Features of the Syrian hamster's lifestyle

Features of the Syrian hamster's lifestyle

In our country, there are mainly two types of pets - Djungarian and Syrian. Djungarian hamsters can be easily distinguished from Syrian hamsters: they are much smaller and have a gray color with a longitudinal black stripe on the back. This species also includes dwarf hamsters, sometimes called Siberian.

But it is very difficult to distinguish Syrian hamsters from others. The fact is that they can be short-haired, long-haired or even hairless - bald. They differ in that they have four toes on the front legs and five on the hind legs (these signs helped me determine the type of my hamster). As the name of the animal already indicates, the hamster comes from Syria. The Syrian hamster was first described by the English scientist J.R. Waterhouse, who traveled in 1839. across Syria. He found only 2 copies of this animal. It turned out that this is a new species of rodent unknown to science. It took almost 100 years to discover them again. The amazing discovery was repeated in 1930. almost in the same place (near Aleppo, Syria).

A zoologist from Israel, professor at the University of Jerusalem I. Aharoni, managed to dig up a whole family of hamsters at a depth of 2.5 meters: a female and 12 small cubs. He put them in a cage, but only brought four of them to England. They soon gave birth to offspring. It turned out that hamsters are unpretentious, easily breed in captivity and are tamed. Over the course of several years, the hamsters multiplied greatly. From England, people transported them to America and a number of other countries, including Russia. They have recently been "discovered" as ideal pets and have become very popular. These hamsters quickly get used to people, become tame and willingly communicate with their owners. All hamsters kept in captivity today trace their origins to these animals captured in Syria, so we can say that they are all related to each other.

Observing the characteristic behavior of a hamster

After re-reading the descriptions of both species and looking at photographs of the breeds and colors of hamsters, I determined that my hamster is a Syrian shorthair, black in color.

When Gina first appeared in our house, we spent some time getting used to each other. At first I learned to care for her, I cleaned the cage with my mother, changed the water, and added food. But the hamster didn’t really like it, she wouldn’t let herself be handled, she squealed and was worried. We understood: we needed to make friends with Gina, and affection, patience and perseverance helped me here. We tried to accustom her to holding hands. I put various “goodies” on my palm and calmly, without sudden movements, brought them to the animal sitting in the house. Over time, Gina began to trust me and was no longer afraid to take food from the palm of my hand. Gradually, our hamster stopped being afraid of us, and we could calmly pick her up. After about six months, we accustomed the hamster to our name. The training proceeded as follows: when approaching the cage, they always said: “Gina, Gina, Gina...”, if she came out, they were treated to seeds.

I came to the conclusion: a hamster can be quickly tamed.

Cans, bottles or cardboard boxes cannot become a home for a hamster. In general, hamsters can be kept either in a cage or in an aquarium. We bought a cage for our pet.

We poured sawdust and torn napkins at the bottom of the cage. Gina settled down in this house for a very long time: she collected sawdust for herself, wrapped herself in napkins. But soon I read that a hamster’s house should have a roof, since the hamster hides in the house, like in a hole, and feels safe there. After all, by their nature, hamsters are wild animals. In fields and meadows they live in separate burrows, fiercely protecting them from predators and even from their fellows.

I wonder what the daily routine of hamsters is? Hamsters are nocturnal. Domestic hamsters do not hibernate.

Naturally, when getting a hamster, you need to take into account its daily rhythms. It is best to place the cage where no one sleeps. We placed Gina's cage in the kitchen. It had everything necessary for the development and active life of our hamster. At night she tirelessly ran in a wheel, apparently imagining the desert, sometimes she did this during the day.

I can conclude that hamsters are very active and need to move, so their cages should have a lot of room for movement, and a wheel should be installed. My hamster also has a walking ball, in which Gina walks around the apartment, and in the summer - outside.

Gina sleeps during the day, wakes up and goes about her hamster business in the evening. She stretches funny, yawns, then washes herself. We wait for the animal to eat and go to the toilet. We transfer it to a walking ball. At this time, my mother and I are cleaning the cage. But Gina especially loves to walk without a ball. We have to look after her when she runs around the apartment. There is one more feature of hamsters that you need to know about: the Syrian hamster does not sense heights. Therefore, having reached the edge of a table or shelf, he boldly steps further, and can be seriously injured if he falls. In addition, it can fall anywhere: escaped hamsters are often found in an aquarium with fish, or in a pot of soup.

Conclusion: you need to properly close the cage with hamsters, and also keep an eye on them when you hold them in your arms or let them run around the apartment.

In the summer, Jinka and I went for a walk outside. She loved to run through the grass and dig in the ground. She was interesting to watch. Hamsters are very curious, active animals that love to explore different objects. I was interested to know which hole a hamster can climb into? I selected containers with different neck sizes. I placed a treat in the container. I started to see if the hamster could get the hidden food. (Care should be taken to avoid getting stuck).

Gina climbed into a vitamin jar, the neck diameter of which was 25mm, but she couldn’t get out on her own, because... the jar turned out to be light, and she carried it with her, or rather on herself. I held the jar and it came out easily.

Conclusions: at home, hamsters must be kept in a cage, the bars of which are located at a distance of no more than 10-15mm. In natural conditions, it is quite easy for hamsters to get roots, make their way through thickets, and also into a person’s home or storage room to find food there.

I also like to play other games with the animal. I hide some “delicious food” in a large box with sawdust and small pieces of paper, put Gina in it, and she finds it. All hamsters love to dig, so she had a lot of fun playing in the box.

Separately, I would like to talk about the nutritional features of Syrian hamsters. From books I learned that the hamster is a steppe creature - a field creature, so the basis of its diet is cereals: wheat, oats, corn, peas, sunflower seeds and nuts. It is best to buy your hamster food at a pet store. In addition to all this, it contains vitamin supplements necessary for normal growth and development. Of course, you cannot feed your hamster only dry grain. Every day he needs to be given vegetables and fruits, apples, carrots, cucumbers, tomatoes, apricots, peaches, in general, everything except citrus fruits and cabbage (it is too heavy for the hamster’s delicate stomach). The hamster also needs to be fed with herbs - parsley, lettuce, dandelion leaves.

Watching Gina, I realized that she doesn’t really like millet and oats, but she happily eats sunflower seeds, rice, buckwheat, rolled oats and herbal granules. But most of all my hamster loves sweet fruits, berries and vegetables. I gave the animal pieces of strawberries, apricots, cherries, apples, pears, bananas, fresh cucumbers and tomatoes, carrots, and radishes. With great pleasure, Gina eats cottage cheese casserole, butter and cheese, and she will not refuse a roll dipped in milk.

I also noticed that while eating, the hamster puts food in its cheek pouches to make a supply in the house. Sometimes Gina managed to hide more than two teaspoons of grain behind her cheeks. According to my observations, the hamster's need to store supplies increases in cold weather. We can predict the approaching cold weather from Gina's behavior. On frosty days, she leaves her house only to replenish her supplies, and does not even go for a walk.

I can consider my work finished. The Syrian hamster is a pet with thick cheeks, curious, able to penetrate almost any crevice, and leads an active lifestyle in the evening and at night. He always pleases with his numerous tricks, activities and inventions. Syrian hamster - this cute, thrifty, fussy animal requires very little time and money for its care and maintenance. Moreover, all costs will be more than compensated by the joy and positive emotions that the hamster will give during his stay with you!

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