Last updated on January 22nd, 2023 at 07:04 pm
Hamsters are friendly and lovely pets we are happy to keep, feed, and play with. In addition to all the joys they bring us, sometimes they also bring us sad moments when they get sick, which is an integral part of caring for hamsters.
One of those problems is the occurrence of testicular tumors in hamsters.
When you notice large lumps on your hamster’s balls, it shows tumors on their testicles.
In today’s article, you will find the signs of these tumors, treatments for them, and what to do when hamsters have testicular tumors.
What are testicular tumors in hamsters?
Testicular tumors in hamsters are overgrowths in male hamsters of cells in their balls, which eventually results in the appearance of lumps or tumors. Lumps are noticed by the swelling of the balls, which does not go away even when the weather is cold.
Hamster balls are pretty large, or about 1/4 of their body, and they have some of the most enormous testicles in proportion to their total body size.
When you notice a lump in the hamster’s testicles, you wonder if the tumor is benign or malignant?
Although spotting lumps in the area of the testicles immediately scares you, and you think the worst.
You should not panic because the growths in hamsters do not always have to be tumors; they can also be just a problem that will pass without concerns for their health.
What are the signs of a testicular tumor in hamsters?
Suppose you notice lumps on your hamster’s testicles. In that case, the best solution is to go to the vet immediately to check if they are tumors.
When male hamsters have testicular tumors, there are several signs by which you can recognize them yourself.
The testicles become discolored
When everything is in order with hamsters’ testicles, they have a red color.
And when the hamster has a tumor in his testicles, its reddish color is lost, and they become darker.
Or one testicle can be reddish, while the other diseased testicle has a dark color due to the tumor.
Any discoloration of their testicles means you should immediately take your furry friend to the vet.
One of the main signs that hamsters have testicular tumors is the appearance of swollen testicles or testicular lumps.
Although male hamsters naturally have large testicles, when they have lumps and swellings, they are even more significant than average.
Lumps usually start out small and gradually or sometimes quickly become larger. Tumor lumps can be benign or malignant tumors.
Fortunately, in hamsters, 96% of the tumors are mostly benign, which is not dangerous for their health, and they can continue everyday life.
However, to accurately determine whether the tumors are benign or malignant, you must immediately take your pet to a veterinarian to determine what it is.
When hamsters have lumps with tumors on the testicles, it can be noticed by eyesight. Still, it can also be detected by touching, and the testicles are firmer than before precisely because of the appearance of lumps with tumors.
Of course, when you want to touch your hamster’s testicles, it is best to do it gently and slowly so as not to scare your pet because he may bite you.
When it doesn’t want to pick it up
Hamsters usually enjoy picking them up and holding them in your hands, but if they don’t like it, it’s a bad sign that there is a tumor on the testicles.
You can also examine your hamster yourself, although an examination by a veterinarian will undoubtedly show whether it is a tumor or something else.
When hamsters have a tumor on the testicles, they not only do not want to be held in your hands because they feel pain in the lower part of the body near the testicles, but they will no longer want to run and play in the cage.
Notice that the hamster is just sitting in the cage, lazy and without activity. It could be from the pain from the tumor in the testicles.
They have no appetite to eat
Hamsters are nocturnal; they run and play and, of course eat. Sometimes even during the day they know how to wake up if they feel hungry, eat and then go back to sleep.
If the hamster has testicular cancer, these habits will change drastically; he will refuse to eat, have no appetite, and lose weight.
Food refusal can only worsen his condition because it will reduce the intake of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that they need daily to be healthy and have a longer life span.
Besides not wanting to eat, the hamster will not want to drink water, which is dangerous for its hydration. When a hamster is dehydrated, it can die in 3-4 days, so you should immediately take it to the vet.
Irregularity in walking
When hamsters do not walk properly, it can signify a tumor in their testicles.
The pain from the tumor bothers them and creates problems in walking, which can be easily noticed when you look at your pet.
He can even lift his rear slightly when he walks because of the problem with the pain and enlarged testicles resulting from the tumor.
Lethargy and inactivity
Hamsters are active by nature; they are constantly running and playing, which is undoubtedly excellent and healthy for them.
They constantly use the crawl space, hiding places, and tunnels through the cage to have daily activities and not get bored.
When the hamster has a tumor on the testicles, the complete opposite happens; it refuses to play, does not want to run, and has no interest in any activity.
