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My name is XXXXX XXXXX I have been a Vet Tech for 30+ years working with Pets and Pocket pets. hair loss that you are seeing could be from various. The rubbing in the tube is a very good possibility since he is on the chubby side. Another reason we may see this hair loss is a dietary problem. Depending on the diet you are feeding the diet may be too rich in grains causing Henry to be overweight and a secondary dietary alopecia (hair loss).This is a link on diet and what veggies and foods you can add to the diet: http://www.hamsterific.com/nutrition.cfm This can also be a sign of renal failure in older hamsters, but from your description he is not exhibiting any of the signs. We aslo see mites in hamsters that cause hair loss, but you would notice scratching due to the itchiness. I would add some fresh veggies to the diet and reduce any fancy foods, add 2 drops of cod liver oil to the daily diet, and make sure that the bedding is not irritating him. Wood beddings like cedar and pine can cause skin problems as well as toxicity affecting the breathing in Rodents. This is a link on Hair Loss in Hamsters: http://www.hamsterific.com/illnessguide.cfm#HairLoss
I would be happy to locate some hamster and Rodent Vets should you choose to have Henry seen by a Vet. Please let me know if you have further questions and I will be happy to continue with you. My goal is 100% Excellent Service. Joan
Thank you! That helps alot. Just one more question. I've always used the pine bedding for Henry, but I'll throw in some cotton balls that he likes to use as his bed. Is cotton, or shreds of paper towels, bad to use because of the bleach content?
Get rid of the Pine it can be deadly for small rodents. You can use newspaper because it is made with soy ink, paper towels, or a bedding called Carefresh or Yesterday's News. The pine needs to go asap: http://www.ratfanclub.org/litters.html I hope all goes well with Henry. Please do not forget to rate my service before leaving. I would like to me my goal of Excellent Service. Please ask for me if you need further help. joan