Black Bear hamsters are a unique type of Syrian hamster. Black Bear hamsters are actually a type of Teddy Bear (or long-haired Syrian) hamster that was originally bred for its black fur markings. Black Bear hamsters are fairly popular today for people that value the unique markings and gentle temperament commonly seen in most Black Bear hamsters.
History: The Black Bear hamster was first discovered as a breed variation in 1985. This was marked as being a genome mutation, and was not yet a legitimate breed. Black Bear hamsters got their name from the similarities between their appearance (black fur and white markings, thick coat) and the appearance of large black bears. The Black Bear hamster is today recognized as being a legitimate hamster breed by a large number of hamster lovers.
Temperament: It is said that Black Bear hamsters were originally bred for their larger size and gentle nature. As such, many people believe that Black Bear hamsters have a much more docile and gentle temperament than most other species of hamsters. Though this is not officially confirmed by documented testing, Black Bear hamsters do seem to tolerate handling and stressful situations much better than other species of hamsters.
Behavior: Since Black Bear hamsters are more relaxed than some other species of hamsters, they do require a bit more exercise in order to prevent obesity. This can be accomplished by placing an exercise wheel with a wide diameter in your Black Bear hamster’s cage. In addition to this, you may want to purchase a plastic exercise ball that will allow your hamster to exercise while outside of their cage. Due to their large size and agreeable temperament, it is sometimes possible to purchase a small leash and harness for taking your Black Bear hamster out of their cage for extended periods of time. Black Bear hamsters can often be easily handled, without nipping or biting (as long as you are gentle). For small children, Black Bear hamsters often make a good first pet.
Appearance: Typically, the Black Bear hamster displays a black fur coloration that extends over the majority of their body, with some white markings appearing on the belly, paws and face. Black Bear hamsters can grow from 5 to 6 inches long at their adult size, depending on their genetics and level of care. Black Bear hamsters usually have a thick, slightly glossy coat of fur.