In order for hamsters to be healthy and happy, it’s necessary to care for them properly.
One of the most important things is to ensure they’re adequately hydrated every day by providing enough water in their system.
How do I know if my hamster is drinking enough water?
Hamsters are drinking enough water if they regularly use the water bottle, have clear urine, and are sufficiently active in their cage or outside of it.
To ensure they drink enough water, it’s necessary to change their water daily, and they should eat fruits and vegetables rich in water, such as cucumbers.
In today’s article, you will learn tips on how to keep your hamster hydrated and ensure they intake enough water.
How do I know if my hamster is drinking enough water?
When hamsters drink enough water, it can be noticed by how much they use the water bottle, the color of their urine, and how active they are each day.
Here’s a detailed explanation of all these signs indicating that your pet is drinking enough water:
Regular use of the water bottle
The most important sign that hamsters are drinking enough water is to observe how much they use their water bottle.
Generally, hamsters should drink water from the bottle at several intervals throughout the day to ensure adequate hydration.
Typically, hamsters, depending on their size, should drink 10 – 30 ml of water each day to stay hydrated and healthy.
Clear and moist urine
When hamsters drink enough water, they have clear and moist urine.
Their urine then has a clear or slightly yellowish shade, it’s moist, not dry or sticky.
When a hamster’s urine is dark in color and very thick, it’s a sign of dehydration and insufficient water intake in their system.
Hamsters are active and play throughout the day
When hamsters intake enough water, they are active and play throughout the day in their cage or outside of it.
This activity includes running on their exercise wheel, exploring their living environment, climbing on bars, and running through tunnels in their cage.
If hamsters are lethargic and show no interest in playing or running, it indicates dehydration, although these signs could also mean they are sick or injured.
In any case, it’s best to take them to a vet to check if the hamsters are lethargic due to dehydration or illness.
How to recognize that hamsters are not drinking enough water?
When hamsters don’t drink enough water, it’s noticeable through certain signs and symptoms.
Here are some signs that will indicate you need to take action for your pet:
When hamsters don’t drink enough water, they become lethargic and reluctant to move normally.
They run less and play less in the cage, instead preferring to sleep and rest in a corner of the cage.
Lethargic hamsters lack the energy to perform their daily activities.
Sunken eyes indicate that your hamster has problems with normal water intake, i.e., they are dehydrated.
Their eyes appear sunken and less expressive compared to other healthy hamsters.
This occurs because the hamster lacks enough fluids in their system, and immediate action is needed to restore normal hydration levels.
The skin becomes flaky and dry
Another sign that hamsters aren’t drinking enough water is when their skin becomes flaky and dry.
It’s recognizable that a dehydrated hamster’s skin lacks the necessary shine and elasticity.
Healthy and hydrated skin with enough fluids is when it appears shiny, soft, and quite oily.
When hamsters have dark and thicker urine, it’s a sign that your pet has hydration issues and isn’t taking in enough water.
In such situations, the hamster’s body tries to conserve water by reducing urine output.
Dehydrated hamsters have dense urine, while healthy urine is nearly colorless and clear.
Tips for optimal water intake in hamsters
To ensure hamsters drink enough water every day, you need to pay attention to certain aspects. Here are a few practical tips to implement:
Provide fresh water every day
You should change the water in your hamsters’ bottles every day. It needs to be fresh and clean.
This practice prevents bacteria from forming in the water, ensuring better hygiene and clean drinking water for the hamsters.
Regardless of whether your hamster drank a little or a lot from the water bottle the previous day, you should still replace the water.
Regularly check the water bottle
Whenever the water level in the bottle decreases, it’s necessary to change the water and provide clean and fresh water.
By regularly checking the hamsters’ water bottles, you’ll know if there’s a problem, as sometimes it might not work properly if it’s filled with impurities or food.
If you notice that the water in the bottle isn’t decreasing, there might be an issue, and you’ll need to buy a new bottle, or your hamster might be unwell and unwilling to drink water.
Place the water bottle in an accessible location
The hamsters’ water bottles should be placed in an easily accessible location for them to drink from it easily.
The water bottle shouldn’t be obstructed by toys or other objects that might make it difficult for the hamster to access the water.
Additional water sources
Although the water bottle is the primary source of drinking water, hamsters should always have additional water sources.
Hence, provide them with foods that contain enough water, such as cucumber, watermelon, or green salad.
Besides providing sufficient hydration, fruits and vegetables rich in water also supply essential nutrients to your hamsters.
How much water should hamsters drink daily?
Hamsters should drink 10-30 ml of water every day to meet their needs. The amount of water they should drink daily depends on their size, breed, age, and activity level. Check the water level in the bottle every day to know how much water your hamster drinks.
Can hamsters drink too much water?
It’s rare for hamsters to drink too much water, but it’s possible. When hamsters drink too much water, it’s noticeable through frequent urination. If you notice that your hamster is drinking too much water, consult a vet to examine and assist your pet.
Can I put electrolytes in my hamster’s water?
In some situations, on a vet’s recommendation, you can put electrolytes in your hamster’s water, such as when the weather is excessively hot or if the hamster is recovering from an illness. However, be cautious when giving electrolytes to your hamster and always follow the instructions for proper usage.
Why doesn’t my hamster want to drink water?
If your hamster doesn’t want to drink water from the bottle, first check if the bottle is functioning correctly. If the bottle is fine, take your hamster to a vet to examine your pet because it might be sick or injured.
To know if your hamster is drinking enough water, simply monitor the decrease in water levels in their bottle.
Other signs indicating that the hamster is drinking enough water include the appearance of their urine, which should be light in color, and their activity level, as they should play and run on their exercise wheel.
When hamsters are lethargic, constantly sleeping, and showing similar signs, it means they aren’t drinking enough water, and you should take them to a vet.
Drinking enough water is one of the most critical aspects of hamsters’ health and life. Therefore, ensure they always have fresh and clean drinking water.
Regularly clean their water bottles and provide them with fruits and vegetables containing plenty of water, such as cucumber and watermelon, to keep them adequately hydrated.