Why Do Hamsters Eat Their Babies?

Last Updated on December 22, 2020 by Woody Pet

Why do hamsters eat their babies?

Hamsters are known to be cute, tiny creatures that are happy and enjoy their day by spinning on a wheel or running through a cage.

But these are really benefits if you keep these hairy pets, but there are also moments of animal instinct that are slightly different from their usual behavior.

If you notice that one of the little baby hamsters is missing, it means that the mother ate it, and this behavior of hers for you would be a little unusual and scary. If you read this you will surely wonder if this is a really horror story!

How and in what way is it possible for a mother to eat her children! Yes, hamsters eat their children, and it’s really not nice to watch and it really sounds like some kind of horror story. It’s a cruel story when we hear about hamsters eating their babies.

But there are ways to save babies, but you also need to be careful. You can not save them anyway, but there are many reasons why mothers do it.

If you have ever witnessed this, and you do not know why it is so or what explanation is behind it, you should read this text and understand why it is so. You also need to understand how you can save your babies.

Why Do Hamsters Eat Their Babies

Normal Hamster Nesting Behavior

After the reproductive act, female hamsters prepare for the expectation of new babies. The female hamster is three weeks pregnant, and can bring into this world as many as 19 babies, which can appear in the cage without you knowing that she was pregnant.

That is, they are so small, like a fingernail, that you will not be aware that she gave birth, and most often during the evening.

The female hamster will use a soft material, such as a blanket, in which she will give birth, ie regardless of what she finds in the cage as a warm place for her little ones.

Normal Hamster Diet

You should expect your hamster to eat a lot more when they are pregnant or caring for their babies, ie they are mammals so little babies need to be next to their mother to suckle.

Except that they will need to eat more, their diet remains the same as before. Seeds, some fruits and vegetables and of course the pellets inside the cage. Of course, this includes the fresh water needed in the cage.

Do father hamsters eat their babies?

Yes, father hamsters eat their babies, because they want to get the other female attention.

Why Do Hamsters Eat Their Babies? A few reasons

If you have really prepared your hamster for birth, that is, you have given him more food while he was pregnant or while caring for his babies, but it is also surprising that the hamster eats his babies.

But while food shortages are a major cause of this anomaly, there are several other reasons we will address that you need to address.

Anyone who has carried a baby and given birth knows the pain of youth and the stress that comes at that time. The time of pregnancy, the birth of young people, caring for them, especially for a few babies, is a great stress and even for the hamster.

Therefore, if the hamster feels stressed, then it makes sense to eat his babies, through which he will get rid of stress.

Therefore, this can happen especially to young mothers or if they are upset during the day, because from her perspective young people are in danger.

It is very normal in the wild for mothers to protect their young, the same goes for hamsters. But when they are scared, they manifest their emotion differently, and that is manifested by killing their young.

Therefore, there are many indications of their anger and fear, through loud music from the room to a natural instinct.

The mother hamster spends a long time cleaning and caring for their young. The smell of young people is known to the mother, but if a new smell like that of humans can be found in young people, the hamster is confused that they are other babies.

Therefore, he can kill the baby who smells of someone else, realizing that he is an impostor, that is, not his.

Also, the most obvious reason why the mother eats the little ones is that there is not enough food.

She needs a lot more food during that period, because she lost a lot when she was carrying them, and she also needs it in the process of breastfeeding. Food is necessary, they are guided by natural instinct, and it is primarily food.

If she has no food, her fear is that she will be able to raise all the babies, so she kills a few in order to feed the others. Also, if the mother does not feel safe in the cage or if she thinks she is small, she decides to eat the babies.

The mother does all this for the good of the other babies, in order to allow others to survive, even though it seems like a very ruthless and crazy act to us. However, it is for their survival. Next time when you hear about hamsters eating their babies, don’t be surprised! 

Why Do Hamsters Eat Their Babies? How to prevent?

Of course, there are ways to intervene in rescuing small babies. It is most practical to keep the silence in the room, so that the hamster will not have additional stress and will be relaxed in caring for his little ones.

The same goes for keeping children away from the hamster, ie not playing with it, and the same goes for you.

Leave the mother alone! If you are hanging out with friends in that room, move the cage, also if you are playing music!

Check the hamster regularly for its condition, check the babies but do not touch them, so as not to give them your scent. Especially in the first week, do not touch them, but regularly put food in the cage.

If your hamster has enough food, he will not reach for his babies. These are the answers and advices regarding “How to prevent hamsters from eating their babies”.


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