Can Hamsters Drink Tap Water? Is It Safe?

Can Hamsters Drink Tap Water

Hamsters can drink tap water, but it should be cleaned, drinkable, and not contaminated or unhygienic. 

Tap water is definitely a cheaper option for your hamsters, but sometimes tap water is polluted and not drinkable in some regions.

In this case, bottled or filtered water is safe for hamsters because it goes through many filtration and distillation processes.

In this article, I have covered everything you might ask, like “how much water do hamsters need“? Why bottle is better than bowl“? And about “dehydration in hamsters.”

So, let’s begin!

Can Hamsters Drink Tap Water?

Yes, hamsters can drink tap water, but it should be clean, drinkable, and not contaminated or unhygienic.

You should always give your hamster soft water. Hard water has high mineral content like calcium, magnesium carbonates, and sulfates; they are not suitable for drinking.

Tap water sometimes also contains chlorine and other harmful chemicals, which can cause several issues to your hamster. 

So, make sure that the water you are giving to your hamster is drinkable and not too hot or cold. It should be room temperature.

However, I highly recommend you use distilled water obtained from the vapor of water, and it’s the most impure water.

How Much Water Do Hamsters Need?

Hamsters are originated from the deserted region, and the water supply is limited there. So, they do not require a lot of water, and sometimes they can even go without water for a few days.

Most hamster drinks about 10 to 30 ml of water per day. For example, if the body weight of your hamster is around 100 grams, he will drink about 10ml of water, and so on.

How Much Water Do Hamsters Need

However, the amount of water your hamster will consume also depends on the breed and gender. 

For instance, a Syrian and Chinese male hamster consumes roughly 5 ml and 11 ml of water every day, but a female consumes around 14 ml and 12.9 of water per day. 

So, it really depends on their breed and gender but ensures that they have access to fresh and clean water all the time.

Can Hamster Drink Water From Bowl?

For any hamster owner, it might be confusing whether they should choose a bowl or bottle for their pets.

While both can be used to feed water, a bottle is considered a better, safer choice for a hamster.

The water in the bowl is always wide open and the more likely to get contaminated. The chance of getting the water dirty is higher in bowl-like urine, dirt, feces, hair, or their food can fall into the water and make it dirty.

Besides, an open water bowl could be risky if your hamster falls into them accidentally. This could be life-threatening if you are not there on time.

But sometimes hamsters are not comfortable, or there could be a scenario when the bottle is leaking or damaged. In this case, a bowl can be used alternatively.

Why Do Hamsters Need Water Bottle?

There is always a conflict in owners’ minds that they should provide water in a bottle or bowl. Well, it depends on your personal thoughts and what suits your hamster best.

First of all, do not confuse hamster’s water bottle with our regular one; they both are different in size, shape, and design.

Why Do Hamsters Need Water Bottle

A water bottle is considered better as it can quickly provide consistent, reliable access to water to your hamster.

Also, it allows you to monitor how much water your hamster consumes every day so that you can spot changes in their health.

The bottle keeps the water clean and protected from dust, hair, and anything else that could contaminate the water.

The water in the bottle needs to change every day, and the bottle needs cleaning every few days to prevent the build-up of bacteria. 

A bottle comes with an easy detachable mouthpiece and nozzle that can easily be opened and cleaned so that your hamster gets fresh water every day.

How Often Should I Change my Hamster’s Water?

Hamsters need fresh and clean water every day. So, it’s best to change the water every day; even the bottle or bowl is not entirely empty or even half.

If the water is not changed on a daily basis, then the hot and humid weather could build up bacteria in the water bottle, which can eventually make your hamster sick.

Moreover, changing the water helps to monitor how much water your hamster is consuming, and if they are not drinking enough water, you can take them to a vet.

Also, changing the water daily and cleaning it will help you keep an eye if the water bottle is damaged or leaking.

So, don’t risk your little buddy’s health and refill their water bottle with fresh and clean water every day.

How To Clean Hamster’s Water Bottle?

Cleaning the water bottle of your hamster is a pretty easy and simple process, but it’s essential to clean it thoroughly.

Firstly, empty the water bottle if it has some water and rinse the water with clean water thoroughly.

