HAMSTER FIRST AID KIT

You have a first aid kit for you in your house or in your car, right? Well, your hamster deserves one too. Being so small, the hamster needs special attention and care.
It is best to have the first kit always prepared and handy just in case. Make sure that everyone in the house knows where it is and how to properly treat minor wounds.

hamster first aid kit

A well prepared and designed first aid kit should contain :

Antibiotic ointments and powder
Apply them on the wound  after it’s thoroughly clean. You should only use what the vet has recommended you and not improvise because hamsters are allergic to most of the medical treatment we have and use.

Antihistamine lotion
If you keep your hamster in a room where are opened windows or just if your hamster’s luck runs out and encounters with a bee or any other kind of insect, the antihistamine lotion is his lucky charm. You have to double check before you apply the lotion that the stinger is removed from your little hamster wound.

Antiseptic lotion
You have a crazy hamster that wonder’s around in the cage, buries everything and plays with his toys till you get tired from all of that commotion? Well, we all have such a hamster and is best to have an antiseptic lotion near the hamster’s cage to use it to treat wounds, cuts and scrapes that could occur from his “dangerous ” run  around.

Bandages and first aid tape
You can use them on smaller wounds, cuts or scrapes. Sometimes, you can use bandages to splint injured limbs, but only after you make sure that the injury is minor. Otherwise, medical treatment must be sought. Check the hamster periodically to see if he is chewing off the bandages and if so, replace it to prevent him from licking his wound.

BeneBac,Probios or LactoBac
These medicines replace all the beneficial bacteria that are killed when your hamsters is on antibiotics or he simply has a lack of these bacterias. Never use them without consulting your hamsters’ veterinarian.

Cotton balls and swabs
They are ideal for cleaning wounds and applying all kinds of ointments and lotions.

Disinfectant
A mild disinfectant such as Hydrogen Peroxide (3%) is of great help when your hamster’s wound needs to be disinfected. This disinfectant can be used in small amounts twice a day. Even you can use it to wash your hands after cleaning your hamster wound or just after you’ve handled any kind of injured animal. Other disinfectant recommended by veterinarians are Betadine or Povidone.

Feeding syringes
Are useful to feed hamsters that won’t eat or sick hamsters that can not eat by themselves. It’s appropriate for administrating oral antibiotics – make sure you use a syringe from the vet because the quantity of antibiotics administered is very important. As you know they come in various sizes so you can get the ones that are best for your hamster’s needs. If you dislike syringes you can use an eye dropper as a more fun alternative.

Gram scale
You are very careful with your weight, right? Hamsters need to have constant weight in order to be healthy and happy. Check your hamster’s weight as often as you can to make sure he is eating properly! This method is very useful especially when you have more hamsters in a cage to see if there are bullies in there, stealing the food from other hamsters.

Latex gloves
You can never be to careful when dealing with wounds. A pair of latex gloves are ideal to protect yourself and your hamster when cleaning and bandaging a wound. You can buy them from the drugstore, supermarket or you could just kindly ask the vet for a pair.

Magnifying glass
Hamsters are all so tiny and special care require special “devices”. the magnifying glass is one of them. You check your hamster fur with it to see if there are any parasites or any other small wounds, check his ears and many other funny and small tasks that need to be completed to ensure your hamster’s health.

Nail clipper and metal nail filer
Both for you and your hamster. You can cut your nails to prevent accidents during playtime. Also, the hamster’s nails need to be cut if he doesn’t naturally wear them off to the right size. Still, the hamster should have a designated nail clipper and metal nail file, for personal use only.

Olive oil / cod liver oil
Useful when treating mild constipation. You can administer 1 or 2 drops.

Rectal thermometer
This is a tricky one. Not buying the thermometer, but actually getting to use it because the hamster will use all his tricks to escape. A healthy hamster’s rectal temperature should be around 36.2- 37.5 °C (97.16 – 99.5 °F).

Salt
You can use it to make a home remedy for your hamster: prepare a solution made with 2 table spoon of table salt and one pint water. It will be very useful to wash wounds and prevent infection.

Scissors
When you prepare the first aid kit for your hamster make sure that you have the right scissors: it has to be the one with round edges to prevent any accident when using it on your hamster. The scissors has many purposes: cutting the fur from around the wound, removes knotted fur or cut pieces of bandages.

Small animal heating pad
If you are afraid that it might be cold in the room where you keep your hamster, a heated pad will solve the problem. They are “chew proof” and the temperature is controlled so your hamster will not end up with burned tummy. A great alternative is a heat lamp. Put the hamster cage underneath it and he will get all the warm weather he needs.

Sodium Bicarbonate
When applied on a wet compress it helps reduce swelling.

Styptic powder
I find this quite handy especially when I observe a scratch on my hamster or when I accidentally cut his nails too short, because it stops bleeding.

Surgical gauze
It is used to clean and also cover wounds, cuts and scrapes and stop bleeding.

Towels, both paper and cloth
Very useful when you need to wipe your hamster or even his cage. If you use a bowl instead a hamster water bottle, you will have to use the towels more often because your hamster might end up very wet after a short run in the cage.

Tweezers
I haven’t needed mine, but you never know what your hamster is up to so you should be prepared just in case.

Unflavored Pedialyte
This solution that is specifically designed to replace fluids and minerals (electrolytes) that are lost when your hamster has diarrhea with or without vomiting. Dilute 50% (1/2 Pedialyte and 1/2 water) and administer it by dropper/syringe or in the water bottle (in case that your hamster drinks voluntarily).

Vet’s name, address and phone
Even if hamsters are among the most familiar pets, there are few vets that treat them. It’s very important to find one before your hamster really needs it -sometimes it’s bets to find a vet even before you actually buy the hamster.

Wire cutter
You might laugh, but there are a lot of cases of hamsters that got stuck between the bars of their cage. This tool is handy in such cases.

You can always add more products to the first aid kit, depending on your hamster needs and health condition. Even if you have the best first aid kit, I do hope you will need it rarely!

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