Hamster's lifespan

hamster lifespan

Hamsters kept as pets have a lifespan of two to three years, while wild hamsters' typical life expectancy is as little as 12 months.

Although there are numerous breeds of hamsters, their lifespan generally remains very similar. So whether you have a Roborovski Dwarf Hamster or a Syrian Hamster, you can expect each to live approximately the same two to three years.

Here are the 5 most popular pet hamster breeds and their life expectancy:

  • Siberian dwarf hamsters: 1.5-2 year lifespan;
  • Russian dwarf hamsters: 16 months - 2 year lifespan;
  • Chinese hamsters: 2-3 year lifespan;
  • Roborovski hamsters: 3-3.5 year lifespan;
  • Syrian Hamster: 2-3 year lifespan.

What affects a hamster's life expectancy?

  • Breed
  • Diet
  • Living conditions
  • Stress
  • Genetics
  • Care

There are factors that are out of your control, like genetics or breed. As you've already seen, certain hamster species have a longer lifespan than others. Also, hamsters are prone to different illnesses, and that also depends on the breed.

But as for other things on the list, it's your responsibility to make sure your hamster gets the best care possible. From spacious clean cage and proper foods to entertainment and visits to the vet, there are ways to help your hamster live a happy and long life.

How to increase a hamster's life expectancy?

grey hamster running in a hamster wheel

There are several ways to increase the lifespan of your hamster:

  • First, you must get a healthy hamster from a reputable breeder. Many pet stores sell animals with genetic disorders or other health issues, so make sure you research where to buy before purchasing your hamster.
  • Avoid stressors: aggressive pets (like cats and dogs), loud noises, and overcrowded living spaces. All these things can impact the lifespan of any hamster species.
  • Provide plenty of space for your hamster to run around and explore in its cage without being bothered by outside stimuli such as noise pollution (i.e., cars driving down streets).
  • Regular exercising is also vital when extending the life span of all animals including hamsters. So make sure they have enough room to run.

Love hamsters? Spend some creative time coloring hamster pictures