Congrats on welcoming home your new pet

THE PETCO NEW HAMSTER GUIDE

We’ll help you navigate pet parenthood with helpful tips, expert guidance and recommendations for every milestone.

1. SETTING UP THE PERFECT HOME

Fill your space with supplies and essentials before your hamster arrives to help them feel comfortable and safe from the start.

Habitats

Provide the largest habitat possible with a securely attached top so your hamster can hide, bury, exercise and play without escaping.

Bedding

Fill their habitat with 1–2 inches of high-quality, commercially available, paper-based bedding or crumbled paper.

Food bowls

Food bowls help keep your hamster’s food free of contamination.

Exercise wheels

Help encourage daily activity with a wheel that has a smooth surface so they don’t get injured.

Water bottles & bowls

Provide and refill clean, fresh water daily.

2. Finding the right food

Set a strong foundation for your new pet’s physical health with quality nutrition.

Food

Feed them a species-appropriate, high-fiber, low-sugar diet.

Treats

Be sure treats make up no more than 10 percent of their diet and include quality ingredients plus vital nutrients so they stay at a healthy weight.

3. KEEPING YOUR hamster HAPPY

Bond and play with them every day to help support their home and social health.

Toys

Help stimulate their mind with hamster-safe toys that don’t have small pieces of rubber they could ingest.

Hideaways

Provide a safe place for them to retreat when they want privacy, plus explore hay and wood options they can chew when they’re bored.

4. Understanding your hamster

Hamsters have a lot of energy and can be great companions when you properly socialize them. Below are some key behaviors to know so you can help them adjust.

Cheek pouches

Their cheeks may be a different size when they are carrying food and other items in their mouth.

Running

Hamsters are naturally fast runners and can even run backward.

Moods

Hamsters have a variety of moods, and research shows that having toys and cozy bedding can make for a more well-adjusted hamster.

5. BUILDING A ROUTINE

A consistent routine for cleaning, bathing and dental care can help support their wellbeing while they settle in.

Cleaning

Bedding should be spot cleaned daily, and the entire habitat should be cleaned thoroughly at least once a week.

Chew Sticks

Because their teeth are constantly growing, it’s important hamsters have chew sticks to help naturally wear them down so they stay at a healthy length.

Grooming

Brushing your hamster gives you bonding time together and promotes a clean, shiny coat free of tangles.