Many people choose to keep pet hamsters due to their small size and minimal expense. However, it should be emphasized that hamsters are not necessarily low-maintenance pets. A hamster’s cage still does need to be cleaned at least once per week, and you will need to purchase additional pet care supplies for your hamster. Hamsters may also require medical care, which can provide an additional expense. Here is a general guide to the cost of owning a pet hamster.
Habitat: The first item that you will purchase for your hamster will be a habitat. This will be your hamster’s home, and should be chosen carefully. Even though a larger hamster habitat can be slightly more expensive than a smaller cage, it can help prevent health and behavioral problems. You may want to consider purchasing a larger habitat for your hamster. The cost of hamster habitats varies, and can range from approximately $18 (for small cages) to over $100 (for more “deluxe” habitats).
Chewy Toys: Hamsters need to chew in order to maintain good dental health. To keep your hamster happy, be sure to purchase small chew toys for your hamster’s cage. These are usually made of wood or a hard, edible material. Luckily, chew toys for hamsters are fairly inexpensive. The general price range for hamster chew toys is from $3 – $10.
Bedding: Hamster bedding is most likely one of the larger expenses you will encounter on a regular basis. Since your hamster’s cage needs to be cleaned at least once per week, you will be replacing their bedding frequently. Be sure to choose a bedding that is free from chemical dyes, chemical coloring and excessive dust. In general, the cost of hamster bedding can range from around $6 – $20, depending on the type of bedding you choose to use.
Food: Just like any other animal, a hamster requires a diverse diet in order to stay healthy. Hamster food mixes are available at most pet care supply stores, usually for a fairly affordable price. However, it is important to choose a food mix that has different types of grains. Some hamster mixes only include one type of grain, or do not contain a variety of ingredients. No matter which type of food mix you choose, you will also need to supplement your hamster’s diet with fresh fruits, vegetables and nuts. In general, the cost of hamster food mix ranges from $5 to $15.