How much does a hamster cost?
These adorable fluffy creatures are just the right size to fit in your hand while still being visible. They are ideal home pets for younger children learning the basics of pet care because they are typically very amiable and relaxed.
Perhaps you even have a warm spot for these radical rats and enjoy their company. However, if you haven’t owned one in a while or are considering getting one for the first time, the price is one of the most crucial elements in deciding whether to welcome one, two, or more into your house. Let’s dissect the hamster’s cost to get a clear picture of how much you’ll be shelling out.
Bringing home a new hamster: One-time cost
The initial cost of purchasing all of their required supplies and care items will be your biggest outlay. You’ll need to purchase the cage, food, bedding, and other necessary items in addition to the hamster (or hamsters).
The cost will also vary depending on where you purchase your hamster: from a private breeder, a pet shop, or an existing owner. Depending on the model you need and your budgetary and extravagant goals for the setup, prices may vary.
Most likely, you can locate someone who wants to rehome their hamster. Since many children receive hamsters, when the novelty wears off, you are left with a small animal in a cage that receives no attention.
Some pet owners or parents simply want to guarantee that the little fuzzie goes to a loving home. The cage and supplies will typically be included, but you may still need to buy a few things.
Hamsters cost $5 – $50. It varies so much depending on the type of hamster and what’s included in the purchase (such as a cage, food, etc.). Age may also play a factor.
A hamster that has been turned in to a local rescue organization has probably received a vet check up.
If you choose a breeder, they will only sell a hamster to you in its current condition without a cage. If they are kind enough to provide beginning food as a complimentary gift, you might receive a tiny bag of it.
The price of a hamster can vary significantly depending on its mutation, markings, and breed. Each breeder will set their own prices or fees in accordance with their judgment. Most are very informed about care, so occasionally buying a hamster from a specialist professional truly pays off.
You may only need to purchase some goods once when you’re ready to acquire supplies. Other essentials, as opposed to food and bedding, ought to be available from a single source up until the item ceases to work.
The cage will be where the most of your money is spent up front. Depending on how many hamsters you have, you can choose the size you require. Getting more than one is a wonderful idea so they can have buddies, but it will depend on you and how much you can initially afford.
You can replace other items like toys, wheels, and exercise balls when they become worn out. You can anticipate paying $120 up front, with subsequent monthly expenses costing $30 to $40. However, don’t let that fool you into thinking that these animals are cheap.
You need to find an exotic vet, buy food, and replace the bedding for your hamster frequently. Although a plastic home might endure longer, gnawing isn’t always avoided.
Additionally, to make sure your hamster is in peak condition, you should always take them to the veterinarian once a year. Sometimes, until your child receives a closer inspection, you might not even be aware that they are in pain.
- Health care
- $30-$300+ per year
A hamster’s medical expenses are ordinarily low, however they may increase if they experience any problems. You might quickly build up a lot of vet fees if your hamster requires x-rays or other specialist treatment.
This shouldn’t be the main issue because hamsters are often in good condition, but since it is a possibility, you should account for it in your calculations.
- $35 per year
Annual exams are crucial and should only be used as a preventative measure. If routine testing are carried out, there might be an issue with your hamster that isn’t being seen but that can be fixed or completely avoided.
A hamster’s checkup typically costs around $35 for one consultation. The cost varies according to your veterinarian’s clinic fees.
Contrary to other domesticated animals, such as dogs and cats, which may cost upwards of $100 per, hamsters don’t need any kind of preventative vaccines.
- $25 per year
Hamsters do all the labor-intensive job cleaning your teeth. They chew on just about everything because their chompers are continually growing, so they naturally file their own teeth.
Keep their teeth at the proper length if you’re looking to purchase some fantastic filers, wooden toys, or other materials. They’ll nibble as needed if you only make sure their supply is replenished.
- Treatments for parasites
- $35-$100 per year
Hamsters may encounter parasites that need to be treated. Although not certain, it is conceivable. Though you could notice symptoms or signs earlier, yearly vet exams can help you find any parasites.
Hamsters are susceptible to tapeworms, pinworms, and mites. All of these ailments can be managed with common medications, like antibiotics safe for hamsters.
