Can Dwarf Hamsters Live Together?

Due to their social nature, dwarf hamsters are friendlier and more comfortable when kept in pairs (same sex or mixed sex) or small groups, rather than when kept alone.

Handle both dwarf hamsters together to avoid returning one to the cage with a foreign scent that might invite an attack. For example, a female may become more territorial, more nervous and jumpy, dislike being picked up, start quarrels with cagemates or, if she was too young when she became pregnant, she may never fully grow.

Also provide two exercise wheels, two bowls and two hiding places so each dwarf hamster has a retreat if it needs time alone. To help a dwarf hamster deal with the loss of a cagemate, offer it new toys, spend extra time interacting with it and watch that it eats enough.

Can you put two dwarf hamsters together?

Owners who want to keep more than one hamster in the same cage should opt for the Dwarf species. These can be kept in pairs or groups – but they will still need plenty of space,as they are territorial. Syrian hamsters, however (and sometimes Chinese too) must be kept alone.

Is it better to have 2 dwarf hamsters or 1?

Due to their social nature, the dwarf hamsters are friendlier and more comfortable when kept in pairs (same sex or mixed sex) or small groups than when kept alone. Dwarf hamsters bond closely over time and usually for life. … If death claims one hamster in a pair, it can be risky to introduce a new dwarf mate.

Can you have 2 hamsters in the same cage?

Happily, the answer to this question is yes! With care, many dwarf hamsters can get along and share a cage. For example, Dwarf hamsters sharing the same cage need to be the same species. Don’t mix one type of dwarf hamster in with a totally different type of dwarf hamster.

Will dwarf hamsters eat each other?

Syrian and dwarf hamsters are known to be cannibalistic against other hamsters in the habitat. While dwarf hamsters can sometimes get along with cage mates, they can also become aggressive. Robo hamsters thrive in colonies, but they must have enough space or they too can become cannibalistic due to overcrowding.

You’re looking to double your fun by adopt more than one hamster. Be sure to get the right kind: Several breeds of dwarf hamsters are social, and two males can cohabit safely together. Non-dwarf hamsters do not tolerate company of either gender, but many dwarfs are actually happier living in the same cage with a pal.

If trouble arises when you put them back together, it’s a good idea to house them separately permanently.

You may have heard and been confused by the debate as to whether hamsters can be safely kept together or not. To answer your questions, we have put together an article which serves as a handy guide to whether or not certain hamsters can be housed together, why and why not, and how to go about doing it the right way.

Studies have shown that Chinese hamsters have a strong preference for empty nests as compared to occupied ones. Although this species of hamster is currently not on the market in Singapore, should they eventually become available, we strongly encourage pawrents to always house them individually.

Ultimately, the possibility of pairing hinges heavily on the temperament of your hamster and the cage environments provided. Although there have been some rare cases of Roborovskis living in groups in the wild, they are more commonly known for their territorial and aggressive behaviour. Most of the time, hamsters from pet shops come from breeding mills and are still extremely young, before their territorial behaviour kicks in.

These young hamsters are sold at fast rates, entering and leaving the pet shops before they can even familiarise themselves with their environments. When two hamsters are bought together at a pet shop and brought home to a new and more stable environment, they usually start to fight each other as they mature and their territorial instincts begin to develop. Female hamsters reach fertility as early as four weeks, and are prolific breeders with an average litter size of about seven pups.

Unethical breeding is strongly discouraged, as inexperienced breeders risk producing pups with severe health and temperament issues. When housing multiple hamsters together, ensure that they have access to their own food bowl, water, wheel and hideouts. You should only attempt to house a maximum of two hamsters in one enclosure at any time, as with any number greater than two per cage, there is a tendency of the stronger few ganging up to bully the weaker one.

Bear in mind that even if all these conditions are met, fights can still occur, which is why we strongly recommend always housing your hamsters individually. Social stress and reproductive success in the female Syrian hamster: endocrine and behavioral correlates.

So youre in the pet store choosing a hamster to take home but you just cant pick between all the little beady eyes looking up at you. Why not just keep two or three hamsters together?

