Hamsters are one of the most popular small rodents to keep as pets and since they are so adorable, they are not so intimidating to kids. Equally, unlike larger pets such as dogs and cats they do not require outdoor access, nor do they need to be taken for a walk or require as much care as larger animals.
However, just because they don’t require much care and space as larger animals does not mean they require zero maintenance. In fact, owning a pet hamster requires you to be aware of their specific requirements, including their dietary, health, home, and environmental needs.
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The best hamster cage is one of the most important things to consider for your pet hamster, not just any cage will suffice. The best hamster cage type you require will largely depend on the species of hamster you own and how many, for instance, most hamsters do well in mesh cages. The dwarf hamster, on the other hand, can squeeze through tiny spaces and needs a tank to prevent them escaping.
Other important considerations when deciding on the best hamster cage includes the enclosure size, ease of cleaning, exercise, ventilation, and stimulation apparatus (toys) as well as overall quality and design. With these factors in mind, we have analyzed some of the best hamster cages and enclosures for a variety of circumstances suitable for various hamster breeds and for owners of hamster pairs.
Best Hamster Cage for Dwarf Hamsters & Small Breeds
IRIS Hamster Cage
This is one fo the best hamster cage choices for small breeds such as the Robo dwarf hamster and other types of dwarf species. The cage is made mostly of plastic, so there is little chance of them escaping. The sides are made of a tight mesh material, tight enough that any small hamster breed would struggle to fit through, but at the same time, providing ample ventilation and airflow throughout the enclosure. This is a good compromise to the complete plastic or glass tanks people recommend, which often provide inadequate breathability.
The interior of the cage also offers a great environment for one or two hamsters to live. The three levels ensure your hamster will have a lot of room to explore, climb and exercise, and the built-in nesting box makes the perfect sleeping space or just somewhere to get peace and quiet. The cage also comes equipped with other essentials including a detachable water bottle and food dish meaning you don’t have to worry about shopping around for the “perfect fit” or having to make any additional purchases. The cage also comes with a built-in exercise wheel and essential for any rodent cage, which ensures they maintain a healthy weight and level of fitness.
Another big advantage of this cage is how easy it is to clean. You don’t have to worry about having to squeeze your hands into hard to reach places or dealing with complicates clasps. All you have to do snap open the side locks and the bottom tray is then easily removed and debris discarded into the trash.
Ferplast Hamster Cage
Yet another best hamster cage option for small hamsters including the Roborovskis (Robo Dwarf Hamster), as well as Chinese hamsters and Roborovski hamsters, is the Ferplast hamster cage. This cage is mostly composed of a plastic material, meaning there’s no risk of them squeezing in between any bars, a very common occurrence in mesh cages, which tend to be more suitable for larger breeds. The only area that is not plastic is the mesh wire roof, however, the space between the bars is incredibly small and being on the roof, there is a less likelihood that they will come into contact with each other.
Since security is a common issue with small hamsters, plastic cages like this one are preferred, yet having some mesh is a healthy compromise as it provides adequate ventilation, which is definitely required when the temperature increases or if you live in a warm to hot climate.
The cage offers easy viewing of your pet and features a tube that spans the exterior, allowing your hamster to explore and interact with the external environment. There’s also a built-in exercise wheel to encourage play, exercise, and stimulation, essential for their health and well-being.
This cage is the perfect starter kit and comes with feeding bowl, nesting box for sleep and a feeding bowl. What makes this cage stand out are the high-quality durable design and the ability to add additional modular habitats, providing your pet with more space to explore and play, including a mini-circus. The base is easily removed by snapping open the clasps, which makes cleaning convenient and easy.
Best Hamster Cage for Syrian Hamsters & Large Breeds
Lixit Savic Hamster Cage
Syrian hamsters and other large breeds require substantial floor space to explore, navigate and keep active, so this cage is ideal. At over 31 inches in length, it provides plenty of room for Syrian hamsters and lots of individual areas to explore including multiple platforms, sheltered areas and a tube that extends over the top of the cage. There is also a running wheel included; all of these are great for hamsters that can be incredibly active at times.
The bar spacing is also small enough to keep your hamster safe and secure and prevent them from trying to escape and the plastic bottom is sturdy and durable. This also ensures your hamster has great ventilation, which they also have the tubes thanks to the breathing holes – an advantage and rarity amongst the many cages available.
The cage comes equipped with a variety of accessories including water bottle, feeding bowl and uniquely – a potty. This is an attempt to encourage your hamster to have a designated area to go to the toilet. There also 3 “houses” in total, two smaller with the cages, as well as the larger green one on top, this gives the opportunity to give your fur baby lots of bedding options and variety.
The cage has multiple door openings, which are large enough to fit your arm right in so you can gain access to the interior of the cage or your hamster with ease. The base of the cage is also removable, which makes the cleaning process so much easier. There’s also a carrying handle which makes moving the cage around much easier than having to grip both ends and bear the weight and balance the cage with your body.
Prevue Hamster Cage
This is another large cage with lots of floor space, which is perfect for highly active and playful hamster breeds, specifically larger breeds such as the Syrian and Russians. The bottom level is 608 sq inches and the platform is around 210 sq inches, which is more than enough room for your hamster and will ensure they don’t get stressed.
This cage is much more substantial than the typical “hamster” cages you find in pet stores, it has two main components a mesh cage on top and a robust and deep plastic base, both of which ensure your little friend is safe, comfortable and secure.
