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Taming for the Timid...or Just Newbies!


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#1 monkeysmom

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Posted 13 July 2004 - 09:46 AM

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Hamster Basics! So you want to learn how to tame your hammie?

These techniques are especially good for the timid or newbie hamster owner! Experienced hamster owners may find this a slow process.

Well, you have just bought your first hamster and now you have no idea what to do! Don't worry, we have all been there! I have tried to create a little training manual from things I have learned, which have helped me greatly.

Coming Home:

1. First of all, you must realize that when you first bring home your hammie you must resist the temptation to try and play with it. Your hammie needs time to acclimate itself to you and its new surroundings.

2. For the three days, place your hammie in its cage and just leave it alone. Do not play with it.just LEAVE IT ALONE! Most hamsters will become stressed upon coming into an new environment, dwarfs or syrians. But, for syrians, they can come down with Wet Tail the first few days of arriving at their new home because of the stress. All animals need time to adjust in order to feel feel comfortable....just as you would if moving into a new home. There are new sounds to learn and new people all around you to get used to.

3. On the fourth day, try introducing scented tissue. This means tissue that has your scent on it. For girls this is simple. Just put a little tissue in your bra for a few hours and then place it in your hamster's cage. For guys well, tuck it in your sock or something! We'll let you decide where to put it! :laughing:

4. Give your hammie new tissue each day with your scent on it. What this is doing is letting your hamster get to know you by your smell. This is a very good idea because this way when you start to play with your hammie, then hopefully because it knows your scent, you won't get bitten! We still give our girl who is over a year old scented tissue just to make sure she knows she's part of the family and to make her feel comfortable!

5. Why you are using the tissue method on the 4th and 5th day (and as long as you need to use this method continue to do so) also begin feeding your hammie hand treats. I would really like to stress the importance of healthy treats! Sunflower seeds and pumpkins, although yummy treats, are fattening. Yogurt drops and commercial pet treats generally contain too much sugar. Therefore I like veggies! My girl's personal favorite our baby peas. I keep a few of them on hand at all times to help with taming. Carrots also work well. Avoid giving too many fruits also. The key to any fruit/vegetable is moderation.

NOW ON TO THE TAMING LESSONS:

Day 1:

I have certain items that I really like to use when taming such as: a hamster ball, a detergent lid, and a play tub filled with toys and a playpen.

1. To start with use your hamster ball by placing it next to your cage door and let your hamster crawl into it on its own. Be patient.this may take a while!

2. Next lower the ball into the play tub and give your hamster time to go out on his own and explore his new surroundings. See picture:

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3. Next try giving a hand treat to bribe your hammie with. Lay your hand on the bottom of the tub giving your hamster time to become familiar with you. Remember: your hamster can only trust you if you trust your hamster! So please try not to be frightened that he might bite you. If you're not scared, then your hammie won't be either! 

4. Pretty soon your hammie will be running over your hand like it is just another toy. Time to stop for today!

5. Put your hamster ball back into the tub and let your hammie crawl in. Then hold the ball up to the cage door to let your hammie back into its cage. 

6. Give your hammie a nice treat and talk with your hammie encouragingly!

Day 2:

Repeat all of the steps of Day 1 then add these steps:

1. Try and get your hammie to go into the detergent cup (or any small cup) and gently lift it a little ways off the floor of the tub but not far. Now, with your other hand, make a little bridge for him to use to jump off of to reach the bottom of the play tub. Soon this will become a game and your hammie will crawl into the cup just to jump off your hand! See picture:

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2. Continue with this until your hammie seems to be getting a little tired or hungry. You don't want to overdue it! Use the hamster ball to return it to the cage.

3. Give your hammie a nice treat and talk with your hammie encouragingly!

Day 3 and 4:

Repeat all of the steps of Day 1 and Day 2.

Day 5:

The big moment, here you get to really play and have fun with your hammie!

1. Setup your playpen and have it ready.

2. Go and get your hamster with the hamster ball and sit inside the playpen crossed legged. The playpen will prevent you from losing your hammie should it get away from you. Hold your hands in a cupped fashion under the opening of the hamster ball to make a large bridge, just as you did with the detergent cup with one hand. See picture.

