The Syrian hamster is a rodent of the hamster family, which is popularly called the “golden hamster” due to its natural reddish-sandy color.
The color of this breed is not only golden but also white, brown, black, silver, etc.
Initially, the Syrian hamsters were short-haired, but now there are many long-haired hamsters on sale.
Their body length is 13-13.5 cm, and their weight ranges from 100-125 g.
Syrian hamsters are considered the longest-living species of decorative hamsters – the average life expectancy is 2.5 years, but with proper care and maintenance it can reach 4 years … Unlike Dzungarian hamsters, they are less whimsical, are distinguished by their endurance and cleanliness. They are very active and kind creatures who will calmly enjoy the warmth of their owner’s hands, without showing a single drop of aggression.
Females of golden hamsters practically do not smell, while males, driven by the desire to assert themselves, tend to carefully
mark the territory.
The Syrian hamster has a thirteen-centimeter stocky body with short legs, medium rounded ears, a short muzzle, beady-shaped eyes, and a small tail that can hardly be seen under its thick coat. The rodent’s belly is light, and its back has an ocher-gray or brownish-gray color. The hind legs of the animal have five toes, while the front legs have four toes and a rudiment of the fifth. The rodent lives in hallow burrows lead an active life at night. The Syrian hamster uses convenient cheek pouches to transport materials for building the nest and food.
For the first time in 1797, the Russell brothers wrote an article about the Syrian hamster. This rodent species has been considered extinct since 1839 after Waterhouse made their first scientific description. On April 30, 1930, after a long search, the zoologist Israel Aharoni discovered a hole in which eleven newborn rodents were together with the female, he transported them to the University of Judea. Of
all the individuals brought in, three males and one female survived. After unsuccessful attempts to find other representatives of this species in the wild, Ahoroni made a related mating of the female with one of his brothers, who became the progenitors of this species in captivity. Their descendants in 1938 first entered the territory United States of America. Simultaneously with this event, pundits concluded that the Syrian hamsters were completely extinct in the wild.
However, this turned out not to be the case. The Syrian hamster lives on crops, in meadow steppes and foothill steppe landscapes, which are located on the territory of Iran, Western Asia, Turkey, the Balkans.
Syrian hamster – maintenance and care
Hamsters of this species are best accommodated in a cage with a deep plastic tray and metal rods, and an aquarium
made of organic or regular glass. The dimensions of the cage for the animal must be at least 30 × 40 cm, and the minimum aquarium height is 30 cm.
As for bedding, it is most optimal to use large dry sawdust, the layer thickness of which should be about 3-4 cm. For long-haired representatives of the species, it is not advisable to lay sawdust, as they can entangle the wool. Purchase a special natural wood filler by pairing it with colorless paper towels.
Pieces of paper, hay, and straw work well for building nests.
Inside the cage, you need to put a house where the animal will hide and rest. It is also important to take care of your pet’s active life in order to avoid weight and well-being problems.
In addition to the food bowl and drinker, given the spirited nature of the Syrian hamsters, a large jogging wheel, perches, and a
variety of obstacles must be placed in the cage.
Cleaning is necessary every 4-5 days. The drinker and bowl should be rinsed daily. Once a month, be sure to wash the cage and
all the “furniture” of the hamster with a special detergent that contains bleach.
The content was translated from Syrian hamster. Great thanks to the author!