Common Hamster Diseases

Common Hamster Diseases

Here we are listing some of the major and very common hamster diseases:

1. Diarrhoea

This should not be confused with wet tail as it is not that severe and can be cured easily.

Prevention

Do not over feed vegetables and fruits and if there may be a need to change your hamster’s diet then do it gradually.

Symptoms

Loose, light coloured droppings and a wet bottom.

Treatment

Remove all fresh fruit and vegetables from diet and instead offer plenty of water, burnt toast and dry grains.

2. Diabetes

Causes

Diabetes is when the body is not capable to break down sugars either for the reason that there is a lack of insulin i.e. type 1 diabetes or the insulin is not functioning as it should be i.e. type 2 diabetes. This becomes a source of high sugar levels in the blood and urine.

Symptoms

These include drinking overly, urinating more often and in bigger volumes (urine may smell like nail polish remover), amplified appetite, abrupt weight loss or weight  gain, napping more than normal or too much exercise, tetchiness, or unusual biting, ‘squinty’ eyes when wakeful and a hunched posture.

Hamster Diseases

Treatment

It is vital to keep the pet on a sugar-free, low fat diet, which comprises a food mix with the whole thing of the corn and peas and sunflower seeds selected out, alfalfa sprouts, boiled or scrambled eggs, and potatoes, in order to keep the suffering hamster happy and fit. Commercial treats, and any other sugar containing foods, including fruits should be avoided. Fresh water should be available on hand all the time, so as to keep the hamster from dehydration.

3. Impacted cheek pouch

Causes

A hamster’s cheek pouch can also get infected and cause pain. Hamsters use cheek pouches to stock food. As the lining of the pouches are arid, sometimes food particles might stick to these.

Symptoms

This happens if a pink, moist mass is dangling out of the side of the pet’s mouth.  This condition is called an averted pouch. The cheeks will appear enlarged either on one or both sides.

Treatment

This should be surgically fixed by a veterinarian, who puts it back into abode and stitch it, so that it stays in place. In order to avert cheek pouch problems, hamster’s teeth should be checked frequently so as to confirm that these are being accurately worn down through chewing. One should also provide the hamster with safe chewing materials such as untreated wood blocks or pesticide-free branches from hardwood trees such as aspen and oak. Pens or other items with sharp edges that may possibly damage a hamster’s cheek pouch, if it chewed on them, should be avoided.

4. Ear mites

Causes

Unlike other Hamster Diseases, mite infestation takes place commonly in males and older hamsters because of constant worry, malnutrition, and a debilitated immune system. Underdeveloped immune systems might be cause of infections in newly born ones.

Symptoms

Symptoms take account of crusting inside and round the ears and now and then, also, on the face and feet.

Treatment

Treatment of this disease is done with Ivermectin either given orally or via injection, by a vet.

5. Mites

Causes

Mites are tiny parasites that can be transferred from pet to pet or from any infected material such as bedding. They embed themselves on the skin and cause irritation.

Prevention

Use hygienic products and try to keep your pet as far away as you can from any other hamster that you doubt has mites.

Symptoms

Irritated skin, loss of fur in some areas, appearance of tiny black dots.

Treatments

Purchase a mite spray to disinfect your hamster and thoroughly clean his cage all other equipment.

6. Mange

Causes

This disease is instigated by small mites that live in the hair glands and skin of the pet.

Symptoms

These include dry, scaly skin and fur loss. Usual signs include concentrations of symptoms around the ears or on the hamster’s back.

Hamster Diseases

Treatment

The best treatment is keeping the hamster in a well-ventilated pen.

Addition of cod liver oil and crushed yeast tablets to the hamster’s food aids to restore fur growth. Vitamin A can be gained from carrots and  milk products aid in addition of Vitamin D, which will help in improving fur health.

Another treatment is soothing the irritated skin with aloe Vera gel.

Neem oil can also be used as it has antibacterial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties. However, this should be done in Consultancy of a veterinarian prior to use as to high levels may be toxic.

Ivermectin is the drug typically recommended, given over the course of a month, by vets.

7. Cold/Influence

Causes

The disease can be transferred from humans to hamsters or they might catch it themselves.

