Do Hamsters Suffer When They Die? (IMPORTANT FACTS)

Do Hamsters Suffer When They Die

Given the short lifespans of hamsters, it’s critical to recognize the indicators that a hamster is nearing the end of its life.

A properly-kept hamster who eats well and lives in a calm environment ought to have a tranquil death.

If your hamster contracts a serious illness, it could not survive.

You must choose the best course of action for the hamster in these situations.

Euthanasia is occasionally the best course of action when a hamster is in distress.

Your hamster’s demeanor will alter if it’s uncomfortable.

Expect your once-active hamster to become drowsy, lose interest in eating, quit grooming, and exhibit unusually protective behavior.

Do Hamsters Suffer When They Die?

Hamsters experience pain when they pass away and exhibit a variety of indications and symptoms, including an irregular diet, fatigue and lethargy, irritability, circling, increased sleep, fur loss, watery eyes, and runny nose.

They also cease moving. As the hamster’s owner, it is your duty to properly care for your pet.

The hamsters suffer greatly from a variety of causes and illnesses.

The causes of the hamsters’ appearance and strange actions can occasionally be determined.

Some of the issues are obscure. The hamster dies as a result of these unseen problems since they are so terrifying.

Symptoms and Signs of a Dying Hamster

More Sleep

If your hamster is sleeping excessively or more often than usual, there is a problem.

The hamster doesn’t get much sleep. Their sleeping habits follow a certain pattern.

Tired and Lethargic

Being worn out is a sign that the hamster is unhealthy.

Lethargy, which the hamster experiences, maybe the cause of its pain.

This sluggish and exhausted behavior may be caused by a sickness or other issues.

Your hamster is in distress if you notice that it is perpetually exhausted and sluggish.

For the owner of the pet, lethargic behavior is a strong indication that something is wrong with the hamster’s internal organs.

Rectal prolapse in hamsters is another reason for this.

Changes in the Eyes

Your hamster’s eyes will begin to alter as it ages. Their eyes may begin to get more matte and sticky as they mature.

When a piece of dust or bedding gets in a hamster’s eye while they are resting, it can cause sticky eyes, which is a fairly typical issue in elderly hamsters.

When they wake up, as a result, their eyeballs are locked together.

You can assist them by gently wiping their eyes with a little piece of a moistened cloth.

Although older hamsters are typically affected, younger ones might also be affected.

Difficulty Breathing

Hamsters with major medical issues frequently have problems breathing regularly.

In fact, aside from wet tails, respiratory infections are perhaps the most prevalent disease in hamsters.

Be alert for signs of difficulty breathing, such as wheezing or puffing. This is frequently a sign that your hamster is approaching death.

Other breathing issues, such as heavy or loud breathing, maybe a sign of pneumonia or another life-threatening condition, like a respiratory infection.

If you observe persistent breathing issues in your hamster, take him to the doctor right immediately.

By doing so, you might be able to stop the emergence of a potentially deadly health condition. Being safe is preferable to being sorry.

Wet Tail

Given that the wet tail disease frequently results in diarrhea in hamsters, it can be especially harmful.

A potentially fatal stomach illness known as wet tail is frequently linked to stress and is frequently brought on by a variety of bacteria.

Younger hamsters are typically affected by this condition, especially those that are 3–8 weeks old.

If neglected, it can be deadly, frequently within 24 to 48 hours of the onset of symptoms.

The disease’s name derives from the fact that the associated diarrhea can be so bad that it causes the hamster’s tail and the region around it to become filthy.

Check to check whether there is a moist material that resembles mucus near the base of your pet’s tail.

Get your hamster to the veterinarian right away if you think he has a damp tail.

If your hamster gets dehydrated, he may administer IV fluids along with antibiotics to treat your pet.

Irregular Diet

A hamster’s diet consists primarily of seeds and grains. Hamsters consume food in accordance with a set timetable.

If your hamster isn’t eating correctly, it’s likely that it’s quietly suffering.

Hamsters’ irregular feeding patterns are a blatant sign that something is wrong with them.

Hamsters in good health eat many times a day.

Even though hamsters spend the day sleeping a lot, they frequently wake up to feed.

Hamsters frequently eat, however they don’t consume a lot of food. For instance, a hamster would typically eat two teaspoons of food each day.

It might be challenging to keep track of how much your hamster is consuming.

Even while there might not be any food in their dish, it could indicate that your hamster—like many hamsters—is a hoarder.

They will stow food in their cheek pouches and conceal those pouches about their cage.

Despite all of this, you ought to be able to determine how much your hamster is consuming.

