The Omlet Blog Category Archives: Hamsters

How to cool down a hamster

Boy feeding his hamster in pull out tray of Omlet Qute hamster cage

Hamsters don’t appreciate the warmer weather as much as we do. Whilst great family pets, something these small pets aren’t so good at is regulating their body temperature, making them highly sensitive to changes in weather. But with a few tips and tricks, you can learn how to beat the heat this summer with these tips on how to cool down a hamster.

Too hot for hammy to handle?

Hamsters originate from all over the world, but mainly in European and Asian grasslands and deserts. The diverse habitat of their environment means that extreme fluctuations in temperature are not uncommon for hamsters in the wild. Despite this, domesticated hamsters are not accustomed to such climates. In fact, they actually live comfortably at a temperature consistently between 18 – 75°C. When temperatures rise above this, the effects can, at worst, be fatal.

Unlike us, hamsters are unable to sweat or pant to cool themselves down. In the wild, hamsters are naturally shielded from direct sunlight when they burrow. But, as domesticated pets, they need the help of their owners to stay safe. Fortunately, it’s easy to keep them cool with the correct setup.

Signs of hamster heat stroke

It’s important not to wait until your hamster is already showing signs of distress to take measures. But, should you find your hamster in an unexpected situation when temperatures rise rapidly, watch out for the following signs of heat stroke:

  • Constant thirst 
  • Open mouth breathing
  • Loss of coordination
  • Loss of appetite
  • Drooling
  • Running in circles
  • Collapse

If your hamster is showing any of these symptoms or you have any concerns about heat stroke, contact your vet immediately.

6 tips for keeping your hamster cool

Prevention beats cure every time, so taking these steps will ensure a summer of safety for your furry friend.

  • Avoid sunlight

You might enjoy basking in the sun, but your hamster won’t. Choose a location for their cage that’s out of direct sunlight to keep them as cool as possible. You should also avoid any areas close to fireplaces or radiators. Omlet’s Qute hamster cage is ideal for your hamster’s summer setup, with optional wheels to make relocating easier than ever. For more information on where to put your hamster’s cage, read our hamster guide.

  • Fan their cage

Now that you’ve picked the perfect spot for your hamster’s cage, keep temperatures cooler with a fan for those especially hot days. Never place a fan directly on a hamster as this will cause them stress and for temperatures to drop too low. Don’t forget – a temperature between 18 – 24°C is ideal. Instead, keep an electric fan at a distance, simply pointing it in the direction of the cage to circulate cool air around the room.

  • Summer snacking

Nothing beats a refreshing treat to cool down over the summer. Your hamster will appreciate a refreshing snack in the warmer weather too. Try freezing a few of their favourite fruits and veg – think of it as a hamster ice pop! A few popular options include watermelon, carrot and pear but this isn’t an exhaustive list. Find a few more suggestions on our hamster food list.

  • Frozen accessories

If temperatures get too high, use a frozen towel for your hamster to keep cool. Simply wet a towel and place it in the freezer for a few hours. Wait until the towel gets cold before removing and draping over your hamster’s cage. To ensure you don’t block any airflow, only cover half of the cage with a towel if you try this.

If you have a Qute cage, your hamsters will benefit from the draft-free ventilation system. Designed to keep hamsters cool in summer and warm in winter, the cage has been crafted with your hamster’s safety at the forefront.

  • Limit playtime

It might not sound like too fun of a tip, but it’ll keep your hamster safe. Hamsters love to play – it’s great for physical and mental stimulation, as well as creating a bond between pet and owner. But, handling your hamster too much can quickly increase their body temperature, making them uncomfortable. Using frozen treats, however, is a great alternative to keep them mentally stimulated during this short period of time when playtime may have to be cut short. 

  • Stay hydrated

Hydration is key! Hamsters should always be provided with fresh water throughout the year but it’s especially important to keep their supply topped up in summer. During this season, just like us, you’ll find that hamsters drink a little more than usual to stay cool. On average, they’ll drink 0.33 fl oz per 3.5 ounces of hamster. If you do notice this amount increase excessively, though, they could be dehydrated.

Omlet and your hamster

Omlet supports the needs of pets all year round. From the scorching summer to the freezing winter, our ingenious products have been designed to keep your furry and feathered friends happy and healthy. Shop hamster cages and hamster cage accessories to build your hamster’s perfect setup and a wondrous connection with your pet.

Hamster with paw up against Omlet Qute Hamster Cage

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Hamster personalities explained

Hamster in their cage nibbling at food

Hamsters may be small, but they have large personalities packed into their pint-sized bodies. Since they’re easy to take care of, they’re great pets for owners of all ages. And, when provided with the right habitat, hamsters will delight their owners by displaying their intelligent and vibrant personalities. 

How are hamster personalities determined?

Just like other pets, different attributes play into how your hamster may behave. While personalities are unique to each hamster, some aspects that may determine how they act include: 

  • Gender
  • Breed 
  • Age

The following factors will help you decide which hamster may mesh best with your family. 

Male vs female hamster personalities 

There are some key differences to consider when weighing if you should get a male or female hamster. Both can make great pets, but it’s important to take note of how their respective genders may affect their personalities. 

Male hamster personalities 

Males are generally larger than females and may grow longer, more dense coats that may require grooming. They’re also typically more outgoing and tolerant of being handled. Male hamsters can be territorial, but are typically not as defensive of their space as females. On the whole, male hamsters are known for being easygoing and more playful than females. 

Female hamster personalities 

Females are usually smaller than males and have a reproductive cycle that will affect their demeanour. A female hamster will go into heat every 4 or 5 days, and may act moody during this time. Female hamsters in heat may become aggressive to their owners or cage mates, sleep more, and be less tolerant of being handled. In addition to being temperamental, they also emit a musky odour during their heat cycle that may be off-putting to their owners. Females are more prone to being territorial of their space with both humans and other hamsters. 

5 hamster breed personalities

Like gender, the hamster breeds you choose will influence their personality. Did you know that there are over 20 types of hamsters in the world? Many of these are wild species that have not been domesticated, like the Mongolian hamster, Turkish hamster, and the European hamster. 

Only some breeds are kept as pets due to their human-friendly temperaments and tolerance of being handled. And, among these, some breeds are known for being more easygoing than others – so be sure to consider their breed carefully before bringing your hamster home. 

Syrian hamsters

Syrian hamsters are also known as “golden” or “teddy bear” hamsters. This breed is larger than the rest on our list, but is known to be the most friendly toward humans. They are laid back, easy to tame, and warm up to their owners quickly, displaying social behaviours with them. However, they prefer a life of solitude (even in the wild), and do not do well housed with other hamsters. 

Hand-feeding your hamster will help build a bond quickly, and before long your Syrian hamster will look forward to your daily visits. They’re also great companions for small children, as their size makes them easier to handle. 

Russian dwarf hamster 

These small, curious creatures thrive in small groups in the wild. For this reason, it’s best to keep at least two, if not more, to recreate this social structure. No more than 2 males should be kept together, however – otherwise they may become territorial. Several females can cohabitate nicely. 

Because they bond with their peers, it may be slightly more difficult to bond with this breed. Due to their size, they may be more timid at first, but will warm up to humans faster if they are hand-fed. 

Chinese dwarf hamster 

Also known as “striped” hamsters, this breed likes to live a life of solitude much like its cousin the Syrian hamster. This small breed is fast, but slower to warm up to their owners at first. Shy in nature, the Chinese dwarf hamster takes patience to tame. 

They can be tamed with daily handling and hand-feeding sessions. Chinese dwarf hamsters are prone to biting when frightened, so it’s best to go slow and avoid sudden movements or loud noises while working with your pet. With enough time and commitment, they too can grow accustomed to being handled by their owners. 

Roborovski dwarf hamster 

Also known as “robo” hamsters, this little breed is the smallest and most active of domesticated hamsters. They’re so active in fact, that they have been known to run the equivalent of four human marathon races – every night. Being the “hummingbirds” of hamsters, they are very fast and may be difficult to catch and handle. They also prefer to live in same-sex social groups. 

When active, robo hamsters make more noise than other breeds, and will exercise all night long in their cages. Because of their high energy, they aren’t a laid-back, cuddly breed, and are not suitable for young children. 

Campbell Russian dwarf hamster 

This breed prefers living in pairs, but may successfully be kept in a social group. And while they may resemble the Russian dwarf hamster in appearance, the resemblance stops there. They’re actually known to be very territorial and temperamental. 

This breed is not a good choice for children, or for those wanting to handle their hamsters regularly. Campbell Russian dwarf hamsters have earned a reputation for being biters – sometimes latching onto a finger of their owners. While each hamster is their own unique self, caution should be taken when considering this breed. 

Bringing out the best in your hamster

In order to bring out the best in your hamsters and have them display their full personalities, they need stimulation and exercise – and a place to crash when they’re done. The Qute Hamster Cage by Omlet gives your tiny family members a place to use both their minds and bodies to feel their best. The Qute is perfect for any hamster owner because it: 

  • Is easy to clean in minutes flat 
  • Has integrated feeding and exercise stations 
  • Allows you to place your hamster in any room due to its sleek design 
  • Can be used to transport your hamster around the house thanks to the pull out bin 

But even though the Qute has everything you need to take care of your hamster and meet their needs, you can offer enrichment outside of their cage. Unleash your creativity and design a hamster maze from household items, or have your children practice the dos and don’ts of handling their hamsters to let your hamster explore the world beyond their cage.  

Omlet and your hamsters

Hamsters are great starter pets for children, or as an addition to a family with other pets. With the Qute hamster cage, your hamster will be well protected from other household pets, while providing enough stimulation to keep your busy buddy engaged and content.  And, with the addition of wheels for the Qute hamster cage, you can bring your hamster along to other areas of your home to make sure they feel like a cherished member of the family.  

Hamster with paw up against Omlet Qute Hamster Cage

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Dos and don’ts of hamster care for kids 

Boy interacting with hamster in Omlet Qute Hamster Cage with his mother

Thinking about adding a hamster to your family? Hamsters make for fun little friends that are easy to take care of and interact with. But, as with owning any pet, there are some dos and don’ts of caring for hamsters

Hamsters are an excellent choice for first-time animal caretakers – especially children. They’re low maintenance but still teach responsibility. With the right setup, your child will be able to care for their hamster and enjoy the bond forged through pet ownership. 

