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Hamster Cages - How to Choose the Right One

One of the first things you need to decide is what type of house you will provide for your hamster. You have several choices to choose from. Each type of housing will have its pros and its cons:

Wire cages

Wire cages are fine for your hamster. You just need to know that bedding material, bits of food, and hamster droppings can fall through the wire bars. Apart from the obvious mess that this can create, you should also know that your hamster will likely gnaw the metal bars of her cage.

It is quite an unpleasant sound to say the least. Syrian hamsters are active during the nighttime, which means that they are nocturnal. Early morning and early evening are activity time for most dwarf hamsters since they are usually crepuscular.

Glass aquariums

Glass aquariums are much better if you are concerned about mess and about your hamster gnawing on wire bars. However, they are a bit more difficult to clean than wire cages. One important thing to remember is that you must keep a glass aquarium clean.

Ammonia gas tends to build up easily in this type of habitat. Hamster are pretty clever and have been know to find a way to climb out and escape. Because of this, you need to be sure the top of the aquarium is covered at all times. Covers made specifically for covering the aquarium top can be bought at your local pet store. Be certain to buy one with clips if not your hamster can still push the cover off and climb out!

Wire and Plastic Combination

Wire and plastic cages will certainly work for your hamster's habitat. Just keep in mind that if you do not clean the plastic often it can become discolored.

Whichever housing you decide on, keep these things in mind:

1. A good cage should measure at the minimum, 24 inches by 12 inches, and be a minimum of 10 inches tall. It should have enough space to allow your hamster to have an area to sleep, an area to eat, and an area to potty. Some hamsters will sometimes store food in the area where they sleep.

2. Try not to get a multi-level habitat. Remember that hamsters are not good climbers and they can be seriously injured from a fall. It is better to choose a hamster home that offers more floor space than choosing a tall cage.

3. The cage should be cleaned regularly. Hamsters are more likely to become sick if they are living in a dirty home.

4. The cage should be kept dry. Always check to see if the water bottle has a leak. You do not want it leaking into the bedding material. If the bedding it piled up too close to just underneath the water bottle it may cause the bottle to release water.

5. Stay away from wooden cages, unless you want your hamster to chew its way to freedom. I recommend you stay away from cages with any wooden parts. Your hamster is pretty clever at finding the weak spots.

6. Choose a home that was made especially for hamsters. Cages that were made for other types of rodents may have spaces between the bars that are large enough for your hamster to escape.

7. Keep the cage away from drafts.

8. Keep the cage away from direct sunlight.

Once you have decided on the type of cage you want, its time to select the other supplies you will need.

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