night just so i can get sleep and putting her back in the big cage in the morning, But i know this stresses her out and that makes me feel really anxious and on edge. It's not every night, just the nights where she is being unbearable.

I've tried play pen time and bonding in order to tire her out but it doesn't seem to affect her.

Any advice.

Last edited by Fullcheeksandfullhearts; 02-19-2024 at 03:15 PM.
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Old 02-20-2024, 09:04 AM   #2
Aegis
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Join Date: Jan 2024
Location: United States
Posts: 38
Default Re: My new hamster is demanding. Help!

My first hamster was similar to this, as it seemed like she had infinite energy. This happened when she was a pup, (baby hamster) but she eventually calmed down. Your hamster might chill out when she gets older too, but for now, I highly recommend using a hamster ball. This way she can run around all throughout your house (during the day) in it and still stay safe, and it will definately wear her out. Maybe if you don't want to put her in a small cage, try putting the big cage in the bathroom so you don't hear it? Hopefully you find this advice helpful.
-Aegis
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Old 02-20-2024, 09:47 AM   #3
Jeir
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Location: UK
Posts: 238
Default Re: My new hamster is demanding. Help!

I would recommend against a hamster ball. Hamsters are nearly blind, and 'see' with their whiskers and nose. Trapped in a ball, every single bang against a piece of furniture/the wall, every fall down a step, is just terrifying for them. The balls are also always too small for a hamster anyway.

'Unfortunately', you seem to have gone right for hard mode with Syrians. =D Females are known to be very active, and the most naughty of them are usually the torties.

That she's not using the wheel could suggest it's too small for her. Syrians prefer a wheel to be at least 11in/28cm, but some bigger ones may need a 12inch/30cm wheel. It also may be the style of wheel; some hamsters may prefer an open wheel (e.g. Nightangel, Comfort and Rodipet wheels), while some prefer ones that are more enclosed (e.g. Silent Runner, Wodent Wheel, Trixie).

I'm not sure if your cage would allow it, but you may want to try adding even more substrate to part of the cage. If you do a websearch for 'hamster ikea cage', you'll see quite a few different cage setups that may give you an idea of how to plan it out. You could also look at SomethingAnimal on youtube; Ollie has a female Syrian and DIY cages, so how he's set them up may inspire you.

Otherwise, all I can suggest is more enrichment. More hides, more tunnels, more things to chew. Try adding variation with pinecones and tree branch pieces to climb on, as well as the usual cardboard. See if there's a particular kind of thing she likes to chew the most (such as the wood used to make the platforms) and add more of that to the cage. You might be able to mask the scent of the platform legs with something like plasticote, or else put something in front of them, like a bendybridge, to help deter her from attacking them.

Good luck!
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