Symptoms

The ciphers are sneezing, wheezing, difficult or rapid breathing, clicking noises during respiration, runny eyes and noses, higher temperatures, and lethargy. Urgent treatment is required as the colds and flus can rapidly turn into pneumonia, which will kill the hamster.

Hamster Diseases

Treatment

Instant veterinary care should be sought. The owner has to make certain that the hamster is kept in a warm spot, free of drafts.an open container of Vicks should be kept in a spot close to the cage, away from reach of the hamster. The vet will give the antibiotics to cure the disease, and as well to avert secondary infections.

8. Wet Tail

Wet Tail (proliferative ileitis)

This is a severe form of diarrhoea and can cause death within the first 48 hours if left untreated due to extreme dehydration.

Prevention

Make sure hamsters are weaned to a proper healthy diet at the right time; cages are clean and hygienic with enough ventilation and definitely avoid overcrowding.

Symptoms

The hamster may sit in a hunched position, may appear lethargic with sunken eyes, messed up coat, diarrhoea and a wet tail as well as anal area.

Treatment

Take your hamster to the vet immediately who may prescribe antibiotics and give your hamster multi-vitamin injections to counter for the loss in diarrhoea.

9. Tape worms infestation

Tape worms infestation

This is one of the dangerous hamster diseases and kills hamsters rapidly; it can also be fatal to humans or any other additional pets in the house who can catch from the hamster’s feces. At the first ciphers of illness, hamsters should be taken to a veterinarian immediately so that the vet can check for tapeworm eggs via inspection of its feces.

Causes

The most common cause is the ingestion of the feces of infected hamsters or else food with a few pellets mixed in.

The disease worms can also be delivered by fleas and beetles. When these insects, infected by tapeworms are eaten by hamsters, disease might occur.

Symptoms

Mild tapeworm infestations do not bear any signs. With apt attention, tiny white worms can be seen in the feces or appearing from the hamster’s rectum. The obvious signs at severe infection include diarrhea, loss of appetite, weight loss and dehydration. Also, coats might come to be dull and lack its shininess.

Treatment

After diagnosis, the hamster should be given a mixture of niclosamide in the feed. The dosage will be ten milligrams per hundred milligrams weight of the pet. The treatment is done in alternative weeks, one week full treatment, next week nil, and then again the following week. Other prescriptions include thiabendazole or praziquantel mixed in the feed.

10. Salmonellosis

Salmonellosis

Salmonella reasons severe intestinal disease in hamsters under definite conditions. Salmonellosis is contagious to and likewise serious in humans.

Causes

The contamination is usually linked to food, water, or bedding infected by insects or wild rodents. The hamsters with weak immune systems or immature gastrointestinal tracts and old age have a high risk of developing salmonellosis.

Symptoms
The symptoms clearly present are evident with severity of the disease. Symptoms commonly seen are Fever, Lethargy, Diarrhea, Vomiting, Loss of appetite (anorexia), Weight loss, Dehydration, Abdominal pain, Distended stomach,  Rough body coat, Abnormal vaginal discharge (in females) and Miscarriage (spontaneous abortion) in pregnant females.

Treatment

The diagnosis of salmonellosis is done by vet according to the severity of disease indicated by symptoms.

11. Abscesses

Hamster Diseases

Abscesses

The main causes for these are wounds which may be due to fighting or other injuries resulting in formation of lumps under the skin. Abscesses provide a high risk for infections.

Prevention

As soon as you notice a cut or bite on your hamster treat him immediately by properly cleaning it and applying an antiseptic or take him to the vet. Make sure no wires of the cage are open and bedding is comfortable.

Symptoms

A lump filled with fluid will be noticeable.

Treatments

A trip to the vet is necessary where the abscess will be drained, followed by antibiotic prescriptions.

12. Bladder Stones

Bladder Stones

This is an agonizing disease resulting in extreme pain when during urination. The urinary tract becomes infected and stones form inside it.

Symptoms

This disease is hard to detect especially by an owner. You may notice your hamster urinating more then usual, he may appear to be in pain while urinating and there may be blood in the urine.

Treatment

Do not go for dietary changes to dissolve the stones since it will be a long painful process and most probably will not show positive signs in hamsters. The best method is for a vet to take them out immediately and relieve the hamster from any pain.

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