Hamsters and children

Hamsters are members of the rodent family, but unlike most rodents, they don’t have a noticeable tail. They’re nocturnal by nature, but are very lively and entertaining while they’re awake. Their compact bodies make them easy for children to handle, and they don’t require extensive care.

Many things about hamsters make them a perfect first pet for children, but hamsters should be respected and handled appropriately to avoid injury. Supervising your child with their hamster is always a good idea. 

Teaching your child how to take care of their hamster is a great learning experience. Pets like hamsters teach responsibility, love, and commitment. To make sure everyone is happy and having fun, we’ve outlined the most important “dos” and “don’ts” of hamster care.  

The dos

The needs of hamsters can be easily met, so long as these hamster care “dos” are considered. 

Do make sure that everyone respects hamster’s boundaries

As members of the rodent family, hamsters can be skittish by nature. Each hamster has their own personality, but be prepared to take some time to bond with your hamster. Like most pets, hamsters give clues as to how they’re feeling based on how they look and act. Understanding your hamster’s body language is important for knowing when your hamster is ready to play, or when they’re trying to tell you they’d rather not be handled. 

Do get creative with playtime

When your hamster is ready to play, they’ll appreciate variety outside of their cage. And putting a fun environment together for your hamster is an excellent opportunity to showcase your creativity too. Get some hamster toys for your little friend to enjoy during playtime, or make a hamster maze from repurposed household items. Watch your hamster interact with their toys, pick their way through their custom maze, and bask in your praise for a job well done.  

Do provide a safe space for your hamster

Hamsters are crafty and resourceful, and are known for being escape artists. While they crave time outside of their cage, they should always be watched closely. Make sure their playspace is surrounded by an appropriate playpen that they can’t escape from. But, if your hamster happens to get away from you, there are ways to find a hamster in your home. 

The Qute Hamster Cage by Omlet is designed to keep hamsters safely inside. Not only that, but its stylish design is meant to complement any decorating style – making your hamster’s enclosure fit right in with the rest of your house. Your hamster can be artfully displayed in your living areas as a valued part of the family, instead of being limited to an out-of-sight corner of your home. 

The Qute Hamster Cage is interactive, but you’ll still want to provide your hamster with plenty of playtime outside of their enclosure. Playing with your hamster gives them valuable mental and physical exercise, and strengthens the bond between both of you. Just remember when, how, and where to play with your hamster: 


Your hamster’s ready to play when they are awake and active, usually at night. 


Always handle your hamster gently so they don’t get startled, and provide creative outlets for playtime through toys or homemade elements. 


Create a safe area that your hamster can’t escape from or injure themselves in. 

Do regularly clean your hamster’s cage

One of the most important tasks when taking care of your hamster is to clean their cage regularly. Hamsters like to burrow down in their bedding when they sleep, and soiled bedding can cause respiratory problems when nesting. Your hamster will keep themselves clean, but it’s up to you to keep their home fresh and clean. 

The Qute Hamster Cage is easy for kids to keep clean, taking only a few minutes. Depending on the bedding you use, cleaning your hamster’s cage at least once a week is all that’s needed to keep their home hygienic. Daily spot cleanings around eating, drinking, and play areas will also freshen up their space. 

The don’ts

Help your hamster live their best life and enjoy your time with them to the fullest by keeping in mind these hamster care “don’ts.” 

Don’t feed them a poor diet

Your hamster relies on you to supply their food and water. Choosing a quality diet is important to keeping your furry friend fit and healthy. The majority of their diet should consist of pellets formulated for hamsters. These pellets are usually mixed with seeds and have all the nutrients your hamster needs. 

Hamsters also benefit from some fresh food offerings. Good choices include: 

  • Leafy greens such as kale, romaine lettuce, or dandelion greens 
  • Cucumber 
  • Small pieces of carrot 
  • Broccoli 

As a general rule, your hamster’s diet should consist of 75% pellets and seeds, 20% fresh foods, and 5% treats. Fresh fruit would be considered a treat, as would commercially bought hamster treats. Be sure not to overdo it on the sweets – hamsters can quickly become overweight if fed too many treats. 

Don’t wake a sleeping hamster

Don’t force your hamster to play if they aren’t ready. They’re nocturnal, so they will sleep most of the day and be ready to play after night falls. And remember: never wake your hamster up from a nap to play! Your child will need to learn patience when waiting to play with their nocturnal pet. 

Sometimes circumstances require your hamster to be roused from their napping. Vet visits, cage cleanings, or other events may have you waking your hamster up from its slumber. Be sure to wake your hamster up the right way to avoid startling them. 

Don’t keep hamsters of the opposite sex

In general, hamsters do best as single occupants of their cage. Most types of hamsters are territorial and do not appreciate having to share a space with others. There are some exceptions, as certain types of hamsters enjoy the companionship of others. If you have a type of hamster that lives best in pairs or groups, you’ll want to be sure that you keep all of the same sex together. Accidental “pups” (baby hamsters) can occur frequently if male and female hamsters are housed together. 

Don’t use poor-quality bedding

Hamsters burrow as part of their natural behaviour. They do it for fun, to find a good place to sleep, and to explore their surroundings. High-quality bedding is essential to keeping your hamster healthy. 

Don’t use wood-based shavings for your hamster’s bedding, unless it is 100% aspen. Other types of wood shavings can be toxic to your hamster. Wood shavings are still not the most ideal choice, as they are not soft and can stick to the coats of long-haired hamsters. 

Aim for dust-free, soft bedding like paper. Not your average shredded paper, these types of bedding are soft and fluffy and almost resemble shredded cotton balls. This type of bedding is perfect for nesting, burrowing, and digging. 

Omlet and your hamster

Omlet wants your child to have the best relationship and experience with their hamster as possible. Our Qute Hamster Cage was designed with young pet owners in mind to give them the unique opportunity to take care of their hamsters on their own. And, the contemporary and chic design makes the Qute a cage you’re not afraid to display in any part of your home. Truly a hamster home within your home, the Qute Hamster Cage by Omlet has everything you, your child, and your hamster could ever want. 

Children playing with hamster in its playpen

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How to Wake up a Hamster

Waking up a hamster is not always recommended, though there are certain ways you can do this to ease them out of their naptime. Considering they sleep mostly during the day, disturbing them to clean their cage or feed them is often inevitable. We look at how to wake up a hamster, in the politest way possible.

Many people believe that hamsters are nocturnal animals, meaning they are most active throughout the night and tend to sleep during the day. However, this is not quite the case. A hamster’s sleep pattern tends to be slightly different. They are classed as crepuscular mammals, meaning that they are most active at dusk and dawn.

It is important to understand how your hamster sleeps to ensure that you have a healthy and happy little friend. You should also know when to leave them alone because even though they are cute you would not want a hamster in a huff!

sleepy white hamster with black eyes and long whiskers snuggled up in cosy hamster bedding

How to wake up a hamster

It may be disappointing to find your hamster fast asleep during the day when you want to play, but a hamster has its own routine, and although this can be adapted slightly, this is something you will have to accept.

You can always compromise and alter your daily patterns to suit your hamster, by waking a bit earlier or not going to bed until later at night. This might not be a solution for small children however,  as that could result in other problems! 

If you ever need to wake your hamster up, it’s important you know how to do this in the right way.
As prey animals, they want to feel safe, and they are used to hiding in the wild. This is why their sleep pattern has evolved over time so that they are more active at night when other predators might be on the hunt! It’s exhausting being so small, which is why hamsters are sleepy little animals and their sleep is so important. So when a hamster wakes, they need to be treated quite delicately so they can adjust as naturally as possible.

Move slowly

You want to wake up your hamster without scaring the poor thing and jumping out on them loudly and quickly is certainly the wrong way to go about it. Slow down your approach, especially if there are excited children ready to play. Don’t rush to wake them up as they could be in a deep sleep, and will not appreciate being woken up suddenly. 

Adjust their environment

A hamster’s sleep schedule means they begin to stir from their slumber at dusk and dawn, or during low-light hours. So you might be able to gently wake your hamster by adjusting the lights and dimming them in the room. By making the room dark enough, your hamster should respond to the change in light.

Hamsters sleep more in colder temperatures. Warming up the vicinity of your hamster’s cage acts as a gentle alarm clock allowing your hamster to wake up in a cosy environment. No one likes waking up in a cold house, and that includes hamsters!!

Offer them a treat

Sometimes the allure of cooking smells coming from the kitchen will wake even the heaviest of human sleepers, and when you do wake up after a nap you might feel a little peckish. The tempting smell of some yummy hamster food can do the same with your hamster!

Hold a little tasty hamster treat close to their nose and the delicious smell could stir them from their siesta. Make sure you don’t hold it too close, as this could scare them but they could grab the treat and scurry away to nibble on it alone. If that doesn’t work you could tempt them with some fresh food or give the food bowl a little shake. That’s certainly one almost guaranteed way to wake your hamster.

Talk softly or humorously

Do you “coo” and make silly noises around a baby? Hard not to really! Hamsters respond to gentle noises and soft voices. Making funny sounds or humming a calm tune will alert them to your presence as they will recognise the sound of your voice. They might be small but they are incredibly observant and clever little creatures.

Gently blow on your hamster

This may sound a little silly, but it can work and it doesn’t cause little hammy the hamster any harm. In fact, they may quite like it. If your hamster is sleeping out in the open in their hamster cage and is within reach, you could lightly blow on them. Think of a soft delicate summer breeze rather than a gale-force wind! Remember your size in comparison to your hamster!

white qute hamster cage with see through bedding tray against a painted blue wall in the living room

What not to do when waking up your hamster

The most important thing to remember when it comes to disturbing your hamster’s sleep schedule is that you need to be considerate. There are definitely ways you could bother your hamster that would be deemed inconsiderate so here are a few things to avoid!

Be loud

As prey animals, hamsters are constantly on alert, and could get easily stressed. Even if a hamster is awake or just relaxing it’s still a good idea to be gentle and play nice, after all, they are only small, and our size and volume could be somewhat intimidating! Loud noises, in general, will be very unpleasant, whether it’s playing loud music, shouting across the room or just raising your voice a bit. Hamsters have very sensitive ears.

