We all know how pets are capable of enhancing your mood mere by their presence. But how about keeping a palm-sized creature with little-to-no demands and a goofy smile that can give your mental health a major boost? A Teddy Bear Hamster can do that. Teddy Bear Hamsters can make excellent pets for people who are fond of ‘pocket pets’ and are looking to rake in all the perks of keeping a companion animal that doesn’t demand too much attention and time from them.
More commonly known as Teddy Bear Hamsters, Syrian Hamsters are the most popular breed of hamsters, and have been domesticated as pets for decades. They are named Teddy Bear Hamsters because of their fluffiness and long hair, resembling a Teddy Bear. However, unlike bears, Teddy Bear Hamsters have a friendly and loving nature, making them one of the most sought-after pets by children. But their adorable looks alone are not enough to go ahead and get yourself a Teddy Bear Hamster; it’s vital to learn about different hamster’s breeds, their behavioral traits, and their nutritional and fostering needs, first.
A lot of us are absolutely fascinated at the sight of a hamster adorably running on a wheel; we can’t resist admiring this endearing creature. Some of us even end up wanting to have one for ourselves, too. Strangely though, many of us do not know about which hamster breed to adopt, given that each of them are having their own traits. Let’s make it easy for you. So, here’s a roundup of five hamster breeds that you can choose from.
1. Syrian Hamster (Teddy Bear Hamster)
As mentioned earlier, these are the most popular hamsters and are readily domesticated as pets. This can be attributed to their loving and affable nature. Syrian Hamsters can easily get attached to their keepers and are considered low-maintenance, making them a suitable choice of pet for young children, too.
There are two types of Teddy Bear Hamsters: The short-haired Syrian hamsters, also known as ‘fancy Teddy Bear Hamsters,’ and the long-haired Teddy Bear Hamsters. These hamsters can grow as big as 7 inches and are considered the longest of all hamsters.
2. Dwarf Campbell Russian Hamster
As the name suggests, this breed of hamsters is really small in size. It is probably because of their size that they are timid in nature and don’t survive for more than 2 years. Russian Hamsters are fond of interacting with their owners and would even stay awake during the daytime to garner their attention despite being nocturnal.
They like to stay cozy and hidden and aren’t exactly suitable to become pets for younger children because of their meek nature.
3. Chinese Hamster
A Chinese Hamster might just be the answer for those wanting an interactive and sociable pet; this is the most kittenish breed of all hamsters. Measuring as long as 4 inches, the Chinese Hamster needs a lot of attention to keep it busy; it can, otherwise, chew through almost anything while bringing serious damage to your valuables. If you believe you can give a Chinese Hamster the affection and attention it requires, this may just well be the right pet for you.
4. Dwarf Roborovski Hamster
Being the fastest among its fellow dwarf breeds, Dwarf Roborovski Hamsters are becoming increasingly popular as a pet. Also known as desert hamsters, they do not like to be tamed; they are not much fond of interacting with humans and can be kept merely as ‘observational creatures.’ This hamster likes mingling with other hamsters of its breed, but they refrain from sharing their space. Because of their hyperactive nature, they are fun to watch as they constantly play with their toys and never seem to run out of energy. The only thing that you might miss out on is a chance to cuddle your pet since these hamsters like to be solitary and limited only to themselves.
5. Dwarf Winter White Russian Hamster
Since they are primarily found in the colder parts of the world, they are also called Siberian Hamsters. Contrary to what their name suggests, this hamster has a coat of grey or brown hair that turns white only in winters. Siberian Teddy Bear Hamsters are sweet in nature and sociable with fellow hamsters of the same sex, provided they are given ample space. Just give them a silent corner with enough toys and attention, and watch them roll.
Considering the traits of different hamster breeds, it is advised to prefer a Teddy Bear Hamster over other breeds when choosing a hamster as your pet, albeit it’s arbitrary. What makes Teddy Bear Hamsters so likeable as a pet (whether it’s a fancy Teddy Bear Hamster or a long-haired Teddy Bear Hamster) is their behavior and general habits.
1. Hamsters Prefer Isolation
Teddy Bear Hamsters like to stay in isolation inside their cages. They aren’t even friendly with hamsters of their same sex, unlike Dwarf Hamsters. Before getting a Teddy Bear Hamster, keep in mind that hamsters aren’t like cats or dogs you can pet and easily tame. They have different ‘petting’ trajectories from other pets.
Baby Teddy Bear Hamsters can be handled or hand-tamed, and as they get older, they get used to it. They just need a lot of your attention and love and get accustomed to your presence. Also, don’t forget to give yummy treats to these cute rodents. Hamsters usually become active after dusk only while they spend the rest of the day sleeping. Those coming home after a tiring day can sure get relaxed watching the hamster running around its cage. They nap again at dawn.
