How Long Do Hamsters Live? Curious Lifespan Facts Revealed For Kids! | Kidadl


How Long Do Hamsters Live? Curious Lifespan Facts Revealed For Kids!

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Did you know that the oldest hamster was four and a half years old?

Hamsters make great first pets, but before getting any pet you must know how long they generally live and for how much time they’re gonna be a part of your family. Hamsters are rodents that have roughly seven breeds that first came from Syria but are now available in most parts of the world.

They are docile creatures who enjoy being held. They can even learn to respond to their name with practice. Syrian hamsters are the most popular winter white hamster breed today because of their docile and homely nature and rich luxurious fur which gives them a “teddy bear” like appearance and thus the name “teddy bear hamsters”.

Hamsters are favored by a lot of people as pets because they are tiny, don’t require much attention, and get plenty of exercise in their cage. You don’t even need to groom these small animals as they groom themselves, often twice a day but compared to other pets, hamsters have a shorter lifespan. The question is, how long does this tiny animal live? Although hamsters don’t require much care, there are some things that you must keep in mind while taking care of small animals like a hamster in order to ensure that they live longer. After reading all about how long a hamster lives as a pet animal, do check Roborovski hamsters facts and how long do gorillas live?

How long do hamsters live as pets?

Hamsters are adorable creatures that make great pets, although there is no fixed period of time for which hamsters live, there is an average number of years you can expect your beloved pet to accompany you. Read further to find out how long you can expect to care for your hamster and how to make them live longer.

Wild hamsters are originally natives of Syria, as we discussed above., and are one of the most popular hamster breeds in the world. Originally these hamsters were expected to live an average lifespan of three years but due to changing climatic conditions, predators, and inhabitable forest environments the average hamster's lifespan has increasingly declined. A few wild species have also been considered critically endangered and are on the verge of extinction. Domestic care and protection enable a pet hamster to live a longer lifespan. The hamster's lifespan depends upon a number of factors like diet, exercise, genes, species, and quality of care. With good care and love, you can make your pet hamster live longer.

Hamsters live with bad eyesight right from their birth as they have bad eyesight due to their faulty genetics, which means that most hamsters have little to no vision. But the little bit they see, they are capable of seeing in colors. If you’re a hamster owner you must have heard that a dwarf hamster breed is actually colorblind.

While this may not be true for full-sized hamsters, it is true for a dwarf hamster. Dwarf hamsters are not fully developed and lack a proper functioning cornea. This is particularly true for one of the most sought-after dwarf hamsters, the Russian dwarf hamster breed, also known as the winter white Russian dwarf hamster. The Russian Dwarf hamster species has bad vision and can only see in black and white colors.

Knowing the exact age of a Roborovski hamster can be difficult, but if you look closely you will be able to tell if the Roborovski hamster is getting old. Hamsters age quite similarly to their human owners and show similar signs of ageing.

Hamsters have a very short average lifespan of about three years, therefore they reach old age after one and a half years of age. After this time, certain changes start occurring in hamsters. These include decreased activity, lethargy, certain changes in the quality of skin and hair like hair thinning and flakiness. Other symptoms include dental problems, arthritis, and complete loss of vision.

How do hamsters really die?

As a Roborovski hamster parent, you must be concerned about your hamster’s safety and protection. Hamsters are delicate little creatures that are vulnerable to a lot of infections and diseases and need to be handled very carefully to ensure their health and well-being. If you’re wondering the cause of death in hamsters then keep on reading.

Illness: Like any other animal, a pet hamster species too is susceptible to catching many illnesses. These illnesses could also be a result of their genetics. Syrian hamsters are notorious for hiding their illness till the very end. Therefore it is very important for hamster owners to look for signs. The signs of illness that can severely affect your winter white hamster species and you must look out for are anorexia, loss of appetite, changes in defecations, lethargy and excessive grooming, and unkempt fur.

Stress: It may sound weird but stress can be fatal to dwarf hamsters and can be a potential cause of death. Stress can severely affect your hamster’s immune system. Acute stress can cause sudden death in hamsters by inducing heart attacks and strokes. It will be a good idea to give them proper attention.

Heart Diseases: Heart diseases that affect hamsters can either be due to genetics or be acquired. Diseases like congestive heart failure can cause sudden death due to genetic predispositions which cause the blood flow to slow down drastically. Symptoms can include erratic movements and respiratory distress.

Wet Tail: Wet tail is diarrhea in hamsters. It is one of the major causes that cause a spontaneous collapse of hamsters. It is usually associated with a bacterial infection. A good idea of symptoms includes wetness around the genitals, lethargy, uneasiness, and messy coat.

Pneumonia: Pneumonia is an infection of the lungs that is fatal to both humans and hamsters. Hamsters can catch a cold from humans easily but unlike humans, their immune system is quite weak and the cold soon develops into fatal pneumonia.

These were some of the common causes of death in hamsters, other causes include cancer.