Shake their cage

This is a definite no-no, a hamster’s cage is a safe place. They can snuggle up in their cosy nests and hide away from everything around them, or play peacefully in their comfortable habitat. The Qute Hamster cage offers an innovative design where you can see into the clear bedding tray. This way you can see where little hammy is and you can certainly avoid shaking the cage to see where they are or to wake them up!

Make them jump

Hamsters are delicate mini mammals and it doesn’t take much to scare them. Creeping up on them and making them jump will only stress them out. So, try not to startle your hamster and be conscious of your own behaviour around them, considering how sensitive they are.

If you are concerned that your hamster is unhappy then it is a good idea to try to learn a bit more about the Body Language of a Hamster. Like all pets, if things become a little unsettled and they feel stressed this could result in behavioural issues and a lack of trust towards their human families.

Picking them up

If you haven’t already startled your hamster and they are still fast asleep then it is certainly not recommended to attempt to pick up or poke them to make them wake up. There is no gentle way to do that! Be warned, hamsters do have very sharp teeth and they could bite if they feel threatened. After all, you are trespassing on their territory!

Fast or sudden movements

Avoid quick and sharp and sudden movements, this will startle the little one and could be quite distressing. Hamster’s natural instincts are pretty sharp so they will see this sudden movement as a threat.

little girl holding a grey hamster in her hands in front of the qute hamster cage in the living room

What time should a hamster wake up?

Hamsters follow their natural sleep pattern, and whilst they can adapt to a slightly different routine it will never completely change to suit you (it will most likely need to be the other way around!). They will always stir during those low light hours, and while we can interfere with that slightly by warming up the room or altering the lights, you will only be able to change the schedule by an hour or two.

A hamster’s sleep will also depend on the species, as different varieties have distinct sleep schedules and needs. Hamsters usually sleep for about 12-14 hours a day, but they have polyphasic sleep-wake patterns. This means they sleep on and off throughout the day rather than one continuous sleep cycle.

One way to keep an eye on your hamster’s sleep pattern is to keep a diary and track their schedule. Spend a few days writing down precisely when they are asleep and awake. Follow this by feeding them at the same time each day. Over time you can alter the feeding time by a few minutes, which will ultimately affect when they wake.

Is it bad if my hamster sleeps at night?

There could be a number of reasons why your hamster sleeps at night, a couple of reasons may be that they are hibernating or could be sick. The age of your hamster will also affect how much they sleep. Stress and depression can also be factors, or they may have been overstimulated during the day when they should have been sleeping. Just like a small child, if they are overtired they will struggle sleeping because the routine has been altered.

Hibernation can occur if your hamster is housed in a cold environment that drops below 10 degrees celsius. If you don’t live in a cold environment but notice that your hamster is sleeping more often than not then check the temperature to make sure there isn’t a draft anywhere that could be causing a drop in temperature.

Otherwise, respiratory and digestive issues can be common in hamsters so if they are more lethargic than normal then it would be a good idea to take them to a vet to check and make sure they are okay.


Hamsters are very common pets for small children and so it’s imperative to learn about your hamster’s personality and behaviour. This way you can make sure they are happy so that you can keep them and your children safe.

Key points to take away from this:

  • Avoid waking your hamster unless it’s done properly
  • If you notice increased sleeping at night they could be sick or unhappy
  • The location of the hamster cage is important – place the cage in a darker corner of the room so they can sleep during the day
  • Wake up your hamster slowly and calmly
  • No sudden movements, cage shaking or shouting!
  • Sleeping 12-14 hours a day is normal, that’s the sleep they need

It’s always worth thinking about how you would like to be woken up. Unlikely it would be by an enormous person running towards you shouting, especially when it’s earlier in the morning than you were expecting. A little hum in the ear, a yummy cooked breakfast and a cup of coffee is a much nicer way to start any day! 

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Give Your Pets’ Run a Spring Clean

Eglu Go Guinea Pig Hutch with tulipsSpring has nearly sprung, which of course means new beginnings! Many of us will make a start to the annual spring clean and take advantage of the slightly longer days and warmer weather by spending some more quality time outdoors again. And just like us, our pets appreciate all that spring has to offer after a long winter! For our furry friends, this season means more time outside in their run, where there will now be a lot less mud, and plenty of luscious grass to play in and peck at. But before your pets head out again, get them involved with the spring clean and give their run a tidy up as well!

Move Runs to a Fresh Space

Before beginning a spring clean, you’ll want to take your chickens, guinea pigs, or rabbits to a temporary enclosure to keep them safe and out of the way. Once this is done, you can move their run to a fresh spot in the garden. All Omlet runs can be transported and can then simply be secured in their new position using the Omlet screw pegs.

As we’ll now (hopefully!) have a bit more sun, place your run in an area where your pets will have plenty of room to explore. When we head later into the season, it’s a good idea to purchase some weather protection for your run, which will keep your animals shaded from the sunlight. 

Change Their Bedding

Guinea pig and rabbit bedding should be changed frequently (twice a week), so be sure to include this job when you’re carrying out the spring clean. Fortunately, the Omlet rabbit hutches and guinea pig hutches can be easily navigated to change bedding with slide-out trays, which can be cleaned and refilled.

For hens, spring is the time of year where you’ll begin to notice an increase in egg laying output after a winter of minimal or reduced egg production. Make sure that your hens’ nesting boxes have soft bedding for chickens, which will provide them with a cosy place to nest, as well as reducing odours in their coop. 

Use Caddis to Improve Run Cleanliness 

To further improve cleanliness of your rabbit or guinea pig hutch, you can use Caddis as an alternative way of feeding. Not only do Caddi Treat Holders provide pets with the mental stimulation they require but they keep food off of the run floor. In doing so, you’ll also keep unwanted predators and rodents away from your pets. 

Rabbits hopping around their Omlet Caddi Treat Holder

Give Your Pets a Groom 

As well as keeping your pets in pristine condition, grooming is a great way to build a bond, and it’s not just for cats and dogs! So why not hop into the new season with your pet looking their very best, all ready to get back into their run? 

Although it might be your first instinct to run your guinea pig a bath if they’re looking in need of a clean, this can actually be harmful for them. Instead, invest in a guinea pig grooming kit and chemical-free wipes, which will help to maintain their fur cleanliness. For more information on guinea pig hygiene, have a read of a previous blog we wrote on this topic. 

The amount of grooming a rabbit needs, however, is dependent on its breed. Longer haired breeds such as the Lionhead require a thorough grooming regime, so it’s important that you upkeep this routine all year round. 

Chickens are very low maintenance animals, and will often bathe themselves in dust to keep clean. You can even offer them a helping hand and make your very own chicken dust bath by converting a bucket or old cat litter tray!

Extend Their Run

Now that your spring clean is complete, why not consider adding a few extras to their run? Your pets will be spending more time outside, so it’s the perfect excuse to get an extension for their run, and the Zippi Run Extension Kits are ideal for making your rabbit or guinea pigs’ play space bigger. For chickens, try the Chicken Walk In Run Extensions, which can be fitted to your existing chicken run to give your flock some extra freedom.

Upgrade Your Pets’ Run With New Toys and Accessories

A few more toys and accessories for your pets’ run won’t go amiss either! Omlet has a wide range for chickens, guinea pigs, and rabbits. The Zippi Shelter with a Play Tunnel is a great option to go for, giving your cavies hours of entertainment in their run, alongside providing them with plenty of exercise, essential for their wellbeing. 

Chickens will absolutely love the Omlet Chicken Peck Toy for their run, which can be filled with their favourite treats or feed, stimulating their foraging instinct.

Extending Omlet Chicken Eglu Go UP

Now you’re hopefully all ready for what spring brings you and your pet. Make a start to upgrading their run today!


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Ideal Christmas Presents for Little Ones (Humans and Pets)

Whether you’re buying a present for an animal loving child or for your own little pet, we’ve got the perfect gifts, big and small. Check out these top tips, now at an amazing price in the Omlet Black Friday Sale! 

Shelters and Play Tunnels

Give your rabbits or guinea pigs something fun to play with on their run this winter with Zippi Guinea Pig Shelters and Rabbit Play Tunnels. Available in green or purple, the shelters are a great way of providing a safe and secluded place for your pets to hide, or as a platform they can jump onto and watch the world go by. 

The play tunnels can be placed independently anywhere on the run for your pets to chase each other through, or be connected to the shelters to create a maze that mimics their wild burrows. Entertainment and safe spot in one! 


The Caddi Rabbit Treat Holder is the perfect stocking filler for chickens, rabbits or guinea pigs, or their owners. The Caddi can be filled with a range of pet appropriate treats, and will swing as the animals peck or bite the treats. It’s the ideal both mental and physical challenge, with the added bonus of a tasty reward! 

Hung from the roof of your hutch and run, the height of the Caddi can easily be adjusted, and it’s super easy to remove it for refilling and cleaning.

Qute Hamster and Gerbil Cage

The Qute hamster and gerbil cage allows owners to get closer to their pets. The modern design means you will be happy to display the piece in your kitchen or living room, and the large, crystal clear bedding tray makes it easy for pet owners of all ages to see what their pets are up to. The bedding tray also offers a convenient way of getting your hamster or gerbils out of the cage for playing, socialising and exercise. 

Geo Bird Cage

Upgrade your budgie or other small birds’ home this winter with the stunning Geo Bird Cage. The Geo has got everything your bird needs to become a natural part of the home, and you can accessorise with baths, mirrors and toys for your pets to enjoy.

You can also add a festive touch to the avian housing with the NEW Nordic Green cover. Pop the woodland themed cover with a calming cream background and a trim of geometric trees over the cage at bedtime to let your pets rest in their own winter wonderland. 

Eglu Go Hutch 

Do your current pets need a home improvement? The Eglu Go Small Animal Hutch is the perfect way of keeping rabbits or guinea pigs in the garden. The handy integrated hutch and run solution allows your pets to run in and out as and when they like during the day, and when it’s time for a nap they can curl up in the safe and insulated house. In winter you can move the hutch closer to the house, making cleaning and spending time with your pets even easier.

