How to pet and handle a hamster?

The hamster is one of the most popular new pets (NAC) in France. Easy to live with and a pleasure to raise, he is a small guinea pig who can be a friend to both young and old. On the other hand, it is a small animal, as it only weighs a few grams. Therefore, it is important to handle it carefully and making the right gestures. Here are our recommendations and three steps to take to properly handle your little companion without risking injury.

Step 1: tame the animal

First of all, know that a hamster, like any animal or living creature, has needs that are important to respect. The hamster is a nocturnal animal that lives at night and sleeps during the day. Therefore, if you accept it in order to satisfy your children, it is necessary to teach them to respect the life cycles of this little rodent, in particular its sleeping and eating periods.

Indeed, a hamster is an animal that can experience a lot of stress when awake, or be embarrassed in a dream. If you keep him awake when he feels the need, he will develop stressful, anxious, aggressive behavior and will tend to reject all human contact, even biting anyone who approaches him, to protect himself. This malaise should not be overlooked; Learn to respect your hamster’s sleep and meal times. Don’t disturb him on such occasions and make sure you only make contact when he wants to, otherwise your little companion won’t accept you and live to a ripe old age.

To start a healthy relationship with your hamster, it’s important to take the time to tame it. Really, don’t try to take it by surprise. On the one hand, he is too mobile to guarantee you success, and on the other hand, he does not really appreciate the maneuver and may try to bite you to defend himself.

So give him time to get used to you and learn to trust you. When you approach him, especially to clean his cage, make only gentle movements. Ideally, isolate him in a safe place first so that he is not scared of that giant hand that invades his space and flips him upside down. Talk to him gently and be patient. Your hamster will get used to your smell and your voice and gradually gain confidence. After a few days, he will allow you to approach, allow you to touch and caress him. Take your time to follow the steps and be patient so you don’t go back.

Step 2: first contact

At the end of the day, your hamster is up and ready to start his crazy night. This is the best time to try the first contact, provided that he already trusts you relatively. Put your hand in the cage and let him come. Your hamster will sniff you and get used to your scent. Don’t go any further at first.

After a few days like this, feel free to reach out and wiggle your fingers. You can offer him a treat in the palm of your hand and let him rise to get it. First, he will take it and go to taste far away, in a shelter. But over time, he will be confident enough to eat him out of your hands.

As soon as he sits on your palm, try gently bending your fingers around his body. On the other hand, if he wants to leave, let him do it and go no further.

Step 3: first caresses

Once your hamster lands in your palm, happily lift it up a few inches to get it used to being carried. Don’t lift him too high so he can run away without hurting himself if he’s still scared.

When you can wrap your fingers around your pet and pick it up without trying to get away, try putting it on top of you. Be sure to cover yourself with a towel first, because he can pee on you. Always caress him gently in the direction of his hair and give him enough time to feel you when he shows the need. This calms him down.

As soon as your hamster starts to fuss or get frustrated, carefully place him back in his cage. Let him calm down slowly.

Also, make sure you never carry it high up because it’s always possible to fall. Even if your pet trusts you and allows himself to be touched and carried, a sudden noise (shouting, slamming a door, falling object, etc.) can scare him to death. However, a fall from a height can be fatal.

Finally, never hold a hamster by the scruff, it’s not a cat! You need to grab it from below, with both hands and always carefully. Do not overtighten it, it is important to keep it without pressure.

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