Can a Cat and a Hamster Live Together?
Many people have their doubts before adopting a new pet, especially if they already have a pet of a different species. Cats and hamsters in particular seem a difficult combination. However, even if a good relationship is hard to achieve, it is not impossible for cats and hamsters to respect each other and cohabit under the same roof - as long as some precautions are taken.
In this AnimalWised article we'll detail some options and suggestions so that you can keep these two pets; we'll answer your question of can a cat and a hamster live together so that you don't have to choose.
Cats are predators
While it is true that cats have become domestic animals and are very popular pets for lots of families across the world, we must keep in mind that cats are and always will be predators - and that mice are their favorite prey.
However, we shouldn't generalize. A cat's behavior towards a hamster will always depend on each cat's character and individual personality. It's highly important that the cat becomes familiar with other pets - including these small rodents. To achieve that, there is no better option than raising a cat and a hamster together since they're small - although it's true that young cats tend to be more active predators than older ones.
It is very common for older cats to not pay much attention to other pets; this can also happen if the cat has been properly familiarized with them, as we said before.
Introducing a cat and a hamster
To begin with, the first thing to do when you adopt a new pet is to properly introduce them to the other animal. Let the cat and hamster get to know each other, always separated by the cage. Monitor their attitudes; see if the cat is passive or tries to catch the hamster, or whether the hamster is scared. This will determine if these pets can cohabit or not.
Once this has been observed, pay attention to any predator instinct from the cat. We recommend that you put a wire mesh or wire around the hamster's cage or that you place it in an inaccessible closed room when you leave the house. Cats are clever animals and they will learn how to open the cage's door quickly - prevent a major upset.
Can cats and hamsters become friends?
Although friendships between hamsters and cats are not common nor fruitful, in occasions we'll find that the cat doesn't feel the pull to hunt, and instead wants to play with the new tiny pet. This happens more often with kittens, and it's the best moment and situation to socialize them and get an exceptional friendship.
It is possible for cats and hamsters to cohabit as long as these precautions are taken and we procede with care. We should always respect their limits.
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