How to Know if Your Hamster Is Healthy

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Examine your hamster’s skin and hair.,
Look at your hamster’s teeth.,
Inspect your hamster’s nails.,
Watch for lumps.,
Weigh your hamster.

A hamster’s fur and skin should be monitored for changes weekly. Some changes are normal. Older hamsters, for example, are prone to thinning hair. However, hair loss in a younger hamster may be a sign of health problem and should be evaluated by a vet.Hamster’s fur and skin varies by breed. You should know your hamster’s normal coat condition and be able to tell if it is changing. A deteriorating coat on an older hamster is normal. However, in a younger hamster dry fur, matted patches of hair, skin rashes, flaky skin, and bald spots can be a warning sign.Fur loss and skin rashes can be a sign of an easily treatable problem, like fleas or mites. However, they can also be a sign of a chronic condition like Cushing’s disease. It’s important to have your hamster evaluated by a vet in the event of skin and fur changes to diagnose the issue properly.If mites, fleas, and chronic diseases are ruled out by a vet, your hamster may be allergic to his bedding or toys. Try removing certain items, like any new toys or chews, from his cage or changing the bedding. If you notice an improvement when a certain material is removed, your hamster’s fur changes were likely an allergic reaction., Hamsters are prone to overgrown and uneven teeth. You may need to occasionally take your hamster to the vet to have this teeth trimmed. You should also monitor the color of his teeth to make sure they’re healthy.

A hamster’s teeth should be of more or less the same length. The bottom teeth should be longer than the top teeth. If your hamster’s teeth seem to be getting longer, try providing him toys he can chew on. This can help keep his teeth at an appropriate height. You can buy traditional wooden chews made specifically for hamsters or purchase dog biscuits for your hamster.A hamster’s teeth should be yellow. If you notice your hamster’s teeth whitening, take him to a vet to check for signs of a mouth infection.On occasion, you may need to have your vet trim your hamster’s teeth. If your hamster’s teeth begin curving inwards towards his mouth and jaw, take him to the vet. A qualified veterinarian can clip your hamster’s teeth safely. Your vet may also provide you with instructions on how to trim your hamster’s teeth on your own.

, Much like teeth, hamster nails can become overgrown. You can provide a hamster with longer nails with a big of store bought hamster sand. The hamster will dig in the sand and wear down his nails to an appropriate level. Check your hamster’s nails each week. If they seem to be growing longer and curving downward, pick up some sand for your hamster at a local pet shop.Not all hamsters take well to sand. Some hamsters dislike playing in the sand. Other hamsters have very strong nails that do not wear down with digging. If your hamster’s nails do not seem to improve with sand, make an appointment with your vet to have them trimmed., Hamsters can get benign and cancerous growths on all parts of their bodies. Such growths should be evaluated by a veterinarian as soon as possible to decide on a course of treatment. Once a week, take your hamster out of his cage and gently inspect him for lumps.

Allow your hamster to come to you. Put your hand in the cage, palm upward, and wait for him to come sniff you before picking him up or handling him. Handle your hamster gently as not to cause him pain.
Examine all over your hamster’s body for any new lumps or bumps. If you find a bump on your hamster, don’t panic. Hamsters are prone to benign cysts and ulcers. However, if the lump is cancerous early intervention is key. Removing a cancerous lump in its early stages improves your hamster’s chance at recovery. Stay calm and make an appointment with your vet for evaluation as soon as possible.Hamsters have scent glands near their hips. People often mistake these for cuts or lumps, but they are a perfectly normal part of a hamster’s anatomy. However, if a hamster is vigorously licking at his scent glands he may dislike the smell of something in his cage. Consider removing any new toys or bedding and see if the behavior stops., The appropriate weight of a hamster varies by breed but your hamster’s weight should stay relatively stable. It may fluctuate by a few grams each week, but any major changes could be a sign of a health condition. You can weigh a hamster on a small handheld scale you might use in the kitchen to weigh food.

It’s normal for a hamster’s weight to increase until he’s six months or older. However, a full grown hamster’s weight should not continue growing each week. If your hamster’s weight is increasing, talk to your vet about adjusting his feeding schedule. Obesity can cause a number of health conditions in your hamster.As in humans, weight loss and loss of appetite is a sign of a variety of health problems. If your hamster is losing weight each week, take him to a vet for evaluation.

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