A female hamster can get pregnant when she is about six weeks old. A male hamster can impregnate a female at twenty-eight days old. This can mean that leaving baby males in with baby females for even a short time after recommended safety limits by breeders may result in unwanted pregnancies. Female hamsters bought from pet shops who have been kept with males in the cage either by accident or by lack of space may therefore be pregnant.
Check How Many Baby Hamsters You Have
When the babies first start to come out of the nest at around fourteen days, you will be able to count how many and check for any problems. Sometimes there is an undersized baby, or one may have a cut. Watch them carefully for any problems.
Handle Your Baby Hamsters
At sixteen days you can handle them. Please do so, they very rarely bite. They are very quick so transfer them into a safe bucket and then gently pick them up, keeping them over a surface. Do not let them fall, or they will be hurt.
Handle them every day and they will soon become tame. This makes it easier to find good homes for them. Once you know how many there are, you will know how many good homes you need to find.
Talk to Your Pet Shop
If it is a pet shop mistake that your hamster had babies, then do talk to the shop which should offer to take back any babies that you cannot find homes for. The babies will be ready to go to the pet shop at about five weeks old. They should however be separated from Mum and males from females at twenty-eight days old to prevent further unwanted pregnancies.
Tell People About the Baby Hamsters
Talk to your friends. Tell everyone about your beautiful baby hamsters and how tame they are becoming. Ask friends to ask friends about whether they would like a baby. Tell your children to ask friends at school. Spread the word and be proactive from the time you know how many baby hamsters there are. Aim to ask everyone you know and get them to ask everyone they know if anyone is looking for a new pet.
Allow people to come over to view the babies once they are out of the nest and beginning to become tame. Allow people to reserve that baby if they think they would like one and arrange a time for them to come and pick it up. Tell them what they will need, and remind them to bring something to take the hamster home. An empty ice cream tub with holes punched in the lid is an ideal carrying box.
What to Do if There Are Baby Hamsters Left
If you have not managed to find homes for the babies, then you may need to advertise in a local shop. Put a picture of Mum and babies if you can and your contact details. Get adverts up as soon as possible as the hamsters only have a short space of time that they can remain together.
If you have one or two babies left over, then don’t panic. You can use plastic storage boxes with a small mesh lid hammered to a wooden frame as a temporary home. You can keep the male babies and female babies together in separate cages until they are about eight weeks old. If they start to fight, then separate out the trouble-maker. Do not give up on advertising for new homes, or letting friends know that there are one or two left.
Be proactive, spread the word and get your baby hamsters as tame as you can and you will find that they will all be able to find good homes.