Dwarf Hamsters Fighting

Dwarf Hamsters Fighting

The occurrence of dwarf hamsters fighting is not uncommon.  Although these guys are less aggressive and more social than other hamsters, they still have the tendency to fight at times.  But don’t worry, most of the time the fighting is harmless and the dwarf hamsters are simply play fighting.  There are times though, where the fights are real and can be very dangerous.  Serious dwarf hamster fights can happen for a variety of reasons and situations.  The most common ones are listed below.
 
Play Fighting vs. Real fighting
Most of the time dwarf hamsters will just be play fighting.  This ranges from squeaking and chasing each other to rolling around and appearing to fight while not really hurting each other.  Play fighting actually happens a lot and you shouldn’t be concerned at all if they are just playing around.  Real fighting doesn’t happen as often, but if it does happen, it can be serious.  The results of dwarf hamsters fighting range from nicks and scratches to serious cuts and death.  If a real fight occurs, you need to break it up immediately.

The following are three of the most common causes for dwarf hamsters fighting and ways to prevent it.

1. Territorial issues
Dwarf hamsters are very territorial animals.  Most fights between dwarf hamsters are a result of their territorial nature.  This comes up most often when introducing a new hamster to the cage.  If you introduced two hamsters by putting the new hamster into the established hamster’s cage, I wouldn’t be surprised if a fight broke out.  This is even true when introducing two mates for breeding, by putting one hamster in the other’s cage, the hamster that is currently living there will feel like his or her territory is being attacked and feel the need to protect it.  How would you feel if all of a sudden a stranger was placed into your house?  (Yea, I would attack him too!)

Solution
The solution to this is to introduce two dwarf hamsters on neutral territory, that is, put them both in a cage where neither of them has been living in.  You can use an old cage, but you’d want to clean it and make sure there are no old hamster smells left as scent is usually used to mark territory with dwarf hamsters.

Another really neat solution is splitting the two hamsters up in the same cage.  Simply put a net or mesh that the hamsters can not get through, but they can easily see and smell each other through.  They may avoid each other at first or they may even squabble a bit at first.  Just let them live like this for a bit and as they get more comfortable and curious, you will see them interacting and sniffing each other at the fence.  Once they are comfortable with each other, you can remove the fence and they should get along.

2. Not enough room
Another common cause of dwarf hamster fighting is that there simply isn’t enough room in the cage.  Dwarf hamsters need their space and if a cage is too cramped, then dwarf hamster fighting is more likely to occur.  I’m sure if you were stuck in a small room with another person for twenty hours a day there would be fights, no matter how friendly you are with the other person.  The same is true with dwarf hamsters, they need their space.

Solution
By providing your dwarf hamsters with enough space hiding places to enjoy their own privacy and private time, you will greatly decrease the likelihood of the dwarf hamsters fighting.  This will also prevents fight as it gives the hamsters enough room to run away from each other if one of the hamsters is in a particularly bad mood and tries to start a fight.

3. They just don’t get along
Sometimes two dwarf hamsters just don’t get along. 

Solution
The best solution for this is first of all to pair up the dwarf hamsters in a way that they’re more likely to get along.  A few rules of thumb that will help with this are that female dwarf hamsters normally get along better than males.  Also it is better if they are siblings and grew up together from birth.

If two of your dwarf hamsters don’t get along and one of the poor guys is getting injured from the fights, you will have no choice but to separate the two.

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