Hamsters appear to be easy-care pets, but the reality is quite the opposite. Hamsters are highly fragile animals with short lifespans. However, their short life span might become even shorter if they are not adequately cared for.
This is why some individuals buy hamsters for themselves or family to realize that they lack time to care for them properly. In such instances, several pet shelters accept hamsters needing new homes. So, if you’re wondering where can I take my unwanted hamster, look no further. You’ve landed on the right page.
Why Would Someone Want To Give Away Their Hamster?
It might be challenging to say goodbye to a pet. Taking care of a pet might be difficult if you have a hectic lifestyle or have just had a kid. Many individuals feel awful about giving up a pet. You must, however, recognize that it is one of the most responsible and excellent decisions you can make for your pet.
Neglected pets might become unhappy and even sick. Pets such as hamsters need much love and care from their owners to flourish and be happy. If you cannot provide all these things for your hamster, it is better to find a new home where they will receive the love and care they need. Here are a few reasons why someone would want to give away their pet hamster:
- Hamsters need to play outside of their cages a few times daily
- Hamsters require an enclosure that measures 80 by 50 to 100 by 50 cm (depending on the species), which may occupy a substantial amount of space
- Hamsters have a reputation for breaking free from their cages. They may climb the walls of their cage and escape if the cages are not appropriately secured. This can cause stress to owners who may go through a lot of trouble and stress to look for their hamsters now and then
- Hamster cages need to be spot cleaned often to ensure hygiene
- Hamsters must receive daily treats like vegetables and fruits from their owners
- Hamster wheels are loud and may cause owners trouble sleeping when hamsters run on their wheels at night
- If hamsters are not appropriately trained, they can be aggressive. This may be dangerous for people who have young children, as hamsters can bite their fingers
These commitments may be a lot for some individuals, so they may decide to give away their pet hamsters.
Read: Can Hamsters Eat Green Leaf Lettuce?
Where Can I Take My Unwanted Hamster?
Giving away a pet is a show of love for the animal since you give them away to ensure they can have a chance at a much better life. So, if you are someone who does not want a hamster anymore, or you have inherited a hamster after a loved one’s passing and are unable to take care of it, here are a few responsible ways you can get rid of your unwanted hamster.
Pet Rescues and Shelters
There are several pet shelters all around the world that accept unwanted pets, no matter where you reside. These pet shelters then care for the animals and place them up for adoption to guarantee they find forever homes.
So if you have an unwanted hamster, one of the best things to do is search pet shelters or hamster/ mall animal rescues near me to find the best shelter for them. However, remember that you cannot simply call a shelter and expect them to pick up your hamster.
When you contact a shelter about giving up your hamster, the shelter representatives may sit with you to ask why you want to give away your hamster and give you possible solutions to any problems you might be facing.
They may also offer financial assistance or refer you to facilities that provide training and financial aid to people who may be struggling with taking care of their pets.
Therefore, if you go to a shelter, do not just think that you will leave your hamster there since it is a lengthy process. You may have to keep your hamster with you for a few days after contacting the shelter until the shelter has completed all the required documentation and the processes needed to take in a pet.
Once a shelter can accommodate your hamster, remember that until your hamster finds its forever home, it will stay in the shelter. The organization will pay for its medical care, food, and accommodation throughout that period.
Important Note: Regardless of whether the animal rescue or shelter does not have space for your hamster, it might be able to put you in touch with nearby rescue groups that can assist. Therefore, contacting any facilities you come across in your neighborhood is usually worthwhile.
Relatives, Colleagues or Friends
Another great way to find your pet hamster a loving home is to ask around relatives, friends, neighbors, or colleagues if they are looking to adopt a hamster. The fact that you know this person will also help you determine better if they will be able to take care of the hamster responsibly.
Moreover, if someone you know adopts the pet, it will reduce the guilt or stress you might feel after giving away your hamster. You can get regular updates on how your hamster is doing and also possibly visit it.
Social media platforms such as Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook are also great ways to connect with people who might be looking to adopt a hamster. You will also find specific pages dedicated to pet adoption, which people can join on these social media platforms.
By becoming a member of these pages and groups, you can post details about your hamster, and people who live nearby may contact you.
If you bought your hamster from a pet store, you might be able to sell it back to the same retailer. So you may contact the pet store and inquire whether they accept returns on the pets they sold. Furthermore, if your hamster is older than 12 weeks, the pet store is less likely to purchase it back.
Hamsters have a short lifespan; after 12 weeks, pet retailers stop selling them and give them to rescue organizations. It is best to contact the pet shop and ask for guidance on returning the hamster. If the store does not take the hamster back, you can always ask them for advice on the nearby rescue shelters.
Check here: Can Hamsters Eat Grass From Outside?
Can I Release My Hamster In Nature?
Some individuals may think that releasing a hamster back into the wild may be a great way to get rid of an unwanted hamster, and they may feel like they are doing the animal a favor.
However, doing so will equal a death sentence for the poor animal. Hamsters who have lived in captivity their whole lives don’t know how to survive in the wild.
When released, the hamster will not know how to hide or protect itself from other predators and will probably become prey for snakes or cats.
Moreover, hamsters who have lived in captivity and in clean cages their whole lives do not have strong immune systems that can fight diseases or parasites they may become exposed to out in the wild.
Hamsters who have lived in captivity may also not know how to catch their prey as they are all used to getting fresh food in their food bowls. Therefore, it is very likely that the hamster will die due to starvation or dehydration.
Furthermore, hamsters originate from different regions, so they may not be capable of surviving in varying climates. The bedding you use for your hamster cage is also substantially different from the natural bedding in the wild. If your hamster is used to burrowing within artificial bedding, it may struggle to acclimate to the harsh terrain found in the wild.
Moreover, many people may not know this, but the release of pets into the wilderness is also subject to legal restrictions. Non-native hamsters endanger indigenous wildlife and vegetation by destroying habitats and reproducing.
Hamsters use this bedding to feel comfortable and warm. If a hamster cannot burrow correctly, it can significantly stress out, and it might die due to fear or climate conditions.
These reasons conclude that releasing pet hamsters in the wild is irresponsible and cruel. So, if you want to get rid of a hamster, you owe it to the animal to find a loving home where it will be cared for.
Now that we have answered your question, where can I take my unwanted hamster? We hope you have some direction on what to do with your unwanted pet hamster. Remember that rehoming any animal may be stressful for them, so take special care of your pet hamster during the entire process.
Furthermore, never release domesticated animals into the wild and always do all in your ability to find them loving homes since domestic animals cannot survive in the wild. Instead, contact pet rescues, shelters, relatives, friends, or the pet shop where you got the hamster to ensure you give the animal away to caring hands.
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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