Hamsters can swim, but being in water could be a stressful experience for your hamster, which is not good for their mental health.
Getting wet is not good for a hamster. Water removes the natural oil from the skin of your hamster, leaving their skin dry and itchy which will lead to rashes and other skin conditions.
And staying long in the water, especially in cold water, could be risky as they may catch a cold, develop acute pneumonia, or other illnesses.
In this article, we will look at why hamsters shouldn’t swim, what happens if your hamster gets wet and how you can clean them without a bath.
Table of Contents
Can Hamsters Swim?
Technically, hamsters can swim or float on water, but they don’t necessarily have to because they don’t really like it.
Hamsters are originated from dry and hot climates and rarely encountered large bodies of water to swim.
However, when hamster gets into the water accidentally, they can definitely swim back to land but being in water could be stressful for your hamster, and it could mess with their mental health as well.
Thus, if your hamster falls into the water accidentally, take them out immediately and pat them dry as they have been in water or getting wet.
And if you are thinking of bathing your little bud in a bathtub or want to get purchase a pint-sized pool for them, then it’s a big no!
Do Hamsters Like Water?
There is no doubt that hamsters can swim, but it doesn’t mean they enjoy doing so.
Hamsters live in a hot and dry climate and barely encounter large bodies of water to swim in.
But if they fall down into the water, they will quickly swim back to land as soon as possible; they don’t usually like to get wet.
However, some breeds of hamsters might enjoy swimming as a part of their exercise.
It’s really tough to tell whether your hamster enjoys swimming or not, but if your pet is looking stressed, swimming out of the water or panicking, immediately take them out of the water just to be on the safe side!
Lastly, don’t put your hamster into water or force them to swim as it could be stressful for your little buddy, weakening their immunity. And if the water is cold, your hamster could have pneumonia and other diseases.
Can Hamsters Get Wet?
No, hamsters shouldn’t get wet.
Hamsters are from a hot and dry climate, and getting wet could cause mental distress or even shock, which is highly dangerous.
A wet hamster can undergo emotional distress or anxiety, weakening its immunity causing a long-term effect.
If the water is freezing, it can easily sick your hamster, and they could catch a cold or pneumonia due to cold water.
Risks When Your Hamster Gets Wet
Hamsters do not like being in water or getting wet. So, if your hamster gets wet by chance, it could be risky, or it even proves to be fatal.
Forcing them to take a bath or swim could cause them stress; anxiety, or they might even get drowned.
Here are the risks that are possible when your hamster gets wet:
- Being in water could be a stressful experience for your hamster. This may develop unnecessary biting behavior.
- Water exposure could lead to “wet tail,” a rare but fatal disease.
- Water will wash off the hamster’s natural oil, which means their body will no longer trap the heat.
- If the hamster falls into cold water, the risk is relatively high that he may catch cold or acute pneumonia.
- Lastly, being in water could lead to “hypothermia.” This is when they can’t afford to regulate their body temperature.
What Should You Do When Your Hamster Gets Wet?
Hamsters are dry region animals, and they do not like to get wet. In fact, getting wet could be risky for your hamster, and it could cause stress, pneumonia and other diseases.
So, if accidentally your hamster fells into the water or gets wet; immediately follow the steps:
- Take a soft and dry towel and pat dry your hamster to remove the excess water.
- You can use a hairdryer (in a cool setting) to dry out their fur from about half a meter away from your hamster.
- Keep your hamster warm until its fur is dry.
- Place them into their cage and let them feel comfortable in the burrows.
- Monitor your hamster and look for signs of diseases like sneezing, wet tail, pneumonia or diarrhea.
- If you notice any of the above symptoms, immediately seek medical help.
How Can I Bathe My Hamster?
Usually, hamsters do not need to bathe; they are experts in cleaning and grooming themselves with their saliva.
They use their tongue to clean the dirt and parasites from their entire body, similar to cats.
However, sometimes they get too dirty, and you might think of helping your little bud. In this case, don’t wash your hamster with water, and do this instead.
1. Give Them A Sand Bath
While hamster cleans themselves, a sand bath would help if they are filthy.
You can do this by purchasing a sandbox or a tiny bowl, filling it with reptile sand or any other suitable sand (make sure it’s hamster friendly), and then placing it in their cage.
Hamster roll in and out in the sand, and it will remove most of the dirt naturally, and once they are neat and clean, you can take back the sandbox or bowl from their cage.
2. Clean With Dry Soft, Clothe or Towel
Another way to clean your hamster is by gently wiping your hamster with a soft and dry towel.
Be careful while rubbing your hamster. be gentle and rub him in the direction of its fur and not in the opposite direction; otherwise, it might cause irritation and lose its hair.
3. Bath if Absolutely Necessary
Hamsters are capable of cleaning themselves efficiently without water and do not really need a bath.
Bathing is not recommended for hamsters as it removes the natural oil from their coat essential for them.
However, consider bathing your hamster only if they cannot groom themselves due to injury, illness, or when something dangerous or toxic is attached to their coat which could be harmful or life-threatening.
Bathing won’t be life-threatening, but they might get sick after a bath so prepare to take them to a vet afterwards.
Can Hamsters Swim In A Bathtub?
No, you should never let your hamster swim in a bathtub.
A bathtub might look small for us, but it’s definitely not for a hamster. The corner of a bathtub is slippery, and if your hamster accidentally falls into the water, the depth of water can mentally shock your hamster.
However, some hamsters may like to swim, but the swimming practice should be done under the supervision of an expert trainer else, it may harm your hamster mentally and physically.
Therefore, do not put your hamster in a bathtub for swimming or even bathing; they self-clean themselves and do not really need a bath.
Can Hamsters Drown In Water?
While hamsters are great swimmers, there are possibilities that a hamster might drown if the water is too deep and your hamster is tired, hurt or injured and unable to swim any further.
So, do not, I repeat, do not put your hamster in water. However, if your hamster falls down into water accidentally and you see them struggling, immediately scoop them out and dry them off.
Swimming or getting wet is not suitable for hamsters, and they might get sick after getting wet so, take them to a vet immediately.
While hamsters can swim, it could be a stressful and challenging activity for your hamster, which could badly affect their mental health.
Hamsters don’t usually encounter large bodies of water to swim in, so; they don’t like it.
So, it’s best to avoid putting them into the water. However, if you are concerned about their cleanness or hygiene, you can offer them a sand bath which is absolutely safe for them.
I hope you got what you have been looking for, and if you have other queries, you can write us down in the comment box.
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