The Siberian Dwarf Hamster is one type of dwarf hamster alongside the Russian Dwarf Hamster, Chinese Dwarf Hamster and Roborvoski Dwarf Hamster that you can buy within most pet stores around the world.
In this #1 Guide, we will jump into the fascinating world of Siberian Dwarf Hamster Care including:
- Who they are suitable pets for (which ages)
- Recommended diet and favorite food
- Price and where to buy Siberian Hamsters
- Most active times in the day and what to expect
- Life Expectancy of a Siberian Dwarf Hamster
- How to Care for your new pet
- Breeding and what to do with unexpected babies
- Find out if Siberian Dwarf Hamsters live together
- Suitable and best cages for Siberian hamsters
- Learn more about their personality
In a rush? Click any of the above to skip to what you are looking for!
Siberian Dwarf Hamsters make great pets, but who for?
These loveable creatures are fascinating to watch, play with and bond with. But, not great pets for children under 7 years old.
The averages age that own dwarf hamsters as pets are between 9 and 55 years of age which tells us that hamsters are great pets for children, teenagers, and adults.
This being said, it’s completely up to you on whether you think you’re ready to own your first dwarf hamster, or if you already do, make him/her famous with our gallery here 🙂
What Food do Siberian Dwarf Hamsters Eat?
A Siberian dwarf hamster diet in the wild consists of seeds, fruits, vegetables, small insects, grains, some nuts, and other smaller animals.
We are not saying you need to feed them insects!
No, not at all… That’s the diet they eat within the wild.
Your pet will mostly enjoy fruits, vegetables, seeds, and nuts. However, a balanced diet is very important for the health of your hamster.
It is recommended to give your dwarf hamster pellets that contain a balanced diet, mixed into one pellet. An example of these branded foods is Oxbow Fortified Food.
Using this food as a normal daily source of goodness and then adding mixed dried vegetables, fruits, nuts, and muesli will keep your pet’s diet varied. An example of this is Hazel Hamster Tasty Mix. This will give your hamster a happy healthy lifestyle.
Dwarf hamsters are prone to diabetes and obesity, a healthy and balanced diet will help prevent this.
Directions for pellets foods – Simply add 1-2 tablespoons of pellets every day and what we recommend you do every 2-3 days sprinkle your fruits/vegetable treats or muesili around the cage. If you really want to keep your hamster entertained, hide bits in places like under bedding, or accessories where they can find them.
Where to Buy a Siberian Hamster and How Much for?
Siberian Dwarf Hamsters can be bought at most pet stores around the world and the cost around $10-$30 depending on the location.
Many stores try to promote buying more than one for a discount, but be very wary of these schemes until you read pointer 8 – Can Siberian Dwarf Hamsters Live Together.
Do you Want to Save Money and Feel Proud About Your Hamster?
Adoption is always available in pet stores and most of the time, younger dwarf hamsters are still available. This means that you can adopt a hamster for half the price and they may be around the same age as the new ones! Here is a video when we adopted a 12 year old Russian Dwarf Hamster.
When is Playtime, Sleepytime and What to Expect
Siberian Dwarf Hamsters are nocturnal, which means they are most active at night.
Generally, they will be active for around 1-2 hours in the daytime. This time is normally made up from thirst, hunger, and hygiene.
Most of their energy will be used at night time, meaning the daytime will be rest time. But when they are thirsty or hungry, they will happily go fetch some.
Dwarf hamsters are surprisingly hygienic pets when they have the right accessories.
A sand bath is a really good way to keep hamster hygiene and odor control. Simply add a sand bath to their environment and they will naturally use it. Our recent post explains how to create a sand bath in 5 steps.
During the daytime, you should avoid holding your handle your hamster until its tamed. Consider playing with them before you go to bed. This will prevent aggressive behavior during the day.
Siberian Dwarf Hamster Lifespan
The life expectancy of a Siberian Dwarf hamster is 1-2 years.
However, some have reportedly lived for up to 3 years old. Completely depends on the lifestyle of your pet, breed, lifestyle, and diet.
This breed is prone to getting diabetes and some forms of cancer around 2 years of age. When a hamster is in pain, it may affect the behavior towards the owner.
Liberian Dwarf Hamster Care – Everything you will need
Caring for dwarf hamsters you will need:
Cage or Tank – This will be their perimeters for your hamsters home. Tanks are generally far better environments for these small pets because they are safer, show more visibility and quieter at night. Its known that dwarf hamsters bite and knaw on cage bars when they are unhappy or trying to escape. This removes the headache of being woken up at night.
What Size Should It Be? Many people think that because it’s a small animal, it will not need much room. This is completely and utterly incorrect information!!
A good size home would be something like the one of these two below. A good starting point as these are both over ground floor 60cm x 60cm.
The more space you provide for your hamsters, the fewer problems you will have taming, biting and being woken up by an unhappy hamster in the middle of the night.
Bedding – This is the term for the material that layers in the inside of your pets cage/tank. It provides protection whilst helping natural foraging and borrowing. The main purpose, however, is for maintaining a clean cage that your hamster feels comfortable in.