Posted Image

3. Now you have to be patient again. Your hammie might come right out and feel comfortable or might be a little shy. Once your hammie comes out just let it explore! Don't try and make it do what you want, let it do what it wants!

4. Soon you will be surprised that it is crawling all over you and you are having the time of your life. See picture.

Posted Image

5. When you are done, again use the hamster ball. After all this time it is still my favorite mode of transportation throughout the house. I know that my little No Name can't get away from me in transit this way and I won't be frantic or guilty because I lost her!

6. Give your hammie a nice treat and talk with your hammie encouragingly!

CONGRATULATIONS! Now you know how to train your hammie! I am sure some of you will be able to train your hammie faster, but many may have to take longer to tame your hammies! It is really up to your individual hammie! Let them set the pace!!! No Name took over a month to tame because she was so skittish, as was I, but Baby Girl was tamed in just 3 days because she was so outgoing and friendly! You have to remember that hamsters have personalities just like ourselves, so take your cue from them and before you know it you will have a loving bond between you and your hamster!

Good luck everyone! If you have any specific questions, please feel free to post your questions or PM me. I am always happy and willing to help!

~ Monkeysmom :hug: :wave:

Special credit is given to Baby Girl who is pictured in this taming section. She is now a part of the Rainbow Bridge....may she rest in peace in God's loving shadow! :hamster1: :lovestruck:

Edited by Christmas_hamster, 12 February 2011 - 11:12 PM.

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#2 missPixy

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Posted 13 July 2004 - 12:39 PM

We still give our girl who is over a year old scented tissue just to make sure she knows she's part of the family and to make her feel comfortable!

:lovestruck: when i read this, i thought it was such a good idea! i just did this with monique when she went in to surgery, so she'd have some tissue that reminded her of home (i also put some in her mom and sister's nest the night b4 so she would have them with her too!)

but why wait for some serious situation? i like your idea of doing this all the time!

i love the pictures that go along with this! such a very photogenic little hamster! and it makes things so easy to understand and know you're doing something the way it's explained~~

very fun to read! :applause: :trophy: :hamster1:
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#3 whimsicalhamster

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Posted 15 July 2004 - 11:35 AM

Thank you Monkeysmom! This is a very neat and troughou step by step guide !

#4 Dwarf_Runner

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Posted 15 July 2004 - 02:12 PM

Thanks for the guide;) I'll try that haha

#5 SouthPaw

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Posted 17 July 2004 - 02:59 PM

That's very helpful! The pictures are great for people who are like me and get confused easily... ;D
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#6 LucilleE

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Posted 20 July 2004 - 11:46 AM

:applause: Thank you so much for the guide! We got a pregnant hamster (surprise!)
from the pet store, and kept one of the 4 babies. It is a little skittish since leaving its littermates, I think. The detergent lid is such s simple thing! We put a clear one so we can see her/him?
Thanks again.

#7 monkeysmom

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Posted 20 July 2004 - 11:49 AM

I'm glad you found it helpful. My girl, NoName, was incredibly skittish, which made me as a new hamster owner very nervous since I had no idea what I was doing. It was a long process, but we got through it together! LOL....my second hammie was tamed in 3 days!

They are have different personalities, the best thing to do is play it by your hammie's timetable in order to gain its trust. If you do, you will have a long-standing bond!

Good luck and welcome to HH!

~ Monkeysmom :wave:

#8 ozzy

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Posted 21 July 2004 - 12:06 AM

ever thought of being a vet??lol.

#9 Mona

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Posted 22 July 2004 - 11:23 PM

Mokeysmom, thanks so much for the info. It's so helpful. I will do the tissue trick today for my 'Coconut'

*hamster hugs*

#10 monkeysmom

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Posted 22 July 2004 - 11:37 PM

Ozzy ~ There is no way I could ever be a vet....anyone that knows me knows that the mere site of blood or needles is enough to make me woozy! :laughing: Whenever I get a blood test done, I have to turn my head away....otherwise they will be picking me up off the floor! :ashamed:

Mona ~ I am glad you liked the info. I still use the tissue method just as a "comfort" to my hammie and I hope it is as helpful to you. Good luck and keep us posted on your progress!

