Raising hamsters can be fun and very rewarding. They are wonderful pets, gentle and easy to care for. But sometimes these rodents can be very difficult to live with, partly because hamsters are solitary animals. What kind of social life is better suited to these adorable rodents?
Hamsters are animals from the rodent family, but they differ from their fellow rodents in a few ways, such as a fairly short tail, small ears, short legs and wide feet. They also have a thick and long fur. They are very suitable pets for children because of their softness and sturdiness. If you want to adopt one or more hamsters, then you need to get to know the way your new friends live, so that they become domesticated and grow up happily.
It is important to note that some hamster breeds are known to be skittish around humans, and even more so around each other. If you buy them from a pet store or breeder, discuss the different varieties and find out if they are sociable or not, to get an idea on the issue of cohabitation. The most important thing to remember about hamsters is that they need to have enough room to roam.
Can we have several hamsters living together?
Co-habitation is often a thorny issue with hamsters. Between them, these hairballs can adopt real “fighter” characters. If you plan to have more than one hamster in a cage, it’s best to proceed with caution. Although most hamsters prefer to live alone, dwarf hamsters such as the “Winter White” or “Roborovski” tolerate group living, as long as each has plenty of personal space. But be careful, there is no guarantee that everything will work out in the long run.
The other trick is to have these little beasts live together from a young age, in this case, brothers or sisters. If two hamsters from the same litter have grown up together, then they know each other and can agree to share their territory without clashes. But if you haven’t managed to get hamsters from the same litter, you should avoid having animals older than six weeks, the age at which rivalries arise. Note that the experience of cohabitation is almost impossible with Russian, Syrian or Chinese hamsters, as well as golden and winter white hamsters.
Precautions for cohabitation
If you are planning to have hamsters that are very close to each other in the same cage, there are a few rules of etiquette that should be respected to ensure a better understanding:
- Have a cage that is large enough: a large cage will avoid many problems, and if one hamster is in a bad mood, the other one will be able to retreat to its personal corner.
- Check the sex of the hamsters: it is preferable to have hamsters of the same sex living together rather than a mixture of the two sexes. Otherwise, you may find yourself with a colony under your arms!
- Put their food in different places: to prevent the animals from fighting, you will have to provide them each with a bowl and a bottle of water.
- Keep a close eye on their behavior: even if they get along well at first, hamsters can end up fighting and becoming irritable overnight (even after several months of living together). In this case, act immediately by isolating the troublemaker.
In short, it is possible to have several hamsters live together if you know how to do it efficiently. But in case of repeated disputes, you must intervene immediately, because they can have harmful or fatal effects.