2. Teddy Bear Hamsters Like to Hide
Hamsters are timid creatures and do like to hide even inside their cages. They feel sheltered and comfortable once inside their little dens. So, it’s vital that you provide them a little home for them even inside the cage before you get yourself a Teddy Bear Hamster.
3. Hamsters Express Their Emotions
While they may be really tiny, Teddy Bear Hamsters can still feel and express humanly emotions. For those aspiring to pet these tiny rodents, it’s important to learn to decipher the signals they send you. If a hamster feels like escaping or is insecure, it would promptly blow air out of its cheek pockets. Hamsters perk their ears forward to reflect their attentiveness while they would puff their cheek pouches to indicate fear. Just like humans, hamsters stretch and groom themselves when they are relaxed. Be on the lookout to see what your hamster is up to!
4. Keep Your Hamsters Away From Children
Children are usually more inclined to play with pets, and with the hamsters’ sleeping routine, children would likely want to wake up the hamster to play with it. This can really disturb the animal leading to Teddy Bear Hamster bites. Additionally, hamsters need to be handled gently since they can become fidgety around abrupt movements or loud sounds. This, again, can make your Teddy Bear Hamster bite your younger ones.
With keeping a Teddy Bear Hamster comes great responsibilities. Teddy Bear Hamsters require a very special kind of care with regards to their cage, food, toys and environment. Any requirement not being met can trigger the hamster and lead to their hyper behavior.
What you will require for your Teddy Bear Hamster is a cage with enough space, food, and water supplies and bedding, preferably made out of aspen shavings. Since their energy levels are high, they need to exercise often to release the pent-up energy. For that, it is essential to have an exercise wheel in addition to other toys. You may need a toy or a product that your hamster can chew on, too.
You will have to take responsibility for feeding your hamster around a tablespoon of food along with drinking water. Hamsters like living in clean spaces, which is why it is important to keep their cage clean of their droppings and change their bedding when required. Because of teddy hamsters’ long hair, all material related to the hamster must be scrubbed of all impurities, at least every week. Your hamster may require some cleaning for itself, too, but make sure to never get them wet. Hamsters are more than capable of cleaning and grooming themselves; all you need to do is brush them once a week.
As mentioned above, hamsters require time for exercising; allowing them to play in a playpen for some time once a day can keep them fresh and active. However, you need to be wary of infecting your hamster with any breathing issues that you may have; hamsters can catch these very quickly. Apart from this, hamsters are generally low-maintenance animals and if kept under excellent care, can give you company for 2-3 years.
Teddy Bear Hamsters are fond of various foods, ranging from fruits to vegetables and grains. On the contrary, there are some food items, including fruits, which can prove fatally poisonous for your hamster. Considering this, you have to be very cautious when feeding your hamster. While many hamster-keepers prefer commercially available food as the best food for Teddy Bear Hamsters, you can also feed your hamster with regular food items but with the utmost care. Below, we offer a list of items that your hamsters can eat—and savor.
That said, we recommend taking advice from a certified vet in this regard.
1. Fruits & Vegetables That Teddy Bear Hamsters Can Eat
- Peeled Sweet Potatoes
- Timothy Hay
Hamsters in the wild also eat bugs and worms to keep their little tummies filled; it wouldn’t hurt to feed your hamster one in its cage. There are also additional Teddy Bear Hamster food items that can be fed but overfeeding must be avoided at all costs. A tablespoon of food per day is enough for a hamster; overfeeding can have serious long-term implications like diabetes for your pet hamster.
Hamsters also require fresh, filtered water to drink. An inverted water bottle could be installed in their cages to have water, but again, the water must be changed every other day to keep it fresh.
To make the hamster feel loved, treats can be given when they are done exercising or when they let you pet them. You can treat your hamster to cheese or any other food they like to munch on, in addition to their regular diet.
As a rule of thumb, you need to remember to feed your hamsters foods that are rich in proteins and carbohydrates, low on fats and have lower water content. Needless to say, all foods must be given in moderation.
2. Foods Your Teddy Bear Hamster Must Avoid
- Apples seeds and skins
- Citrus fruits
- Sugary foods
- Fruits kernels or seeds
Foods that are dense in fats and calories can prove to be dangerous for your hamsters, in some cases causing them death. Potato or apple skins can be a host to molds that can cause a hamster to fall ill; it must be avoided feeding to hamsters.
All nuts are not exactly toxic to hamsters but the high fat content can lead hamsters to obesity and should be avoided. Bitter almonds, however, can prove to be deadly for hamsters as they consist of a cyanide composition.
Hamsters’ tummies are sensitive; too much acid from citrus fruit can make things worse for them. Alcoholic or caffeinated items can be a source of toxicity for your little partner, so be sure to avoid any such food items.