- $35-$300+ per year
It’s inevitable that problems will develop when owning a pet. You might find yourself in need of assistance from an emergency veterinary facility if your hamster is hurt or ill. Sadly, there is frequently no clear upper limit on prices in this situation.
The cost of diagnosis and therapy may not be prohibitive, but it will increase as the severity of the problem increases.
Based on facility price, euthanasia, or putting your hamster to sleep, costs between $75 and $150. Hamsters frequently don’t exhibit symptoms of illness until it is quite advanced.
- Medications for on-going conditions
- $120+ per year
Just like any other animal, hamsters can experience health problems. Most of the time, the issue may be resolved with normal antibiotics for a week or two. However, as they age, your hamster may require daily medicine.
Liver and renal problems can affect hamsters. Even though nutrition is a major element in health, they might need medication to assist them stay stable. The cost will change depending on the meds.
- $50-$80 per year
As herbivores, hamsters require a diet rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. The majority of their nutritional demands may typically be met by commercial pellets. Giving your hamster some fresh fruits, vegetables, and grains is also a wonderful idea.
Most edible hamster snacks cost close to nothing because they are typically something you can find in your refrigerator (like carrots, broccoli, berries, and bananas.) However, you should also provide them with rodent-specific treats like Timothy hay.
- Environment maintenance
- $220 per year
You must maintain a clean and clutter-free cage for your hamster. You’ll need to factor in replacement prices because they urinate inside their cage and chew on everything.
One bag of high-quality bedding ought should last one to two hamsters for around a month.
Your hamster’s cage can be cleaned with normal soap, water, and a vinegar solution. This mixture is affordable and completely safe for your hamster.
The majority of the adorable small house shelters in hamster cages are constructed of chewable materials like wood or cardboard. You may have to spend more money than you anticipated if they experience any strange health problems. A house will most likely only need to be replaced once or twice a year in reality.
Water bottles normally endure for a while, but if one is damaged or stops working, you may need to replace it.
- $20-$50 per year
Each hamster will have a distinct cost for entertainment. You might have a hamster that is peaceful and barely chews. Or, you can have a hamster that is overly active and inclined to mischief.
You’ll need to constantly replace these items if your hamster enjoys nibbling on brand-new toys. But one should put in a year or more of effort with running wheels and workout balls!
Total annual cost of owning a hamster
- $400-$600+ per year
Overall, you can expect to spend at least $400 on your pet hamster annually. This cost may go up slightly or drastically depending on your individual hamster’s needs – and how many hamsters you have.
Even though emergency vetting and other circumstances might not arise for several years after you get a hamster, you should be ready to pay for them just in case.
Owning a hamster on a budget
It’s OK to occasionally need to save money on care bills. If you find yourself short on money, you can substitute certain monthly expenses.
You can even employ these techniques frequently, but if you alter your hamster’s diet in any way, be sure to meet all of its nutritional needs.
Saving money on hamster care
- Use substitute bedding. Instead of dishing out money for bedding, you can use toilet paper, newspaper, or paper towels you have at home.
- Toilet paper rolls come in handy. Rather than restocking chew toys that can get pricey, give your hamster a leftover paper towel or toilet document roll to chew on. You may also give them pieces of cardboard from those Amazon packages that always roll in. If you choose to add in cage liners to keep the floor clean, there’s an extra expense, but it can be worth it for sanitary reasons. If you are struggling to buy a bag of commercial pellets until payday, look in your cabinet. It is possible to give your hamster a little mix of items you already have at home like fresh fruits and veggies, grains, and nuts.
- Consider fleece blankets. A newer concept for rodent-owners is using fleece blankets in place of bedding. Your hamster can snuggle up, hide, or lay on top of these blankets-plus, they are very absorbent, washable, and reusable.
Now you can see just how much you’ll be spending upfront for your furry friend. Costs decrease significantly after the initial buying process. You can expect to drop $120 right away, with monthly costs averaging $30 to $40 thereafter.
Depending on vet care and other expenses, you can shell out over $600 per year. So, don’t be fooled into thinking that hamsters are always inexpensive. Like any other pet, they can be pricey with care, but it’s worth the reward.
If you want more helpful advice on looking after your hamster, including tips on food, toys, accessories and accommodation, add a comment below to let us know!
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