So you already own a cat and want to get a Hamster, or you already own a Hamster and want to get a dog too. In either of the case, you might be wondering, will my Hamster be safe? Do Hamsters get along with cats? Don’t worry. I did some research and consulted a few experts, and here is what I found.
Hamsters and cat get along with some careful planning. It is recommended to make their introduction smooth and stress-free so that they will be able to get along quite nicely. However, you must be cautious all the time.
The stereotype of cats and Hamsters is that while one is a predator, the other is a prey animal. However, with little bit of training and care, you can make sure that both of your pet get along well.
Each cat has a very distinctive personality, while some cats get along with Hamsters quite well, on the other hand, others look them as a source of food only.
All in all, cats do have a predator instinct and due to this being cautious is really crucial if you plan to keep both of your pets together.
How Do Cats React To Hamsters?
It is advised to never house a Hamster with a cat. Although your cat might get scared of your little Hamster at the beginning as they will look at the Hamsters as s threat, but with passing time, they will understand and may look at your Hamsters as a food source.
Just because there was no unfortunate incident when you first introduced them, doesn’t mean something wrong can’t happen in the future.
However, some owners have managed to get both of their pets together in a common play area. Also, many times both Hamsters and cats were seen playing alone. But does this mean you should try the same with your pets?
Likely not immediately. However, with certain insurances and learning, you can figure out how to get both of them along in a common play zone. Obviously, under your supervision only. In any case, housing them together can be really risky. So be aware of that!
To understand how you can get your Hamsters along with your cats, you need to initially observe and understand your cat’s behavior and conduct.
Will My Cat Eat My Hamster?
If your cats are raised with your Hamsters, then there is a very slim possibility that they will eat them or even hurt them.
Although Hamsters have a very impulsive personality, and if your Hamster starts to run, then your cat might hold your Hamsters tightly with its paws out of natural instinct, which in turn can hurt your Hamsters badly.
On the other hand, if you have not introduced your cat and Hamsters appropriately, then the cat might get aggressive and end up hurting your Hamster or even eating them.
Therefore, it is important to introduce your pets before leaving them in one place, and even after that, make sure that you are present for invigilating them when they are left to play together.
Understanding Cat’s Temperament
The living environment of the cat and how it is being raised shall determine what traits it will develop over time.
If the cat has been raised well, right from their young days, then there are high chances that they will develop a sense of affection and friendliness.
On the other hand, most wild cats have several negative traits like dominance, anxiousness, and recklessness.
Therefore, it is important for you to get a young cat and raise it alongside other family members and your other pets. It will help them develop a sense of friendliness will all.
You must understand that it is very difficult to introduce an old cat with your small pets like a Hamster in comparision to the ones raised together from their early days.
There is a slim chance that you pet cat will get along with your Hamsters. However, the wild ones are still vulnerable.
Let us now learn how we can introduce our Hamsters to a cat in the right way.
Introducing Cat & Hamster
Introducing your cats and Hamsters to each other is a critical aspect you can never neglect. This time can be stressful for you as well as your Hamsters.
If you do not do it correctly from the beginning, then you might end up messing with their relationship for a long time.
So, I would request everyone to keep reading and follow the steps carefully to make sure that your Hamsters and cats are introduced in the right way.
You Must Introduce Them At An Early Age
If you want to keep both Hamster and cat in your home, you might need to make a plan from an early stage.
Researches even show that the best age to socialize with a kitten (baby cat) is during its first few weeks.
The time of 2-14 weeks is when young cats are bound to associate with their current circumstance and different things.
If you can get your cat and Hamsters to associate during that stage, the odds of effectively keeping them together goes up.
Something very similar applies to our Hamsters too. Hamsters are bound to mingle and have a sense of security around the cat with which they have been raised with.
However, if you do that later with an old cat, at that point chances are your Hamsters will get pushed, out of dread and will probably always be unable to associate with your cats.
Set Them Up A Common Play Area
It is very crucial to set up a play area to introduce your pets and also let them free for some floor time.
It could be any part of your house. it could be your drawing room, your living room, or even your bedroom. Choose a play different from where you house your Hamster typically.
This will make sure that none of your pet feels that their territory is being invaded. This will also make the process smooth.
Wherever you setup the play area, make sure you have made that room Hamster proof and have added some hiding spaces for your Hamsters in there so that they can hide if they feel nervous or stressed out.