~ Monkeysmom :wave:

#11 wiffy

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Posted 22 July 2004 - 11:50 PM

:lovestruck: when i read this, i thought it was such a good idea! i just did this with monique when she went in to surgery, so she'd have some tissue that reminded her of home (i also put some in her mom and sister's nest the night b4 so she would have them with her too!)

but why wait for some serious situation? i like your idea of doing this all the time!

i did this tissue trick when i when away on holiday in June and July... think it helps :goodvibes:

mm... thanks for putting in the time and effort to come out with such a wonderful guide! I'll go thru this in detail this weekend. there's much I can learn!! :yes:

#12 killingb

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Posted 14 August 2004 - 02:03 PM

if u put the tissue inside,how will ur hamster react?
mine juz tried to tear up the tissue..after tat he'll leave it outside of his house..
is tat normal?

#13 ghost

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Posted 15 August 2004 - 12:47 AM

Below is an article by myself in another forum (G.T.) many years ago.Tho not as detailed as the 1st post in this thread...,but i still hope it can help those who are attempting to tame those very fierce hamsters....it's my very own experience on taming of Campbell Hamsters...hope u guys can understand my broken english... :hmmm:

Alrite,for those untame hamsters when i adopt em,i leave em under observation w/o really touching em for abt a week or so,i use a food tray to transport em if cleaning up of their cages is needed........then for another 7 days later,i will hand feed em,making the hamsters tip toe to get their food(minimal mix).......this will take quite a lot of time & hard work,so the short cut methods will be,just making em tip-toe to grab 3-5 pieces of their food & put the rest of it in the food tray.....jus make sure if there r 2 hamsters,let the 2 hamsters each able to grab 3-5 pieces of food from your hand.

After the 2nd week,handfeed em by filling up your palm w food & put em near the food tray to feed em........if they attempt to bite,move away.......& don't feed em for the next 1 hour or so.........if u drop all the food into the food tray,then don't feed em anymore......but if drop partially u may still continue to the next step........that would be 1 hour later when u handfeed em again the same way/method........putting food in your palm & put near the food tray again,so that the ham will come to your hand......if they bite,or attempt to bite again,move away & don't feed em for the next one hour again.........repeat this steps at least 3 times a day everyday for the next 7 days again.......after that if u decide to call it a day when they still attempt to bite u,feed em w jus enough food to last em a day only(for me is 1 tea spoon only)........well thruout the entire process,rewards(their fav. treats) may b given to those hamsters who doesn't bite u any more.......or didnt attempt to bite u.

If all things goes well,on the 4th week.....hand feed em w the food in your palm near the food tray for another 7 days.............your hamsters shld have given up attempting to bite u by then as he/she already knows your hand is their sole-food provider.......& they also knows the scent of your hand smell.......oh,1 more thing to take note.......make sure u wash your hands well b4 feedings & do make it a habit to do so.......cos if your hand got food smell fr the things u eat jus now or hours ago.......they SURE BITE!!!

A lot of patience & time is use to tame hamsters tho.......& my most hardcore hamsters(4 & 1/2 months old) takes a maximum of 4 weeks to be tame........as those mention above,one can talk to em as well so as to let your ham know your voice/sound too,but not too loud as our normal talking voice is like thunder to our beloved hamsters.

Another thing to share,all my taming methods are taught by observing Elna,my super most fiercest campbell hamster among all my other hamsters(51 of them)........ & any credits to me,if there is,(on taming hamsters) should in turn goes to her (elna) instead as she is where i learn how to tame a hamsters from(& knowing a hamsters behaviour).In my view,there is no hamsters that cannot be tamed....guess that's about all for now,hereby wish u all good luck & have a wonderful time with your hamsters.


Edited by ghost, 15 August 2004 - 12:48 AM.

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#14 monkeysmom

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Posted 15 August 2004 - 03:09 AM

It is very normal for them to tear it up, eventually they will start to nest with you. No worries, perfectly normal! :goodvibes:

~ Monkeysmom

#15 killingb

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Posted 15 August 2004 - 05:36 PM

thanks alot~!
will keep trying that method..
this morning i found out tat he's sleeping with the tissue..
is tat a gd sign?