All animals have a heartbeat. It is the muscle that pumps blood throughout the body. When they think of a heartbeat, most people think of a slow, steady pulse. However, for some people, their hamster’s heart is beating so fast that it is alarming.
In this blog post, we will explore some potential reasons why your hamster’s heart is beating so fast and what you can do about it. So, if you are concerned about your hamster’s heartbeat, keep reading!
Read: Can Fear or Emotional Stress Lead to a Hamster’s Death? [11 Reasons]
Can Your Hamster Have Fast Heartbeat?
If you’ve ever owned a hamster, you know they’re incredibly active little creatures. They love to play and run around and are always on the go. So it’s not surprising that their hearts must work hard to keep up with their activity level. Your hamster’s heart rate can be as high as 400 beats per minute!
While a high heart rate may seem like cause for concern, it’s perfectly normal for a healthy hamster. Their little hearts are just built to work a bit harder than ours. However, some medical conditions can cause your hamster’s heart to beat too fast.
If you notice that your hamster’s heart is beating faster than usual, or if they seem to be having trouble breathing, it’s important to take quick action.
Hamster’s Heart Brief Anatomy
As you know, hamsters are small animals with big hearts. Their hearts beat faster than ours – on average, between 300 and 400 and even reach 600 beats per minute. That’s about four to eight times as fast as the human heart!
So what does a healthy hamster heart look like? And how can you tell if your hamster’s heart rate is too high or too low? First, let’s take a look at the anatomy of the hamster’s heart.
The heart comprises four chambers – two upper chambers (the atria) and two lower chambers (the ventricles). Blood enters the heart through the right atrium, which is pumped into the right ventricle. From there, it is pumped into the lungs, picking up oxygen.
The oxygen-rich blood returns to the heart through the left atrium and is pumped into the left ventricle. The left ventricle is pumped out to the rest of the body. The heart is made up of muscle tissue, which contracts to pump blood through the heart.
The autonomic nervous system controls the heart muscle contract rate, which regulates automatic functions like heart rate and blood pressure.
In a healthy hamster, the heart muscle contracts regularly and evenly, and the blood flows smoothly through the chambers and valves of the heart.
Now let’s look at what can happen when the heart doesn’t work properly.
If the heart muscle contracts too slowly, it is called bradycardia. This can be caused by various things, including heart disease, electrolyte imbalances, and certain medications. Bradycardia can lead to low blood pressure and insufficient blood flow to the organs.
If the heart muscle contracts too quickly, it could be tachycardia. Tachycardia can be caused by stress, anxiety, heart disease, electrolyte imbalances, and certain medications. This medical condition can result in high blood pressure and inefficient blood flow.
If the heart muscle contracts irregularly, it can be an arrhythmia. Arrhythmias can result from heart disease, electrolyte imbalances, and certain medications. Effects of this disease include blood clots, stroke, and heart failure.
Is High Heartbeat Fatal in Hamsters?
As a hamster owner, you might wonder if your hamsters can die because of a high heartbeat. After all, their hearts are pretty small, and they seem to beat very fast. The answer is yes; hamsters can die from a high heartbeat. It is one of the most common causes of death in hamsters.
A high heartbeat can be dangerous for hamsters because it can lead to cardiac arrest. When the heart beats too fast, it doesn’t have time to pump blood properly around the body. This can cause the blood pressure to drop and lead to cardiac arrest.
In most cases, a high heartbeat in hamsters is caused by stress. So, if you can identify what is causing your hamster’s stress and remove it, its heart rate should return to normal.
Symptoms that Your Hamster’s Heart is Beating Fast
When it comes to our furry little friends, we want nothing more than for them to be healthy and happy. However, sometimes health problems can crop up unexpectedly – and one of the most worrying things you might notice is that your hamster’s heart appears to be beating faster than normal.
Here are some symptoms you should look out for, which could indicate that your hamster’s heart is beating too fast.
