Hamsters naturally have a great need to move. They love to play, dig and climb. They should therefore find opportunities to let off steam both in the cage and when running free. These tips will keep your hamster feeling comfortable and busy around you.
If you always spend a lot of time with your hamster, a really close bond can develop between you and your hamster over time. In addition to your attention, these very active animals also need a varied enclosure that offers opportunities to play, climb, build and gnaw. Because the activities do not only make hamsters smarter, but also fitter.
Diverse occupation for the hamster
There are many different ways to keep hamsters busy. It’s important that you don’t just offer your hamster one of these, but provide different play options instead. Even the hamster wheel alone is not enough. But with the right accessories, there are many more movement options for hamsters, for example:
- horizontal turntables made of wood
- cardboard tubes
When buying the accessories, make sure that you avoid plastic items as much as possible. Because if your hamster tries to chew it, plastic particles will end up in its stomach, which can be hazardous to your health. You can also hide treats in, under, or on the accessory. This will keep your hamster even more challenged and busy. However, be careful not to give too many treats as this is overly unhealthy for hamsters.
You can also become active yourself and have creative play options for your hamster. For this purpose, for example, wooden or cardboard rolls are suitable, which you insert into each other. This is how you can create an obstacle course. You can also include treats here. Make sure the tunnel is wide enough for hamsters with full cheeks.
Free run for hamsters
In addition to the varied design of the cage, regular, preferably daily, free exercise in the apartment is important so that your hamster feels comfortable with you. You can set up the accessories for this in the apartment. Because hamsters also love interesting climbing and discovery tours there. However, the room must be hamster-proof and must not have any sources of danger.
Small training exercises for hamsters
Unlike a dog, you can’t really teach a hamster any tricks. However, you can try to “tune” it to certain noises. Since both golden and dwarf hamsters hear particularly well and even perceive sounds in the ultrasonic range, you can try to condition your hamster to certain signals.
If you make a specific sound at exactly the same time as the food is given, the hamster will learn over time that this sound promises a treat and will rush to you immediately. As a signal, you can click your tongue, whistle, or use a clicker (a device commonly used for conditioning animals that resembles a “clicker”).
If you’ve conditioned your hamster to do this, you’ll find it much easier to recapture it after it’s been released. Because as soon as he hears the sound, he will want the treat and run to you.