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Old 04-27-2011, 05:52 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Hamsters?

I've been carousing the hamstercentral.com website (reading up on hammies, considering having them back in my life again... my apartment is a zoo! ) and it seems that there is a huge discrepancy on the amount of space hammies need.

Specifically, I'm looking into Syrians... but it seems that they suggest at least 50x80cm for space?

I just wanted to know your thoughts, and if you do have hammies, how big your cage is?
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Old 04-27-2011, 06:23 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hamsters?

I had a couple of Syrians over a few years. I had the biggest cage I could find at the time, and was so glad I did. The traditional "hamster" cages are way way way too tiny for a syrian. The hamster mass market is designed for the idea of cute little dwarves who have cute little home and cute little toys... (Tiny cages are too tiny for ANY hamster, it makes me mad)

The cage I ended up getting was just a... small animal cage? It was a one off I got at petsmart, they have never carried it again. (I had originally bought this http://www.hamstercagesource.com/hamste ... story.html omg can we say TINY?) The one I ended up with is the same design/brand as this cage, which I still see at petsmart http://www.petsmart.com/product/index.j ... Id=3057123 but was clearly designed for hamsters/gerbils based on the size of the bars and the spacing. I can't measure it ATM since it's in the car right now (I use it for hedgie travel!) but yeah, it is about 12"x24". I had a loft in it too, which added some fun space.

People tend to write of hamsters as small pets who don't need attention or enrichment, but as a hedgie owner you know that all animals need enrichment. I had a HUGE playpen set up for my hamsters as well with a spare wheel, a dig-bath (filled with hamster litter) lots of tubes and containiers and places to forage.
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Old 04-27-2011, 07:06 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hamsters?

Quote:
Originally Posted by NoDivision
I had a couple of Syrians over a few years. I had the biggest cage I could find at the time, and was so glad I did. The traditional "hamster" cages are way way way too tiny for a syrian. The hamster mass market is designed for the idea of cute little dwarves who have cute little home and cute little toys... (Tiny cages are too tiny for ANY hamster, it makes me mad)

The cage I ended up getting was just a... small animal cage? It was a one off I got at petsmart, they have never carried it again. (I had originally bought this http://www.hamstercagesource.com/hamste ... story.html omg can we say TINY?) The one I ended up with is the same design/brand as this cage, which I still see at petsmart http://www.petsmart.com/product/index.j ... Id=3057123 but was clearly designed for hamsters/gerbils based on the size of the bars and the spacing. I can't measure it ATM since it's in the car right now (I use it for hedgie travel!) but yeah, it is about 12"x24". I had a loft in it too, which added some fun space.

People tend to write of hamsters as small pets who don't need attention or enrichment, but as a hedgie owner you know that all animals need enrichment. I had a HUGE playpen set up for my hamsters as well with a spare wheel, a dig-bath (filled with hamster litter) lots of tubes and containiers and places to forage.
The bar spacing is for hamsters? I didn't realize. The bunny makes the bar spacing look huge in that link @[email protected]

I had a hamster way back in the day. She was my first pet. unfortunately, this was back in China where they sold them in pairs. We separated them after a fight (we had no info. on syrians at the time), and the cage I had for her I found to be too small, so I took our old rabbit cage and used it for hers Eventually I moved to a plastic bin... and she turned out to be pregnant and had like 12 babies @[email protected] At any rate, I also used to have the S.A.M. kit as well... but yeah, I never thought those cages were big enough, and I guess I was right then!

I'd love to have an active funny animal in my household, which is why I'm looking into hammies. Now, I just have to convince my mom to let me get another pet
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Old 04-27-2011, 07:11 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hamsters?

Sorry I don't have a hamster but my mouse seems to enjoy this househttp://www.petsmart.com/product/in ... Id=2754667
I don't know if your hamster would fit though the tubes though Well best of luck with the search from a new furry friend
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Old 04-27-2011, 07:21 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hamsters?

oh, no, sorry, should have been more clear. The one I had has much smaller bars and spacing, but it is that same style

that super pet critter cage would NOT work for a Syrian.
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Old 04-27-2011, 07:40 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hamsters?

Quote:
Originally Posted by megan4032
Sorry I don't have a hamster but my mouse seems to enjoy this househttp://www.petsmart.com/product/in ... Id=2754667
I don't know if your hamster would fit though the tubes though Well best of luck with the search from a new furry friend
Yeah, that would be too small for syrians, because they tend to get very big

Quote:
Originally Posted by NoDivision
oh, no, sorry, should have been more clear. The one I had has much smaller bars and spacing, but it is that same style

that super pet critter cage would NOT work for a Syrian.
Ohh I see. Yeah, I was looking into finding a rat cage and just making it a hammy cage (not too many levels).

I also can't remember... but do they smell?

Also, how much do they usually cost you per month? (Everyone on the forum seems to be British so it's obviously different in terms of pricing compared to N. America).
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Old 04-27-2011, 08:02 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hamsters?

They can smell, yes. Mostly just because of bedding. I always used carefresh and I had a few odor absorbing carbon packs that I kept close to the cage. They, like hedgies, need good ventilation, which both hurts and helps with the smell. Something like a tank keeps the smell *in* a bit, but when you are near it god does it reek XD A nice open cage stops it from being one big explosion of smell. But as long as the cage gets cleaned every week it should never get too bad

The cost of upkeep for a hamster is almost entirely in bedding - I have started to wonder after owning a hedghog if you could do fleece liners and dig boxes for hamsters as well, which would certainly cut down on costs and smell. And a lot of hamsters can be littler trained, which is helpful. I'm sure the hamster forum probably has lots of good advice on different bedding types, I just used what I was used to.

I would say I probably spent about... $20 a month on my hamster? That's bedding and food, not including treats and toys. So they're pretty inexpensive little guys one you have housing taken care of, and of course do not have the same strict heat and light conditions as hedgehogs so that keeps the cost down. Though of course they do need a decent schedule and steady temps as well

If you do decide on a hamster, I would gladly send you a bundle of my old supplies for just the cost of shipping, since I don't anticipate having another hamster again any time soon (silent spinner wheel, igloo, hamster ball, water bottle, bowl and I might have some other toys in there as well. Just have to find them at my brother's house)
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Old 04-27-2011, 10:08 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hamsters?

A friend of mine had a cage like this for her hamster and it worked well. Hers was a dwarf though so I don't know if this is big enough.
link:
http://www.petco.com/product/106173/...PCagesHabitats
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Old 04-27-2011, 11:27 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hamsters?

If you want a large cage this one looks nice http://www.petco.com/product/114062/Sup ... atsHutches
It says it's for guinea pigs but I'm sure it would work great!
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Old 04-27-2011, 11:45 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hamsters?

Oh, here it is, petco has my cage! http://www.petco.com/product/113054/WAR ... -Cage.aspx I was really happy with it.

There's also this one, by the same maker, that would probably be perfect http://www.petco.com/product/113068/WAR ... -Cage.aspx in the medium size. The deeper bottom bin would be good for keeping bedding in But of course hamsters are super chewers, so might try to chew the edges of the plastic.
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