Hamsters, due to their fertility, are found in abundance both in the wild and as pets. Since in the wild they live in arid steppes or in the desert, a logical question arises: do hamsters drink water, or is there enough moisture from food?
Need for water.
Domestic hamsters get more succulent food (fruits, vegetables) than in nature, but they need water. The need for liquid depends on the sex, activity and breed of the animal, as well as on the ambient temperature. On average, it is 5-14 ml per 100 g of body weight per day. Most animals drink, which are released for walking, pregnant and lactating females. Water consumption greatly increases in hot weather, or in winter, if the cell is next to the battery.
If the hamster does not receive water, he naturally eats more juicy products. This causes digestive problems in the rodent, which needs to eat more dry food rich in fiber. Therefore, giving vegetables instead of water is unacceptable.
In nature, hamsters are nocturnal animals. They do not go to a watering place, but they are happy to lick dew from grass blades. The same opportunity should be provided to them in captivity.
What kind of water should a hamster give?
The small organism of the animal is sensitive to the quality of food. Water quality is equally important. Typically, rodents are given filtered or bottled water. It should be fresh (change in a drinker daily). Water for the hamster should not contain a lot of bleach (like some tap water), boiled is also undesirable. If you give water from a natural reservoir (pond, river), animals can become infected with helminths.
An open drinking bowl (bowl) is not suitable for hamsters. Even a heavy ceramic bowl the animal can turn over. Hamsters are actively rummaging in the litter, tedding it. Because of this, litter, feed, and even feces get into the bowl. Water quickly becomes unfit for drinking. An open bowl must be washed thoroughly with soda, and water should be changed at least twice a day.
The best solution is an automatic drinking bowl. A closed container keeps the water fresh longer, does not turn over – you can leave your pet alone for the whole day.
The design is fixed to the cell wall, low enough. The hamster should not reach for the drinker, straining his neck. There are two types of automatic drinkers:
The metal ball in the nose of the cup is wetted with water when the animal licks it with its tongue. The downside is that if the ball sticks, the pet will be left without water. Inconvenience for the owner: to fill the structure with fresh water, it is disconnected from the cage. Ball drinkers can leak. In this case, it is better to purchase a new one.
It is considered the most reliable. In a steel nose, not one, but two balls and a vertically located valve. The fluid enters when the nipple is pressed. It is convenient to fill such a device with water without removing it from the cage: the lid opens from above.
When buying any type of car drinker, preference is given to transparent containers with a metal nose (plastic rodents quickly damage their teeth). Do not save on buying: cheap models fail faster.
Why doesn’t the hamster drink?
If the liquid level in the drinker does not decrease, the owner begins to doubt whether the hamsters need water. Or begins to give water forcibly. Both options are not the best solution. You need to understand why the pet does not want to drink.
low room temperature
stale, polluted water
plenty of wet food (e.g. cucumbers)
If the pet is in the house recently, it is logical to assume that the previous owner did not give the hamster water, or used a different type of drinker. When a hamster first finds himself in his cage, he carefully examines the space. If the drinker is installed in advance, the curious animal will guess how to use it. If you install the design later, the hamster will ignore the innovation. In this case, the animal needs to be shown several times how the drinker works, wetting the face with a drop of water. If you are afraid to pick up a pet in your hands, it is better to coat the metal spout of the device with a treat. Licking the food, the hamster will get water.
If a pet-old-timer suddenly refuses to eat and drink, this is a sign of a serious problem and an occasion to contact a ratologist – a specialist in the treatment of rodents. In case of illness, the animal is not only force-fed, but also doped with fresh water from a syringe, adding ascorbic acid to it.
What if a hamster drinks too much?
Another cause for concern is the hamster’s sudden thirst. If the animal empties the drinker, you need to make sure that the liquid does not leak into the litter, namely the pet drinks it. Check the litter under the nose of the bowl and the toilet corner. Drinking too much and drinking too much are signs of diabetes. The same signs accompany kidney disease.
In females, increased thirst may indicate pregnancy, and in the case of solitary confinement, uterine inflammation (pyometra).
so, The main reasons why hamsters should be given water, even if they have wet feed in their diet:
If the pet’s cage is in the sun or near a heating radiator, free access to water will help him avoid overheating and dehydration.
2. Water-salt balance.
Hamsters drink water intensely, making up for fluid loss in case of diarrhea. Diarrhea causes, in particular, an excess of vegetables.
3. Prevention of constipation.
The consumption of some dry food (hay, grass granules, cereals) makes the feces hard, they come out with difficulty. Constipation for a rodent is deadly. Drinking plenty of water in this case is not only prevention, but also the treatment of coprostasis.