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This entry was posted in Budgies

8 tips for making your pets’ run more fun this autumn

Eglu Cube chicken coop outside in the autumn

It’s that time of year again when we say goodbye to summer and welcome in the cooler, shorter autumnal days. For many pet owners, summer is a great opportunity to spend quality time with their animals; playing outdoors and enjoying the warmer weather. But, the change in season doesn’t have to mean that the good times have to stop. So whether you’ve got a chicken, guinea pig or are a pet parent to rabbits, here are 8 tips for making their run more fun this autumn.

Why do pets need runs?

It’s important that you continue to keep your pets exercised throughout the year, and animal runs are great for this, giving your furry friends the freedom to roam within a safe and confined environment. Omlet has a range of runs for chickens, rabbit runs and guinea pig runs, which are all predator-resistant, with their innovative mesh designs.

Whilst runs are fantastic for providing your animals with more space, adding a few extras over the next coming months can help to keep both you and your pets entertained. 

For guinea pig and rabbit runs

Pig out on veggies

Cavies and rabbits love their fresh veg – you can even make a game of it! Try hiding their favourite pieces of veggies around the run and have them go off to find their treats. This game is the perfect opportunity for you to spend some quality time outside with your pet. Just don’t forget to clean up any remains from the run floor to avoid pesky predators sniffing out the snacks.

Or, use the Omlet Caddi rabbit treat holder or guinea pig treat holder to keep your pets’ brains engaged. Simply fill the treat holders with your rabbit or guinea pig-safe vegetables and watch them spend time navigating how to get them out. Take a look at some suggestions for rabbit treats and guinea pig treats here.

DIY adventure playground

Upgrade your pets’ run to an adventure playground with pet play tunnels. They can simply be attached to your guinea pig or rabbits’ run and provide them with a new way to exercise. Plus, they’ve been designed to mimic the innate burrowing behaviours of rabbits and guinea pigs too.

Shelters can also be a great addition to your run this season. The Omlet Zippi Shelters for rabbits and Zippi Shelters for guinea pigs are weatherproof too, meaning that your pet will be protected from the elements in autumn. 

And since both pets have a natural desire to seek a hiding space in a hole, you can be assured that while they’re having fun, they’re feeling safe. The Zippi shelters easily attach to the Omlet play tunnels via connector rings, too, which means you can create a fun maze for your furry friends.

Guinea pig and rabbit toys

Who said toys were just for cats and dogs? Give a new toy to your small animal to help to bust their boredom this season. Toys for guinea pigs and rabbits can simply be hung up in their run and will keep them active, engaged, and curious.

For chicken runs

Make use of those crisp, autumn leaves

The leaves of autumn in your garden can actually be a great source of entertainment for your chickens. All you have to do is build up a pile of crisp autumn leaves in your chickens’ run, and watch them have endless hours of fun pecking. You can even add some sunflower seeds to your pile to have your flock hunt for.

Omlet’s Chicken Swing

Omlet’s Chicken Swing is the perfect way to make your chickens’ run more fun this autumn. The Omlet Chicken Swing will have your chicken in their element, as they get to grips with their new toy. Not only will this run accessory provide them with plenty of entertainment, but you’ll have just as much fun watching them hop on and off and swing back and forth.

Toys for chooks

Chickens can have toys too. A bored chicken can lead to behaviour such as flock bullying and abnormal feather loss, so at this time of year it’s even more important to keep your chickens entertained. Naturally, as the weather drops, these animals get increasingly restless, with less grass and weeds for them to forage on, as they enjoyed over the summer. A chicken peck toy though, is one option to keep your flock happy, providing them with physical and mental stimulation.

Omlet and your pets’ autumn

Omlet knows that this time of year can be more difficult for pet owners but whatever the season brings this year, with Omlet’s range of guinea pig, rabbit and chicken products you and your pets can continue to have fun all autumn long. And, as the end of the season brings colder weather, don’t forget to have a read of the Omlet guides on keeping your guinea pigs, rabbits, and chickens safe and warm when they’re outdoors.

Two guinea pigs in fall using their Omlet Zippi Shelter in their outdoor Omlet guinea pig run

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This entry was posted in Chickens

What’s The Difference Between a Hamster and a Guinea Pig?

hamster and guinea pig next to each other with yellow stars

Hamsters and guinea pigs are relatively low maintenance pets that make a great choice for new pet owners. The two animals have several fundamental differences, though. Knowing what these differences are will help you make the right choice when choosing your pet.

Wild hamsters live across large areas of Europe and Asia, notably in Syria, China and Russia, which are the ancestral homes of most hamsters kept today as pets. These little rodents prefer dry, warm climates.

Guinea pigs are native to the mountainous regions of South America – Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia. However, they belong to the same broad family as hamsters – the rodents. This kinship is a bit misleading, though, as the animals have distinctly different needs and dietary requirements.

Hamster vs Guinea Pig

closeup of brown guinea pigWhile these two critters do have things in common, their different habitats and ways of life mean that a hamster’s home setup is very different from that of a guinea pig.

One major thing that differentiates hamsters and guinea pigs is lifespan. Hamsters have shorter lifespans than guinea pigs, generally living for 2 to 4 years. This is because they are small and have metabolisms that work much faster than their guinea pig cousins. Guineas generally live from 5 to 8 years, with some individuals reaching 10 years.

Another key difference between the two is their size. As we mentioned above, hamsters are much smaller than guinea pigs, with the average size being in the region of 5-15cm. Even the smallest guinea pigs are larger than the biggest hamsters, with the average guinea being 20-30cm long. This means that guinea pigs need larger enclosures.

While the size of the animal and its enclosure needs to be considered, these factors don’t have a huge impact on general pet care. The following differences are the ones that need to influence your decision.

The four main differences between hamsters and guinea pigs

1. Sleeping patterns

This is possibly the biggest difference between the two species. Hamsters are generally nocturnal creatures, which means they prefer the nightlife. Many hamster owners will be able to tell you how their hamster starts running in its squeaky wheel at 1am!

Guinea pigs, on the other hand, are mostly active during the day, taking naps whenever they feel the need. Rather than sleeping for one long spell each day, they recharge their batteries whenever they feel like it. They do tend to sleep more during the night, though.

2. Social needs

Hamsters and guinea pigs have completely different social needs. In the wild, guinea pigs live in groups of three to ten individuals. They have evolved to be social animals and will soon become sad and stressed if they are denied this interaction. Lonely guinea pigs have even been known to die when left in isolation for too long.

For this reason, it is highly recommended that owners should keep at least two guinea pigs. Keeping just one can work as long as someone is willing and able to step in and do the socialising. Because of their need to be with other animals, guinea pigs will be much more willing than hamsters to spend time, play and interact with humans. This factor – and their handy habit of sleeping at night – can make them the superior choice for children who want to play with their pets.

Hamsters are loners. That, at least, is the case with the Syrian or Golden hamster, which is by far the most popular pet hamster species. While they can live with companions, the other hamster species are perfectly happy – and may in fact be even happier – living on their own. Many hamsters that are kept together can become aggressive towards one another, especially if two males are being kept in close quarters.

If looked after properly and hand-tamed from an early age, hamsters will form a bond with their owners and will be glad to spend time with them. An unsocialised hamster will often bite, though, and this is another offputting thing for children.

3. Diet

cute hamster cleaning itselfThe dietary requirements of hamsters and guinea pigs are probably the most significant difference between the two species. Hamsters are omnivorous and will eat pretty much anything they can find. They famously store food in their cheeks for later, making their cute faces puff up, almost doubling the animal’s size.

The easiest option for feeding a hamster is to buy a pre-made food mix that has all the things they need, rather than sourcing your own insects and extra protein to supplement the plants and vegetables in their diets. You can feed your hamster fresh fruit and vegetables, as long as they are washed, and as long as they don’t completely replace the hamster mix. Grains and cereals make a good addition to their diets, too. Also, be sure to provide your hamster with something to chew on, such as a piece of wood or some straw, as this helps keep their teeth in check.

Unlike hamsters, guinea pigs are vegetarian. In the wild, they eat fruits, plant roots and – most importantly – lots of high-fibre grasses. As with hamsters, domestic guinea pigs should be fed a specially made food mix. However, these often have lots of carbohydrates and not enough fibre. For this reason, your guinea pigs will also need lots of fresh vegetables, fruits, grass and hay alongside their food mixes. Hay is crucial for keeping the guinea pigs’ teeth in check, and it also ensures a healthy balance in the stomach bacteria the animals need for digesting their food efficiently.

4. Space

Hamsters are always kept indoors, as they need to be kept somewhere consistently warm. Being small creatures, they don’t need a huge amount of living space, and an enclosure such as the Qute can be incorporated into a room as an attractive part of the furniture as long as they are taken out of the cage for daily exercise and play.

Guinea pigs, in contrast, need a larger hutch and a run, as they are not only bigger than hamsters but need to be kept in groups. Some are kept indoors throughout the year, but if you have space for a guinea pig run in the garden, the animals will love it, and children will be able to interact with their pets in the most effective way.

The upshot here is that a hamster can be easily accommodated if you only have a small indoor space, but a guinea pig can’t.

Overall, both hamsters and guinea pigs make great pets, and both are low maintenance. The key differences between the two are size, lifespan and diet. When choosing which of these wonderful little animals to keep, it mainly boils down to personal preference. As long as you care for them properly, they will soon form a close bond with you.

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Back to School – Get 20% Off Selected Items

While the kids are away, the pets will play!

Start the new school year with 20% off selected Back To School Buys when you spend £30 on qualifying items. Look out for the pencil symbol on out website to find all the included items, or choose some of out favourites ✏️

and many, many more…

Terms and conditions
This promotion is only valid from 02/09/21 – midnight on 06/09/21. Use promo code BACK2SKWL at checkout to get 20% off when you spend £30 on selected products. While stocks last. Must spend £30 on items displaying on the website with pencil icon for 20% off to work. Subject to availability. Omlet ltd. reserves the right to withdraw the offer at any point. Offer cannot be used on delivery, existing discounts or in conjunction with any other offer.

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Get 15% Off Qute Hamster and Gerbil Cage – Don’t Miss Out!

Treat your hamster or gerbil to a Qute new home, with this amazing offer on the Qute Hamster & Gerbil Cage!

