If we humans have them, why shouldn’t the hamster have them as well? Symptoms like sneezing, runny nose, watery eyes, irritated stomach, wheezing, red feet, hair loss, skin irritation, persistent and frequent itching or dry skin are all signs that your hamster developed an allergy.
Hamsters might develop allergies to food, bedding products or some household items.
1. Food allergy
Hamsters are very sensible to diet changes. Every new type of food should be introduced into the hamster’s diet step by step. It’s not safe or neither healthy to stuff your hamster with packs of new vegetables and fruits every day.
The hamster must get used to the food and be able to digest it properly. In case not, he will most likely have an allergy or even worse, could be suffering from wet tail. If your hamster was allergy free before you started to feed him with a specific food item, remove that food from his diet because he doesn’t tolerate it.
You have no idea at what food your hamster is allergic? In this case put your hamster on dry food only until you figure at what food is he allergic. You do that by giving him one vegetable or fruit at a time and see how he reacts. If he starts the sneezing and other symptoms again, than that food must go.
2. Bedding Allergy
Are very common and due to the hamster’s respiratory sensibility. I would be sneezing and have runny nose if I was kept in a cage full of dust (I imagine you would feel the same). If you have a hunch that the bedding is the one causing the allergy replace it with tissue or toilet paper and see what happens. If your hamster gets rid of the allergy, you have to get rid of something too…the bedding product.
When you buy your hamster supplies, make sure you avoid cedar and pine shavings. Some studies show that they have a great impact both in hamsters allergies and respiratory diseases. Great alternatives to cedar and pine shavings are wood pulp fiber, aspen, eco-straw pellets, recycled newspapers and much more.
3. Household items allergy
Sometimes hamsters develop allergy to products we use, like aerosols, spray furniture polish, cigarette smoke, perfumes, air fresheners or any products we use for our hygiene or for home decoration. The only solution to this is the quickly removal of the allergen.
In some cases, hamsters develop severe allergies from various reasons: the allergen was to strong, you found about the problem when it was already too late, the hamster was too small and he couldn’t fight it etc. If your hamsters has problems breathing or has severe allergy, you have to take it to vet as soon as you can to avoid any future complications.
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