The best known hamster is the golden hamster, which comes in different colors and coat types. The long-haired golden hamsters (teddy hamsters), which are available with shiny or dull fur, are conspicuous.
Other popular hamster species include z.B. the Daurian Dwarf Hamster (coat color gray with eel markings), the Chinese Dwarf Hamster (light gray, mostly without eel markings), the Dsungarian Dwarf Hamster and in rare cases the much larger European Hamster.
Hamsters should be kept in cages with minimum dimensions of 100 x 50 x 50 cm, and the cage cannot be large enough. The bars should be arranged horizontally to allow the hamster to climb. The ideal location is warm, but not too bright, because hamsters are nocturnal. The optimal ambient temperature is between 18 and 26°C with a relative humidity of 40 to 70%. At temperatures below 15 °C, too short light periods or food shortage the animal falls into a pseudo-hibernation, in which it lies huddled and comatose in its hiding place. Since hamsters are solitary animals, they should be kept singly and only brought together for breeding purposes. The bottom of the cage should be made of a plastic tray that is easy to clean. Bedding can be sawdust, wood shavings, or cellulose cut into small pieces; peat bedding is not recommended because of the dust it produces. Make sure that the bedding is high enough so that the hamster has plenty of opportunities to dig. The cage equipment consists of a food bowl, a drinking bottle (water bowls are too quickly contaminated by the hamster's strong need to burrow), a sleeping house (15 x 15 x 10 cm, entrance hole 5 x 5 cm, bottomless), a running wheel, which should have a diameter of at least 30 cm and should not squeak, as well as other gymnastics facilities, if necessary, such as a playpen or a play pen.B. unsprayed twigs.
Cleaning the cage should be done once or twice a week, although it is not always necessary to change the entire litter. Often it is enough to mainly "pee corner" by the squeak of the wheel cleans. The sleeping house should be completely cleaned only once a month. However, it is necessary to keep the "larder Check regularly for perishable food. Cleaning the food bowl. drinking bottle must be done daily. Before the acquisition one should consider that hamsters are nocturnal animals and it can come to nocturnal disturbances of the peace z.B. by the squeaking of the wheel, which is essential for the health of the animal in addition to regular free running and must not be removed under any circumstances. Long-haired hamster species require special grooming by combing their fur. Bedding should also be adjusted. Hamsters quickly become hand-tame with regular activity with the animal, however, the animal should be given time to wake up on its own. Constant restlessness, as well as clumsy handling, promotes the hamster's propensity to bite.
The food consists of a commercially available grain mixture for hamsters. In addition hamsters need by their increased protein requirement small amounts on raw meat, fish, liver, mealworms and hard-boiled egg to z.B. to prevent muscle atrophy. Hard bread or dog biscuits should be offered to satisfy the gnawing urge. Pears and apples (but only in small quantities because of the high fructose content), lettuce, carrots, dandelions and other vegetables serve as indispensable juice food.a. All types of cereal, sunflower and pumpkin seeds, nuts and fruit branches are a welcome variety. Nuts and kernels should also only be offered in very small quantities, as they contain a lot of fat.
Hamsters become lonely with ca. The hamster is sexually mature after two months, with sexual maturity often occurring two weeks earlier in females than in males. Hamsters kept as pets are ready for mating all year round. After a gestation period of 16 to 22 days, the female gives birth to five to nine young, which are born between the 3rd and 4th week of pregnancy.