Terms and conditions:
This promotion of 15% off Qute Hamster and Gerbil Cage is valid while stocks last or until midnight on the 17th August 2021. Use promo code GOQUTE at checkout to get 15% off your Qute. This offer is available on Qute in all colours, with and without storage. Excludes accessories. Maximum 2 per customer. Subject to availability. Omlet ltd. reserves the right to withdraw the offer at any point. Offer cannot be used on delivery, existing discounts or in conjunction with any other offer.

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Can you feed pets a vegan diet? 

Some pets, including rabbits and guinea pigs, are naturally vegan. Hamsters and gerbils, although omnivorous, can thrive on a vegan diet in which the protein content is supplied by plants and vegetables. Others, including omnivorous dogs and out-and-out carnivore cats, cannot be easily pleased on meat-free diets.

All animals need to have their nutritional needs satisfied. But this does not mean you can’t have a vegan dog. Vegan cats, though, are a lot trickier.

Can my dog have a vegan diet?

If you were to meet a species of animal for the first time and had to make an accurate guess about its diet, you would get lots of clues by looking at its teeth. The teeth of a dog, like the teeth of a bear, proclaim loud and clear that this animal is an omnivore – that is, one that eats both meat and vegetables. If you think of your dog as a domesticated wolf, you get a good idea of its natural diet.

However, as the panda proves, a supposed meat-eater can sometimes get by perfectly well on a vegan diet. A panda’s teeth are similar to any other bear’s – long canines for meat-eating and molars for grinding vegetation. And yet pandas don’t eat anything other than bamboo. So, if a bear can be vegan, does that mean you can have a vegan dog?

The answer is yes – but it’s a yes with lots of small print! A dog requires a diet that contains the fats and proteins it would get from meat. It is dangerous to ignore this basic need and simply feed your pet with whatever you please. Some dogs have delicate stomachs at the best of times, and a low-fat, high-fibre diet can cause potentially life-threatening problems. A diet that excludes meat should never be fed to a dog without the advice of a professional pet dietician.

The collagen, elastin and keratin found in meat diets are not easily replaced by vegi equivalents. Your dog will also need the ‘long chain’ omega-3 fats found in animal products such as egg, fish and some meats. Vegan omega-3 fats are not the same as animal-derived ones.

All of which presents a headache for the vegan dog owner. There are, however, products available that claim to let your dog live a healthy, meat-free life. Before you take the plunge, it is essential to seek professional, scientific advice and guidance. Compromise is usually the best choice here – a vegan diet supplemented by some of the animal-derived essentials. Crickets, for example, can provide lots of the amino acids and keratin a vegan diet lacks, and they’re 65% protein.

Can my cat have a vegan diet?

The compromise approach is even more important for cats. These are amongst the planet’s true carnivores, obtaining all their dietary requirements from other animals. 

The main challenge with minimising the meat in a cat’s diet is that, unlike many mammals (including dogs), cats cannot produce certain proteins. They have to absorb these from the meat and fish in their diet. Amino acids are another issue – cats deficient in the animal-derived amino acid taurine, for example, usually succumb to a specific type of heart problem.

Even a fortified vegan cat food cannot be confidently recommended. Turn the situation on its head, and try to imagine weaning a rabbit onto a meat-only diet, and you get some idea of the challenge – and the ethics – involved.

There are some lab-grown ‘meat’ products in development, with vegan and vegetarian cat owners in mind. However, whether these will arrive – and remain – on the market any time soon is hard to guess.

For many vegan pet owners, there is a huge ethical issue involved in feeding the animals they share a space with. Ethics, however, include the animal’s needs too, and it’s an almost impossible issue to resolve when it comes to cats. If you are able to reduce but not eliminate the meat in your cat’s diet, that’s the safer option.

Top 10 pets for vegan households

There are, of course, plenty of other pets that don’t eat meat, or that eat some meat but can still thrive on a meat-free diet. Here are our ten favourites.

1. Rabbits. No problems here – rabbits are happy vegans, with diets based on hay and vegetables. You could argue that the soft pellets they eject and then eat are animal products of a sort, but they are simply semi-digested vegetation.

2. Guinea pigs. Like rabbits, these wonderful little characters thrive on a 100% vegan diet.

3. Hamsters. As most hamster owners feed their pets with shop-bought hamster food, they may not be able to say exactly what the ingredients of that food are. However, vegetarian and vegan hamster foods are readily available.

4. Gerbils. Like hamsters, gerbils are omnivores that can live happily on a vegan diet. They tend to have rather delicate stomachs, so feeding them with a high-quality pellet mix is essential. Too much fresh stuff can cause problems.

5. Mice. Although they will eat pretty much anything in the wild, mice can thrive on vegan diets; but it is still best to use a food mix prepared specifically for them. This ensures that they will not be deficient in any of the vitamins and minerals they need. 

6. Rats. These are the most omnivorous of rodents, but as long as you feed them a vegan mix that has been fortified with all the nutrients they need, they will thrive. Indeed, rats who eat too much animal fat tend to become fat and die prematurely.

7. Chickens. If you watch a free-range hen, it soon becomes clear that she will eat anything – grass, beetles, worms, and everything in your veg patch if you’re not careful! Most chicken feed emulates this mix of plant and animal products. However, it is possible to buy vegan chicken feed, and circumstantial evidence suggests that hens can thrive on it. However, they are likely to produce fewer eggs, and you will not be able to stop them scratching for worms and bugs, no matter how vegan the layers pellets are!

8. Budgies and parrots. Vegans will have no obstacles to face with budgies and parrots, unless the birds are being bred. Egg-brooding female birds need a protein boost, normally delivered via an egg-based food or cooked meat. Vegan alternatives are available, though.

9. Finches. Many finch species enjoy bugs and mealworms as treats, but these are not an essential part of an adult finch’s diet. These birds thrive on a mixture of seeds and fresh vegetables.

10. One for reptile fans. When you think of pet snakes and lizards, you probably have an image of dead mice or doomed crickets. However, there are a few commonly kept pet reptiles that eat a 100% vegan diet, the most popular being the Green iguana. Getting the balance of vegetables just right is very important for the animal’s health, but meat is certainly something you won’t have to worry about.

There is no shortage of choice when it comes to vegan pets. Keeping a vegan cat or dog is a much trickier proposition, though. And with all these animals, a balanced diet that matches the pet’s nutritional requirements should be your primary goal.

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Can I keep chickens with other pets?

Dog and chicken interacting with help from the Omlet Eglu Cube chicken coop

You can keep chickens with other pets when the proper preparations and precautions are in place. Some pets like cats and dogs may have an innate prey drive that chickens can trigger, so it’s important to take introductions slowly to ensure success. With these tips, you’ll be able to confidently introduce your current pets to your chickens, or introduce new pets to your existing flock with confidence. 

Keeping chickens with dogs

Dogs are the most common pets in the world, with millions kept as pets across the country. So, if you’re among the many dog owners, adding chickens to your family is possible once you consider your dog’s temperament and trainability. 

Assessing your dog 

If you’re a dog owner, the first thing to consider is their temperament. Different dog breeds may also react differently to birds as part of their nature. For example, breeds like Labrador Retrievers or German Shorthair Pointers may become easily excited around birds due to their natural hunting and retrieving drives. Other breeds that may have increased prey drives include: 

Regardless of their breed, if your dog becomes excited or overly curious around small animals, their behaviour will likely carry over to chickens. If your dog loses their mind over the birds at your backyard feeder, or drags you to investigate the park ducks on your evening walks, they’ll likely stress out your flock – and themselves.  

Dogs without a prey drive or with little interest in birds will likely not pose a problem to your chickens, but all dogs react differently when new pets enter their territory. Usually, most dogs will adjust to the new backyard occupants just fine after an acclimation period. You will likely see your dog expressing interest in your chickens at first – hanging around and sniffing the coop. They may even express a desire to interact with your chickens through playful postures and behaviours. Understanding your dog’s body language around your chickens will help you determine what their relationship will be like.

Chickens are prey animals, and can be hurt easily. Dogs cannot play with chickens as they would with other dogs or even other pets. It’s important to teach your pup that chickens are fragile friends – not toys or something to hunt. 

Teaching dogs to get along with chickens

Unless leashed walks make your dog overly excited, their first encounter with your chickens should be done with a dog collar and lead. Make sure their collar is tight enough that they don’t slip out, but not so tight that it’s uncomfortable. Walk your dog up to your chickens’ enclosure and let them sniff. Maintain a tight leash until you see your dog’s reaction, and allow the lead more slack slowly to reinforce good behaviour. 

Let your dog watch you spend time with your chickens. This should be done with your chickens in the safety of a strong walk in chicken run. If your dog does more than sniff or hang around the run, take a step back and approach their interaction from a different angle. 

It could take several weeks for your dog to fully accept your chickens. Some other ways to help your dogs adjust to your chickens include: 

  • Setting up chicken fencing around the outside of your flock’s run for your dog to observe them at a distance.
  • If your dog has a run or playpen, place it next to your chickens’ run and slowly decrease the distance over several days until they are side-by-side. 
  • Reward your dog with their favourite treats each time they are calm around your chickens. 

Make sure to never leave your dog unattended with your chickens – especially in the beginning. Even if they can’t get into the run with them, an excited dog’s barking can easily stress your flock out. 

Keeping chickens with cats

Cats are more difficult to train than their canine counterparts, and are decidedly less predictable in their behaviour. But the good news is that most cats don’t see a large hen as potential prey the same way a dog might. Most cat owners will agree that their cats show little to no interest in their chickens. In fact, cats and chickens have a somewhat symbiotic relationship. 

Birds and their feed attract rodents, which a cat would much prefer over your hens. So, when your cat is able to patrol your chickens’ surroundings, chances are good that any potential rodent problem will be nipped in the bud.

Some cats may show increased interest in your hens. This largely depends on your cat’s breed and temperament. Cats will pose a greater threat to chicks rather than grown hens, but by keeping your flock in a strong chicken coop and run, you’ll ensure they stay safe from your cat.  

Keeping chickens with guinea pigs

It may be tempting to keep some cute cavies in with your chickens, but in reality it’s not wise. Chickens will likely pick on them, and with their short legs, guinea pigs can’t get away from them quickly. Their dietary requirements are also very different, and your chickens may eat your guinea pigs’ food in favor of their own, which means neither animal will be getting the nutrients they need. If you have cavies and want to house them near your chickens, it’s best for them to have their own guinea pig hutch and run. 

