Always approach the hamster gently with no sudden moves, so as not to scare it. If it is asleep, gently tap the house or nest to wake it up, and let it walk out of its nest. Never just grab the hamster while it is asleep in its nest. You will startle it and it might bite you in fear.
How to pick up your hamster
With your hamster in the bedding tray, gently cup your hands around the hamster but allow your hamster to run off your hands if it wants to. Wait a few seconds before trying again. Repeat this process until it feels secure sitting in your hand. At this stage don’t lift the hamster up. Do this a few times a day for the first few days and your hamster should be much quieter.
Speak gently as you handle your hamster and stroke it gently but avoid touching its head. Once you are happy that you and your hamster have bonded, you can pick your hamster up. To do this place one hand firmly but gently around its body (as you would a computer mouse, with the hamsters tail being the mouse lead) or cup both hands together and lift your hamster up. Either way is suitable, whichever you find the easiest.
Once it knows that you are not going to hurt it, you will both become more confident and you will find your hamster waiting to come out to be handled. Young children may find handling easier if they spread their fingers out wide, when the hamster walks from hand to hand the hamster’s legs ‘fall’ between the fingers and slow it down.
If you wish to handle your hamster at any time you need to follow the following procedure. Gently tap on the cage, open the door and call your hamster’s name and wait for it to come to the door. Do not try to pick up your hamster from it’s nest whilst it is asleep or try to get it out of it’s house using a finger as this is a sure way to get bitten. It may take a few days for you to be able to do this but eventually the hamster will come every time. Above everything else enjoy your hamster and become it’s friend and companion.
Finally, always wash your hands again once you have finished handling your hamster.
More Sociable Hours
During the day, hamsters like sleeping a lot! To encourage your hamster to be more active when you are awake try feeding at a time when you’re around for example when you come home from school or work. You could feed yours, perhaps, when the child comes home from school.