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Gerbil & Hamster Discussion Twitching whiskers, tiny paws, and all things gerbil or hamster related.

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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-20-2011, 05:33 PM Thread Starter
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Bonding with new Hammy

Hello. I got a hamster a week ago, I've been giving her treats by hand and petting her in her cage. She will allow me to pet her, has never bitten me and takes the treat out of my hand happily.

But when I pick her up, she freaks out and jumps out of my hand. (Her cage is low to the ground and I sit when I try to hold her)

How can I get her to relax and chill on my lap? My other hamster did this, but that was a long time ago and I don't really remember how.

Her name is Bailey. A golden hamster. Six months old is what the petco lady told me.

"A horse gallops with his lungs,
Perseveres with his heart,
And wins with his character."
"Dogs come when they're called; cats take a message and get back to you later."
"An animal's eyes have the power to speak a great language."
"We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals."

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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-20-2011, 08:48 PM
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that's a toughie.. is she by chance a dwarf hamster or a syrian? Dwarves are notorious for being spazwads, I guess just keep trying. Almost force her to get use to being held even if it means playing jumping beans for a while. be careful but you knew that good luck.

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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-20-2011, 09:18 PM
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Hold her in your hands suspended IN the cage for a while, see how she does with that. And are you doing the appropriate hold on her? It should look similar to this : http://0.tqn.com/d/compsimgames/1/0/...amsterHold.jpg

That's the best picture I can find..but even then that's not the most appropriate. The most appropriate hold is with one hand curled entirely around her body, and your other acting as support around your fingers of the other hand, with the palm being support for her behind. She may not feel secure enough in the hold you're doing.

Open-handed is more for those that are completely tame, and you should never be holding her with one hand only curled around her - that hold should only be done for picking her up and until you can get your other hand there for security and support. I never even held my tamed hamsters with one hand only - it just looked too cruel to me.

This picture also works: http://media.photobucket.com/image/h...ittleFluff.jpg

Also, females typically aren't as tame as the males are.

Last edited by FlickeringHope; 03-20-2011 at 09:23 PM.
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-20-2011, 10:09 PM
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The best thing to do is keep up with the treats and petting bonding an take a while ... You may also try what i did and wait until they are in one of their toys or get them to go into their ball and then sit it on your lap and let them come out onto you. my hamsters are very well tamed one even comes to me after she escapes lol. females love to run and play and typically do not just sit in your lap. the getting them out method if you arent sure of her do it in an empty bathtub. do not force yourself too hard on a hamster otherwise it will do more harm than good.

I disagree with females not being as tame my Sofi was VERY nippy ( even drew blood) when we got her and now she comes and sits in my hand and even climbs my arm to say hello she is very sweet ... both my girls are. It just takes a bit more work
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-20-2011, 11:58 PM Thread Starter
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She is a syrian hamster, a very big girl.

I pick her up right, I've tried different ways of holding her, but she just doesn't seem happy about the whole thing yet. So I have been placing a treat on my hand and then placing my hand in front of the cage door. Tonight she placed two paws on my hand. Which was a big step. Hopefully someday she will put all fours on.

"A horse gallops with his lungs,
Perseveres with his heart,
And wins with his character."
"Dogs come when they're called; cats take a message and get back to you later."
"An animal's eyes have the power to speak a great language."
"We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals."

Steve Irwin. One of the greatest men that ever walked on this earth.
"I have no fear of losing my life - if I have to save a koala or a crocodile or a kangaroo or a snake, mate, I will save it."
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-22-2011, 04:27 PM Thread Starter
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Update on Bailey!

She put all fours onto my hand and I held for her awhile. She is now not freaking out anymore when I pick her up. She still isn't too sure about it, so I am giving her treats to bond with her. Thank you all for your help.

"A horse gallops with his lungs,
Perseveres with his heart,
And wins with his character."
"Dogs come when they're called; cats take a message and get back to you later."
"An animal's eyes have the power to speak a great language."
"We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals."

