Do you know that a hamster can run almost 9 km a day? Well, if you don’t, then you must have seen your hamster running on a wheel almost all night long. But if you notice your hamster is not walking correctly, you may ask, why is my hamster walking weird?
There could be some possible reasons behind it. In this blog post, we will try to cover those reasons. But you should take the hamster to the vet for proper diagnosis, as weird walking is not an easy issue for hamsters.
Why is My Hamster Walking Weird?
There could be many health issues behind a hamster walking weird. Scurvy, cage paralysis, hind limb paralysis, circling, dehydration, and strokes are the possible reasons behind this fact. However, age also plays an important role here. If your hamster becomes older, it may not walk as usual as before.
Stick with us to find out the correct reason so that you can take effective steps for your hamster.
Reasons Behind A Hamster Walking Weird
Hamsters could be tiny animals, but they are not lazy or inactive. They run and move a lot. A hamster comes out at night and walks a lot to find food in the wild.
However, keeping a hamster as a pet doesn’t get that much chance to run or walk. For that, you need to give the hamster a running wheel. But is that enough? Is a running wheel safe for a hamster?
Let’s first look at these reasons behind a hamster walking weird-
The first reason can be a hamster’s age. If a hamster becomes too old, it can not walk normally as before. Or it becomes lazy and inactive to move fast. When a hamster is old, you notice hair and fur fall from the hamster.
Well, as a hamster runs a lot on a running wheel, sometimes it gets hurt. However, it is not always the hamster’s fault. There are some running wheels available in the pet stores that are not hamster friendly. So, when you buy a running wheel for your hamster, you should check it again and again.
Scurvy happens because of vitamin C. Every living being needs vitamin C for strong muscles and bones. If your hamster is lacking vitamin C, it may face scurvy and other bone problems.
Cage paralysis happens if you keep a hamster in a small cage. A hamster needs a spacious cage for playing and running. Less movement creates a blockage in the vein and muscles, which is dangerous to them. A hamster eats a lot. So, it needs that much exercise to balance its weight. Obesity in hamsters is harmful to them. In some cases, a hamster even becomes unable to move at all.
Hind Limb Paralysis
Hind limb paralysis is another serious issue. If a hamster hurts its spinal cord or nerves related to its legs, then hind limb paralysis happens. In some cases, a hamster can’t move its back anymore.
Circling is another cause of a hamster walking weirdly. Yes, you have heard right. Hamsters can also feel circling too. But it is not the same as us. Circling in hamsters happens to ear infections. If a hamster has an ear infection by bacteria, it will start feeling its head tilt.
Another possibility is dehydration. If a hamster is out of water for a long time, it will not be able to walk normally. For this reason, you should always keep fresh water around the hamster cage.
If your hamster gets a stroke, it may lose the ability to walk normally. How to understand if a hamster has a stroke?
You will see a hamster nodding its head while sitting
Some damages from a stroke can be healed, but it is recommended to visit the vet soon. Home treatment is not enough for a hamster got a stroke.
A hamster needs bedding inside its cage for sleeping and resting. The bedding should be comfortable too. A bedding of paper towels, pine wood shavings, wood shavings, and shredded paper can be a good option for a hamster. If a hamster can’t sleep properly, you may see him walking weirdly as its muscle hurts.
Steps to Help A Hamster
So, if you notice a hamster walking weirdly, you should find out the accurate reason first. Then you can take essential steps. Let’s see what steps you can take to help a hamster.
If your hamster is in elder age, you can do nothing, actually. You just try to keep the hamster in a peaceful environment, a happy life.
But if your hamster hurts itself by an accident, you should rush to the vet and diagnose the hamster properly.
For scurvy, you can definitely do something at home. You just need to give your hamster vitamin C by providing some green fruits and vegetables. You can keep the hamster under sunlight too. It will help their bones and muscles.
You should put the hamster in a larger cage. A smaller cage is less space, and the hamster doesn’t get proper exercise and movements. A larger cage can prevent cage paralysis.
You need to provide fresh food and water for the hamster. Water and food will keep the hamster strong and active.
Things to Consider
Hamsters are prey and tiny animals. They are active mostly at night and try to remain inside the cage for a long time. But when a hamster is not moving at all or walking weirdly, it is really a matter of concern as hamsters are active animals by nature. So, if you notice your hamster is walking weirdly, you should definitely take steps against it.
A pet hamster is happy inside a cage. You may find your hamster is running and playing with the toys. Your hamster just needs some food, water, a running wheel, bedding, and some toys. These all can make a hamster cheerful. But if you notice anything unusual, like walking or moving weird, you should check the hamster and take steps for it.