One of the hamsters’ most common symptoms of a fast heartbeat is increased activity. If your hamster is normally lazy and laid-back but suddenly starts running around its cage a lot more, it could be a sign that something is wrong.
Another symptom to look out for is panting. This is when your hamster breathes rapidly and with its mouth open, which it would normally only do if they were very hot or stressed. If your hamster is panting for no apparent reason, it’s a good idea to be serious about it.
If you notice that your hamster’s heartbeat appears to be racing or that they are having difficulty breathing, these are both serious symptoms, and you should seek veterinary attention immediately.
Read: How To Make a Hamster Wheel Silent – My 6 Helpful Tips
Reasons Why Your Hamster’s Heartbeat is Fast
If you’re noticing that your hamster’s heart is beating faster than normal, it could cause concern. However, excitement is one of the hamsters’ most common reasons for a fast heart rate.
If your hamster runs around their cage or plays with toys, its heart rate will increase. This is completely normal and nothing to be concerned about. Besides, there are several potential reasons why this may be happening, so it’s important to take your hammy to the vet to rule out any serious health problems.
One potential reason for a fast heartbeat is that your hamster suffers from heart disease. This is relatively common in older hamsters and can be caused by several things, including blockages in the arteries or valves or an enlarged heart. If your vet suspects your hamster has heart disease, they may recommend treatment with medication.
Another reason your hamster’s heart may be beating fast is that they are suffering from stress. This can be caused by several things, including changes in their environment, such as a new pet or baby in the home or a move to a new home.
If you think stress may cause your hamster’s fast heartbeat, try to make their environment as stable and stress-free as possible. This may involve ensuring they have a hiding place to retreat when they feel overwhelmed and providing them with plenty of toys and playtime.
A final reason your hamster’s heart may be beating fast is that they are suffering from a respiratory infection. This can be caused by several things, including bacteria, viruses, or even allergies.
Suppose your hamster has a fast heartbeat and is also wheezing or having difficulty breathing. In that case, it’s important to take medical help immediately, as they may need antibiotics or other medication.
Read: Why Is My Hamster Rolling On His Back? [8 Causes & How to Help]
Things to Remember
Your hamster’s heart is beating too fast. You’re not sure what to do. You don’t want to take them to the vet just yet, but you’re not sure how to treat your hamster’s high heartbeat before going.
Here are some things you can do:
- Check their diet. A high-sugar diet can cause a hamster’s heart to race. Cut back on sweets and sugary foods.
- Give them plenty of exercise. A hamster that isn’t active enough can also have a high heart rate. Make sure they have a wheel or other way to burn off energy.
- Check for other health problems. If your hamster is overweight, it can put a strain on its heart. Make sure they’re at a healthy weight by feeding them a balanced diet and giving them plenty of exercise.
- Monitor their heart rate. If you notice that their heart rate is still high after changing their diet and exercise, take them to the vet. They may need medication to help regulate their heart rate.
- Know when to take them to the vet. If your hamster’s heart rate is consistently over 400 beats per minute, it’s time to take them to the vet. They may need medication or surgery to correct the problem.
If you think your hamster’s heart rate is high, don’t wait to take them to the vet. The sooner you get them treated, the better their chances are for a full recovery.
Our Final Thoughts
If you’re concerned about your hamster’s heart rate, the best thing to do is to take them to the vet for a check-up. This way, the vet can rule out any serious health problems and help you to find the cause of the fast heartbeat. Once the cause has been identified, you can then take steps to address it and help your hamster to feel better.
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My name is Everly. I am a Milwaukee-based mom of 2 and have been a proud owner of many hamsters throughout my life. Like many of us, my introduction to hamsters happened when I was very young. My family saw several hamsters come and go through the years, and I enjoyed playing with them, but I never fully appreciated them until I grew up and my own children decided to jump on the hamster bandwagon. At that point, I was determined to learn all I could about caring for these adorable pets. Read more