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Hamster is dying.

Species: Other
Breed: Syrian Hamster
Age: 2-5 years
My hamster is 2 years and 11 months now . I noticed he hasnt been drinking as much , But yesterday I noticed his stomach/abdomen area is really swollen . Also his eyes are closed and they look a little red around the edges . Normally he takes the food in his cheecks and empties it into the house . However he isnt letting the food out of his cheecks . He fell onto his back earlier and couldnt get back up again . Ive tried feeding him through a syringe but he isnt wanting to drink a lot of it . I understand he is old now , But was just wondering how I can make him more comfortable . Thank you


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Oh, the poor little guy. I'm not sure that I've seen a hamster that was almost 3 years old. On average they usually live about 18 months.

What you are describing does not sound good for Sabastian. Unfortunately there is probably not much that can be done. I wouldn't try too hard with the syringe feeding. If he will accept it then that's good, but if he doesn't want it then forcing it will not accomplish much.

I think at this point you really have two options. I have found that once hamsters get to this point of illness they usually pass away quickly. So, one option is to just wait and let things happen naturally. (I don't usually recommend that with dogs and cats, but with hamsters, again, they seem to usually pass quite quickly and peacefully.)

The second option would be to have your vet put him to sleep. This is probably the better option so that we know that he is not uncomfortable any more.

I wish I could give you some more advice on what you can do to help but really there is not much that can be done.

I'm so sorry. I hope Sebastian's end is peaceful.

Dr. Marie.


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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.