Hamsters could make such nice household pets. However there’s a lot to consider when adopting your new BFF — from what meals shall be finest on your hamster to the sorts of cages and bedding he’ll really like.
And right here’s another — do hamsters hibernate?
Because it seems, Siberian and dwarf hamsters within the wild survive chilly winters by hibernating. They put together for the lengthy winter by consuming a ton of meals and bringing further snacks and heat bedding into their dens. However what about domesticated hamsters?
For extra perception on the explanation why your hamster would possibly hibernate, and what you are able to do if it occurs to your pet, we spoke to Leah Feusse, a veterinary nurse with DodoVet.
Do hamsters hibernate?
In brief, sure, your pet hamster can technically hibernate — however whether or not he really does this or not is determined by how chilly you retain the temperature in your house.
“Pet hamsters will start hibernating if the temperature of their habitat drops under 65 levels Fahrenheit for greater than 24 hours,” Feusse instructed The Dodo.
However typically, pet hamsters don’t hibernate, as a result of they’re used to dwelling in comfy temperatures that don’t change a lot.
What to do in case your pet hamster hibernates
Despite the fact that pet hamsters don’t usually hibernate, they nonetheless can. Right here’s when your pet hamster would possibly go into hibernation, in keeping with Feusse:
- The air-con or warmth in your house malfunctions
- A window was left open
- His habitat was too near an air vent
- He escaped and ended up in a chilly spot in your house.
The thought of your hamster hibernating sounds fairly cute, however it could actually really be tremendous harmful for him.
“Pet hamsters can undergo from hypothermic shock, dehydration and/or hunger in the event that they hibernate for greater than 24 hours,” Feusse stated. “When you discover your hamster hibernating, you would possibly suppose that it has handed away. When hibernating, a hamster lowers its temperature, respiratory and coronary heart charges drastically.”
Examine for indicators of life
When you discover your hamster unresponsive in his cage, you’ll wish to examine for indicators of life ASAP (and take a look at to not freak out!).
“Watch very carefully for motion of their chest or stomach for indicators of respiratory,” Feusse stated. “When hibernating, a hamster can gradual their respiratory right down to just one breath each two minutes, so be affected person. You too can really feel their ribcage, simply above their elbows, for a heartbeat.”
A hibernating hamster will gradual his coronary heart fee from the traditional 400 beats per minute to as little as 5 beats per minute. He may also really feel chilly to the contact, however his physique received’t be stiff, it’ll be limp.
Slowly heat the room
When you discover your hamster unresponsive in his home, and the ambient temperature is under 65 levels Fahrenheit within the room, you’ll be able to attempt to slowly heat the room to not more than 75 levels Fahrenheit.
“In case your hamster is hibernating, they need to slowly get up when they’re heat,” Feusse added. “Don’t strive instantly warming them with objects like hairdryers, as they should heat up regularly.”
One strategy to wake him up is to softly maintain your hamster within the palm of your hand to let your physique temperature slowly heat his physique. When he does get up, your hamster shall be hungry and thirsty, so be sure you have contemporary meals and water prepared for him!
Convey your hamster to the vet
When you discover your hamster unresponsive, you’ll be able to strive the steps above first or simply take him on to the vet if that makes you are feeling extra comfy.
Learn how to forestall your hamster from hibernating
Temperature is vital to forestall your pet hamster from hibernating — ideally, your property’s temperature ought to keep between 65 and 75 levels Fahrenheit. Additionally, ensuring your hamster will get some solar, blockading drafts close to your hamster’s home, and offering loads of meals, water and clear bedding are important to conserving your hamster joyful and thriving.
Right here’s to plenty of enjoyable instances collectively along with your little BFF!
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