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Hamsters could make the cutest little pets to own. They are very friendly and extremely smart. They do not require lot of maintenance apart from few guidelines to ensure a hassle free experience. However, amidst the cute and cuddly moments, a more prominent experience is to lose a hamster. Being the playful and active rodent that they are, hamster can quickly hide from sight at a moments notice. Even while playing with them, it is very easy to lose them. They are extremely agile and can fit into very small nook and corners. In this article we will discuss how to find a lost hamster. We will also discuss in detail the reason for hamster to get lost and what to keep in mind when starting to look for a hamster.
Why Do Hamsters Get Lost?
There could be several reasons why your Hamster keeps getting lost. It does not necessarily mean that your Hamster doesn’t like you. We should understand Hamsters are curious little creatures. They always on the lookout for something and the moment they stumble upon something interesting, they have to explore it right away. So most probably out and about exploring, your hamster found something that intrigued them. There could be various other reasons as to why your hamster could be lost.
- Found another hamster/rodent and could have gone away trying to get to know them.
- Found a source of food in your house or garden which they did not know before.
- Got scared by an unknown creature or human and may have gone hiding.
- Found some loose wire in your cage, and he/she chose to make a run for it just because.
- A bird or a cat was too close for comfort near his cage or hideout.
What To Do When You Lose Your Hamster?
Now that we know why your hamster may decide to just go absconding occasionally, we should have a plan ready for future. It is always better to have a plan ready rather than decide what to do after loosing your hamster. Here we list some ideas:
- Do not panic as it may take from few hours to few days to find your hamster. Also do remember that your Hamster can survive without food and water for up to 3 to 4 days.
- If your hamster has gone missing from your house, it is easier to locate them as they have limited space to explore freely. However, to locate them quicker, you must close all your doors and windows to expedite the process. Try to limit the movement of your hamster to increase your chances of finding him/her quicker.
- Always lock away any other pet or bird you may have in your house. They may scare your hamster and that will further delay your rescue process. They must not find your pets before you do.
- Be extra careful when stepping over a pile of clothes or sit in your sofa or chair. Your hamster could literally be anywhere.
How To Find Your Lost Hamster?
Now that our furry friend is missing, we need to get our game back and start looking for him/her. We need to start preparing for all sorts of crazy methods and improvisation in order to catch our hammy. Let us look at the different methods of trying to locate your hamster.
- Put Yourself In Your Hamsters Shoes: Our first step to rescue our lost buddy is to start thinking like him/her. We must look back at habits and patterns of our pet. What tends to appeal to him/her more. As we discussed earlier, Hamsters are curious and instinctive creatures. They probably never wanted to hide at the first place and simply found something too interesting to let go. So think about your hamster and make a list of their preferences. They are foodies. So a big probability would be to look in your kitchen or where you store food. Also, hamsters are nocturnal creatures, so the chances of you finding your hamster during the day is less. Think like a hamster in order to find one.
- Never forget to check all the cracks, corners and other unlikely places: Hamsters are rodents, which makes them explore every single crack or crevice they find. So you must double check every single little crack and crevice in your house. Make sure to look in every squishy and soft little places like sofa cushion, curtains and drawers. The chances of your hamster crawling into any of these is very likely. Maintain vigilance when stepping or sitting anywhere in your house.
- Check Every Likely Place: This literally means check every possible place available in your house. A hamster is small enough to fit anywhere. You might as well not notice your hamster right next to you unless your paying attention. So the moment your hamster goes missing, your whole household must go into an alert mode. Check inside shoes, laundry basket and drawers, cabinets, fridge etc. Children must be asked to be extra careful whenever stepping or sitting anywhere. Always check your bed, sofa and the floor before walking, sitting or sleeping.
- Lock down other Pets in the House: Your pets may hinder your rescue mission. Specially if your hamster is afraid of them, they may not come out of their hiding. So it is always recommended locking up of all the other pets in the house. If there are no dedicated space to lock your pets, a room where hamster is not present can be used. Ensure you thoroughly check the room before locking the pets in.
- Close All the Doors and Windows During Night Time: It is important to restrict the movement of your hamster. They being nocturnal creatures, would like to come out and explore during the night. It is important therefore to keep all doors and windows locked, so they may not escape out or other rooms. Keep your food sources well hidden and only keep some of them out so you can catch them when they go happily munching.
Using Other Measure To Find Your Hamster
Now that we have locked down our house and restricted the access of other pets in the house. We can use a host of other measures to lure our hamster out of hiding. When it comes to catching your hamster, there is no one rule which work. So a host of measures are needed out of which one of them may work. We talk about few such measures in detail below.
Food To Lure
The most effective and common item to lure out our pet hamster would be to lure it by using their favorite food. Hamsters are foodie and like to munch all the time. This provides a chance to lure him out by displaying his/her favorite treat in the open. If the search has been ongoing for a while, your hamster could get thirsty due to lack of water. Therefore, using treats which are high on water content also works well.
Don’t get disheartened if they do not immediately come out to partake their favorite treat. Leave them out overnight. They are more likely to explore and come across your food trap during the night when they are out and about exploring. Use other measures like setting up a trap, or tying up a string with the food. These can help improve chances of rescue. Sprinkling white powder or flour can help track the movement of your hammy. So you can track it back to its place of hiding.
Setting Up Traps
Another useful way to catch your hamster-on-the-run would be set up a trap. A bucket trap is the most easy one to setup. Use a bucket as the main trap and place it over a towel. The bucket would be balanced using a stick and place some tasty treats in the towel. Once your hamster come smelling your food, it will trip the stick and the bucket would close over trapping him/her. There are other kinds of trap that work similarly. A cage trap would trap your hamster in once it enters the cage to eat their favorite treat. There are other humane traps as well, but they are slightly more risky. If not aligned well, they can hurt your hamster. Be cautious when setting up traps, the focus is capture in the most harmless way possible.
Ensure No Escape
Once you have your hamster caught, you should ensure it does not escape again, at least not easily. Make sure you reinforce the bars of your hamster cage. Check the locks of the cage are hardened and do not open easily. Your hamster would likely gnaw at the bars and locking balls. Ensure they are properly reinforced using tape or glue. This would help prevent future acts of escape. Another important measure would be to double check your walls and floors for any crack and crevice. Ensure you fill up all such cracks using glue or other forms of hard setting gel.