Hamsters are charming creatures that make excellent pets. They are gentle and calm, as well as low-maintenance. Holding your hamster may help you not only feel more connected to him but can also help him grow calmer. Being handled is not natural for hamsters, so make sure you know how to hold a hamster.
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How to Hold a Hamster Correctly
You risk being bitten if you accidentally frighten your hamster while handling them. To protect themselves, hamsters will bite. They will often bite you to let you know if they don’t like what you’re doing. You will most likely get bitten many times while keeping a hamster; perhaps this essay can reduce the amount.
1. Wash Your Hands
Because hamsters have a strong sense of smell, you should wash your hands before handling them. Your hamster may feel afraid if you have any odd odors on your hand.
You should also use unscented soap since heavily scented soaps may overpower the hamster’s sense of smell. You also limit the possibility of spreading germs and viruses to your hamster, which may make them ill.
2. Let Your Hamster Sniff You
To encourage your hamster to smell it, put your hand in the cage and keep it there for a few seconds. You don’t want to grasp them since this will make the hamster afraid and bite you. A hamster may also become afraid of you in the long run.
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This could keep them from letting you hold them in the future. If you leave your hand in your hamster’s cage for a second, they will get used to your scent and hand before you take them up.
3. Wait for Your Hamster to Crawl into Your Hand
Wait for your hamster to crawl into your hand by turning your palm up. This may not work at first, especially if your hamster is unfamiliar with you. They could be terrified of your hand and try to avoid it. They will, however, become accustomed to your presence and crawl into your hands after a few sessions.
If your hamster does not climb into your hand, scoop them up by scooping up the bedding on which they are sitting. You don’t want to grasp them since it will frighten them and prompt them to bite. It may also make them fearful in the long run, leading to more bites in the future.
4. Allow Your Pet to Warm Up to You
Forcing your hamster to be handled for a lengthy amount of time when they are initially adopted is usually not a smart idea. This may make them afraid and worried, which can lead to infections and other difficulties.
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Stress may be a serious issue for hamsters, so try to keep it to a minimum. Depending on how afraid the hamster is, you may only want to put your hand in their cage the first few times. Don’t pick them up immediately if they are afraid of your hand.
5. Provide a Treat
You should give your hamster a reward the first few times he or she is held. Treats are always welcome. If you give your hamster a reward when you hold them, they will begin to look forward to your cuddling sessions. If they are afraid, this is a good way to get them to come out of their shell.
6. Say No to Punishing Hamsters
A note about punishment in general: it is ineffective on hamsters. Even though hamsters are intelligent, they lack the capacity to make unambiguous linkages between actions and outcomes. A hamster is primarily concerned with its own survival and has no sense of “doing wrong.” When you hit or shout at a hamster, it perceives you as an adversary, not a teacher.
Gently blowing in a hamster’s face and maybe pronouncing a stern “no” is the most severe punishment you should ever contemplate. The hamster will rear back and squint as if it smells something strange (which, if you’re cool and collected, can be quite amusing). You will actually “take the wind out of its sails,” but you will not make your hamster more suspicious and protective than you would if you took any harder action.
Hamster Handling Tips
- Following the “golden guidelines,” you’ll have to decide when your hamster is ready to be picked up. There is no time limit, but let your hamster have at least a few hours over many days to grow accustomed to your smell and presence before attempting to lift it.
- If you aren’t yet comfortable handling your hamster, or if your hamster seems scared in your bare hands, pull it out of the cage into a cup or small dish.
- The greatest hamster “elevator” is one you can create yourself out of a 1-liter transparent plastic soft-drink bottle. Remove the label from the bottle and cut it in half. Snip off the bottom half of the bottle, creating a cup the size of your hand.
- the plastic generally used for these bottles is thin enough to transfer your hand’s warmth, and the transparency enables the hamster to see the hand, yet there is nothing for the hamster to bite. You’ll eventually be able to do without this scoop entirely.
Hamsters, like many other little pets, might be fearful of being picked up. Some hamsters may appreciate being handled, while others may not. Follow your hamster’s lead and adjust your interactions to suit them. Consider getting a rat or ferret instead if you want a small pet that likes to be picked up and played with.
Frequently Asked Questions
Following are some frequently asked questions related to how to hold a hamster.
- How do you hold a hamster when scared?
Hold your hand limply in your hamster’s cage to avoid startling him. It’s also a good idea to start with your hand clenched in a fist. As he grows more at ease with your hand, you may unclench your fist with your palm facing upward.
- How often should I hold my hamster?
Interact with your hamster every day and handle them as much as possible, but keep in mind their napping schedule. When hamsters are resting or sleeping, it’s best not to touch them unless it’s absolutely necessary. This could be upsetting for them.
- Why won’t my hamster let me hold it?
An elderly hamster may not appreciate being handled as well as a younger hamster. Hamsters that aren’t accustomed to being handled grow more isolated, and they often don’t learn to welcome your touch.