A fantastic bedding that is fairly expensive, but if you but in bigger amounts online is cheaper than pet stores is called Carefresh Bedding.
It soaks up hamster waste, masks odor and is edible at the same time. Its been around for a while and is recommended a lot throughout dwarf hamster communities!
Accessories – These are the fun in your cage/tank. Accessories probably are the most important part for in your hamster’s eyes. These toys will prevent your pets from biting the bars, prevent boredom and keep them exercised and in better health. The more of these, the happier your hamster will be. For some example of these, see Top 10 Accessories They LOVE here
Breeding and unexpected babies – What you should do!
We get comments and emails every day about unexpected babies and what to expect.
Unfortunately, this is a big problem for many as pet stores do marketing campaigns for buying 2 dwarf hamsters for the same price as one. But after, do not explain or inform customers that
If you put two hamster together, they may not live together
If a male and a female live together, they will have babies. This is just nature. The problem with this is the aftermath.
Being rodents, hamsters will breed over and over again. Meaning that the female can get pregnant the same day she gives birth to a litter.
What should you do if your hamster has babies?
Do not panic, you will need to separate the original male and female quickly though.
The mother will look after the young and raise them, but you MUST not interfere during the first 4 weeks. If your scent gets onto the babies or even close, the mother will either eat her pups thinking a predator has been involved with them or abandon them.
You must just let her be ensuring you put twice the amount of normal food and water in the cage. She will need more than normal…
Here is a video of unexpected babies we once had.
For the full guide on bringing up, pups see #1 guide for health dwarf hamster babies.
Can Siberian Hamsters Live Together?
There is a big debate about this topic and has been for many years. Some say that Siberian Dwarf Hamsters cannot live together period. Others say that with they can live together happily.
We believe that these types of hamster CAN live together happily, but only under certain conditions. These are:
- From the same litter. This means two brothers or two sisters
- With a large amount of space, I mean over 120cm x 120cm
- Their own accessories, food bowls, house, water bottles, wheels and toys
- They spend time away from each other and not always in each others space
These conditions have worked in the past, but it’s not guaranteed to work.
Females with females tend to be better together as males are far more territorial. Males gain scent glands on their undersides when they become adults which they rub on areas to mark territory. This is also how hamsters find their way around when they cannot see.
Marking their territory annoys the other male and these causes play fights which eventually turn into fights to the death.
Best cages for Siberian Dwarf Hamsters Online
As mentioned before, you will need a big cage.
Here are 3 recommended cages that are a reasonable price that should suit your needs.
Number 1 – Dark Grey 528 on Amazon
This cage is roughly 80cm by 45cm meaning its got enough room, however, more would be better. If you are on a budget, this low-cost cage may be right for you. See 106 five star reviews here.
Number 2 Ferplast Hamster Black
This is a cheap Siberian dwarf hamster cage that provides a little less space than the above. Ideally, you should aim for at least 22 to 14 inches in length and width. This cage comes with a handful of accessories including a good wheel, water bottle, hamster house, 2nd floor, and a large food bowl.
This is one of the more recommended cages for new owners of dwarf hamsters. See what others are saying here.
Number 3 Ferplast Duna
Now, this is a fantastic cage if you live in the UK, may fairly expensive anywhere else in the world. We did a full in-depth review and video review at Ferplast Duna Cage Review – Worth the Money?
Definitely check that out, our adopted hamster (from the video above) lived in that cage for 2 years very happily.
Siberian Dwarf Hamster Personality – Behaviour and Taming
These cute and entertaining creatures love human interaction. They really do make fascinating pets.
Generally, dwarf hamsters can be bought after 8 weeks old. This normally means they will need to be tamed.
Siberian Dwarf hamsters are very active at night, being so small they can quickly run, hop and hide.
Once tamed, hamsters are friendly, very happy to be handled and comfortable roaming on your guest’s hands.
Here is a video guide on how to handle a Siberian.
Taming dwarf hamsters is fairly easy when you follow these 5 steps to success.
Here are 5 common normal behaviors to expect from your Siberian:
1 Sudden Bursts of Energy – With such little stomachs, dwarf hamsters digest food and then have sudden bursts of energy, which they burn off with exercising. It’s very normal for your hamster to be full of energy one moment, then sleepy the next.
2 Squeaking and Fighting Dwarfs – Like the saying “blind as a bat”, hamsters have poor eyesight, they use their very powerful nose to navigate. Siberian dwarf hamsters are very curious and they are known to play fight with siblings, parents other hamsters. When they play fight, squeaking or hissing are noises made when feeling scared, frightened or startled. However, if repulsive smells are sprayed and visible wounds you need to read this Why is my hamster hissing?
3 Chewing EVERYTHING? – No, they are not always hungry! Hamster teeth never stop growing, they control and maintain teeth by knawing, nibbling and biting on everything. Keeping chewable toys with their home will prevent them from biting the cage bars. On the other hand, if your being woken up at night or your hammie is trying to escape, see How to stop your hamster biting the bars in 3 simple steps
4 Itching and Scratching – This probably means your pet is happy! Grooming is a very important part to a hamsters day. They will spend overall around 2-3 hours a day doing so. Grooming shows that they’re calm, relaxed and comfortable.
