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Hamster Not Walking Well

If your hamster is not walking well, it’s likely that you’ll need to take your pet to the vet. Below we’ve outlined some potential causes for this symptom, but it’s likely you’ll need to take your pet to the vet for a proper diagnosis.

Falls and accidents - has your hamster has suffered a fall recently? If so, your hamster may have a paralysed or broken leg (or legs), which mean it needs to be taken to a vet.

Scurvy - if you don’t provide enough vitamin C to your hamster, then it may develop the condition known as scurvy. In serious cases, this disease can paralyse your pet’s back legs or cause them to seize up, forcing your hamster to hop around. Make sure you’re giving your pet foods containing enough vitamin C, as well as all the other nutrients your pet needs.

watch how hamsters walk
Sometimes a hamster's gait can indicate health problems

Strokes - if your hamster is rocking backwards and forwards when it’s sitting down, or is swaying as it walks, then your hamster may have suffered a stroke. Some damage caused by strokes can heal, but some is permanent. If you take your hamster to be checked by a vet, then they may be able to tell you how extensive the damage is, and to what extent your pet will recover. If your hamster has had a stroke then it can lead a full life, but sometimes it may need help eating and drinking. We recommend taking your hamster to the vet if you think it’s had a stroke, not necessarily to get treatment, but in case your hamster now has some specific requirements that it will need you to fulfill.

Dehydration - if your hamster is suddenly listless and not walking around much, then there’s a strong chance that your hamster is either severely dehydrated, or has a serious illness. If your hamster is showing these symptoms and you don’t think your pet is hibernating, we recommend taking these hamsters to see a vet.

Old age - if your hamster is slightly older, and the tendency to walk around less has been very gradual, then this may be simply because of old age. As hamsters get older, like humans, they become a little less likely to be quite as active as they once were.

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Jenna, 14 June 2021

My hamster had one of his playhouses on top of his leg and was stuck. I realized this when i woke up so I don’t know how long it was there. I got it off but now his leg is sticking up and he’s limping and licking his leg. It’s currently 8:30am and I can’t get to a vet until 4:30. Will he be okay? Will it be okay to wait that long or should I try to get there sooner?

Penelope, 30 May 2021

hello. my hamster is very old and i think she is a Siberian hamster. she is 2.5 years old and her hind legs have not been the best. i noticed it today when i was cleaning her cage. her hind legs would slip, flail and drag and she kept falling on her side. i asked my parents and they said it was probably her time to go. we think she is just old. im sorry this comment is all over the place. im trying now to make her last days as comfortable as possible and trying to spend as much time as i can with her. i am also feeding her her fav foods. i hope she is not in pain. i know shes probably just old but cant help but feel guilty. if anyone has any tips please let me know

Mary, 15 April 2021

My hamster just fell from the couch where I lost her and down to the first floor. She's a roberrovski female and she's been having trouble walking. we've been trying everything but she doesn't seem to be healing. what do I do? please answer quickly as she's having a hard time moving.

An Omleteer, 26 April 2020

Last night, my hamster was falling on its side, and shaking, along with only opening its eyes a little bit. It's almost in a ball, and feels very thin. It's a male Syrian, and he's not even 1. Today, he seems better, because he's moving and walking better, and his eyes are fully open. He is still very hunched over, and although we gave him a lot of food, he still feels thin. Normally, he looks chubby. I'm worried, and I'm wondering what is wrong. What should I do?

Jane, 29 August 2019

My daughters hamster seem to be taking seizures and then lies on my hand and sleeps for few secs then gets up again walks then another seizure will start wat can be rong n wat can i do to help the poor wee thing HELP