Rabbits, Hamsters And Guinea Pigs

By: Pet Essentials  05/12/2011
Keywords: pet, Guinea Pigs

Here we present some handy advice and tips on taking care of hamsters. These furry little fellows have become very popular and with the aid of some simple know-how you can really enjoy these pets fully.

  1. Hamsters are nocturnal,they generally sleep all day and are awake all night.If you want to handle them during the day,you will need to wake them up gently, otherwise you may frighten them,and they could react by biting you.
  2. Your hamster cage needs to be cleaned at least once a week. At this time,you will need to dispose of all the old shavings and bedding and any uneaten food in the base of the cage.The cage must be washed completely with an anti-bacterial solution (such as clear dettol, not anything with a strong scent). You will need to dry the cage before putting in fresh bedding for your pet. You should always wear gloves when cleaning out your hamster. Never wash the hamster cage in the kitchen sink, or near a food preparation area.
  3. Hamsters need to be handled on a regular basis. It can take them time to get used to you, so be patient if they are a little wriggly at first. Make sure they are fully awake before picking them up, and always use two hands so that they do not fall. A fall for a hamster can cause serious injury to your pet. If you are not confident about picking them up, handle them initially in their cage so they cannot fall very far and get hurt. You must always wash you hands carefully after handling your pet. Any bites or scratches should be treated with caution, clean the wound well, and if you are concerned,contact your doctor immediately.
  4. Your hamster will mainly eat a prepared hamster mix, available in pet shops. You can also give them small amounts of fruit or veg as a treat, this will also help to file down their teeth. Hamster need to chew regularly to keep their teeth filed, so you can also give them a wood gnaw to help with this. Don’t over do the fresh food, as your hamster wil store any excess in the bottom of the cage, and it could end up going off, which isn’t healthy for you or your pet.
  5. Hamsters, in very rare cases, can carry a virus called Lymphocytic Chorio Meningitis. This virus is usually carried by mice but can be passed on to hamsters. This virus can be transmitted to humans by bites or handling faeces and urine while cleaning . It is important to always Never ‘kiss’ your hamster, or hold it close to your face. In most cases, a human who has been bitten by an infected hamster shows no reaction or signs of illness. The virus mainly affects anyone with a compromised immune system, or can also affect babies if their mother handles the hamster while pregnant. We therefore recommend that if you have anyone in your home who is pregnant or has any form of illness that may compromise their immune system, they should not come into contact with the hamster. If you have any concerns about bites or scratches, you should always contact your doctor for advice. Wear gloves when cleaning your pet hamster and to always wash you hands carefully after handling your pet .

Keywords: Guinea Pigs, pet

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