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I have a golden teddy bear hamster and we got her in Sept of

2008, so she's about a...
I have a golden teddy bear hamster and we got her in Sept of 2008, so she's about a year and half, maybe a little older.

She is active, eats drinks and runs around. She likes to be held. We noticed a while back she had a little bit of a crusty eye but thought it was normal. It didn't cover her eye. Then one day she opened her eye all the way and now, there seems to be a tiny yellow bump sticking out on top of her eye in-between the eyeball and the lid. Its hard and we tried to remove it but it seems pretty stuck on there. She doesn't want us to touch it. The bump protrudes outward and looks like yellow gook. However, her eyes look clear and black and are fully open despite this bump.

Another thing I've noticed is she has hair loss on her rump. Its basically above both legs and even on both sides. Haven't noticed her scratching or anything like that.

Any ideas how I can remove that tough crusty looking bump? I'm afraid that its really stuck in her eye or has become part of it.
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Answered in 6 minutes by:
3/6/2010
Gen B.
Gen B., Retired Veterinary Technician
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 2,227
Experience: Dog, Guinea Pig, Hamster, Gerbil breeder / Reptile Keeper / Bunny-Ferret-Exotic Specialist
Verified
What type of bedding do you use in her cage?

Is she able to close this eye (blink)?
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Customer reply replied 7 years ago
We use carefresh bedding.

Yes because when we were trying to tug on it with the towel to get it off she was squinting. I think the botXXXXX XXXXXd is whats moving though and it can come up. Since the thing sticking out is between the eyeball and her top lid I don't think the top lid moves very much if at all. I hope that makes sense?
Hello and thanks for researching this very important question!

Hamsters can develop some endocrine (hormone) conditions as they age...we do not have great treatments in all cases, since these pets are pretty fragile and sensitive to drugs. But this type of condition may account for her fur loss. Make sure that the room where she stays compensates for any cooling of her skin...say between 70-75F degrees. Give her strips of plain white paper towel or tissue to build a warm nest.

Well, I am concerned that she may have a tumor or wart growing from the inside of her eyelid (a splinter usually causes more damage, and you do not use a wood shaving bedding). A slowly developing type of growth would account for the tearing and crusting you have been seeing up until now. It is also possible for this to be a prolapsed (popped-out) tear gland.

Pulling or picking at this "lump" may cause more harm than good.

In case it is a salty tear deposit crust, you can take some warm water and try just soaking it for a few minutes to see if it will dissolve. Do not rub, just use a warm compress.

You can apply a bit of over-the-counter artificial tears ointment to the eye...then hold her or give her some treats as a distraction while the ointment dissolves across the eye. This will help to condition and protect the surface of this eye. You can use the ointment every time you see her awake and moving about.

To get a diagnosis with both of these conditions, she can be examined by a licensed veterinarian who is familiar with this species. Not all dog-and-cat handling techniques and drugs are safe for Hamsters, so you would want to find an experienced practitioner.

These sites can help you look for qualified help:
Small Pet vet directory--click here.

Exotic Mammal vet search--click here.

To discuss this subject more, please "REPLY" again.
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Customer reply replied 7 years ago
Thank you for replying. Does this site provide a way for me to include a picture? I don't have it with me at this time but would be able to provide it around 2pm. If not, I understand.

As far as the "over-the-counter artificial tears ointment" what is that? Is there a brand or something I should look for? And is it an eye drop?
You can ask your regular pharmacist for help finding the artificial tears ointment...the ointment would be longer-lasting than a liquid drop (but drops are OK if that is all they stock). Any brand is fine.

Along the top of the REPLY Box is a row of little buttons for text editing and management. The Photo Upload Button is the little green tree (just to the left of the red youtube button).

Save your photo to your Desktop (so you can find it) and size it to 1MB or smaller (so, any size KB). Then click the green tree button--the tool will then help you browse to your Desktop and upload the photo here.

I check my site messages through the day, so I will get a "ping" when your photo is ready,

Edited by Gen B. on 3/6/2010 at 6:44 PM EST
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Customer reply replied 7 years ago
graphic
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So in your opinion does it look like a tumor or an injury or a tear duct?

Also that's a picture of her rump at the bottom. I don't see any scaliness on the skin or anything.
Her bottom really does look like some kind or hormonal issue...female, thyroid or other.

The photos of her eye are a bit fuzzy...but I am inclined to think of a warty growth of some kind. It seems to have a stalk-like appearance? Like a little tube sticking out of the eyelid.

This has certainly got to be what has been causing this eye to crust.

So since she is in such great health otherwise I would probably opt to have an exotics specialist look at her...it may be that it can be removed quickly under a brief anesthesia. And there may be a recommendation of something to try to counteract the fur loss...hormones do a lot of "jobs" in the entire body, so fur loss can be an early sign of more trouble to come.
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Customer reply replied 7 years ago
Yes, the "stalk-like" appearance describes it very well. If left alone, is this the kind of thing that would over power the eye or will it stay about the same size?

So if it is a wart, will the over the counter tear ointment do anything, or is this something that can really only be treated by a doctor physically removing it?

As for the hormone issue, does that usually progress across the whole body, and does it need to be taken care of quickly? Cost is an issue for us.

Thank you for all of your help and knowledge.
The artificial tears would protect the cornea (skin of the eye) from being scratched by this growth, or by any grit or dust that gets trapped beside it. So I would certainly see if she would let you do this a few times a day at least (put the tube in your pocket ahead of time so the ointment is not cold!).

Warts may spontaneously die on their own (since they are viruses--live things with a life cycle). If you wanted to stake some hope on this happening, that seems reasonable as long as you care for the eye...check it daily and soak off any crusting tears, use the ointment.

A tumor that is an overgrowth of some kind of tissue cells (part of HER body) would continue growing without a predictable course or end point.

If her eyelid starts to curl out, or the eye starts to get pressed down (squished), then it would be time to think more urgently about this eye's health.

If the fur situation is hormonal (and with no itching or superficial scaling, I have to think this is it), the hair loss is not the worse thing that can happen. Out-of-control endocrine and sex hormones can cause heart, metabolic, liver, kidney and/or brain problems.

You would have to watch for signs that she is too sluggish in the evenings, becoming sleepy or aggressive, ignoring food or eating too much, gaining or losing weight, feeling puffy or dehydrated. These additional signs would depend on what hormone(s) are in play.

In very small bodies, as you can imagine, these complications can overtake things pretty quickly.

Get some estimates from practices for the basic examination...this tells you the minimum investment you would need to get some indication of what is going on with her. Then you can ask for estimates for treatments once the vet has had a close look at her. Things do not have to be done all-at-once if she is not having emergency symptoms.

Treatments will be pricey compared to her size, lifespan, and so forth, but I can tell she is Dear to you. You might consider applying for a line of credit against veterinary bills here:
Care Credit company click here.
Gen B.
Gen B., Retired Veterinary Technician
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 2,227
Experience: Dog, Guinea Pig, Hamster, Gerbil breeder / Reptile Keeper / Bunny-Ferret-Exotic Specialist
Verified
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Gen B.
Gen B.
Gen B., Retired Veterinary Technician
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 2,227
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Experience: Dog, Guinea Pig, Hamster, Gerbil breeder / Reptile Keeper / Bunny-Ferret-Exotic Specialist

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