Having become the happy owner of a small hamster, I would rather want to pick it up, stroke it, caress it. But the rodent does not want to communicate, hides in the house, and if you try to pull it out, it can bite. Of course, decorative rodents are less aggressive than their wild relatives, but their teeth are sharp and the bite is painful. You didn’t dream of such a nature of communication when you bought a little fluffy. In addition, the cage needs to be cleaned regularly, and the pet will have to be lured out of the home.
In this article, we will talk about how to tame a hamster to hand. Be patient and gradually you will gain his trust and devotion.
Do not try to tame and take the hamster in your hands on the first day. The animal needs several days to get used to a new place of residence, new smells and voices. He is experiencing serious stress from moving, and if you immediately climb with his tenderness, he will try to bite you. This is especially true of the Dzungarian hamster.
Put the cage in a calm, quiet place so that the baby is not afraid of sharp sounds and loud voices. Especially during the day when he is sleeping. But this should not be a completely isolated place, the rodent needs to see and hear people, get used to the voice of the owner. Talk with him, especially while feeding. Speak calmly and affectionately, repeat the nickname repeatedly so that these sounds are associated in the head of the animal with delicious food. If he runs away at your appearance in the house, be patient and wait for the moment when the animal will eat in your presence. You can’t forcefully pull a hamster out of hiding. Remember a few simple rules before you start training.
- Do not try to tame a Syrian hamster in the daytime. Hamsters are nocturnal animals, their activity occurs after 18:00. The same applies to other breeds.
- Do not start the "educational process" if the animal is in a bad mood: nervous, restlessly running around the cage or aggressive. If you keep other pets at home, they should not bother or frighten a small animal.
- Provide a comfortable stay for your pet: tasty food in sufficient quantities, fresh water in a drinking bowl, toys and attractions. Ensure the rodent has a good day's sleep, do not wake him if you suddenly want to play with the baby or do some training.
If the pet is a little accustomed to a new place and is no longer hiding in the house when you appear, gradually establish closer contact.
- Learn his habits and preferences. When he sleeps and is most active, what food he prefers and what is his favorite treat.
- Accustom the hamster to the sound of your voice. Approach the cage several times a day and calmly talk to him. If the word has run out, you can sing, read poetry. The main thing is that the baby gets used to your presence.
- When the little animal will not immediately hide in the house when you appear, proceed to the next stage of education. Put sweets in the cage: seeds, dried fruits, a slice of carrots or cookies. If the rodent at the same time no longer runs in a panic to shelter, try holding a treat with two fingers to feed the baby from the hand. If he took food from your hands, then you are doing everything right. Fix the result, do not rush to go to the next stage. Do not try to stroke the hamster, you will scare him. All efforts will go down the drain, and a little trust established between you will disappear again.
- If the rodent already trusts you so much that it takes food from your hands, try to carefully stick your palm with the food into the cage. Put a seed or a slice of cookies so that the animal is difficult to get, remaining on the cage floor. The kid will have to climb into the palm of his hand to grab the food. Do such a “trick” for a long time until the hamster crawls into the palm of his hand completely fearlessly. Do not make sudden movements.
- When the hamster jumps into the palm of his hand in search of refreshments, try carefully pulling his palm out of the cage, or take it with two hands folded in the form of a “boat”. Do not take the animal from behind or “by the scruff”. He will get scared and bite.
What to do if the hamster is not yet accustomed to hands
Getting a hamster to hand is not a quick task. You will need several weeks or even months, and the cage should be cleaned regularly. How to lure a "tenant" and not scare him?
The easiest way is to place a glass jar or cardboard tube closed on one side in a cage. Put food inside the trap. When the hamster enters, just remove the temporary housing from the cage.
The second way is to place the cage with the door open in the bathtub. Pre-close the drain hole. A curious rodent will leave the cage, but it will not be possible to go beyond the bath. You can safely clean the cage, then put a tasty one there. The hamster will go inside the washed "apartment", it remains only not to forget to securely close the door.
In extreme cases, you can use this option. Cover the rodent with a towel, or put on gloves and pull it out by hand. But this method is not advisable to use. The hamster is frightened and nervous. It is possible that after that he will become aggressive, and your friendship will seriously suffer.
What to do if the animal bites
If your pet is aggressive, you need to find out the reasons for this behavior. There may be several.
- Hamsters do not see well, trust olfaction more and try everything “by the tooth”. For them, the finger is a new food, it must be tried. Usually young animals suffer from this. This will pass after a closer acquaintance.
- Sometimes it smells of food or something else that seems to be edible to the rodent. For example, the fruity smell of soap or hand cream.
- If the hamster is not given in hands, he is afraid for his life and bites as self-defense.
- The cause may simply be excessive excitement. Something could scare the baby. If he bites, this is not a sign of aggression. Maybe he just plays and bites slightly “from an excess of feelings”.
- The female may become aggressive during pregnancy. This is a completely natural behavior, as she is already preparing to protect future offspring. Try not to worry or disturb her again. All classes and training for hands will have to stop for a while.
Features of the training of different species
There are no special recommendations for the taming of hamsters of different species. For all breeds, the rule applies that young individuals master science faster than adults. The more time you devote to an animal, the faster it will get used to you.
Nevertheless, it is believed that the Dzungarian hamsters are more nimble and smart, and it is easier to tame the Dzhungarik than the larger and slower Syrian. In any case, it all depends on the desire and patience of the owner. Any hamster can even be taught to respond to a nickname if you repeat it every time you bring your pet food. This will help return the rodent if he escapes.
Hamsters and children
Hamsters are small and tender creatures. It is very easy to carelessly harm or even injure them. If the family has small children, carefully explain to them the rules for the treatment of decorative rodents.
- Do not scream, do not wave your arms in front of the cage with the rodent. If he is shy and not yet used to people, the process of taming will drag on even longer.
- If the hamster is in his arms, you need to hold it carefully so as not to pin down.
- Do not take hamsters in their hands without the permission and supervision of adults.
- Be prepared for the hamster to bite. Do not scold or punish him, he just protects his life. Carefully put back into the cage, let it calm down.
Learning a hamster’s hands is a long process, but if you have patience and endurance, everything will surely turn out.