Keep a closer eye on his food for a few days if you see that he is eating less.

Take him right immediately to the vet if he completely stops eating.

Apparent Wounds

One of the most telling signs that a hamster is in pain is when it is hurt and has wounds.

It is your obligation to treat the wound properly. If you abandon the hamster to its agony, it may die.

Limited Movement

It is obvious that the hamsters are in pain when they stop moving. Hamsters’ movements indicate a healthy existence.

The hamster stops moving when he becomes afflicted by an illness or an obvious environmental influence.

The hamster becomes so sick from the mobility limitations that he begins to experience pain.

If your efforts to get the hamster moving are unsuccessful, you should take it to the veterinarian.

Runny Nose

A runny nose in a hamster indicates that it has a cold or the flu. It is not typical for this state to exist.

When a cold and/or runny nose lasts longer than it should, that indicates something dangerous.

When hamsters begin to flow a mucus stream from their noses, you must interpret this as an indication of pain.

Teary Eyes

Hamsters’ eyes always stay dry under normal circumstances.

When your hamster’s eyes begin to become wet or you spot one or two tears, this indicates that the hamster is experiencing some sort of issue.

You, as the hamster owner, must recognize this condition as a blatant indication of your hamster’s misery.

Skin Changes

Skin changes in hamsters are frequently a sign of many health issues, including infections that can result in redness, swelling, and even abscesses.

When an infection is present, the skin will also be flaky and prone to dryness.

Skin that is dry or dehydrated may also indicate another issue.

Lifting it over his shoulders and letting it fall can reveal any slack skin on your hamster.

The skin ought to return to its original position after you accomplish this. Dehydrated skin prevents this from happening.

If you notice that your furry buddy is scratching frequently, take him to the veterinarian to have his skin examined.

Skin conditions can cause scratching.

Gastrointestinal Illnesses

Hamsters that are dying frequently have gastrointestinal discomfort or disease.

Many of them will have stomach pain, which may cause them to eat less and be more sedentary.

Take your hamster to the veterinarian if you detect any of the symptoms because GI issues are typically not a warning of approaching mortality.

These signs include nausea, diarrhoea, and loud stomach noises, which resemble the stomach rumbling that humans also feel.

Fur Changes

The hamster’s hair is frequently impacted by skin illnesses as well.

If you find that your hamster is shedding fur at an alarmingly rapid rate, it may be a sign of an illness or another sickness.

His fur should be lustrous and full.

As hamsters mature, their fur will naturally get thinner; this is normal. Losing a lot of fur all at once is not, though.

Additionally, be sure to look at the fur on your hamster’s belly and tail.

An infection may also be indicated by the skin feeling matted or looking damp.


It is a sign that your hamster is in pain if he becomes agitated by your efforts to appease him.

Your hamster’s uncontrollable annoyance and improper conduct are signs that it is in pain.

Hamsters’ irritability may result from certain outside stimuli. Due to several illnesses and internal issues, the hamster is irritable.

Dull Behavior

Hamster dullness is a blatant indication that something is wrong. Hamsters experience pain as a result of their dullness.

It is your duty as the hamster owner to determine the cause of your hamster’s boredom. Hamsters experience fatigue in addition to feeling dull.

Any other problem, such as a hamster’s illness, might be the cause of the dullness.

The hamster is so boring and worn out that it doesn’t change throughout.

If your hamster appears lifeless for more than three days, pay attention.


Hamsters like circling, which they perform for amusement and enjoyment.

A clue that your hamster is in pain is when it circles excessively or more frequently than usual.

The hamsters increase their activity throughout the time of discomfort and anguish.

Blood in Their Discharge

If your hamster has any bloody flow coming from his nose, ears, mouth, eyes, or anus, he may be critically ill and on the verge of passing away.

Since bloody discharge can be a sign of various health conditions, see your veterinarian to establish the cause and possible course of therapy.

How Can I Comfort a Dying Hamster?

Even if we hope the notion of losing our dogs never even enters our minds, we should be ready for it.

Hamsters pass away just like people and other animals; the only distinction is how they do it.

Love, pleasure, and comfort are the three things that all hamster owners would do anything to offer to their pets right up to the very end.

Here, I’ve provided some advice on how to soothe your dying hamster right up until its passing.

To soothe your dying hamster, consider the following suggestions:

Provide a Tidy and Comfy Cage

Hamsters make tidy pets by nature. Unclean bedding or surroundings may make a dying hamster feel uncomfortable.

If your hamster already has a disease, it can make it worse. Your hamster could feel better after cleaning and sterilizing the cage.

