Why Do Hamsters Die So Easily? (How To Decrease)

Last updated on January 22nd, 2023 at 07:07 pm

Hamsters are cute and pleasant to keep, great for playing and socializing; children love them as much as we adults do.

Our furry friends are friendly and obedient, thus providing a charming atmosphere and making our day more fun and exciting.

But the downside of having a hamster as a pet is its short life, about 2-3 years.

Why do hamsters die so easily?

Hamsters die so easily because of short life, diseases, and unethical breeding. Hamsters are gentle pets that can die very easily and suddenly, when we least expect it.

In today’s article, we will find out the reasons for the easy and sudden death of hamsters.

Why do hamsters die so easily?

Hamsters die very easily because of their short life; they live only 2-3 years; although there may be minor exceptions, the average life is still very short.

Health problems are another reason for the death of hamsters, easily and without warning.

Hamsters die easily and due to bad and unethical breeding, which is why our pets have had congenital problems and diseases since birth.

A simple example of quick death is dehydration which, if not noticed, can kill the hamster very easily in 3-4 days.

What are the reasons why hamsters die so easily?

Hamsters die very easily and quickly without warning, which is really sad. Still, it is the reality that we have to accept.

They can play and run and suddenly just stop and die, which is typical.

A healthy diet and good living conditions are essential to prevent the premature death of our furry friends.

Let’s find out the most common reasons hamsters die easily.

Age is the reason for the rapid dying of hamsters

As we said, hamsters live on average for about 2-3 years, with the possibility of extension for a few months, but that is still their life span.

Other pets have a longer lifespan, but hamsters do not and die easily and suddenly.

With proper care and a healthy and nutritious diet, the death of hamsters can be prolonged by several months or a year more than the usual life span.


Hamsters are by nature very timid pets that can be scared very easily, and then get stressed and die.

Stress is dangerous because it affects their entire organism, and causes diseases and infections that further cause easy and sudden death of our pets.

When under stress, hamsters have reduced immunity, worsening existing diseases, especially the heart and respiratory problems.

Stress in hamsters can be caused by:

  • loud noise
  • other pets
  • predators near them
  • the cold temperature in the room where they live
  • diseases
  • lack of food

All these reasons negatively affect hamsters, create stress and quick and easy death of our pet.

The stress can affect their health even if the hamster does not die.

why do hamsters die so easily

Diseases of the heart

Heart disease in hamsters is a common occurrence that ultimately results in premature death.

They are prone to heart diseases such as:

  • Congestive heart failure – weakening of the heart muscles and the inability to pump blood effectively.
  • Polymyopathy- a commonly inherited disease that weakens the heart muscles and causes easy and sudden death in hamsters.
  • Atrial thrombosis – occurs as a result of heart problems and causes rapid breathing and rapid and premature death in our furry friends.
  • Cardiomyopathic problems – occur as an inherited genetic problem with the heart of hamsters.

All these heart problems can only lead to premature death in our furry friends, especially congestive heart failure is the most common occurrence that is fatal for hamsters.

If hamsters have heart diseases, their life expectancy is significantly reduced; sometimes they live only 10-12 months.

Heart attack from congestive heart failure

Congestive heart failure causes heart attacks in hamsters, resulting in sudden and easy death in our pets.

Congestive heart failure usually occurs due to fear, stress, obesity, and danger from other predators.

Being timid, it takes very little for them to freak out and have a heart attack.

Unethical or Bad Breeding

Unethical breeding is unsuitable for hamsters and can only cause sudden and easy death.

When hamster breeders keep furry pets in inappropriate conditions, such as cramped quarters and poor hygiene, the baby hamsters are often born with defects due to their parents’ impoverished environment.

The result of all this is the short life span of young hamsters and their easy death.

Wet tail

Wet tail or diarrhea is a dangerous disease that can cause quick death in hamsters or in 90% of all cases.

When hamsters have a wet tail, it can be noticed that the area around the genitals is wet.

The most common symptoms of the wet tail are rapid weight loss, lethargy, the poor appearance of fur, and lack of appetite.

If the hamsters have a wet tail, they can die very quickly in one to two days, so if you notice something, you should immediately take the hamster to the vet.


Hamsters get cancer less often, but the danger still exists and can result in sudden death.

Most often, hamsters’ cancer appears due to problems with the skin and their digestive system.

Pneumonic infection

When hamsters have a pneumonic infection, it results in rapid and sudden death.

Pneumonia can be caused by problems with the respiratory organs, and sometimes it is complicated to detect.

You should pay attention to certain signs that indicate pneumonia, such as difficulty breathing and rapid fatigue when running, etc.

Changes in temperature

Hamsters are indeed warm-blooded but cannot regulate their body temperature sufficiently.