Pairing Dwarf Hamsters Together

Dwarf hamsters do not welcome intruders, so pairing of hamsters must be done carefully when they are still young. Owning just a pair is preferable for pets because adding more increases the chances for disagreements. If you choose to group three or more dwarfs, the same rules that apply to pairs also apply to groups.Pairs should be put together when young—preferably when each hamster is less than 2 months old. Littermates or those paired closer to 1 month of age may get along even better, so purchase a dwarf pair together from the same breeder or from the same cage, if possible. Make sure you choose two of the same species. Handle both dwarf hamsters together to avoid returning one to the cage with a foreign scent that might invite an attack.Get a same-sex pair of dwarf hamsters. Getting a mixed-sex pair can lead to pregnancy and the need to separate the pair permanently as well as purchase multiple new cages to house the baby hamsters in same-sex pairs or groups. Although spaying and neutering are possible, it is only recommended if necessary for a health condition that threatens the hamster’s life.

Dwarf Hamsters and Breeding

Breeding dwarf hamsters should not be taken lightly. The shelters are full of hamsters that were bred intentionally but the owners didn’t have the necessary knowledge to do it well.Make sure that the person who sells you the dwarf hamsters has experience with sexing them. Sexing is done by examining the hamster’s genitalia. It can be confusing, so it takes a lot of experience to differentiate male and female dwarves.If you purchase a female pair of dwarves, confirm that they have not been housed with males 4 or more weeks old. Otherwise, you might have to deal with an unwanted pregnancy. Another concern is that some female dwarves change temperament both during and after raising a litter. For example, a female may become more territorial, more nervous and jumpy, dislike being picked up, start quarrels with cagemates or, if she was too young when she became pregnant, she may never fully grow.

Pairing Dwarf Hamsters from Different Sources

If you purchase your dwarf hamsters from different sources, you can still achieve a successful introduction. First, only purchase a hamster that has been living with cagemates. The longer a dwarf hamster has been on its own, the less likely it is to accept a cagemate. Next, introduce the pair on neutral territory and in low-light conditions; plentiful light can lead to aggression. Put hiding places in the meeting area and be ready to intervene if necessary. Make sure that the hiding places have multiple openings so one hamster can’t be trapped by another.When possible, pair the dwarf hamsters on a morning when you will be home most of the day to observe. Continue to monitor them to ensure that their interactions are normal and neither hamster appears unduly stressed. Expect some noise and squeaking. This is part of their normal interaction and communication. Check their undersides for hamster bites. If you find bites, wash these carefully and monitor them for inflammation. If the bites don’t get better within a few days, contact your vet immediately.Even with careful pairing or with littermates, dwarf hamsters may not get along throughout their entire lives. Disagreements occur in a minority of cases, but when they arise, the dwarves must be separated.To minimize problems, provide as large a hamster cage as possible—more space tends to reduce possible animosity. Also provide two exercise wheels, two bowls and two hiding places so each dwarf hamster has a retreat if it needs time alone. Once they are paired, continue to monitor the dwarves for any signs of stress. One of the highest risk times is from the age of 5 to 8 weeks when a hamster rapidly grows and matures. At this time, a previously harmonious pair of dwarves may discover difficulties that they may or may not be able to work out themselves.

Breeds of Dwarf Hamsters

Three breeds of dwarf hamsters are available at pet stores, and all three of them are social. Winter white, Roborovski and Campbell’s dwarfs will appreciate a companion. They should be kept with a same-sex buddy or with a fixed littermate otherwise. The Campbell’s and winter white breeds look very similar, except that winter whites have three stripes where Campbell’s only have one. Roborovskis are the smallest of the bunch, they need a roomy cage because they love to run. You may see Chinese hamsters listed as a dwarf breed, but they are technically ratlike hamsters. Chinese hamsters don’t live well with other hamsters, unlike other dwarf breeds. House only hamsters of the same breed together.