Keeping chickens with rabbits

Rabbits on the other hand are fast enough to fend for themselves against chickens, and if raised together from a young age, can do well around chickens. Still, they require their own dietary needs and clean sleeping quarters. They don’t roost like chickens, so they’ll need their own burrowing space in the run or under the coop. 

The easiest way to achieve this is by adding walk in chicken run partitions. This will allow you to create “rooms” for each species to ensure they all get what they need. You can open the partition doors to allow everyone to be together whenever you’d like, or create a third space as a common area. 

Remember to try to give each species as much space as possible in their respective areas to make them feel safe and comfortable. 

Brown rabbit hopping behind chicken

Chickens and other pets

Chickens can also mix happily with goats, and with female ducks (males will tends to bully them). Ironically, they do not mix with birds in an aviary. They will eat anything that falls to the aviary floor, but they will also happily peck the other birds whenever they can and may attract rats and mice, which will cause problems for the smaller birds.

If you live in a rural setting, you can keep chickens with other barnyard animals. Chickens mix happily with: 

  • Goats
  • Sheep 
  • Cows
  • Alpacas or llamas
  • Pigs
  • Female ducks, guinea fowl, peacocks, geese, or pheasants 

Any other avian species kept with chickens should be docile and preferably female, as males can bully hens. Smaller birds like quail or pigeons will likely get pecked at by chickens, so it’s best to stick with larger birds as run-mates. Small pets like hamsters, gerbils, turtles, or frogs should never be kept with chickens – they will be pecked at and killed. 

Omlet and your pets 

Omlet has all of the pet products you need to keep your furry and feathered family members healthy and happy. Having multiple types of pets is exciting, and through our line of chicken coops, chicken runs, and walk in run partitions, you’ll be able to create a safe haven for all of your animals to enjoy. And, by knowing that Omlet products are protecting your flock, you can rest easy knowing that you’ve provided them with the best chicken housing solutions available. 

Dog watching chicken through Omlet Eglu Cube chicken coop

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This entry was posted in Budgies

World Hamster Day – 10 Reasons Why Hamsters Make Great Pets!

With World Hamster Day looming on 12 April, what better time to celebrate these furry favourites? There are many reasons why so many people decide to get a hamster. Here are 10 of them:

1. Hamsters are friendly!

Golden hamsters, once they have been successfully hand-tamed, form strong bonds with their owners. Although they don’t enjoy the company of other hamsters, they rely on their owners for company and interaction. Chinese hamsters can become very fond of their owners too, although they can also thrive in groups (unlike the Golden). The relatively large size of the Golden hamster makes it easier to handle than the smaller breeds, too.

2. Hamsters are easy to look after

A pet hamster pretty much looks after itself during its nocturnal adventures, and in terms of equipment, all it needs is a suitable cage with a few toys.

3. Feeding hamsters is not expensive

Although a hamster stuffs all the food you give it into its cheek pouches, this doesn’t mean they’re greedy!

The hamster simply hoards the food in its favourite corner and doesn’t actually eat very much on any given day. Your bag of dried food will last several; weeks, especially when supplemented with a few slices of fresh fruit and veg.

4. Hamsters are healthy!

These little rodents are generally healthy during their short lives, as long as they are kept in a suitable cage and fed a nutritious diet. The biggest hazard they face is sustaining injuries through falling, so they need to be handled with care.

5. Hamsters love to explore

Endlessly inquisitive, hamsters love getting out and about in a hamster ball. If you can set up a secure enclosure, they will love exploring its every nook and cranny. Leave some treats hidden in the enclosure or stuffed into wicker balls, and the hamster will have a great time tracking them down and rooting them out. They also love playing on ladders or in runs.

6. Hamsters don’t need intensive training!

Hand-taming a hamster is the beginning and end of the necessary training. There’s no pressure to teach obedience tricks or toilet training, making them a very low-maintenance pet.

7. Hamsters don’t take up much space

These are small mammals, making them suitable even for small flats. 

8. Hamsters are super-clean

Unlike most rodents, hamsters choose one spot in their cage for the toilet, making them very easy to clean out. They are also scrupulously clean themselves, forever fussing with their fur. This means their human friends don’t have to do any of the pet washing.

9. Hamsters are calming

Nothing seems to ruffle a hamster. No woofing, no running away in a panic. They scuttle around contentedly and are the most relaxing things to watch this side of a peaceful fish tank!

10. Hamsters don’t shed fur

Many people with allergies say that hamsters cause them no problems. This is linked to the fact that they don’t send tiny bits of fur drifting through the air or sticking to carpets. A hamster is nothing to be sneezed at!

12 April – World Hamster Day

On 12 April, hamster owners the world over celebrate their furry friends. They are one of the most popular pets in the world, and yet they have only been kept as pets for the last 90 years or so.

The story of pet hamsters begins on 12 April 1930, when Israel Aharoni, a zoologist and professor at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, captured a female Golden (or Syrian) hamster and her litter in Aleppo, Syria. Little did he know that this female would be the source of ALL pet Golden hamsters!

The hamsters were kept as laboratory animals, but escapees became the source of most of the wild Syrian hamsters in Israel today. Descendants of Aharoni’s captive hamsters were shipped to Britain in 1931, and the Zoological Society of London acquired a pair in 1932.

This pioneering pair were the Adam and Eve of British hamsters – in 1937, descendants of these pioneering rodents were given to private breeders, and these were the source of all the Golden hamsters in the British pet trade. If you own one, it’s 99,9% certain that its ancestry goes back to those London Zoo hamsters.

Mitochondrial DNA studies have confirmed that all domestic golden hamsters in the UK and the USA are descended from a single animal – the one captured in 1930 by Israel Aharoni.

That international brotherhood and sisterhood of hamsters is certainly something worth celebrating!

 Photo by Silje Roseneng on Unsplash


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What illnesses do hamsters get, and how can they be treated? 

Hamster sticking their head out of tube in the Omlet Qute hamster cage

If you’ve recently added a hamster to your family, or are considering getting one, you may be wondering what illnesses hamsters get, and how they can be treated. Thankfully, since hamsters are active pets with hearty appetites, it’s usually apparent when they aren’t feeling their best. We’ve outlined some of the most common ailments that hamsters may experience, and what to do if you notice anything amiss with your small mammal friend.

How healthy are hamsters? 

Hamsters are generally healthy animals that live full, but relatively short lives. Depending on the breed of hamster you have, the life expectancy for even healthy hamsters is between 2-4 years. But, over the course of your time together, you may see your hamster acting “off” or even display obvious signs of illness. It’s important to perform regular health checks on your hamster to identify any potential problems early on. 

By checking in with your hamster daily, you’ll be able to see if there are any issues with their coat, teeth, eyes, or paws, and note any behavioural changes. It’s a good idea to get your hamster established with a veterinarian that treats hamsters as soon as you get them – that way both you and your veterinarian will have a baseline for your hamster’s health. And, if you notice anything wrong with your hamster, a quick phone call or visit with the vet will help put your mind at ease. 

Most common illnesses in hamsters 

This is not an exhaustive list, but the following illnesses and ailments are those that hamsters are most commonly seen with. By recognizing the signs and symptoms of each, you’ll be able to determine the best course of action. 


Hamsters can develop infections if they have cut or poked themselves, which can allow abscesses to form. Hamsters that chew on the bars of their cage may develop an abscess in the mouth, or you may see an abscess on the sides or legs of hamsters that have cage mates from rough play or fighting. 

Note: Abscesses need to be treated by a vet – do not attempt to drain an abscess at home. 


Your hamster can actually catch a cold from you. The same virus that causes the common cold in humans can be transmitted to hamsters. Signs and symptoms of a cold in hamsters are similar to those in humans: 

  • Watery eyes 
  • Discharge from the nose 
  • Coughing 
  • Wheezing 
  • Sneezing 
  • Lethargy 

Your hamster’s coat may also appear to stay wet as they continually wipe their runny nose on their fur. 

Treatment for a cold in hamsters includes: 

  • Keeping their bedding fresh, taking care to use a dust-free variety
  • Offer plenty of food and water 
  • Supplement their food with cod liver oil 

Colds will usually pass quickly and on their own,  but if your hamster stops eating or drinking, it may be time for a trip to the vet to rule out secondary infection. Try to avoid handling your hamster when you have a cold to prevent passing it along to them. 


Skin abrasions are more common in hamsters that live together. Scuffles, rough play, or challenges to the hierarchy can result in cuts. If you don’t have a safe and secure hamster cage, you may see a hamster with cuts even if they live alone. These are usually from weak or bent cage wires, ill-fitted tubing, or sharp plastic edges. 

Cuts can usually be cleaned at home with warm soapy water. However, hamsters will lick and tend to their wounds, so anything more than a superficial wound may not heal well without antibiotics or other treatment from the vet. 

Problems with the ears 

A hamster that scratches at their ears constantly, seems sensitive around their head when being held, or appears off-balance or walking in tight circles, an inner-ear infection may be to blame. Your veterinarian can prescribe antibiotics or anti-inflammatories to treat ear infections. While seeing your hamster in distress may be upsetting, ear infections usually clear up quickly.

Dry ears are another common problem. Along with incessantly scratching at their ears, you may also notice the skin around your hamster’s ears cracking or flaking. To remedy this, rub some vaseline on their ears with a cotton swab for a few days. 

Problems with the eyes 

Any swelling in or around your hamster’s eyes, discolouration of the eye itself, or thick or coloured discharge is not normal, and warrants a call to the vet. Some possible causes include: 

  • Trauma to the eye (a puncture or scratch) 
  • Foreign object in the eye 
  • Trouble with their cheek pouch
  • Oral abscess 
  • Allergic reactions
  • Tumors 
  • Glaucoma 

If your hamster’s eye is so goopy that it is matted shut, apply a warm compress (water on a soft rag) for a few minutes to gently remove the crusted material. Don’t try to force your hamster’s eye open once the material is removed – they should be able to open their eyes on their own after a few minutes of having them cleaned.