All temperature changes adversely affect hamsters; anything above or below the allowable temperature of 65°F to 75°F adversely affects and can cause easy and sudden death.

When hamsters are exposed to cold for a long time, their bodies begin to be in a state of torpor or prolonged sleep, similar to hibernation.

If they don’t wake up, they will die very often.

If they are very hot, then they suffer from dehydration, which, if not noticed, will kill the hamster in 3-4 days.why do hamsters die so easily

Injuries and infections

Hamsters can easily get injured and then die suddenly, especially if they fall from a greater height because they cannot see well and cannot estimate the size from which they jump.

Infections from viruses, bacteria and parasites can cause health problems, which if not treated promptly, will cause fatal consequences and death in hamsters.


Depression in hamsters can indirectly cause rapid death.

When hamsters are depressed, they eat less, get more diseases, become aggressive and eventually, they can die quickly.

Depression in hamsters occurs if they are under stress, fear, change of residence and other reasons.

That’s why it’s essential to know our pet as well as we can, to know when we need to take action to improve his condition.

Bad diet

Hamsters need a proper and balanced diet with vitamins and minerals to be healthy and live longer.

If the hamsters do not have the necessary ingredients, they die quickly.

For example, vitamin C is not produced by itself; if it is not taken in through food, it will cause scurvy.

Scurvy is a dangerous disease that can cause fatal consequences and easy death in hamsters.

Read more: Can Hamsters Die From Fear? (Stress, Wet Tail & More)

What can we do for hamsters so they don’t die so easily?

Since hamsters can die very quickly and easily, we should take care of them as best as possible.

Here are some tips on better protecting hamsters from an untimely death.

Healthy and regular diet

A healthy and regular diet with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fiber is important for hamsters to live longer.

Nutrition improves the overall health of hamsters and protects them from disease and easy death.

Antioxidants slow down aging and extend the lifespan of our furry friends.

Play along with them

Hamsters also need attention from us owners.

In this way, they will feel much more comfortable, they will not be under stress and they will be able to live longer.

If we play with the hamsters, they will not be lonely and depressed, they will be happy and cheerful, just be careful not to squeeze them too much, because they don’t like it and are afraid.

Reduce the noise around them

Any loud noise from people, TV, music or something similar can only cause stress and premature death.

Speak softly and gently to your pet, because they hear ten times louder than humans.

Do not keep other pets nearby

Other pets nearby or in their cage can only create fear, depression and stress in hamsters.

All these negative factors can only cause the easy death of our furry friends.

It is best if there are no other pets in the hamster’s room, otherwise the hamster will always be nervous and under stress.

Clean the cage

Cleaning the cage must be a regular procedure if we want to keep hamsters.

In unsanitary conditions, the smell of ammonia from their urine in the bedding is harmful and can cause diseases and infections.

The hamsters’ bedding should be changed regularly so that such side effects do not occur, which further lead to dangerous and fatal problems for the health of the hamsters.

Regular vet checkups

Regardless of whether the hamsters are sick, we should take them regularly to the vet for a check-up every 6 months.

Sometimes we cannot notice if our pet has a problem or, in the worst case, cancer, so control is essential to prevent premature and easy death.

Normal temperature

The temperature in the hamsters’ room should always be 65°F to 75°F.

Any deviation from these values ​​can only make the hamster sick and cause fatal consequences if it does not go away for a specific time.

Hamsters are susceptible to temperature differences and their delicate organism will immediately show adverse reactions.

why do hamsters die so easily

Frequently asked questions

How long do hamsters live?

Hamsters live an average of 2 to 3 years, and Syrian hamsters can live about 3-3.5 years, while dwarf hamsters live from 2-2.5 years. This lifespan is average if we take good care of our furry friends.

What do hamsters do before they die?

Before the hamsters die, specific symptoms indicate something is wrong with them. If you notice that your hamster has no appetite, becomes lethargic, has diarrhea, hides, and similar signs that suggest that the hamster can easily die in such situations.

Why Do Hamsters Die Mysteriously Sometimes?

Sometimes hamsters can die very easily, quickly, and mysteriously. The most common cause of such unwanted situations are diseases, infections and cancer that can quickly cause death in our furry friends.

Read more: Can Hamsters Explode? (Find Out Now)


Hamsters can die quickly for numerous reasons, such as short life span, poor reproduction, diseases and other factors that affect their life span.

We, on our part, should guard them as best we can and protect them from an easy and sudden death.

The more we care about them, the more we get to know them, the easier and better we will know when something is wrong with them, and we will be able to promptly help them live longer and better.

Read more: What Is The Lifespan Of Hamsters? How To Live Longer