Hamsters are tiny, low-maintenance pets, which is why they’re a family favourite when it comes to choosing an animal to bring into the home.
However, because of their size and minimal needs, getting pet insurance for your hamster may not be at the forefront of your mind. Or you may not know whether you need to get it for your new hamster at all.
In this article, we will go over some things you need to know, where to find pet insurance and alternatives to insuring your hamster.
In this guide
Things to Know
There are a couple of things you need to know about hamsters and insurance policies for small mammals.
Hamsters are exotic animals
You may not think a vet bill for your hamster would be that expensive, but hamsters are classed as exotic animals. This can mean they’re harder to insure and may need to be treated by specialists.
Getting specialist treatment for your hamster can rack up quite the bill if you don’t have insurance. So, don’t be fooled into thinking your small hamster equals a small vet bill; that is not the case!
Common issues with hamsters
It is important to know what common issues occur with hamsters. No matter what pet you have, it is always best to educate yourself on that specific animal so you’re in the know, no matter what is going on with them.
Here are the most common issues you could encounter with your hamster:
- Skin disease
- Hair loss
- Chronic diarrhoea
- Respiratory infections
When you’re aware of what problems your hamster is likely to have, you can keep a close eye out for any signs and symptoms.
Perks to Having Pet Insurance
If you’re unsure whether to get insurance for your hamster, it always helps to understand exactly what insurance policies will cover. That way, you can decide if it’s best for you to take out insurance or not.
Exotic pet insurance will usually help cover the following:
- Vet bills
- Accidents and illness
- Death by weather perils or fire
- Public liability
Every insurance policy is different, but some policies also include additional benefits perfect for hamster owners, such as if your hamster escapes! If you lose your hamster, some insurers will cover advertising costs to find them.
Finally, a lot of people simply want peace of mind by taking out pet insurance. So no matter what happens, your hamster is cared for, and you’re not trying to scrape money together to pay for their treatment.
Where to Buy Insurance For Hamsters
Even though pet insurance for hamsters isn’t as common as insurance for cats and dogs, there are a few places to find it.
We recommend starting with GoCompare and Exotic Direct.
Alternatives to Pet Insurance
Perhaps you’re not sold on the idea of pet insurance, which is understandable. Many people own hamsters and never even consider taking out insurance.
So, if you can’t afford insurance or you’re simply not convinced you need it, here are some alternatives.
Now, hamster insurance may be too pricey for you and that’s okay. If that’s the case, some hamster owners suggest putting away what you can each week/month; a ‘hamster fund’ for any emergencies that do come up.
This is a much more affordable way for a lot of people, and even though you may still be left with a hefty vet bill, you’ll be more prepared this way. Plus, if your hamster never gets sick, you have a nice pot of money to do whatever you would like with!
Taking good care of your hamster isn’t negotiable. No matter whether you have insurance or not, every hamster owner should know how to take proper care of their small mammal.
However, if you decide not to take out insurance, extra care for your hamster will go a long way.
Here are a few quick tips to keep your hamster in tip-top health:
- Feed them the correct, natural, nutritional food, and don’t overfeed them
- Keep their cage clean (clean once per week)
- Provide them with a wheel for exercise
- Give them toys to chew on to keep their teeth short
- Buy toys/hideouts that can keep them active and happy
- Minimise stress by not overhandling them or changing their environment
Again, it is vital to care for your hamster properly, regardless of whether or not you have pet insurance.
Should I Get Pet Insurance For My Hamster?
At the end of the day, it is completely up to you whether you get insurance for your hamster. If you have the funds and would like the peace of mind knowing you’re covered if your hamster does get sick, it makes sense to get insurance.
However, if you’d rather put away a small amount of funds specifically for hamster care, that’s also a viable option. It may also be more affordable for many people.
Either way, as long as you take good care of your hamster, you will dramatically reduce the chance of needing to take them to the vet. Of course, there’s always a chance they will get sick, but with insurance or a ‘rainy day’ fund, you at least won’t be panicking about the vet bill.