Any such lethargy and the hamster’s lack of desire for daily activities indicate the danger of a tumor. Therefore, they must be taken to a veterinarian immediately.
Neglects to groom
Hamsters are known for regularly cleaning themselves and maintaining an enviable level of hygiene.
But when they are sick, in this case, with a tumor in the testicles, they will begin to neglect cleaning and maintaining personal hygiene.
Hygiene is essential because this is how they clean their fur and their whole body and protect themselves from various diseases and infections.
The pain from the tumor in the testicles and the lack of energy are taking their toll.
And the hamsters will no longer groom themselves as before.
Treatments for testicular tumors in hamsters
When hamsters get a tumor on their testicles, there is no time to wait. You must react immediately and take it to the vet so that treatment can begin immediately.
Here are some ways to treat a tumor in their testicles.
Castration of the testicles
Castration of the testicles or surgical intervention is the best method to treat a tumor in the testicles of hamsters.
This type of surgery is performed on one or both testicles in hamsters, depending on the tumors. After castration, the hamster can continue to live normally without pain and problems.
Castration is done only by a veterinarian, with the help of local anesthesia.
Anesthesia is a bit risky because hamsters are tiny; therefore, mistakes should not be made during the operation; every most minor error can be fatal for our pet.
Castration usually takes about an hour, and the hamster is kept for a few more hours to see if everything is okay.
With the operation to remove the testicles, the hamster is saved from the further spreading of the tumors and continues with its life.
Diet with dandelion
Dandelions are known for their medicinal properties, with vitamins C and A that improve the immune system in hamsters.
Dandelions are good against testicular cancer in hamsters.
In the composition of dandelions, natural diuretic properties help tumors not suffer from fluid accumulation.
Because the collection of more pus around the tumor balls can cause the swelling to go in and worsen your pet’s condition.
Chemotherapy is another way to treat testicular tumors in hamsters. Also, Chemotherapy irradiates the tumor balls to kill the cancer cells.
Chemotherapy is very risky for hamsters, who sometimes fail to survive.
The risk to their life is too significant when Chemotherapy is done.
So before deciding on such a treatment, you should talk to a veterinarian to see all possible options for treating the hamster.
Can hamsters survive testicular tumors?
Yes, hamsters can survive testicular tumors if detected in time while still at an early stage.
The earlier treatment and diagnosis of testicular tumors are started, the greater the chances that the hamster will recover and continue to live normally.
If the tumor has not spread to other parts of the body, if it is removed in time, the hamster will be saved, so it is always necessary to act quickly when tumors appear.
What to do with a hamster that has tumors?
When a hamster has tumors, the first option is always a surgical intervention that can save its life.
However, if the tumors have spread through other organs in the body, you may need to consider euthanasia.
Because if the hamster is in a lot of pain caused by the tumors, then it will only suffer more and will never be the same hamster, you know.
Euthanasia will ease the hamster’s suffering, although it is a difficult choice for all hamster owners.
You can take the hamster and keep it at home, but you should be aware that every day it will be worse and worse from pain, and will not have much longer to live.
How often do tumors occur in hamsters?
Unfortunately, tumors in hamsters are very common.
Fortunately, most of the tumors, or 96%, are benign, and only 4% are malignant or cancerous and dangerous for the hamster’s life.
Malignant tumors spread throughout their body, and there is no salvation for the hamster’s life. Tumors most often occur in the adrenal glands, stomach, testicles, and lymphatic system.
When the tumors are inside the hamster, they are a little more difficult to notice, so the hamster should be regularly taken to the vet for check-ups.
Tumors in the testicles of male hamsters appear as lumps as a result of excessive growth.
When hamsters have tumors on the testicles, it can be seen by changing the color of the testicles and increasing the size.
Other signs of tumors are observed through their behavior, such as lethargy, lack of appetite, movement problems, and avoiding holding hands with their owners due to pain in the testicles.
When hamsters have testicular tumors, it is best to castrate or remove the testicles that have cancer, after which the hamster will continue to live normally and be happy again.
The earlier a testicular tumor in hamsters is diagnosed, the greater the chances of its cure.
Suppose the tumors are spread throughout the body. In that case, they should either be euthanized to reduce their pain, or we should keep them until they unfortunately die.
The best way to prevent and treat tumors in hamsters is to detect the tumor early, so regular checks and examinations by a veterinarian should be done.