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Why Do Hamsters Need Large Cages?

While it may seem easy, caring for a hamster is pretty complicated. Hamsters need at least 450 square inches of unbroken floor space in their cage, along with ample room for a wheel, bath, hides, toys, and accessories. But why? Here are the main reasons,

1. Natural Habitat

In the wild, hamsters can move up to 6 miles a night. Having a large enclosure allows your hamster to comfortably move about their cage without getting bored and allows for a large wheel and sand bath. In the wild, hamsters search for their food, which we can mimic by scatter-feeding them. This means that an enclosure with a larger floor space would better mimic the natural life of a hamster.

2. Science

While this may all seem like a personal opinion, there is actual science to back it up. In a study conducted in 2007, hamsters were put in cages of varying sizes, the sizes included

1,800 sq. cm. (279 sq. in.)

2,500 sq. cm. (387 sq. in.)

5,000 sq. cm. (775 sq. in.)

10,000 sq. cm. (1550 sq. in.)

The experiment examined and observed the behaviors of four, individually housed Syrian hamsters in the four different cage sizes. The wheel, enrichment accessories, food, and bath were all standardized. The study showed that the two smaller cages inflicted far more wire-gnawing, weight gain, and pacing than the other two cages. The study successfully showed us the stress signs when a hamster was put in a small cage.

3. Sleeping Quality

Hamsters are natural burrowers, meaning they need a lot of bedding to successfully

create burrows. A hamster can't truly be able to create burrows and sleep without disruption from light if the burrows are not deep or large enough.

Overall, hamster care is multifaceted, needing lots of components to have a happy hamster. Thank you for reading! If you have any questions feel free to leave a comment or chat with us privately.

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