Changing the bedding to new, tidy bedding can also aid in giving your pet the pleasant sleep they require.

Maintain Them at the Ideal Temperature

Hamsters that are sick or dying, especially the elderly ones, struggle to control their body temperatures.

They may enter a perilous state of hibernation when the temperature in their surroundings is too low.

A habitat that is too hot might put their health in jeopardy from heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

Hamsters like a room temperature of 65 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

The warmth your dying hamster needs might also be found in dried grass, hay, or wood shavings.

If You Have Other Pets, Place Your Dying Hamster in a Different Cage

If there are other hamsters in the cage with the sick or dying one, you should separate them.

To give them a well-deserved respite, away from the tension and activity of their cage mates, you should place them in a different cage or habitat.

Additionally, isolation lowers the possibility of a disease spreading to other animals.

Give Them Love and Attention

Always take care of them, even in their final hours.

If they give you the go-ahead to pet or handle them, observe their body language and behavior.

If so, you might give your hamster the warmth it needs by placing it on your lap or cradling it tenderly between your palms.

Make them feel comfortable and secure in your presence.

Provide Wholesome Meals and Enough Water

Hamsters that are ill or in the process of dying ultimately lose their appetite and become sluggish.

They must consume food and liquids on a regular basis to get the energy they require for healing.

For ease of access, put the bowls of food and water next to your hamster.

If your hamster lacks the stamina to eat or drink, you may also try feeding and hydrating them using a syringe.

Another choice is to feed them a balanced diet and tempting goodies to get them to eat.

Fruit slices like watermelons, cucumbers, and apples can help your hamster stay hydrated.

For sick and dying hamster pets, protein-rich foods like tofu, pieces of chicken, and eggs (boiled or scrambled) are also advised.

All of these should be offered in moderation, though.

Visit the Vet Frequently

Depending on the cause, dying may be a painful or peaceful process.

Hamsters may face stressful situations as a result of several deadly diseases.

In situations like this, you should see a veterinarian for advice on potential treatments and medications to lessen your hamster’s pain.

You can also choose euthanasia if you don’t want your hamster to endure protracted pain and suffering.

Even though it might be challenging to decide, there are occasions when it is the appropriate thing to do.

With your family members and the vet who will do the treatment, this issue has to be discussed.

As pet owners, losing a pet is a painful and unavoidable aspect of our life.

The last thing we can do for our pets is to make sure they are content and joyful up to their dying moments because of all the wonderful memories they have given us.


Should I Let My Hamster Pass Away Naturally?

If your hamster has a crippling condition, it might not be possible to spare the pain.

Talk to a veterinarian about your alternatives if the hamster is going to experience severe discomfort.

Although it’s a difficult option, the animal may benefit best from painless euthanasia.

The hamster in the example from Vet Times has cutaneous lymphoma. Veterinarians advise euthanasia in such a situation.

The hamster will fight through its remaining time since surgery is challenging and costly.

Choosing to put a pet down should never be taken lightly, so consult a veterinarian before making your decision.

How Long Till a Hamster Passes Away?

Your hamster might not live a complete life if it becomes ill or hurts itself.

A hamster might die instantaneously after a large impact injury from a fall from a height of more than 10 inches, although a protracted death from internal bleeding and damaged organs is more likely.

A hamster has a very short lifespan if it contracts a bacterial or viral illness.

Consider proliferative ileitis, often known as wet tail.

According to Laboratory Animals, this virus has a 90% fatality rate and can end the life of a hamster in just 48 hours.

A hamster may occasionally pass away suddenly.

Given that hamsters may get heart attacks after being subjected to significant stress, this could be the outcome of cardiac arrest.

Unfortunately, as hamsters are living creatures, they will eventually pass away.

However, this does not have to be a torturous or protracted demise. Do all in your power to console a hamster that is towards the end of its life.

How Can a Dying Hamster Be Saved?

There isn’t much you can do once your hamster begins to age-related death.

Make sure your hamster is comfortable by moving them to a calm, warm place.

Final Thoughts

Hamsters grow to be beloved members of the family.

Even though it’s difficult to see your hamster pass away, you must make every effort to make sure that those final moments are pain-free and pleasant.

To reduce stress, provide a calm and quiet living space for your hamster.

To avoid disruptions and upset, keep other pets, unknown individuals, and young children away from the enclosure.

James Taylor

James is the editor of several well-known pet publications. About pets, he has provided his expertise as a speaker at a number of significant events. He devotes the greatest time to his pet research. He is always willing to impart his expertise to his readers in this area in the most simple-to-understand manner.

Recent Posts