My hampster is shaking and moving very slowly. She is awake now during the day which is unusual, but just laying at times with her eyes open and shaking. What do you think is wrong with her? She is almost 2 years old.
Is the hamster passing stool?
Is the stool soft or pellets?
Is the hamster passing normal urine?
What type of bedding are you using?
What type of diet are you feeding?
Has the hamster been eating and drinking?
The hampster is passing stool in the form of pellets. I'm not sure if it is passing normal urine, but I did change the bedding last evening so I can tell that it did urinate overnight. The bedding is Healthy Pet brand pet bedding (brown shredded blobs of paper). We've used that ever since we've gotten the hampster, so no change there. The food we typically feed is Hartz Hampster and Gerbil Food although before Christmas we switched to Hartz Small Animal Diet for Guinea Pigs as it has more of the small kibble in it and less of the tiny seeds which our hampster doesn't seem to like very much. We also give her a small amount of Extreme! Fruit and Nut Small Animal Treats which are dried fruits, seeds and some nuts. Occasionally we'll give her a bit of a fresh carrot, lettuce, or piece of fruit like an apple or banana. Our hampster doesn't seem to have a very good appetite right now, but we were able to get her to eat a couple shreds of lettuce and some oats last night. Normally she loves the dried fruit, but wasn't interested in that last evening. She was not active overnight (usually runs on her wheel). She is still shaking this morning (looks kind of like a palsy). When she walks she is unstable, although she did still crawl through one of her tubes OK. I have not seen the hampster drink. We tried to get her to for us, but she didn't. She did urinate overnight, so my guess is she is still drinking.
I suspect part of the problem may be the age. The hamster life span is 2-21/2 years and on rare occassions 3 years of age. In an older hamster strokes, cancer and organ issues are very common. Since there is shaking I am suspecting that we may be dealing with a Neurological issue and a possible stroke.
At this point I would like to try some fisrt aid to help your girl. Please get a mixture called Oxbow Critical Care: http://www.oxbowanimalhealth.com/vets/products/critical_care You will want to mix per the directions and start to feed in small increments during the the day.The Critical Care is a recovery food and complete diet. You can put some Plain Pedialyte in the water to help with electrolyte balance.
I would keep the hamster as quiet as possible in a darkened room and see if this helps the Hamster. If it was a stroke they can recover but keeping the hamter as quiet and low key is very important.
As far as diet, I do not care for the Hartz foods and Kaytee has just had a recall. This link goes over a good diet and and some safe treats for the hamster: http://www.hamsterific.com/nutrition.cfm This is one of the best foods on the market for hamsters: http://www.petsmart.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2754062
I am also going to give you a link to locate a Vet who can treat the Hamster if this if the Hamster does not seem to get better: Put the word memeber in each blank and it will bring up a list by state: http://www.rmca.org/Resources/vets.htm/
I hope this helps. Joan
The hampster is eating and drinking and mostly resting. It does not seem quite so shaky. Was not able to find a web site to purchase the Oxbow critical care. May try a pet store later today. Do you have any recommendations for food for a recovery hampster which we are likely to have on a hand?
The Critical care is a recovery food a Vet would sell the Critical Care. If you cannot get that the Mazuri hamster food is excellent, or Lab blocks with some fresh foods as treats. Hard boiled egg or scrambled, whole grain bread,some fresh veggies. This list will help: http://www.hamsterific.com/hamsteruniversity/foodlist.html
Plain Pedialyte is good to keep on hand for dehydration. Joan