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Dwarf hamsters - can someone advise?

(4 Posts)
Jollyphonics Thu 20-Mar-14 18:16:23

My DSs have been nagging me for a pet for ages, and they want hamsters.

I'm told that Syrian hamsters have to be kept alone, so they wouldn't be able to have one each as I don't have the space for two cages.

So I thought maybe a couple of Dwarf hamsters would be good, as they can share a cage.

Can anyone tell me if this sounds a good idea? Are they sickly creatures who are often ill and die young, as some people have told me?

Thank you

2kidsintow Thu 20-Mar-14 18:19:01

They are lovely. They last about 18 months apparently, but one of my DD's ones lasted nearly 3 years. It was a winter-white one and it was fab to watch it's colour change each winter, then change back again in the spring.
They are friendly, but fast. The smaller the breed, the faster they are!
They are easy to tame and to handle.

Don't (please) be sucked in by the promise that they will live together happily. Ever pair we (or my friends) have had live nicely for a while, then one will start picking on the other. We started with 2 in one cage and quickly had to get another.

OnceUponAThyme Sun 23-Mar-14 13:07:55

dwarf hamsters can be very friendly, but you need to handle them on a regular basis as they can become less tame when not handled for a bit. syrians tend to stay tame and are easier for children to handle because they're bigger and slower.

dwarfs can stay together but you'd need to be prepared to separate them if they started fighting and injuring each other. a big cage with places to hide and climb can help them to get space if needed. they tend to be more active than syrians as well.

also, dwarf hamsters in my experience can jump much better, so be careful opening the cage doors grin

they live about 1 - 2 years. syrians live slightly longer, but I had a dwarf pair that lived nearly three years, so a good age for them smile

badasahatter Sun 23-Mar-14 13:23:21

Personally, having experience of both, I prefer the Syrian hamster. Having said that, you might save yourself some pain by just going for the biggest animal you can accommodate now. We worked up from goldfish to hamsters, to rabbits, to dog. I would never go back to a small furry animal, but I love my dog!

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