How far do hamsters run in a day (or night) ?

Amanda used to have two little white hamsters. One of them died suddenly about 18 months ago, but the other one had been happily carrying on, despite its age.

While I was over with Amanda for Christmas and New Year little old hamster was finally starting to suffer. The poor little thing had developed a huge tumour on one of its front legs and, although it was bravely carrying on doing little hammie things, it was obviously starting to get in distress. So we had to let the vet do the kindest thing. Sorry hammie. 😥

So Amanda, being Amanda, went out and got two more and a brand new cage for them.

Mrs. Hammy 1

Mrs. Hammy 1

Mrs. Hammy 2

Mrs. Hammy 2

Mrs. Hammy 3

Mrs. Hammy 3

Mrs. Hammy 4

Mrs. Hammy 4

As is normal for them only Mrs. Hammy was out and about when we got the camera to hand; Mr. was having a little nap (again !). 😉

The ball at the top of the cage has a really neat feature. (Every hamster owner should get one !) There is a digital counter built in to the cage, and each time a certain point on the surface of the ball goes past it, up goes the count.

Brilliant… Now you know how many times your hammies have been round on their wheel !

From that it is then primary grade mathematics to work out how far they have travelled since the last time you reset the counter.

Ok, so with two hammies sharing one ball one can’t say how far each of them has travelled, Mrs. definitely does a lot more running than Mr. that’s for sure, and they quite often run in tandem… oh yes, both side by side trundling away, haha ….. but what do you think ? What would you reckon is the longest distance these little critters have racked up over a 24 hour period ?

I’ve heard that they do travel quite a distance in the wild, but I mean they sleep most of the day and do most of their running at night, so it can’t be that far, can it ?

Can it ?

How about a fraction short of 11 miles !
….. just over 17.5km ! 😯

They must be crazy !!!!!

Mind you, that was when it was bit chilly at night. Now it’s started to get a bit hotter and steamier they’re only doing about a quarter of that, but Wow !

The things you learn. 🙂

Update: 20th July 2010
See here for further stories and information about how far hamsters run in a day.

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2 Responses to “How far do hamsters run in a day (or night) ?”

  1. Dave Says:

    My son has recently started a science project to monitor how far and how fast a hamster runs a day.
    We’ve hooked up a cycle computer to his Mother’s hamster’s wheel and he and his sister have bought hamsters – I just need to get good wheels for them and some more cycle computers.
    So far, anything between 3 and 10km seems to be possible.
    If you let me have your email address, we’ll let you know in May what the final results are.

    • honorarynewfie Says:

      Hi Dave,
      and my apologies for not replying sooner.
      How fast they go is an interesting one; I hadn’t considered that aspect of it. Yes I would be interested in the results of your boy’s experiment. I have your e-mail address from your comment, so I’ll respond through that so that you get mine.
      We’ve had to separate our two as they’ve started to become a little more “adult” and, after some experimenting of their own, we think there’s a possibility of the patter of tiny paws in the offing. Mr now has his own cage and ball, and his new-found vitality has lifted him off to 9 miles a day. Mrs is much more interested in building a nest in her wheel at the moment. 😀


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