Are Hamsters Hard to Care For? Read This Before Getting One

Hamsters are a popular choice of pet for people of all ages. These small rodents are cute, cuddly, and entertaining to watch. However, before you rush out to buy your own hamster, it’s important to consider whether you have the time, space, and resources to properly care for one. In this blog post, we’ll explore the ins and outs of taking care of hamsters, including basic care requirements, common health issues, and more.

What are hamsters?

Hamsters are small, furry rodents that belong to the family Cricetidae. There are several different species of hamsters, including the Syrian hamster, the dwarf hamster, and the Chinese hamster. These animals are native to various regions, but they are now found all over the world as popular pets.

Why do people keep hamsters as pets?

There are many reasons why people choose to keep hamsters as pets. For one, they are small and easy to care for, making them a good choice for people who live in apartments or have limited space. Hamsters are also relatively inexpensive compared to other pets, and they are generally quiet and low-maintenance. Finally, hamsters are entertaining to watch and can provide hours of amusement with their playful antics.

Factors to consider before getting a hamster

Before you decide to get a hamster, there are several important factors to consider.

Do you have the time to care for a hamster?

While hamsters are relatively low-maintenance pets, they still require a certain amount of time and attention. You’ll need to clean their cage regularly, provide them with food and water, and spend time playing with them to keep them happy and healthy. If you don’t have the time to devote to a pet, a hamster may not be the best choice for you.

Can you afford to take care of a hamster?

While hamsters are not expensive to buy, they do require some ongoing expenses. You’ll need to buy food, bedding, toys, and other supplies, and you may also need to take your hamster to the vet for checkups or if they become sick.

Make sure you can afford to care for a hamster before bringing one into your home.

Is your living space suitable for a hamster?

Hamsters require a certain amount of space to live in, and their cages need to be situated in a quiet, draft-free area of your home. If you don’t have enough space for a cage or if your living conditions are not appropriate for a hamster, you may need to reconsider whether a hamster is the right pet for you.

Basic care for hamsters

If you do decide to get a hamster, here are some basic care requirements to keep in mind. Read these so that you can get an idea of what level of care a hamster requires.

Housing requirements for hamsters

Hamsters need a cage that is large enough to allow them to move around and exercise. A good rule of thumb is to have at least 450 square inches of floor space for a single hamster. The cage should also be lined with bedding material that is safe for hamsters, such as aspen shavings, paper-based bedding, or recycled paper pellets.

Diet and nutrition for hamsters

Hamsters are omnivores and require a balanced diet that includes both protein and vegetable-based foods. A good quality hamster food should be the mainstay of their diet, but you can also offer fresh vegetables, fruits, and occasional treats like mealworms or sunflower seeds. Make sure your hamster always has access to fresh water as well.

Hygiene and grooming for hamsters

Hamsters are generally clean animals, but their cages will need to be cleaned regularly to prevent odors and bacterial growth. You might also want to provide your hamster with a dust bath 2-3 times a week to help keep their fur clean and healthy.

Exercise and playtime for hamsters

Hamsters are active animals that require plenty of exercise and playtime to stay healthy and happy. You can provide your hamster with a wheel or other toys to keep them entertained, and you should also spend time playing with them outside of their cage.

Common problems and health issues with hamsters

Like any pet, hamsters can experience health problems from time to time. Here are some common issues to watch out for.

Signs of illness in hamsters

Hamsters are small animals, so it can be difficult to tell if they are sick or not. However, some common signs of illness in hamsters include lethargy, loss of appetite, diarrhea, and changes in behavior. If you notice any of these symptoms, take your hamster to the vet right away.

Common health problems in hamsters

Hamsters can develop a variety of health problems, including dental issues, respiratory infections, and skin problems. They are also prone to developing tumors, which can be benign or malignant. Regular checkups with a veterinarian can help catch these issues early and prevent them from becoming more serious.

Preventing health problems in hamsters

To prevent health problems in your hamster, make sure you are providing them with a healthy diet, clean living environment, and plenty of exercise and playtime. You should also take your hamster to the vet for regular checkups, and watch for any signs of illness or changes in behavior.


Taking care of a hamster can be a rewarding experience, but it’s important to make sure you are prepared to provide them with the care they need. By considering the factors outlined in this blog post and following basic care guidelines, you can ensure that your hamster lives a happy and healthy life.

ThePetFaq Team