As you have a good idea, hamsters are delicate creatures and you need to take quality care of them. If you own a Syrian hamster species you must keep in mind some dietary items that can trouble your hamsters and only feed them the chow that they love.

Your Syrian hamster’s diet must be of good quality and must include a handsome amount of vitamin E, which is essential to maintain healthy and lustrous fur. You may also add some nutritious vegetables to their diet like celery, kale, and carrots to their chow. Drops of plain yogurt, honey, and sunflower seeds can be a great treat for your Syrian hamster. Hamsters do not like eating leftover food, so make sure that you only feed them a little food at a time so that they can finish it all and then clear their diet bowl. Also, keep changing their water every day. A healthy hamster requires about 10 ml (0.01 l) of water every day, which is enough to fit in a soda cap.

A cute little hamster in a plate with various nuts eats.

How do hamsters act before they die?

Losing a pet can be very difficult, and can affect you in many ways as they become an important part of our lives and families, but you may wanna know when your hamster’s last time comes near so that you can comfort your loved pet in its last moments and try to make death a little bit easier for them. These are some of the signs that may indicate that your hamster is dying.

The first sign of a dying hamster is loss of appetite and thirst. Hamsters are not greedy eaters and can go several days without eating any food, but not drinking water can be a cause of concern as dehydration can make death quite painful for your small pet.

Deep breathing and sharp squeaky sounds can also mean that your hamster is in its last moments and is scared and frightened.

Your hamster might also shake and shiver before collapsing due to excess fear, such erratic movements are often accompanied by high-pitched squeaks and screams.

The best way you can take care of your dying hamster is by making sure that their environment is warm and comfortable, providing them with proper medication and veterinary treatment. You should also hold your hamster in your hands in its last moments in order to comfort them and let them know that they’re not alone. Also, make sure that your hamster is properly hydrated.

Why do hamsters die so fast?

If you’ve tried to bring a hamster home and the hamster has passed soon after. It may have led you to wonder what causes such unfortunate things to happen. There can be several reasons for your hamster to pass so soon without any underlying cause of disease.

There can be a lot of reasons behind this, as hamsters are very fragile creatures with weak immune systems. If you separate a hamster from its mother very soon and bring it home, chances are the baby hamster will die of extreme depression and fear. Baby hamsters are naturally more susceptible to catching infections and diseases than older ones and can be exposed to bacteria and toxins quite easily. Another reason can be a bacterial infection. A hamster can die due to a bacterial infection that it may have caught from its human owner. Humans can transmit bacterias that can be fatal for hamsters and can cause diseases like the wet tail disease. Other reasons can include extremely loud noises which can cause heart failure in hamsters.

Have you ever been worried to see your hamster lying motionless in its cage and became concerned that it may have passed on to the other side, only to find it revived a few hours later?

Yes, hamsters are capable of playing dead due to their survival instincts which are deeply entwined in their genetics, but they don’t do it out of mockery or play. Although a hamster playing dead is usually not a major cause of worry, it can mean that your hamster is very scared and is having a hard time adjusting. It can also be a sign of chronic depression and anxiety which can be fatal to a hamster. In the wild, hamsters usually play dead when faced with danger, in order to protect themselves from predators.

Now that you know plenty of facts about this tiny animal’s life and how fragile they are, you must also know how to take proper care of your pet hamster. Here are some tips that you must follow to enable your hamster to live longer and stay healthy and happy.

Just like bunnies, hamsters' teeth never stop growing therefore you need to provide them with enough toys to chew on so that they don’t chew on their cage and get hurt.

Hamsters are active creatures and therefore always need something to keep them occupied especially at night as they are nocturnal creatures and come to life after you go to sleep, a good option would be to install a maze or a spinning wheel where they can exercise and self-entertain.

Hamsters are highly susceptible to getting bacterial infections and therefore it is necessary to wash your hands before feeding them and properly sanitize their toys and cage on a regular basis.

Do not pick or play with your hamster in the initial days, as we discussed above, hamsters are cowardly and fragile and can even be scared to death. In the initial days, give them space and time to trust you.

If your hamster has long hair, it can be a possible hazard as their hair can get caught in the cage wire and can hurt them. It is best to trim your hamster’s hair. You do not have to wash your hamster or give them a bath as hamsters are self groomers and groom themselves almost twice a day.

Do not feed your hamster without a proper bowl, this is because hamsters can scratch themselves with the chow. Only feed your hamster in a plate or a bowl to ensure their safety.

You should seek veterinary treatment as soon as your hamster falls sick to avoid any future complications.

Clean your hamster’s bedding regularly.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for how long do hamsters live? Curious lifespan for kids revealed! Then why not take a look at chameleon lifespan: interesting facts on their age revealed! Or chicken life cycle: amaze-wing facts from egg to adult chick explained.

The Kidadl Team is made up of people from different walks of life, from different families and backgrounds, each with unique experiences and nuggets of wisdom to share with you. From lino cutting to surfing to children’s mental health, their hobbies and interests range far and wide. They are passionate about turning your everyday moments into memories and bringing you inspiring ideas to have fun with your family.

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