You and Your Hamster

Syrian Hamster (short haired)

The big guys that are about 5-7" long and weigh 4-7 oz. on average. Their tails are almost bare and their feet have fine fur on the top, but none on the bottom -- just bumpy pads. They can have many different colors and patterns and long or short fur. Syrian hamster sometimes called "golden hamsters" as well as stupid pet-shop nicknames like "black bears," "teddy bears," "fancy hamsters," "Dalmatians," "panda bears," and other dopey or misleading terms. They must live individually by the time they're 6-8 weeks old or they will kill one another. They're the easiest of the species to handle, and perfect for first-time owners. Of course children will need supervision handling any pet, and hamsters are delicate enough to make this especially true. The smaller four species can live in same- or opposite-sex pairs or small colonies if they're same-sex siblings from the same litter or if introduced carefully when young. Their temperaments and habits are different enough that they must live only one species to a cage. Pairs or groups may have to be separated if fights or bullying ensues, so it's essential to have an extra cage on hand just in case.

Dwarf Hamster

Dwarf hamsters are the most common type of hamster that were adopted as pet. They are cute, easy to care and most importantly they are funny. Their act and behavior will surely make you smile or even laugh. They move fast and playing at most of their time. One of my dwarf hamster always run in a small circle at full speed for a minute and then stop for a while for a break lying on it's back with all legs up and then coutinue running like mad scattering away the beddings.

Usually, dwarf hamsters are 2.5-4" long and weigh 1-3 oz. on average. They have stubby little furry tails and fur on both the tops and bottoms of their feet. There are many different colors and patterns. They're sometimes called "Siberian dwarfs," but this is a common pet-store misnomer. They're also called things like "fancy dwarf hamsters," "blueberry hamsters," "blackberry hamsters" and other cutesy, inaccurate names.

The Campbell’s breed by large commercial breeders have given the dwarfs a bad reputation as being Nippy biters. This is not so as most Campbell’s are friendly inquisitive little animals that like to be held. The biting trait is I believe inherited. And by carefully selecting only animals that don't bite I have breed this trait out of my Campbell’s. I do have several females that will nip if they have babies. But that is to be expected of any animal with babies.

Campbells Dwarfs have been Breed in captivity Scene 1963 originally as Laboratory animals Possible references to dates as early as 1943 I am researching this. As A result there are now a number of Coat and Color Mutations available


Roboroski (Robo) Hamster

Scientific Name: Phodopus Roborovski
Country of Origin: Central Asia, Northern Russia, Mongolia, and Northern China
Lifespan: About 3 to 3 1/2 years
Size and Weight: 4 to 5cm and 20g to 25g
Other Important Facts:

The Roboroski hamster is becoming increasingly more available in pet stores. It is fast and very lively, but rarely nip. This hamster is not normally recommended to the first time hamster owner, as they can be tricky to handle. Roboroski hamsters are very sociable and should be bought in pairs of the same sex although many pet stores cannot sex these hamsters confidently. Roboroski hamsters should never be housed in small cages despite their small size and require at least a 24" X 12" glass tank or plastic cage. They should never be housed in barred cages, because they will squeeze through the bars or may get half stuck.

Blueberry Hamster

Actually this type of hamster come from Dwarf Campbells Russian Hamsters family. Being called blueberry due to their bluish color.

Teddybear hamster (long haired)

Teddybear hamster is actually a variation of Syrian hamster which belongs to the golden hamster group species. They are also being called as fancy hamsters and longhair hamster due to their special long soft hair which remarkably resemblance to toy teddy bears. So if you do not want a really hairy hamster, a teddybear might not be the best hamster for you. Sometimes they are also known as "angora hamsters" which refers an ancient breed of goats with exceptional long hair originally from the province of Angora, Turkey. 

Teddy bear hamsters have an average life span of 2 to 3 years if they receive proper care from their owner. Their average body size is roughly up to 4 to 5 inches long for adult. As a Syrian hamster, they prefer to live in solitary, so you will need to house adult teddybear hamsters separately.

Some resources indicate that the teddy bear hamster seems to have more at risk on developing wet tail sickness compared to other species such as dwarf hamsters. So you will need to give extra care and attention to them especially for any factors that could affect their emotions.

Although most hamsters can groom themselves, you can also help them combing their hair by using special hamster combs that could be bought at pet stores. Even toothbrushes will work well. These tasks will also lead up to a healthy way in maintaining good relationship between you and your hamster.