In this guide
One hamster may not be enough for you, so you’re wondering if you can have two. Or you already have one, and you’d like to get them a wee friend, so they don’t get lonely. But can hamsters live together in the same cage? That is the big question.
Unfortunately, it’s not a simple yes or no answer. So, let’s give you the low down on owning more than one hamster.
Are Hamsters Social Animals?
First, let’s understand more about the hamster and its sociability. After all, if hamsters aren’t very social, getting them a friend isn’t going to be a good idea.
Overall, hamsters are not social creatures. They’re solitary animals and are also very territorial. So, if you’ve had your hamster for a while and put another one in their cage, they will not be happy. In fact, they’ll most likely fight.
So, you may think it’s a hard no when answering, can hamsters live together in the same cage? But as already mentioned, it’s not that simple. Whether a hamster can live with another highly depends on the breed of hamster. So let’s look at some of the most popular breeds.
Can Syrian Hamsters Live Together?
If there is a solid answer for any breed, it’s the Syrian hamster. No, Syrian hamsters cannot live together in the same cage. This breed can get extremely aggressive and territorial, so never give a Syrian hamster a friend. They certainly will not see them as friends, and you may witness a fight to the death.
Now you may think that you’ve seen Syrian hamsters housed together at the pet shop. Usually, this is because they’re incredibly young, which is okay. However, once Syrian hamsters are roughly 5 weeks old, they should be kept in isolation.
So, if you’re looking to buy a hamster, be wary of where you get them from. If several Syrian hamsters are in the same cage and they’re older than 5 weeks, stay away. You could end up with a very stressed hamster.
Can Chinese Hamsters Live Together?
Let’s move on to the Chinese hamster breed; this story is similar to the Syrian hamster. This breed is also very territorial, and if you have two Chinese hamsters living together, they will fight.
So, always keep this breed alone to keep your Chinese hamster happy and safe.
Can Dwarf Hamsters Live Together?
Now we know giving your Syrian or Chinese hamster company is a bad idea, let’s look at dwarf hamsters. Some popular dwarf breeds include Winter White Russian Dwarf, Campbell’s Russian Dwarf, and Roborovski.
Fortunately, these hamsters are a lot more easygoing than the Syrian and Chinese breeds. However, that doesn’t mean you can simply throw two dwarf hamsters in a cage together, and it’ll all work out.
Dwarf hamsters can live together in the same cage, but there are a few things you need to be aware of.
Tips for Pairing Two Dwarf Hamsters Together
Here are some tips for creating the best environment for two dwarf hamsters to live together.
Introduce them when they’re young
For the best chance of your dwarf hamsters getting along, introduce them when they’re young. The younger, the better. Even better than that is if you buy them at the same time and they come from the same cage.
Dwarf hamsters that have already been living together in a cage at the pet shop are already accustomed to each other. So, there’s a significantly lower chance of them having an issue in the future.
But as stated, if you don’t get your hamsters at the same time, try to introduce them as young as possible. Trying to pair two adult dwarf hamsters most likely won’t work out.
Cohabitation for hamsters works best if they are of the same sex. Putting a male and female together will likely result in a litter. Breeding hamsters isn’t something to take lightly, either.
So, ensure you get your hamsters from a reputable store that has correctly identified the sex of each hamster. Then, choose male or female, and get two (or three) of the same.
Never mix species
Each breed of dwarf hamster comes equipped with its own set of traits. For example, Roborovski is the most social, and Winter White Russian Dwarfs love to work out. So, mixing breeds can cause a clash.
If you want two or more dwarf hamsters, always ensure they are of the same breed so they complement each other.
Opt for larger cages
Many believe hamsters don’t need much space because they’re so tiny. Wrong. Hamsters love to run around and explore and require a lot of space to do so. That’s why you must get the biggest cage possible for your hamster.
But if you’re putting two (or more) together, you will need an even bigger cage. This is certainly something to think about if your space is limited.
Have backup cages
Finally, hamsters sometimes don’t get along even if you follow the tips above. As we’ve said, they are primarily solitary creatures, so this isn’t unusual. So prepare yourself with a backup cage if you do decide to house your hamsters together. Then, if the worst-case scenario happens and they don’t get along, you can pop one into another cage.
Should You Put Hamsters Together?
If you’re looking for a plain and simple answer to whether hamsters can live together, the answer is no. These wee creatures do much better when they have their own space.
However, if you follow the correct steps carefully, some hamster breeds can cohabit. So do your research and keep a close eye on hamsters living together. Fingers crossed, they love each other and have the perfect companion.