What is Monkey Barring in Hamsters? And How To Stop Them

Last updated on November 3rd, 2023 at 07:45 pm

Hamsters are very active and love to run and play all the time, which is good for their fitness and health.

But sometimes the hamsters have nothing to do, they get bored and they start having fun and doing monkey barring.

What is a monkey barring in hamsters?

When hamsters climb on top of their cage, it’s monkey barring. Hamsters move from bar to bar and may fall and injure themselves.

That’s why we need to provide them with more activities, and more toys so that they don’t get bored and monkey bars.

If the hamster does not want to give up on monkey barring at any cost, you should consider buying a plastic tank.

In today’s article, you will learn what a monkey barring is, how hamsters use it, whether is it dangerous for them and how to prevent a hamster from monkey barring.

What is Monkey Barring in Hamsters?

A monkey barring is when the hamster climbs through the cage, on the sides, and on the top of the cage.

Syrian hamsters mostly enjoy monkey barring, while dwarf hamsters very rarely dare to do monkey barring.

Syrian hamsters are stronger, while dwarfs do not have enough strength to hold on to the top of the cage, if they try it is very likely that they will fall.

Is the monkey barring dangerous for hamsters?

Yes, the monkey barring is dangerous for hamsters because they can injure themselves and break bones when falling out of the cage.

Hamsters have very delicate bodies and bones, it doesn’t take much for them to get hurt, so you should have as much bedding as possible on the bottom of the cage to soften their fall.

Hamsters undoubtedly like monkey barring, because it is very fun for them and it is their natural way of behaving.

As much as the hamsters want monkey barring, we need to stop them in their intention so that they can be much safer in their lives.

Why do hamsters monkey barring?

As we said, hamsters have a natural desire to climb, and a cage is obviously an ideal place for them to do that.

However, there are several reasons why the hamster monkey bars, so let’s read them all in detail.

The hamster’s monkey barring because they are planning an escape

Hamsters are known for the fact that no matter how much you try to make their living in the cage more comfortable, they will still want to escape.

Hamsters always want to escape, monkey barring is a way for them to try to escape.

They will constantly climb into the cage and onto its top in the hope that they will manage to find something between the bars to escape from the cage.

Be careful because if they notice even the slightest chance they will escape from the cage.

Boredom causes hamsters monkey barring

When hamsters are bored, they look for something to do, and that can be monkey barring.

Hamsters are all the time in a cage that can sometimes be very small and they can’t be in one place all the time, boredom takes its toll, especially if they don’t have enough toys and other fun props.

An exercise wheel is one of the most important items that allow your furry friends to run and be active, but sometimes even that gets boring.

Sometimes we let the hamsters out of the cage too, but if that’s not enough they then monkey barring to make it fun for them.

When they want fun

Sometimes we don’t need to look for any special reason for monkey barring in our hamsters.

They are just having fun with monkey barring sometimes and it doesn’t mean they have a problem, stress, or anything else.

In any case, as happy as hamsters are, they should not monkey barring because they can get hurt.what is monkey barring in hamsters

When hamsters don’t have enough space

One of the most common reasons for monkey barring is the lack of space for the hamsters in their cage.

In the US, the smallest recommended cage size for hamsters is 24x12x12 inches, although larger than this dimension is welcome for your pet.

The larger the cage, the less likely the hamsters will monkey barring.

Hamsters spend several miles on the exercise wheel every night to burn off their energy, which certainly helps when hamsters are short on space.

Monkey barring is also an option for hamsters to see if they can escape from a small space or cage, especially if they find a place between the bars, they will try to escape immediately.

Hamsters love more attention

Most of the time, when we see that hamsters start monkey barring, we immediately need to take the hamster to play with it so that it doesn’t get boring.

If the hamster notices that you always do this, it will monkey barring even more knowing that you will pick it up.

Hamsters are smart enough to notice your attention to them when doing monkey barring.

Hamsters love monkey barring when they are stressed

If the hamster is constantly under some kind of stress, it climbs through the cage and hangs on the bars.

Hamsters are very sensitive animals that can easily get stressed from:

  • other pets
  • a lot of noise
  • unfamiliar surroundings
  • a new home

These and other factors may contribute to stress in hamsters and monkey barring.

Inadequate temperature can make hamsters monkey barring

For hamsters to feel comfortable and happy, we should always provide them with a comfortable temperature of 65-75 F.

Anything below and above this temperature causes discomfort and nervousness in your pet.

Nervousness and stress will take their toll and the hamster will monkey barring, so keep an eye on the temperature in the room where you keep your hamster.

Hamsters try to dominate each other when they monkey barring

When two or more hamsters live in one cage, they do monkey barring to show dominance.

Hamsters do not like to share their cage with other hamsters, and when they are together they fight and will want to dominate each other.

Therefore they will use monkey barring to show who is dominant and who is submissive in their cage.

With monkey barring, the hamsters only show hatred towards the other hamsters in the cage, so it is best not to try to keep two or more hamsters in one cage at all.

What is monkey barring in hamsters at night?

If you notice that the hamsters are doing monkey barring at night, you should not be alarmed because they are using up their excess energy.

Hamsters have excess energy if they do not have a wheel in their cage or if they are bored and do not have enough activities.

That’s why it is necessary for them to have enough stimulation so that they don’t monkey barring at night, provide them with enough entertainment and let them out of the cage in free roaming to spend their energy.what is monkey barring in hamsters

How to stop monkey barring in hamsters?

Monkey barring in hamsters can be stopped by several proven methods, which will successfully help to reduce or completely stop this phenomenon.

Give them a climbing frame

Go to your nearest pet store and you will find many different toys for your pet.

To prevent monkey barring buy a climbing frame for your hamsters, they are mostly made of wood and are very useful for your pet.

They allow the hamsters to safely get on and off it, run and play.

A climbing frame like this will provide an excellent climbing base for hamsters and will no longer need monkey barring.

Watch out for the hamster do not monkey barring

Hamsters will always want monkey barring, because it is their natural way of life, and they will constantly look for a way out of the cage.

That’s why you will have to personally remove it from the bars of the cage every time you see that your hamster monkey barring.

When you do this repeatedly the hamster will gradually realize that he shouldn’t do that, but it won’t be easy, some hamsters accept and some you will never get to not do monkey barring.

Enough activity and toys

Hamsters want monkey barring because sometimes they get bored.

That’s why you should provide them with more activities by adding toys and props to their cage.

Here are some suggestions:

  • exercise wheel
  • chew toys
  • tubes
  • comfortable bedding for making a nest

These additions will make the hamster’s day much more fun and interesting, which will surely result in less monkey barring.

Read more: Can Hamsters Climb Glass? All You Need To Know

Get a plastic hamster tank

Sometimes whatever you do will not get the results you expected and your hamster will want monkey barring again.

In this situation, the last resort is to consider installing a plastic tank as a replacement for a cage with bars.

So you will be sure that the hamster will not climb, but it will not be so comfortable for him.

In plastic tanks, the ventilation is weaker and the temperature inside is warmer, as well as the hygiene of the hamsters will not be the same as in a cage with bars.

Read more: Can Hamsters Climb Walls? And Plastic, Glass, Wood


A monkey barring is a natural behavior for hamsters, and they always enjoy climbing the bars to the top of the cage.

Hamsters climb, but they can also fall from the top of the cage and injure themselves, which is especially true for dwarf hamsters who do not have enough strength to withstand a long time on the bars.

In order to avoid monkey barring, you should provide more activities, toys, and more attention to your hamsters.

Read more: Why Do Hamsters Always Try To Escape? Let’s Discover