Cohabitating hamsters is complex because most hamster species would rather live alone as they do in the wild. Nonetheless, there are still some hamster species that can live together.
But can you keep a teddy bear hamster and a dwarf hamster together? Let us find out.
Can a teddy bear hamster live with a dwarf hamster?
Teddy bear hamsters and dwarf hamsters cannot live together.
In general, keeping two hamsters of different species in the same cage is problematic. Teddy bear hamsters are strictly territorial, even to members of their own species. So, making them live with hamsters from another species would most likely be even worse.
You may be wondering what will happen if you keep these two hamster species together. Well, we answer some of your lingering questions in the rest of this article.
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Can a Teddy Bear Hamster Live With a Dwarf Hamster?
You shouldn’t make a dwarf hamster live with a teddy bear hamster. Whether in captivity or the wild, teddy bear hamsters prefer to live alone.
Generally, they don’t even live peacefully with members of their own species. So, making them live with dwarf hamsters—a group of different species—may just be disastrous.
With dwarf hamsters, things are slightly different, yet very similar to teddy bear hamsters.
Some dwarf hamsters, like Campbell’s Dwarf Hamster and Hybrid Winter White Hamsters, can live with members of their own species. But the chances of successful cohabitation with members of other species (such as teddy bear hamsters) are very slim.
Will They Fight?
For sure, teddy bear hamsters and dwarf hamsters will fight if they are placed together.
Typically, teddy bear hamsters will fight other teddy bear hamsters if they live together. So, you can imagine what will happen if they live with hamsters from a different species.
Unfortunately, if teddy bear hamsters fight with dwarf hamsters, the dwarf hamsters are more likely to suffer. There is a significant size difference between these hamster types, and it does not favor dwarf hamsters.
Teddy bear hamsters are about 5 to 7 inches long, and they weigh 4 ounces on average. On the other hand, dwarf hamsters weigh around 0.7 to 1.6 ounces and are 2 to 4 inches long.
Can They Mate?
Teddy bear hamsters and dwarf hamsters cannot mate.
One reason for this is that these hamsters are different species. When animals do not belong to the same species, the chance of successful breeding between them drops.
They also do not belong to the same genus, so the likelihood drops further, and it keeps becoming slimmer as you go up the taxonomy.
Besides these differences, the size difference between teddy bear and dwarf hamsters makes mating unlikely.
Teddy bear hamsters are about 3 to 6 times the size of dwarf hamsters. So, if male teddy bear hamsters were to mate with female dwarf hamsters, the dwarf hamsters may get injured in the process.
On the flip side, if female teddy bear hamsters mate with male dwarf hamsters, the dwarf hamster may still get injured. Female hamsters are typically aggressive during mating. So, if the female teddy bear hamster were to become hostile, the smaller-sized male dwarf hamster may get injured.
5 Tips for Housing Multiple Dwarf Hamsters
As we have already emphasized, you cannot house a teddy bear hamster with a dwarf hamster. But if you get a separate cage for each one, you can keep both as pets.
Dwarf hamsters of the following species can live together:
- Winter White Hamsters
- Roborovski Hamsters
- Campbell’s Russian Dwarf Hamsters
However, you must meet some conditions for these dwarf hamster species to live together successfully. We explain some of these conditions in the following tips:
1. Introduce Them Very Early
Having hamsters from the same litter is ideal since they are familiar with each other. However, if you cannot get sibling hamsters, you can get very young hamsters and introduce them to each other.
Introducing the hamsters to each other before they are 7 to 8 weeks old is most ideal. Beyond this age, hamsters are less likely to tolerate the introduction of another hamster.
2. Provide Enough Space
The dwarf hamster species stated above are generally open to cohabitation. However, cramping them up in a limited space will brew conflicts.
So, to ensure that the hamsters get along, provide enough space and resources. Ensure the cage is big enough for all the hamsters. Dwarf hamsters need at least 450 square inches of space per hamster. So, factor this into your calculation while building or buying the cage.
Also, provide enough food bowls, wheels, water bottles, chews, and food items for each hamster. With sufficient space and resources, the hamsters are unlikely to face off.
3. Confirm the Gender of the Hamsters
Hamsters mature pretty quickly. So, if you put male hamsters and female hamsters together, they will surely give you little hamster babies. But this could be a problem if you do not intend to breed hamsters.
Female hamsters get pretty aggressive and territorial after birth. They may attack the other hamsters and even their own babies. So, if you are not prepared for a litter, a hetero pairing could leave you with dead hamsters.
Keeping same-sex hamsters is better since there are lower chances of conflicts.
4. Monitor the Hamsters
Hamsters that have cohabitated well for a long time can become hostile to each other. Some people even say it’s not a matter of ‘if’ but ‘when.’
Separate the hamsters when you notice any sign of bullying, harassment, or attack on any of them.
5. Have Backup Cages
Of course, when you separate the hamsters, you have to place some of them in new cages. However, before the need for separation becomes sudden, have backup enclosures on hand. This way, you can separate the hamsters immediately when a fight breaks out.
You should never house a teddy bear hamster with a dwarf hamster.
Since hamsters generally prefer living alone, making them live with other hamsters, especially those of a different species, would be disastrous.