Being familiar with normal hamster anatomy will help you determine if something isn’t right. Some lumps and bumps are normal (especially in males or lactating females), but you’ll know quickly while handling your hamster if something has popped up suddenly.

Lumps don’t all have scary causes, but you should always have them checked out by a veterinarian. They’ll likely take a small sample with a tiny needle to determine the makeup of the lump. Some potential causes are: 

  • Lipomas (benign, fatty tumors) 
  • Cysts 
  • Abscesses 
  • Enlarged glands 
  • Tumors 


The parasites that cause mange can’t be seen with the naked eye – but they do cause obvious discomfort in your hamster. Symptoms of mange in hamsters include: 

  • Scratching at their bodies excessively 
  • Hair loss 
  • Red or scaly patches of skin 
  • Matted hair coat 

The mites that cause mange can be seen under a microscope, so your vet will likely take a small sample of the inflamed skin of your hamster. If your hamster is diagnosed with mange, they will need baths with a special shampoo that your vet will prescribe. 

Fleas or lice 

These parasites can infect your hamster if other pets in your household have them. It’s important to keep your dogs and cats on a flea preventative to avoid your small pets from getting them. The same preventatives are not safe for hamsters, so be sure not to apply any flea products on your hamster without direction from your veterinarian. 

If your hamster has many visible parasites, you can bathe them in warm water with a small amount of unscented dish soap (be sure to dry them thoroughly so they don’t get chilled). The lather from the soap will kill the existing parasites – but won’t prevent more from hitching a ride on them later. Treat all the animals in your home for fleas and lice to prevent re-infestation. 


Due to their short lifespans, hamsters age rapidly – and sometimes all of a sudden. Part of this ageing process may include strokes. Symptoms of a stroke include: 

  • Unsteady gait 
  • Circling 
  • Swaying or other involuntary, repetitive motion

Most strokes are small enough to not leave your hamster significantly impaired. But, no matter the size, there is no treatment or prevention for strokes in hamsters. If your hamster has suffered a stroke, they may need to have their housing adjusted to make them more comfortable. Keeping their food bowl topped off and waterer full will help them stay nourished, and you may need to remove obstacles like their wheel or tubing to prevent injury. 

Issues in the mouth 

A hamster with a poor appetite is surely feeling under the weather. But, sometimes the cause of a poor appetite is actually inside of their mouth. Hamsters are rodents, and as such, their teeth grow constantly. They need to be able to gnaw on applewood toys and be fed a quality pellet as the main staple of their diet to keep their teeth filed down. Reasons other than overgrown teeth that may cause oral discomfort in hamsters include: 

  • Infected cheek pouches 
  • Loose or infected teeth 
  • Oral abscesses `
  • Injury to the mouth or jaw 

If your hamster seems reluctant to eat, but appears and acts fine otherwise, they’ll need to be seen by your veterinarian.

Urinary problems

If you spot blood on your hamster’s bedding, it could be due to an injury, a burst abscess, or a urinary infection. An examination of the hamster’s bedding will tell you if it is the latter problem. A change in urine colour, or a lack of urine, indicate health issues too.

Keeping your hamster’s cage clean is good practice for their overall health, but their bedding can tell you a lot about their health. The colour, odour, consistency and amount of urine in their cage can point to potential issues with their urinary tract. Signs of a hamster experiencing urinary tract issues include: 

  • Blood in the urine 
  • Thick, cloudy urine 
  • Decrease in urine output 
  • Urine with a foul odour 

Urinary tract infections can turn serious quickly, so it’s best to have your hamster evaluated by a veterinarian if you notice a change in their eliminations. 

Wet tail

“Wet tail” is a term for serious, bacterial diarrhoea that causes faeces-soaked fur around the tail. This condition can prove fatal quickly for hamsters – not only from the bacterial infection, but from dehydration. 

Offer plenty of water until you can get your hamster to the veterinarian. Wet tail should not be treated at home, as time is of the essence to save your hamster from this illness. 

Preventing illness in your hamster 

The absolute best way to treat illnesses in your hamster is to try to prevent them entirely. Housing your hamster in a cage like the Qute Hamster Cage by Omlet will make cleaning quick and easy – keeping your hamster clean and healthy. The removable bedding tray makes complete bedding changes a breeze, and the wipe-clean plastic surfaces don’t give bacteria a chance to set up shop. 

If you have a social hamster breed, be sure to quarantine new hamsters for a minimum of two weeks before introducing them to your other hamsters. Feed all of your hamsters high-quality feed and offer fresh water daily to keep their immune systems and digestion working properly. 

Omlet and your hamster’s health 

Our Qute Hamster Cage was designed with both humans and hamsters in mind. Our all-in-one hamster home gives your furry friend everything they need to thrive, and cuts down on your time spent cleaning so that you can get back to bonding with your hamster. And, even if your hamster does become ill, the Qute will keep them comfortable while they’re under the weather, and help you keep their home clean with minimal effort – giving you more time to show them the extra love and care they need. 

Boy playing with his hamster in the Qute hamster cage bedding tray

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15% Off All Qutes with Storage

Save 15% on the best selling Qute Hamster and Gerbil Cage with storage this weekend. This stylish and modern cage is sure to be a hit with both pets and owners!

The levelled design will encourage natural nesting and burrowing instincts, it’s super simple to keep clean and hygienic, extremely secure, and thanks to the removable bedding tray it’ll be easier than ever to spend quality time with your pets. The practical storage section under the cage is perfect for keeping all your pets things in one place, making keeping hamsters or gerbils easier and more fun than ever!

Use promo code SEIZE15 to get 15% off all Qutes with storage until Monday evening!

Terms and conditions
Promotion of 15% off Qute with storage runs from 08/10/20 – midnight 12/10/20. Use promo code SEIZE15 at checkout. Includes all colours of Qute Hamster and Gerbil Cage with storage. All Qutes without storage are excluded. Subject to availability. Omlet ltd. reserves the right to withdraw the offer at any point. Offer cannot be used on delivery, existing discounts or in conjunction with any other offer.

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Which is The Best Type of Hamster for You?

Boy handing hamster, Omlet Qute Hamster and Gerbil Cage

There are five hamster species commonly kept as pets. They are all similar in their requirements, but with one or two important differences between species.

The most familiar is the Golden, or Syrian hamster, which is also the largest of the five. The others are all in the group known as Dwarf hamsters – Campbell’s, Roborovski, Chinese and Winter White.

Looking After a Golden Hamster

An estimated 75% of pet hamsters are Syrians, largely because they have been popular for many years, and are therefore widely available. This species is 15–18 cm (6–7 inches) long, and is relatively slow moving (compared to the much nippier Dwarf species). This makes them easy to handle, and that’s one of the keys to their popularity. A nervous owner will find handling very easy (i.e. the hamster isn’t going to run up your sleeve or make a bolt for the door before you can stop it!)

The Golden is a loner, and that means its owner will be its only companion – which is great for forming owner–pet bonds. The hamster will usually live for 2 to 2 ½ years, and can be hand-tamed from a very early age, so you will usually have a long and satisfying friendship with these little bundles of fun.

There are a different types of Golden hamster. One of the most popular is the long-haired ‘Teddy Bear’. There are also different colour varieties, with mixtures of gold, brown, russet, yellow, grey, black and white.

IDEAL FOR: first time hamster owners looking for a single, easy-going pet that’s easy to handle.

Looking After a Chinese Hamster

The Chinese – also known as the Striped, Grey or Rat-tailed – is the least common of the hamsters in the pet trade, although its popularity is growing all the time. There’s a lot to love in these little characters – they are very gentle, and once hand-tamed they will love their daily human interaction.

This species grows to a length of between 10 and 13 cm (4–5 inches) inches and, and is dark grey with a darker stripe running down the back. It has a long tail, by hamster standards, hence the ‘Rat-tailed’ tag. It tends to live a little longer than the Golden hamster, with a lifespan of 2 ½ to 3 years, and like the Golden it likes to live alone. This makes it bond very readily with a human companion.

IDEAL FOR: first time owners, or owners looking for something a little less common than the Golden, but with a similar personality.

Looking After a Roborovski Hamster

This is a lively little pet, and likes to live with at least one other fellow Roborovski – in a same-sex pair or small group. Single animals will do just fine, though, as long as they get lots of human company and handling. They are 10 cm (4 inches) long, and are endlessly curious about the world around them. When handling, you need to be alert, as these are fast movers.

Roborovskis are long-lived, by hamster standards, generally lasting between 3 and 3 ½ years. Being keen climbers and explorers, they will need a cage large enough to accommodate their endless expeditions, so space is sometimes an issue for would-be owners. They also have a rather strong smell, so they need cleaning out very regularly.

IDEAL FOR: owners who want to keep more than one hamster at a time, and have space for a larger cage.

Looking After a Winter White Hamster

This species is also called the Siberian, due to its wonderful colour change during the winter. It is grey-brown for much of the year, with a handsome black stripe down its back. In winter the fur becomes white, but the black stripe remains.

This little character reaches just over 10cm (4 inches) in length, and can live alone very happily, making it a good pet for someone who has lots of time to handle and bond with their pet, and who isn’t nervous handling a fast-moving, small animal. Winter Whites only live 1 ½ to 2 years, and this makes them less popular than some of the other species.

IDEAL FOR: hamster lovers looking for a change from the commoner species, and who can’t wait to see that wonderful change to wintry white!

Looking After a Campbell’s Hamster

This is another short-lived hamster, with a lifespan of 1 ½ to 2 years. They are usually kept in same-sex pairs or groups, but can thrive as singletons as long as they get lots of handling and attention from their owner. Their small size makes them tricky to handle, being both swift and fragile, so they are not suitable for young or nervous owners.

IDEAL FOR: owners who want to keep a group of hamsters together in a larger cage.

Two dwarf hamster eating a snack

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9 things you might not know about hamster cheek pouches

Hamster eating homemade treat

Hamsters are known for adorably stuffing food in their cheeks, giving them a puffy, caught-with-their-paws-in-the-cookie-jar look. But what exactly enables them to carry food in their mouths, and what do they do with it once it’s there? We’ll share 9 things you may not know about hamster cheek pouches so that you can understand your furry friend’s peculiar behaviour a little bit better. 

