Pets are an excellent companion for adults and children alike. They are a huge responsibility and therefore are a great way to teach your kids about responsibility and management. Hamsters are a popular choice of pet, especially among children.
They are small, soft and furry, and are not that hard to take care of. But the question is; where can you buy hamsters from? There are many places where you could go to get one. You can typically buy them from pet stores, directly from a breeder or from a rescue center. Let us explore some of these options.
Pet stores are everyone’s first choice when they go looking for a pet to buy. You are bound to find a hamster at a pet store if not anywhere else. Hamsters are available at pet stores in large numbers, and they come for farms which commercially breed hamsters to sell them at pet stores. Since they come from farms, they might not be the best regarding quality and health.
Also, you might not be able to find out their exact age and how they used to be taken care of. If you are lucky enough, you might find a pet store that carries hamsters sold by breeders. Before buying hamsters from a pet store, make sure that the pet meets the necessary requirements. Check to establish the temperament of the hamsters and the condition/environment it was brought up or born in.
What About The Breeder
Getting a hamster directly from a breeder is the best way to buy it. Essentially, hamsters obtained from breeders score reasonably well on several fronts. First, it is well taken care of and therefore healthy. Second, you can be sure it has been brought up in a healthy environment. This further ensures that the hamster is friendly, tame and well mannered. Since breeders breed only so many hamsters, you can be sure that those hamsters are well taken care of.
The only thing you need to keep in mind while buying directly from a breeder is that the hamster is going to be relatively more expensive than the one you get at a pet store. Again, the reason being that they are not produced in large numbers and that the breeders spend a lot of time, effort and money in raising those hamsters. The end result is a healthy hamster which you will know exactly how old it is at the time of purchase.
Before buying hamsters from a breeder, you should carefully inspect to see if it is in excellent condition and if it’s tame. Be careful to buy from a breeder who gives you a guarantee to take back the hamster in case it is unfriendly. Another thing to be mindful of is in some cases a private seller might be selling of baby hamsters. Those baby hamsters are usually the result of an unwanted pregnancy. Chances are those baby hamsters not well taken care of and therefore might be unhealthy.
Rescue centers are a cheaper option to buy hamsters. Usually, the hamsters here are the ones who were abandoned by their owner, the result of unwanted pregnancies or ones whose previous owners could no longer care for.
The problem in buying hamsters from rescue centers is that these hamsters aren’t in the best condition and their age is unknown. Typically, rescue centers do treat the hamsters in case they need treatment for an illness. But before you buy one, remember to ask them if the hamster has been previously ill.
Choosing A Hamster
After finally deciding where to buy the hamster from, the next step is choosing the type of hamster you buy. When choosing a hamster, go for one that is friendly and playful. Regarding friendliness, no one can beat Syrian hamsters. They are known to be one of the friendliest breeds of hamsters. But they are also tremendous. So you will probably need a big cage. If you plan on getting multiple hamsters or already have some at home, then Syrian hamsters aren’t the best choice. This is because they are not very friendly towards other hamsters.
If you want one that’s very active, then dwarf hamsters are the way to go. They are very active and extremely playful. Their small size makes you want to hold them in your hands, but they aren’t very fond of that. Consider getting two if you buy dwarf hamsters because they do well in pairs. Unfortunately, they have a very short lifespan, i.e. 1.5 to 2 years.
Another thing you should keep in mind is that hamsters mature quickly. So if you get a male and a female, keep them in separate cages unless you want a whole family.
Consider the Gender
How should one decide whether to get a male or a female? Most breeders suggest getting a male hamster instead of a female. This is because they say those male hamsters are calmer than female. But that usually depends on the personality of the animal.
If you buy a female hamster, just make sure that she had a separate cage at the store. Otherwise, you might end up with 7 or 8 more than you asked for.
Supplies Also Matter
Ideally, you should buy all the necessary supplies before bringing the hamster home so that it has a home. This way, as soon as it gets home, it will have its own space, giving it the opportunity to get settled in.
Necessary supplies include a cage, bedding, wheel, water bottle, and food. It is essential to set up these things in advance to make for a smooth transition.
Wait For Four Days
Breeders say that when you bring your hamster home from the store, give it 4 days to settle in. During these four days, you should have minimum contact with the hamster. Your contact should only be limited to giving it food and water for the first four days. Avoid unnecessarily going near the cage.
Cleaning the cage can wait as well. Your only focus should be not scaring the hamster and making a good impression. These 4 days will give the hamster to get acquainted with its surroundings. At the end of the four days, you can slowly start making contact with it. Although it might seem like a long wait, it will make the taming process a lot easier.
Hamsters are beautiful and friendly creatures and are easy to care for low maintenance pets. There are many places where you can buy a hamster. The place you choose depends mainly on your budget and the breed you are looking for.
Carefully inspect your hamster before buying it to make sure it is healthy. And once you have made the selection, give it time to settle in and it will eventually become your best friend.
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