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very healthy.

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We have a hamster that...
We have a hamster that is about a year old. It has been very healthy. Until we found him today. His face is swollen,(I don't know if he has food in it or just swollen). When we tried to open his mouth his tonge was sticking out. One of his eyes is crusted over and he is lethargic and wobbely when he walks. Any ideas on what this is?
Submitted: 8 years ago.Category: Pet
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Answered in 8 hours by:
6/9/2010
Pet Specialist: Anna, Pet Expert/Biologist replied 8 years ago
Anna
Anna, Pet Expert/Biologist
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 11,949
Experience: 40 yrs.: herps, pocket pets, rabbits, poultry, dogs, horses. Biology degree. Vet assistant.
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Hello,

I'm sorry to see that no one has responded to your question earlier. Different experts come online at various times; I just came online and saw your question.

The location of the swelling means it could be an impacted or infected cheek pouch. That could happen in one night. Hamsters tend to carry everything around in their pouches, and sometimes end up with something in a pouch that won't come out. Fluffy bedding or sticky foods are likely culprits. If it swells enough, it can cause the eye to close partially or completely. Other possibilities include an infection, a dental problem, or a tumor.There is nothing you can do at home to treat any of these - your hamster will need to be seen by a vet. The following links will take you to directories of vets who treat small rodents. At the first site, you'll come to a log-in page. Sign in as 'member' and use 'member' as your password XXXXX well.


http://www.rmca.org/Vets/index.php?action=list


http://www.ratfanclub.org/vetref.html

Wobbling can be a sign that the hamster has become dehydrated or hypoglycemic. I'll give you some first aid measures to take. Put a few drops of maple syrup, Karo syrup, or honey in her mouth. Repeat this once per hour. Get some Pedialyte (made for human infants and available in discount stores and pharmacies). Use a syringe to put a few drops in the side of your hamster's mouth. For the first hour, give some every ten minutes, after that, once per hour. These measures may keep your hamster alive long enough to take him to a vet.

If you have more questions, just let me know by clicking on REPLY. I hope your hamster will reach a full recovery.

Anna
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago

Can the vet do anything for a hamster that has a stroke or infection in the pouch?

Pet Specialist: Anna, Pet Expert/Biologist replied 8 years ago
An infection in the cheek pouches can be effectively treated with prescription antibiotics. A vet can clean out impacted cheek pouches. There is no medical treatment for stroke in hamsters. Symptoms of a stroke often include weakness on one side, dragging the back legs, and in-coordination. Some hamsters do recover from strokes over a period of several weeks. They often have to be hand fed and hand watered during that time.

Anna
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