If anything goes wrong in the heat of the moment, your Hamsters can escape and protect themselves in the hiding spaces.
Introduce Them Briefly At The Play Area
When introducing the cats to your Hamsters for the very first time, you must keep your cat enclosed in their kennel or some cage, and let your Hamsters to explore the area around.
You can then do the reverse, keep your Hamsters in the cage and let your cats roam around. This process will make sure that both your pets are used to each others presence and smell.
When you let your cat free, notice their behavior intently. Is your cat showing signs of aggression or anger?
Once you are sure that both of your pets are adjusted to each other’s presence, you can move to the next step.
Also note: If at any point in time you feel your Hamsters are stressed then it would be wise to separate them for some time and try again later. Also, repeat these sessions several times before you move to the next step.
You May Let Them Free (Only Under Your Supervision)
Once your pets are used to each others presence, you can let them free in a common play area.
Also, make sure your Hamster has enough hiding space, if they feel scared or feel like escaping. You must be very attentive and focus on both of your pet’s reactions.
Keep an eye on them when you leave them together for the first time, and make sure your Hamsters are safe. If you notice any kind of unusual behavior, separate them and try again later.
Please Note: Never withdraw your attention when your Hamsters and cats are together. If nothing happened on the first day, doesn’t mean you can act casual on the second day. Your cat’s instinct might change at any time, and it can be lethal for your Hamsters. So, make sure you are there to separate them if anything goes haywire.
Do Not House Them Together When You Are Away
It would be a wise move if you house your Hamster and your cat separately when you are not around.
Whenever you have to go away, keep your pets away from each other. The best move shall be keeping your Hamsters in a room when your cats have not access at all.
Do Cats Go After Hamsters? (How To Keep Your Hamsters Safe)
Keeping your Hamsters safe is extremely safe, especially if you have a cat in your home. There is no doubt regarding the fact that our topmost priority is safety of our pets.
Although your cats might not be aggressive in nature but in your absence, anything can go wrong, and things may end up hurting your Hamsters.
Therefore, it is important to take precautions if you have to keep your Hamsters safe from your cats, especially when you are not around.
Listed below are a few tips that you can follow to ensure your Hamster’s safety if you have a pet cat in your home.
Keep Your Hamsters And Cats Separately
It is crucial to house your pets in different parts of your home. This step is important to ensure the safety of your Hamsters,
Even if both of your pets are familiar with each other, there can be a particular situation when things may go wrong.
As the safety of our Hamster is our first priority, there are a few things we must keep in mind while housing our Hamsters.
To ensure that our Hamster’s cage is placed in such a place where we can keep an eye on them, even while doing our work. Avoid keeping them in an isolated room. Also, make sure that your Hamsters are housed in perfect temperature. Regular fluctuation in temperature is not good for our Hamsters.
You can certainly learn more about housing your Hamsters, whether or not should you keep your Hamsters in your bedroom, and more.
Get A Secured And Strong Cage For Your Hamsters
It is very important to have a sturdy and strong cage, if you have housed your Hamster with some other pets of yours.
You must make sure that the cage is fully covered from all the sides, so that no other pet, including cats, can reach the cage and hurt your Hamsters.
The cages sold in most of the regular pet shops are not good enough for our Hamsters. Therefore, I would strongly recommend you to avoid such cages and get a secure and sturdy one for your Hamster.
Provide Your Hamsters With Sufficient Hiding Spaces
Hiding spaces plays a very important role to keep a Hamster happy as well as healthy. Being prey animals, Hamsters need adequate hiding spaces to make themselves feel at home.
Even if your cat manages to sneak up to your Hamster’s enclosure, hiding spaces will help your Hamsters to hide and stay safe from the cats.
Although a sturdy cage will do the work, but Hamsters do need a safe and secure environment, or they can get terrified real quick.
Lock Your Hamster’s Cage Properly Before Leaving
You must always make sure that your Hamster’s cage is locked properly before you leave the house.
You would definitely want your Hamster to fall into trouble. Cats are quite smart and will find a way to sneak into your Hamster’s cage if it is not closed properly. If this happens the situation can turn critical in no time.
Therefore, it is crucial to close your Hamster’s cage appropriately. Even if your Hamster’s cage remains closed all the time, it is advised to recheck everything before leaving from home.