Why Is My Hamster’s Fur Changing Color? All You Need To Know

Last updated on January 22nd, 2023 at 07:25 pm

All hamsters more or less change the color of their fur.

Changing the color of hamsters is normal; it mainly alters in winter white hamsters, but other breeds of hamsters also change the color of their fur.

Like humans, when hair color changes, hamsters begin to change fur color with age.

Have you ever wondered why this happens and why your furry friends’ fur color changes? The color of the fur occurs due to aging; in some, it is more pronounced the change in color to lighter or darker. Winter white hamsters are whiter in winter, so predators can not easily spot them, while yellow fur appears due to spots from urination or olfactory glands.

In today’s article, we will learn more about the color change of fur in hamsters and the reasons for this phenomenon.

Why does hamster fur change color?

As we pointed out at the beginning, the color of hamster fur changes from time to time, and this is quite common.

Although changing the color of hamster fur is not very common, it still occurs at certain times in their lives.

The color usually changes due to age and for some other reasons that we will now find out.

Why does hamster fur turn white?

Fur whitening most often occurs in winter white hamsters.

They otherwise have brownish-gray fur with a dark stripe on the back.

In them, the color of the fur changes to white to protect themselves when in the snow and thus protect themselves from predators because hamsters, because of their size, are very common prey when out in nature.

The discoloration of their fur occurs gradually and can last from a few days to a few weeks.

In some winter hamsters, the white color of the fur is more pronounced, while in others, it is less common; it is individual.

Will winter white hamsters get white fur if they are in a cage?

Yes and no, it depends, they may change the color of the fur in the cage, but such a change may not occur in winter white hamsters.

When wintering white hamsters are kept in a cage, they may change color slightly, but they are unlikely to get the white color they would have if they were out in the snow and nature.

As it is in the spring, their brown color will return to their fur.

Why does the color of hamster fur change to gray?

Hamsters change the color of their fur to gray due to aging and changes in temperature and seasons.

The gray color of their fur is often accompanied by other symptoms such as:

  • loss of appetite
  • baldness
  • lethargy
  • slowness of movements
  • poor fur quality

This phenomenon occurs in different breeds of hamsters, although mostly again in winter white hamsters.

Why does hamster fur turn brown?

Hamster fur turns brown because it is a natural process that occurs as hamsters age, especially for black Syrian hamsters.

As they get older, they change the color of their fur from black to brown.

In black Syrian hamsters, the fading of the color from black to brown occurs in the summer, which is entirely normal in all hamsters with black fur, and then when winter comes, they darken again.

Something similar happens with winter white hamsters, which regain their brown color in summer on fur instead of white in winter.why is hamsters fur changing color

Why does hamster fur turn black?

The color of hamster fur turns black due to diarrhea and wet tail, but only on some parts of the body, most often in the back.

Otherwise, another way to change the color from gray or white to black is not possible.

From dark to light fur is normal, but from gray to black is not possible; the fur can only be slightly darkened but can not get black.

Why does hamster fur turn yellow?

Hamster fur turns yellow due to the olfactory glands and their urine.

The yellow color of the fur will appear in the olfactory glands of hamsters and is more pronounced in males than in female hamsters.

Their urine also turned yellow on the part of the fur, or the region with which they sat or slept, and there was urine in that place.

Wet tails can also cause yellow fur in hamsters, although it is less common.

What factors affect the darkening of the color of hamster fur?

The color of hamster fur darkens due to aging or lack of sufficient sunlight.

For example, Syrian hamsters have a dark fur color in winter, while they have a lighter color in summer, which is typical for your furry friends.

Aging is the same process that can lead to the darkening of the color of hamster fur, and there is nothing to be done to change that.

Why does hamster fur become lighter?

The main reason for the change in the color of the fur in hamsters to a light color is aging.

In some hamsters, when the fur ages or becomes lighter or darker, it depends on the fur’s natural color.

Sunlight can help hamsters’ fur color to be brighter in summer.

If the hamsters are less exposed to direct sunlight, it will be less pronounced, and as we know, they prefer to sit in a darker room, so they will not whiten their fur much.

Should hamster fur discoloration not be a concern?

The change in the color of the fur in hamsters should not worry us except in some situations.

If you notice that in addition to changing the color of their fur, there are other signs such as declining fur, then this may be a sign of attention.

Hamster fur can fall off from friction, but it can also signify disease, parasitic infection, and possible kidney problems.

So if something like this happens to you, take the hamster to the vet to be examined.

Can stress cause hamster fur to change color?

No, stress can not change the color of hamster fur.

But it can cause changes in the fur’s structure, becoming greasy and less frequent.

Hamsters can thin their fur by rubbing it under stress, but it will not change the color of their fur anyway.

read more: Why Do Hamsters Have Green Poop? 15 Reasons

Does melanin affect the whitening of hamster fur?

Yes, melanin affects the color of fur in hamsters, especially older hamsters.

The more melanin they have, the slower the process of changing the color of the fur to gray.

To have normal melanin levels, hamsters need to eat a variety of foods, especially foods that contain vitamin A and beta carotene, which contributes to the production of melanin.

Such food for hamsters is essential, so give them carrots, sweet potatoes, spinach, and peas.

read more: Can Hamsters Breathe Under Bedding? All You Need To Know


Due to age, seasons, and genetic factors, Hamster fur discoloration is a natural occurrence.

The color of hamster fur can change to gray, yellow, brown, and white depending on the hamster breed and the conditions in which they are found.

White winter hamsters change color for protection from predators, while Syrian hamsters change color due to sun exposure, so you should not worry about changing the color of your hamster fur.

With the aging of hamsters, they change their fur color just like us.

read more: Can Hamsters Drink Out of A Bowl? (How to Use)