9 things you might not know about hamster cheek pouches 

All hamsters have cheek pouches, but what are they for, and how do they work? Let’s dive into those deep cheek pouches — if there’s still room! 

Cheek pouches are part of hamster anatomy 

What we call a “cheek pouch” is actually expandable parts of your hamster’s oral mucosa, or the lining of the cheeks. When they’re empty, your hamster’s cheek pouch looks like a small, deflated balloon. Once your hamster starts filling their pouches, they can expand all the way back to their shoulders. In fact, a hamster can stuff up to 20% of their body weight into their cheek pouches. That would be like a 120 lb human carrying an extra 24 lbs worth of food around in their mouth. 

They act like a built-in lunchbox 

The main purpose of their cheek pouches is to carry food. In the wild, hamsters use their cheeks to carry food back to their home to enjoy it in a safe, quiet place. Domesticated hamsters exhibit the same behaviour. You may observe your hamster depositing its proffered cheek pouch items in their hideout, play tunnels, or hamster sleeping area

Food to-go 

Hamsters can both run and eat with their cheeks full. In fact, hamsters can still eat when their cheek pouches are full. They’ll stuff their cheeks full, then eat some bites before taking their packed food back to their destination. And, even with all of the extra weight of full cheek pouches, hamsters aren’t slowed down by their to-go meals

Dry storage 

Here’s a fun fact: hamsters don’t release saliva into their cheek pouches. This keeps their packed lunches nice and dry and prevents bacteria from building up in their mouths. Hamster dentists are in short supply, so keeping their teeth free from moist food is important for overall oral hygiene. 

Backup baby carrier 

This isn’t something you’ll likely see in your domesticated hamster, but female hamsters can actually secure their babies in their cheek pouches to make a quick getaway, or to serve as an emergency hiding spot. Packing their babies in this way is only used as a last resort when their nest is being threatened. 

Taking out the trash

Hamsters are actually pretty tidy creatures that don’t appreciate spoiled food in their pantries. They’ll use their pouches to stuff and carry spoiled food away from their fresh goods. This too is not very common with domesticated hamsters that have a clean cage, so having an easy-to-clean hamster cage will aid your furry friend in their housekeeping endeavours. 

A wheelbarrow or shopping cart 

How would you like to carry your latest decor or bedding finds home in your mouth? That’s exactly how hamsters sometimes use their cheek pouches — as vessels to carry bedding and nesting or building materials to the home. 

Playing favourites 

Some hamsters favour one side of their mouth over the other, while some will happily stuff both cheeks full. Watch to see if your hamster is a left or right-stuffer, or an ambi-stuffer. 

A potential problem site 

It’s possible for cheek pouches to be punctured or have abscesses form in them. You should keep an eye on your hamster’s overall health, with special attention on their mouths. If you notice any lumps that linger for more than a day, contact your veterinarian. 

Omlet and your hamsters 

Hamsters are amazing animals that are a pleasure to share a home with. Their quirky but lovable personalities are what inspired the Qute hamster cage. We wanted hamsters to have their ideal home, but one that was easy for their owners to keep clean while looking great in any room of the house. With a Qute hamster cage by Omlet, you’ll be able to see your hamster stuff their cheeks along with all of their other adorable behaviours up close and personally. 

Hamster with paw up against Omlet Qute Hamster Cage


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Learn More About Your Pet Hamster

All hamster owners know that they make great pets! They are cute and cuddly, but also very independent and clever. Whether you’re a beginner or a long term hamster fan there is always more to learn about these amazing critters! That’s why we’ve put together this Best of Hamsters, a few blogs with more information and advice, perfect for teaching your children about their pet, as well as some DIY fun you can do together!

12 Interesting Facts About Hamsters

Hamsters are rodents from the subfamily Cricetinae. They were brought to the United States from Syria in 1936. There are approximately… Read more

How to Understand Your Hamster’s Body Language

Hamsters make excellent pets – they’re fun, cute, and relatively easy to care for. Their cuddly credentials have made them popular pets all over the world. Hamsters bring a lot of joy to a lot of people, but how can… Read more

Want to Teach your Hamster Tricks? Here are our Best Tips!

Someone once said that you can train anything that has a brain that connects to a stomach, and that goes for hamsters as well. They are actually very clever little creatures and probably capable of more than you think – like learning tricks for example! Training your hamster is a… Read more

Get Creative – Make a Hamster Maze

Hamsters love to play and explore!  There are many toys and treats available to buy for your furry friend,  but wouldn’t it be great to design and construct an exciting maze for them? They are… Read more

Download this cute colouring page and print for the whole family to enjoy! Send us your finished images, we would love to see them!

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Hamster Vs. Guinea Pig – Which Is The Better Pet For You?

Choosing a small pet is a big decision. Although their needs differ, hamsters and guinea pigs require equal amounts of planning. Where will the enclosure go? Is there enough space? Who is going to carry out the daily feeding and weekly cleaning? Can you afford all the equipment – and all the food the pets will nibble through?

Small mammals of the rodent and rabbit families may all look cute, fluffy and vaguely similar, but there are important differences in the needs and personalities of each species. There are two broad groups – animals that spend all their time indoors, such as hamsters; and those that spend part of their time outdoors and therefore need runs and tunnels, such as the guinea pig.

Hamster keeping – simple, but brief

There’s no doubt that hamsters suit people who want a pet that can pretty much look after itself. But it’s important to have some kind of interaction with your pet, otherwise there’s little point in having it in the house in the first place.

The defining feature of the hamster is its nocturnal lifestyle. This means hamster owners only get to interact with their furry friends in the evening, or early in the morning. Waking them up in the daytime will only make them confused and irritable.

These night-time habits mean that bedrooms are not the ideal location for a hamster cage. Busy little hamster feet, squeaky hamster wheels, rattling water bottles and gnawing rodent teeth are the kinds of sounds guaranteed to disturb a good night’s sleep. This is an important consideration for a child – if the hamster cage is not going to be in the bedroom, will it still be appreciated and looked after?

The answer might still be yes, if the kids are happy to interact with the hamster just before bedtime. The animals can be hand-tamed, and perhaps half an hour each day is exactly what the children are looking for. They can replenish the food and water each morning before school while the hamster settles in for another day’s deep sleep.

But if your kids want a pet who sticks around during the day, a hamster isn’t the best choice. With a lifespan of just two years, their pet won’t be around for very long, and children may feel they hardly had time to get to know their little friend.

Guinea pigs – garden lovers

Guinea pigs require lots more attention than hamsters, and that’s what a lot of pet owners are looking for. Getting to know a pet GP takes time, as they are nervous little creatures, but once you’ve gained their trust, you have a friend for life.

Children will have a real sense of being part of the animals’ community. There’s a lot to be done in GP upkeep, including replenishing hay – lots and lots of it – and chopping up veg for the food bowl. Hutches, runs and tunnels need weekly maintenance. If you have a good tunnel system such as the Zippi as part of your set up, the animals can freely move between their hutch and one or several runs or playpens at their own will. Watching the animals in action will give everyone hours of fun.

A guinea pig that is well taken care of can easily live for five to eight years, so it’s a long term commitment that shouldn’t be entered into lightly.

Guinea pigs are active in the day time, so their waking, eating and sleeping patterns match those of their human neighbours.

10 questions to decide: Hamster or Guinea Pig?

Still undecided? Answer the following questions, and then total up your score, H vs. GP. The higher number reveals the ideal pet choice for you!

1. Is someone around during the day to look after the pets?

Yes – score 1 GP

No – score 1 H

2. Is the pet for a child?

Yes – score 2 GPs

No – score 1 H and 1 GP

3. Do you have some space in the garden for an enclosure or run?

Yes – score 1 GP

No – score 1 H

4. Does anyone in the household have a pet allergy? (This may mean keeping the pets outdoors)

Yes – score 2 GPs

No – Score 1 GP and 1 H

5. Do you want to keep just one pet?

Yes – score 1 H

No – score 1 GP

6. Is someone prepared to prepare fresh veg each day for the pet?

Yes – score 1 GP

No – score 1 H

7. Do you only have room for a small cage?

Yes – score 2 Hs

No – score 1 H and 1 GP

8. Is the pet owner ‘late to bed, late to rise’?

Yes – score 2 Hs

No – score 1 GP and 1 H

9. Is the cage within earshot of your bedroom?

Yes – score 2 GPs

No – score 1 H and 1 GP

10. Are you looking for a pet as a long-term companion?

Yes – score 1 GP

No – score 1 H

More GPs than Hs, or the other way round? Either way, you will hopefully now have a firmer idea of which pet will best suit you and your household.

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FREE delivery on all Qute Hamster & Gerbil Cages for a limited time only!

Transform your hamster’s home this autumn, and upgrade to the Qute Hamster & Gerbil Cage from Omlet, now with free delivery for a limited time only. Use code SUPERQUTE to claim this special offer! 

Easy to clean, secure and stylish, the Qute Cage has a clear and removable bedding tray which makes it easier to handle and interact with your hamster or gerbils. Available in white, walnut or birch effect, this luxury hamster house also features an optional storage section below for keeping all your hamster’s feed and bedding tidily in one place.

The Qute Hamster & Gerbil Cage is a modern and practical upgrade from traditional small pet cages, which will seamlessly fit in your home like a contemporary piece of furniture. If you have been looking to have hamsters but have been put off by the clunky, plastic cages found in pet stores – look no further than the Omlet Qute! 

Available now from £79, with FREE delivery until midnight on Monday. Use promo code SUPERQUTE.


Terms & conditions

Free delivery promotion is only valid from 25/10/19 – midnight on 28/10/19. For free delivery use promo code SUPERQUTE. This offer is only available on Qute Hamster & Gerbil Cages. Offer applies to Standard Delivery Service only. Free delivery offer is not redeemable on pallet deliveries. Omlet cannot take responsibility for third party supplier delays such as courier service. Free delivery is only valid for orders shipped to the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Belgium, The Netherlands, Luxembourg, Austria, Italy, Ireland, Norway, Poland, Denmark, Sweden, USA and Spain. Subject to availability. Omlet ltd. reserves the right to withdraw the offer at any point. Offer cannot be used on existing discounts or in conjunction with any other offer.

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This entry was posted in Gerbils