How Long Before You Can Give a Baby Hamster Away?

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Young hamsters can become stressed if they are handled innapropriately.
Young hamsters can become stressed if they are handled innapropriately. (Image: Creatas Images/Creatas/Getty Images)

Baby hamsters mature into adults very quickly, but that does not mean you can rush their development. A baby hamster who is taken away from his mother and littermates before he is ready and has not been properly weaned may suffer from health problems or even die. It is important that you understand your hamster's needs before you decide to give one of the babies away.

Baby Hamster Development

Baby hamsters are born hairless and blind. They are immobile and completely rely on their mother for all of their needs during the first week of their lives. When your baby hamsters are a week old they will develop hair and teeth. When the babies are 2 weeks old they open their eyes, become mobile and begin to eat foods other than their mother's milk, though they are still nursing. By 3 weeks old your baby hamsters should have the appearance of miniature adult hamsters and be eating more solid foods.

Syrian Hamsters

Syrian hamsters nurse their pups until they are between 26 and 28 days old. After that, the hamsters should be completely weaned and eating solid foods on their own. Baby Syrian hamsters should be completely weaned and separated from the mother by 4 weeks of age. Baby hamsters can be taken away from their mothers and given to their new homes when they are completely weaned from their mothers and eating solid food. You can give away a baby Syrian hamster when he is 4 weeks old and eating and drinking on his own.

Dwarf Hamsters

Dwarf hamsters wean their babies even earlier than Syrian hamsters. Your dwarf hamster babies are normally completely weaned by the time they are 3 weeks old. You can give away a baby dwarf hamster when he is between 3 and 4 weeks old and eating and drinking on his own.

Other Considerations

After your litter of hamsters is born, you will need to immediately remove the male/father hamster from the environment if you have not already done so. The mother hamster can immediately be reimpregnated after birth and will give birth to a second litter in as little as three weeks. Fully weaned baby hamsters need to be separated into groups of boys and girls when they are between 3 1/2 and 5 weeks old because they reach sexual maturity at this age.

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