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Gerbils & Hamsters/orphan baby hamsters in immediate help please


I had 12 orphan hamsters born this past Sunday (only 5 days old)Mom died this morning... I have lost three. can you please help me, I have no clue what to do. I got the goats milk and trying to keep them warm, am I doing something wrong? Please, please help - Shari

Hi Shari

I'm really sorry to hear about your hamster.
Trying to hand rear hamsters from such a young age is very difficult and almost Impossible .

I knew someone who managed to save one hamster from a litter of 12 - I ended up keeping him. The important things are feeding regularly and you can get special milk powder from a vet that is for hand rearing orphaned animals and is easier to digest than cow/goats milk.  They need feeding 5 times a day.  The other important thing is keeping them warm as their body temperature drops rapidly when away from mum.

How are you getting on? Are any still alive? The closer you get to 10 days old the better as at that time they can start to eat solids and you can feed them bread, oats, seeds and baby food.

Please let me know how it's going.


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Sheila Adby


Syrian hamsters are my specialty, however, I have kept Campbells,Winter Whites and gerbils in the past. I can advise on most subjects associated with hamsters, including housing, bedding, feeding, handling, new borns and catching escapees. I have had some experience of various health problems with hamsters and can offer my opinion and advice on basic health issues, however I am not a qualified vet and therefore cannot recommend drugs etc. My website is


I have been keeping hamsters and other small animals for more than 12 years. My favourites are Syrian hamsters and I foster litters and 'difficult' hamsters for a rescue centre. My job is to tame hamsters ready for re-homing, which is extremely rewarding. I also enjoy looking after new litters and raising the pups. I have co-written a book on hamsters with my local vet and have a website:

Hamsters in Sickness and in Health - Sheila Adby and Dan O'Neill ISBN186163218-5 (Capall Bann Publishing)

Educated to A Level standard in the UK.

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