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Q: aging hamster

September 23, 2009 | By Anonymous | 4 answers | Expired: 1839 days ago

Anonymous

My russian dwarf hamster is going to be two in February and I realize this makes her a senior hamster. Lately she hasn't been eating much of anything and I'm starting to get worried. I feed her a balanced hamster blend from the petstore and she's always done well on it. Is it normal for a hamster to lose interest in their food or should I be worried. I've noticed that she's lost weight, should I change her food or give her more calories through treats?

Update:
She started eating today but she isn't as hyper as she normally is, I think she's just getting old. I've been watching her all day and she has a tiny little popping noise when she breathes. Could she have a respiratory infection?

Update:
The popping noise has stopped and she's back to her normal self, she has also started eating her normal amount again. I'm so glad she's better now because I'm not ready to lose her yet. Thanks to all who answered!

Readers' Answers (4)
DevilDawg
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Sep 23, 2009

I would contact a vet that is well versed in hamsters. Sorry that I'm not more helpful.

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Lisa B.
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Sep 23, 2009

Our Hamster lived to be three. Try a walnut without salt or some nice piece of plum and see if it makes a difference.

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MelissaE
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Sep 25, 2009

Hi, we have had 9 dwarf hamsters just like yours in the last few years. They lived between 1-1/2 and 2-1/2 years. Yours may just be aging, but there is probably another reason for his not eating. First take a look at her front teeth. They do break, and you have to give them soft food until they grow back. If that's not it, there may be something wrong with the food, perhaps a bad batch or it went stale or got moldy. Try a new bag of food and offer some treats like veggies, fruit, a whole wheat cracker, or crunchy cat treats (those were always a favorite, no matter how old or sick the hammies were).
Is she pooping at all? Since she's hardly eating there may not be much. But if there is none at all, she could be obstructed. I have had several guinea pigs get stopped up by getting stuff stuck in their privates. I imagine it could happen to a hamster with a seed. If you see one down there, try to pick it out. If nothing works in a day, call a vet fast. The smaller the animal, the faster it can go downhill. Look in the phone book for one that advertises he/she treats small animals or exotics.
Good luck. I hope your little one gets better.

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