If you just brought home a hamster or are setting up for a new arrival, you are most likely wondering about the best place for its cage. Your hamster will spend a lot of time in its home. It is important the environment is safe, comfortable, and nourishing.
Did you know that cage placement is just as important as what's inside its home? Alongside which room the cage is going in, you might be questioning if the cage should be on the floor, up on a cabinet, or on its own stand. We gathered our research to answer where you should place your hamster's cage and if the floor is an appropriate place for it.
Can you keep a hamster's cage on the floor? Yes, you can - but, should you? This depends. You can keep your hamster's cage on the floor if the environment meets specific requirements or standards. You should not keep your hamster's home on the floor if your hammie will be subjected to cold drafts or other animals in the household.
If you are thinking about placing your hamster's home on the floor, it is crucial the environment is up to standard. Keep reading as we define when it's okay to pick the floor as your placement and discuss other areas where your hamster cage may go.
Where Should I Put My Hamster Cage?
You can get creative with hamster cage placement, but there are some conditions that will need to be met anywhere you find your hammie. The perfect environment for your hamster will have the following qualities:
- Regular lighting
- Little foot traffic
- Stable temperature and no drafts
- Protected from direct sunlight
- Away from ultrasonic sounds
Hamsters are tiny, prey animals. Meaning they are sensitive, especially when it comes to changes in their environment. Loud or unexpected sounds can easily scare your hamster and cold temperatures put them at risk of entering a hibernating state.
Predictable lighting is needed to maintain a consistent sleep schedule. While we cannot hear them, ultrasonic sounds coming from TVs or computers can cause irritable moods for your hammie.
Always go through this checklist when deciding on where to place your hamster's home. Ensuring the environment checks all these boxes sets your hamster up for a happy, healthy life.
Find more details on our blog post, Where Should I Put My Hamster's Cage?
When Is It Okay To Have My Hamster's Cage On The Floor?
Maybe you have limited space or multiple hamster cages. Some hamster owners find themselves having to place their cage or cages on the floor. This placement is okay if the environment is meeting all the requirements we discussed.
Main concerns with placing a hamster cage on the floor include the possibility of being exposed to cold drafts or being bothered by other pets in the home. Being on the floor may propose a tripping hazard for humans in the house too.
If the hamster cage is going on the floor, it is better placed on carpet versus tile or hardwood floors. Look for an even and flat surface. The cage should be kept far away from doors.
Consider investing in draft stoppers for windows and doors for the room. Alongside preventing the cold, keep other pets out of this room. Being at eye level with a cat or dog in the house is the last thing your hamster would want.
Can You Put A Hamster Cage In Front Of A Window?
Do not put your hamster cage in front of a window. Being in front of a window poses issues with temperature changes and too much direct sunlight.
Hamsters are just as sensitive to excessive heat as they are to the cold. Too much heat and you may find your hamster experiencing a heatstroke or sleeper disease. If your hamster is dealing with one of these issues, it may appear floppy or lifeless.
A hammie's environment should be kept at a temperature of 69 to 72 degrees Fahrenheit. On a sunny day, in front of a window, temperatures can reach well over 80 degrees. In these conditions, your hamster may become weak, have a bright red tongue, or even experience convulsions.
If these symptoms come up, get your hamster out of the heat immediately and seek veterinary care.
Learn more on our blog post, What's The Ideal Room Temperature For A Hamster?
Can I Put My Hamster Cage In The Basement?
Placing a hamster cage in the basement is not a good idea either. There are the same concerns as the window, too much temperature fluctuation. Basements get colder than most rooms in the wintertime, and there may be unexpected drafts.
Cold temperatures can throw your hamster into a state of hibernation. These creatures are native to parts of the world that do not get cold. When these little guys do experience cold temperatures, reaching below 65 degrees Fahrenheit, their bodies experience distress leading to this state of hibernation.
This state can be alarming because your hammie may appear dead. Their breathing slows and becomes extremely shallow. You will notice their body become limp and lifeless, similar to the symptoms of heatstroke. In these cases, it is best to warm up your hammie, provide some nourishment, and make an appointment with your veterinarian.
Read more on our blog post, Do Hamsters Hibernate In Winter? (And What Is Torpor?)
Can I Put My Hamster Cage Outside?
Hamsters were once wild, but humans began the process of domesticating them in the 1700s. In today's world, the hamster is not equipped to live outdoors, in the wild. These little balls of fur are now bred to live indoors, in cages. Therefore, you should not put your hamster cage outside.
If you place your hamster's home outdoors, they are exposed to elements they are not prepared for. Again, temperature fluctuation is a key point. You also run the risk of your hamster escaping its cage.
If your hamster escapes into the great unknown of the outdoors, your hamster will get hurt and most likely die. To avoid this reality, keep your hamster safe indoors.
Having control over lighting, temperature, noise, and the people or animals who come in contact with your hammie is needed to give them a happy life. As a hamster owner, it is your duty to protect your pet and give it the best life possible. Part of this is keeping them inside, comfortable in their home.
Learn more on our blog post, How To Keep Your Hamster Warm During Wintertime [7 Suggestions]
Your hamster's cage could go on the floor, as long as you follow the expectations and standards of cage placement. Your hammie's home needs to be in a space where temperature, lighting, and noise can be regulated.
Temperature regulation has a large impact on your hamster's life. Extreme temperature changes in either direction can leave your hamster in serious medical conditions.
Keep your hamster comfortable and happy by picking the perfect place in your home, for their home. If the floor meets all the requirements for a peaceful placement and your hammie isn't being met by other pets or chilly drafts, it is doable.
We hope you found this article insightful when choosing the space that is right for your hamster's cage. A happy hamster makes for a happy pet parent.
Have you already settled on a cage for your hammie? If not, get some ideas from our blog post, 5 Types Of Hamster Cages Every Pet Owner Needs To Know.