5 Creating Nests and Digging – In the wild, these types of hamsters live in underground burrows and tunnels, sleeping in the day, foraging at night. If you put some tissue paper into your cage, you will notice that your hammie will stuff some in its cheeks and then take back to its burrow. Creating a bigger home. They are known to move nests around randomly and sleep in random places when they feel safe.
If you still have unanswered questions, please leave a comment below and we will get back to you! 🙂
Has your Russian dwarf hamster had unexpected babies?
It is more common than you may think but, sometimes young Russian dwarf hamsters are mixed with the wrong sex. This leads to pregnant dwarf hamsters that are sold on without the store or breeder knowing.
In this week’s post we are going to look at proper Russian dwarf hamster babies care, how to deal with unexpected baby hamsters and important advice on caring for baby Russian hamsters. This post is for unexpected, not breeding.
Guide to Russian Dwarf Hamster Babies Care
A Russian dwarf hamsters babies are hairless at birth and begin to grow fur within the first week. Here is a video of what to expect…
New-born are very cute however there are some very important rules you should abide by, if your hamster has unexpected babies.
RULE Number 1 – Do not touch the babies… Although they may seem very cute and cuddly, if you touch the young within the first 17 days (2 and a half weeks), the mother may abandon her young or worse eat them. Do not touch the mother and young within the first 3 weeks if possible.
2 Plenty of food water – The mother will care for her young, however she cannot do it all on her own. She will need almost double her daily amount of food and water. This is because her young will require milk that she should provide. Enough nourishment for the mother will be essential for healthy babies. Add extra food and change water daily.
3 Mother and child time – Caring for dwarf hamster babies is stressful for the mother. Be sure to give her as much time and space as possible. Disturbing her and the young may only cause future problems. Keep their cage/tank in a quiet location where disturbances are minimal. Music should also be kept low or off.
Here is a picture of Russian dwarf hamster pups from 2 days old up to 6 weeks old. Notice how they grow fur on their backs quicker than undersides and how their eyes develop to open.
Have Two Hamsters But Not Sure Which One Is Female?
Do you have two Russians, but not sure which one is male and which is female?
Pet stores and breeders sometimes may accidentally put different sex’s together thinking they both are the same gender. If you have two and one is pregnant then one may be a boy and the other may be a girl.
The best way to find out is by taking them to a vet or seeing our “How to Determine the Gender of a Russian Dwarf Hamster” By Clicking Here.
If it appears that you have a male and a female, although males make great fathers and help bring up the young, they may reproduce within the first 24 hours of birth which will result in more babies within the gestation period (20-29 days).
We advise that you split the father into his own tank, cage or environment and allow the mother to bring up the young. Another reason for this is – The farther may mate with the baby females when they become 3 weeks old causing future problems.
What You Should Do – To Help The Mother Bring Up Healthy Pups
If your hamster has surprised you with new pups, there really is not much else you can do to help.
Allowing her to do her job is crucial and could save their lives.
More Related Guides:
There are many causes for Russian dwarf hamster hissing.
For an owner, it may make you think like you are doing something wrong. Today you are going to learn:
- Why Russian dwarf hamsters hiss
- Common behavior when biting and hissing
- How to stop your dwarf hamster hissing
Why Is My Dwarf Hamster Hissing At Me?
Hamster hissing is very similar to when a cat hisses.
When a hamster hisses, this is a sign of aggression towards something they may feel is a threat. Every hamster can hiss when they want to but will only do this when feeling trapped, in danger or cornered.
Some hamsters are mistreated at a young age and can develop hissing behavior towards almost everything. We will look at a way to solve this later down the page.
What does hissing look like?
All types of hamsters including Syrian, Chinese, Roborovski and Russian dwarfs will do this action in the same way.
Normally they will stand on their back feet, open mouth and flare teeth. This is a warning that a bite and aggressive behavior will come.
See picture on the right, this is very similar behavior.
Common Behavior With Hissing & Biting Russian Dwarfs
Not only do they hiss and bite. But you may also notice a strange smell that comes from between their legs.
This is another warning sign that is normally used for marking territory. The scent that they produce is strong and in the wild is used to ward of predators.
If your hamster is hissing at you, spraying and also biting then there may be a problem with your hamster. Possibly an infection, miss handled at young or even in pain.
A trip to the vet can always find out what’s wrong.
In the next stage, we are going to look at how to stop your dwarf hamster hissing, biting and spraying foul smells.
How to Stop Your Russian Dwarf Hamster Hissing and Biting
Pets that show aggression towards their owners need to be tamed.
But what does taming do? Taming, is an excellent way to build up a strong relationship with your pet hamster. Taming will allow your dwarf to realize that you mean no harm.
Generally if a dwarf hamster is hissing, biting you or spraying smelly fluids, then it feels in danger around you. This can easily change when your hamster feels safe around you. This is why taming your hamster will stop hissing and biting.
If you own a Russian, or any type of dwarf hamster and experiencing any of the above. I recommend you see our Video guide – How to Tame a Russian Dwarf Hamster by clicking here.
Alternatively if you still have questions, please leave a comment below…