Steve Irwin. One of the greatest men that ever walked on this earth.
"I have no fear of losing my life - if I have to save a koala or a crocodile or a kangaroo or a snake, mate, I will save it."
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-22-2011, 05:08 PM
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Good keep it up! It took quite a while with my little Button too. Pet store animals are mass bed to keep up with demand, they receive little human interaction other than sorting, shipment, and selling. Basic store cage upkeep can scare them as employees might not be properly trained in handling small animals and therefore handle them aggressively. I noticed a freaking HUGE difference in Button's predecessor Puff who was home raised. Puff had no issues with being handled but Button was from a pet store (also a gift to me from mom, I don't buy from pet stores) and it took me like 6 months or something until Button was totally comfortable with me.... If you're interested, here's my video of Button from 2-3 years back http://www.youtube.com/user/AKINAaca...15/RdnG9sVwjWY
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-28-2011, 01:31 AM
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I raised a litter and there was such a difference when they went to their new homes than when i got their mommy. She bit to the point that she drew blood ( she wasnt pregnant either) sometimes its also natural disposition you have to overcome.
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-28-2011, 02:24 AM Thread Starter
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Okay. Well thankfully Bailey is doing great. She still isn't too sure about it, but is getting a lot better. She has not bit me at all, which I am so thankful for, since my last hamster would bite me so hard that she drew blood and would not let go. I did everything I could to tame her, but she was always my little vampire hammy till the day she died. At first I was scared to death Bailey would be the same, but I had a hamster that was so sweet, and I wanted to get another and try again. And she is almost just like my very first hammy. She really is a joy to have in my life. I think I shall post a cute video of her getting her treats soon. Just wished she could live with others so I could get more! lol!
Oh, just wondering. What kind of things I could do with her? Sometimes I let her run around my lap, or on my bed. (She likes digging into the blankets lol) But are there any other fun things we could do?

R.I.P My little ham-hams!
Crash, teddy bear male, lived to be six. (Escape artist)
Sugar, gray dwarf female, lived to be three. (Vampire hammy)

"A horse gallops with his lungs,
Perseveres with his heart,
And wins with his character."
"Dogs come when they're called; cats take a message and get back to you later."
"An animal's eyes have the power to speak a great language."
"We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals."

Steve Irwin. One of the greatest men that ever walked on this earth.
"I have no fear of losing my life - if I have to save a koala or a crocodile or a kangaroo or a snake, mate, I will save it."
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-28-2011, 11:09 AM
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Oh congrats on the progress! Keep it up.

This is EXACTLY what I am dealing with,with my Syrian ham. He is friendly,never bit and will come up to me. He sits in my hand and happily eats as long as my hand is in the cage. However if I start to pick him up he panics and jumps out of my hand and squirms. I have had him for some time and he is still this way. Friendly,but not a ham I can pick up and play with.

The difference is,my ham came from a lady who had an accidental litter. She told me she handled all of the baby hams,but I got Chicken Nugget when he was freshly weaned and have not been able to handle him since.

The last ham I had (JJ) was pretty sweet for a ham and I could take him out. He loved his ball/wheel. I would also let him run around my bed,but he fell off a lot of the time. You can set up an area,like a little play pen of sorts and put toys and make a little playground for your ham in it. The bath tub works good too.




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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-28-2011, 12:52 PM
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See patiencs and blackmail works! lol Well done, keep it up!!
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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-28-2011, 04:33 PM
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Hmm Picking up was not an issue once mine learned the hand means food. I let mine run around on me and pick them up when They went too far and This has worked for me. Even with the "bitey" dwarf I adopted Saturday What i do is get them in there ball or try picking them up a more secure way ... how would you like if your floor suddenly started moving?

once they trust me this is roughly how I pick up my syrians "Place your finger behind it's front legs and the rest of your fingers on his stomach, apply gentle pressure on his back while your figners wrap around, common sense, don't squeeze him, don't hold him too loose " It makes them feel secure as long as they trust you dont try this if they dont or they wont take it as security they'll take it as an attack
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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-29-2011, 12:13 AM Thread Starter
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UPDATE ON BAILEY

She is now a very friendly hamster! She comes running to the door when I open it and happily climbs out and onto my hand. She spends many hours on my bed while I go on facebook and such. (I keep a very close eye on that silly girl...She mostly just makes a bed in my blankets o.o) So all is good!

My bunny met her while she was in her ball. They seem to like each other. o.o So I let her out and let my bunny sniff her...I wonder if they're become buddies?
Thank you all for helping me. You are all awesome.

"A horse gallops with his lungs,
Perseveres with his heart,
And wins with his character."
"Dogs come when they're called; cats take a message and get back to you later."
"An animal's eyes have the power to speak a great language."
"We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals."

Steve Irwin. One of the greatest men that ever walked on this earth.
"I have no fear of losing my life - if I have to save a koala or a crocodile or a kangaroo or a snake, mate, I will save it."
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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-29-2011, 02:08 PM
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Thats great! Congrats.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AnimalLover<3 View Post
My bunny met her while she was in her ball. They seem to like each other. o.o So I let her out and let my bunny sniff her...I wonder if they're become buddies?
Thank you all for helping me. You are all awesome.
I would not risk this. Rabbits can seriously harm a hamster,even if they don't mean to.




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* To the world you are ONE person,but to a rat you are the world *


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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-29-2011, 03:47 PM
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Oh, no no no!!! While they may seem curious at first a bunny can strike out quite fast at a hamster. Before Acacia was spayed my fat little Button got into her kennel (before I built her a cage) and bunny hormones plus hamsters do not mix!! I wouldn't risk it for a second!
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