The platform and large floor area also give you a lot of room to customize the cage for your pet. You can easily add hamster accessories, toys and create hideouts in a variety of areas, with the area below the ramp being a particularly great area to make private for your hamster if they ever want to hide or have some peace and quiet from all the attention.
The cage features two doors, one at the top and one on the side, along with two handles that make transporting and balancing the cage easier. Like other cages, the base is removable, making cleaning and removing waste straightforward.
Pico XL Hamster Cage
This large and spacious cage is the perfect environment for larger hamster breeds such as the Syrian hamster and Russian hamsters. With multiple levels, your hamster will have more than enough room to explore, play and exercise. The cage is also equipped with a relatively large sized running wheel, sturdy enough to take the weight of a chunky hamster and great for encouraging exercise.
The cage itself is made from mesh wires that will withstand any biting and gnawing from your hamster and there is very little chance they will be able to squeeze through the bars. Cage designs like this are preferred to tanks since they allow maximum air-flow and ventilation and also allow you to see your hamster from all angles.
Lastly, this cage is extremely easy to keep clean and tidy; the bottom of the tray is fastened onto the rest of the cage with clasps. When the cage is ready to be emptied, these can easily be unfastened and the contents dumped into the trash. The cage also comes with all the essentials such as nesting box, feeding bowl, and water bottle, making it ready to house your hamster from day one.
Choosing The Best Hamster Cage
There are a variety of different cages available for hamsters, but they are not all made equally. Ultimately you will need to think about the type of hamster you have as well as other factors such as the cage size, durability, portability, safety, and ease of cleaning. Here we will outline some of the most important factors to consider when deciding on the best hamster cage:
What size Cage does a Hamster Need?
Whatever type of hamster you have, one thing remains true, the cage needs to be large enough for them to run and play. The amount of floor space required is at least 20 inches x by 11 inches, it should also be at least 12 inches in height, but of course the bigger the better.
In order for your hamster to remain healthy and content, the air-flow into the cage is of vital importance. Inadequate ventilation can impact their ability to regulate their body temperature and can create a heat trap in warm weather. In addition, urine left on the floor can build up and without any air to re-circulate it can potentially harm your hamster’s airway.
For these reasons, your hamster will be most comfortable in a wire mesh cage. These allow maximum air-flow through the spaces between the bars, ensuring the enclosure is well ventilated.
Ease of Cleaning
A hamster cage needs to be cleaned on a regular basis, at least once each week, therefore, you want a cage that is going to be simple and straightforward to clean. The best hamster cage for most is normally the easiest type of cage to clean. Wire mesh cages with a plastic base suit most people well. All you have to do is unclip the bottom and they lift apart. The simple rule is that the more complicated a cage, the more difficult it will be to clean, therefore, bear this in mind during the choosing process.
Hamsters are escape artists and can squeeze their tiny bodies through the smallest of spaces. This isn’t so much of an issue with Teddy bear hamsters and larger breeds, but the space between the bars in dwarf hamster cages should not exceed 1/4 inch. For this reason, dwarf hamster cages are few and far between, yet there are some that are suitable. Also, ensure the doors fasten well and are difficult to open as rodents will certainly give it a go!
The best hamster cage options can be made from a variety of materials including glass, wood, and metal. Wood should be avoided as it soaks up urine and fast becomes dirty and unhygienic. Wire mesh cages made from metal are superior since they allow maximum airflow and are well-protected against chewing and biting.
However, some hamsters will manage to chew through metal wires, which is why you should carefully monitor the condition of your cage on a regular basis. For this reason, glass tanks can offer an extra level of security, yet are inferior since they don’t have as much ventilation and air-flow.
What Cage does a Dwarf Hamster Need?
Dwarf hamsters just like Chinese hamsters are one of the smaller types of hamster and so it’s important to house them in a cage they are secure in and which they can not escape from. Since these hamsters can squeeze through tiny spaces many people recommend tanks and glass aquariums since they have no spaces for the hamsters to escape. However, many people think these offer poor ventilation and breathability, which is why people prefer to buy the best hamster cage models that are specially made for dwarf hamsters.
Cages suitable for dwarf hamsters typically have a large proportion of the enclosure made of plastic. While smaller components are composed of mesh wire with very small spaces between the bars that they are very unlikely to fit through. The advantage of this wire and plastic hybrid is that they provide superior air-flow into the cage, which is a much healthier environment for any rodent to live in.
- Limit Dwarves Fighting
Unlike Syrian hamsters, dwarf hamsters can live alone or in pairs, however, littermates or a mother and child pair is usually the only pairs that work well. Regardless, it is always possible for hamsters to have a squabble from time to time, so it’s important to provide with a cage with sufficient space. If the cage is too small it can result in aggression as they compete for the territory.
In addition, it’s a food idea to double up on accessories, this including running wheels, food bowls, and beds. Giving your hamsters their own items and access can prevent squabbling and facilitate good, healthy relationships.
What Cage does a Syrian Hamster Need?
Just like all hamsters, Syrian hamsters (also called Teddy Bear hamsters) require cages with a substantial floor space, however, since they are larger this is a much more important factor to consider.
The advantage of Syrians is that you don’t need to be as worried about the design of the cage since they are less likely to be able to squeeze through some of the mesh wires dwarfs find easy. For this reason, there are many more cages available for these hamsters and the majority are full mesh cages with plastic bases.
- Tube Size Suitability
Since hamsters such as the Syrian are larger, they will require larger tubes and tunnels. Many people purchase cages with tubes only to discover their hamster can’t even fit into them! Therefore, always double check large hamsters can fit through the tubes and other cage accessories easily.