Usually, the inside of the bottle is the most challenging part to clean. In this case, you can use a hand brush or towel and wrap it around a fork or something like that and rub it inside systematically.

You don’t have to use any soap or liquid dishwasher to clean the water bottle. Just use tap water and rinse it thoroughly.

However, if you are using anything soapy to wash the water bottle, you must be careful that you rinse the bottle several times thoroughly to remove the traces of the soap; otherwise, it could be consumed by your hamster and make them sick.

Can Hamster Drink Cold Or Hot Water?

Not really!

Hamsters shouldn’t drink hot or cold water. In fact, a hamster seems to like room temperature water the most.

In the wild, hamsters drink water from various sources like rivers, ponds, etc., and the water in there is constantly flowing, and the water temperature is neither so hot nor cold.

Hot or cold water is not recommended for hamsters as it may cause several issues like hot water could burn their inside or outside the mouth, and cold water could make your hamster sick.

Therefore, room temperature water is highly suitable for hamsters.

Is Tap Water Or Bottled Water Better For Hamsters?

Bottled water is best, without a doubt, but that’s doesn’t mean tap water is not suitable for a hamster.

Bottled water goes with many filtration and distillation procedures, which removes most of the harmful minerals from water and makes it safe for you and your hamster.

However, if tap water is cleaned and drinkable in your place and safe for you, it won’t harm your hamster either.

But some states in the US have a terrible reputation for contaminated tap water. In that case, you should opt for bottled or filtered water, but it’s costlier than tap water.

Therefore, it depends on where you live and the tap water condition, and if the tap water is clean and drinkable, you can offer it to your little pet. Also, it will be light in your pocket.

Is Filtered Water OK For Hamsters?

Yes, hamsters can drink filtered water.

In fact, a hamster can drink any water as long as it’s clean and hygienic. However, the water you have chosen should have low minerals and not contaminate.

This means filtered water is best for your hamster. 

However, in some places, tap water is cleaned enough and drinkable. In this case, you do not have to purchase filtered or bottled water, and tap water is safe for hamsters.

How Long Can Hamster Go Without Water?

Hamsters are originated in a deserted region, and it’s usually hot and dry there, so hamsters do not require a lot of water.

However, water is essential for hamsters, and their health could suffer if they do not drink water for about 24 hours or so.

If your hamster is drinking no water or less water, it could lead to dehydration, organ failure, and other severe life-threatening complications.

Their water should be changed daily, and if you are thinking of going out for a few days, you must ask someone trustable to take care of your hamster in your absence.

Hamsters should have excess to water and food all the time, and if your hamster is not drinking or drinking less, you should take your hamster to a vet, and he will diagnose and tell you the reason.

How To Tell If A Hamster Is Dehydrated?

While hamsters are from dry and hot climates, they still need a small amount of water every day.

Usually, hamsters cannot stay alive more than two or three days without water and may experience dehydration within 24 hours, which is highly dangerous and could be lethal sometimes.

Hence, your hamster must have excess to water all the time. 

Tired behavior, sunken eyes, breathing issues, weakness, or loosened skin is sign of dehydration among hamsters.

However, you can check whether your hamster is dehydrated or not by gently pinching the loose skin of the neck. 

If the skin instantly pulls back into the position, it means your hamster is fine, but if the skin slowly falls back to its position, it’s a sign of dehydration, and tight skin is a sign of a hydrated and healthy hamster. 

If you are concerned that your hamster is dehydrated, you should immediately change and refill the water bottle, and if they are not drinking sufficient water, I advise you to seek a vet.

Final Thoughts

To conclude, hamsters can drink tap water. They are originally desert species, and it’s usually hot and dry there, and they do not need a lot of water. 

Still, water is crucial for their survival, and they need about 10ml to 30ml of water every day. So, the foremost concern of an owner should be to provide your hamster with fresh and clean water. 

Bottled water is safe for hamsters, but if the tap water in your place is cleaned and drinkable, then you can offer it to your pet fearlessly.

Make sure your hamster is well-hydrated and healthy. But if your hamster is drinking less water or showing any sign of dehydration, you should seek advice from an expert vet.

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