Start Young

If you’re going to house the little guys together, you should start when they are young, less than 8 weeks old if possible. Adopting your hamsters as a pair from the beginning is the best way to go. These guys have already gotten to know one another. It’s best if your hamsters are the same gender. As a dwarf hamster grows up, he’ll be less likely to accept a new roomie. If he’s over a year old, you shouldn’t introduce a new hamster to the mix, even if he’s gotten along with another hamster in the past.

Give Them Space

Even though they’re friends, your dwarfs may squabble from time to time. Make sure your little guys have room to themselves. You should have a food bowl, water bottle and wheel for each of your buddies. It’s a good idea to keep a separate cage on hand in case the disagreement gets a little heated so you can separate them.

But Pet Shops Keep Them Together!

Most of the time, hamsters from pet shops come from breeding mills and are still extremely young, before their territorial behaviour kicks in. These young hamsters are sold at fast rates, entering and leaving the pet shops before they can even familiarise themselves with their environments.When two hamsters are bought together at a pet shop and brought home to a new and more stable environment, they usually start to fight each other as they mature and their territorial instincts begin to develop.

But My Hamsters Don’t Fight!

Similarly to pet shop hamsters, young hamsters require a bit of time before their territorial instincts take root, and hence may be able to tolerate one another preliminarily. For dwarf hamsters, it is possible that they may ultimately coexist given the proper environment.However, with Syrian or Chinese hamsters, it is aWe encourage housing any hamster from all species individually, as pawrents cannot feasibly watch over their hamsters round the clock, which means that, should a serious fight occur while no one is around, the hamsters might harm each other grievously.

Can Syrian Hamsters Live Together?

No, Syrians are best kept in their own cage away from other hamsters. Even keeping two Syrians together in the same cage is risky business and can only be successfully achieved while the hamsters are young.As Syrians reach maturity they become incredibly territorial and will fight with any other hamster that is perceived as a threat. Syrian hamsters should not be kept with dwarf hamsters either.

How To Keep Multiple Dwarf Hamsters

All that being said, dwarf hamsters can be kept together successfully and it’s really entertaining watching a small group of hamsters interact. If you would like to take care of more than one hamster, have a read of the tips below to set your cage up for success.

Start Young

When dwarf hamsters are introduced together while young, there is a much higher chance that they will live happily together long-term. Hamsters from the same litter are your best bet but not the only option, just make sure both your hamsters are under 4 months old when you introduce them together.If you’re buying dwarf hamsters from a pet store, only pick the hamsters that are already living together in the same cage. If they’re young and already get along pretty well, you’re good to go!

Provide Plenty Of Space

Bigger is always better when it comes to hamster cages. If you’re planning on keeping multiple dwarf hamsters together, you’re going to need to provide them plenty of space to sleep, exercise and play. We have an in-depth guide on hamster cages so have a read if you’re looking for the best hamster cage.

Listen For Battle Squeaks!

When keeping multiple hamsters together, you may hear the odd squeak from time to time. Hamsters squeak to communicate with each other and this is perfectly normal (and pretty amusing to watch).What you should be wary of is very loud squeak sounds or constant squeaks. This could indicate fighting. Dwarf hamsters are usually pretty friendly by nature but if a fight does break it, it won’t end well.Some dwarf hamsters even like to playfight! They also sometimes squeak to let their cage-mate know they’re being trampled on. All of this can make it pretty hard to distinguish whether your pets are just having fun or if there’s something more serious going on.If you do start hearing some distressing squeaks, go and see what’s happening. Any signs of fighting should be monitored closely and if you notice injuries – separate the hamsters immediately!

Two Of Everything

Another great tip for reducing hamster aggression is to fill your hamster cage with two of everything. For example, some hamsters don’t like sharing their food bowl so placing two food bowls in your cage can reduce aggression during meal time.You can also provide two water bottles, two hamster wheels and multiple nesting areas as a further precaution. This tactic has worked a charm for me when I’ve had to deal with hamster fighting in the past so it’s definitely worth a shot.(When housing multiple hamsters, I now start with two of everything from the outset!)