The trend of keeping Hamsters as pets is still very popular worldwide, especially among young people. This is not difficult to understand as Hamsters have an extremely adorable appearance and a lively personality, enjoying running and jumping.
However, like other pets, Hamsters can sometimes encounter health issues, including eye-related problems. This article will provide you with information regarding Hamsters with sore eyes.
What is the Eye Problem in Hamsters?
The most common eye issue in Hamsters is conjunctivitis, red eye disease. This disease occurs when the outermost layer of their eyes becomes inflamed. Whenever Hamsters lower their heads, their eyes produce a liquid that warms the eyeballs. However, when the eyes are affected, this liquid may flow out and then dry, forming a crust around the eye area, preventing them from opening their eyes.
The treatment for Hamsters with sore eyes may vary depending on the severity of the condition.
Signs of Hamsters with Sore Eyes
The easiest way to recognize eye problems in Hamsters is when they wake up, and you can see that the corners of their eyes are watery, which can be in the form of discharge or tears, depending on the severity. Additionally, if you notice their eyelids sticking together, preventing them from opening their eyes, they likely have sore eyes.
In more severe cases of red-eye disease in Hamsters, you may observe swelling around the eye area or even part of their face, with a distinct redness around the eyelids. In such cases, your Hamster may require treatment with antibiotics.
Causes of Sore Eyes in Hamsters
There are various causes of red-eye disease in Hamsters, including internal body issues and external environmental factors. Here are some common causes:
Older Hamsters with dental issues, such as overgrown teeth, can also develop eye problems. Additionally, adult Hamsters can experience red-eye disease when infected with bacteria or other foreign objects entering their eyes. Some Hamsters may develop sore eyes due to dust or particles in their bedding, which they often burrow into or chew on.
Treating Hamsters with Sore Eyes
Although conjunctivitis or red-eye disease in Hamsters is not considered a severe condition, it can lead to complications affecting their health and even their lives if not treated promptly. If your Hamster’s eye condition is not too severe, limited to an inability to open their eyes, you can treat them at home with the following steps:
– Step 1:
Ask someone familiar with your Hamster to gently hold and stroke them to help them relax and calm down. Ensure a firm grip but without causing any discomfort to your Hamster.
– Step 2:
Take a cup of lukewarm water and moisten a cotton swab, or use a baby wipe to squeeze out excess water and avoid dripping.
– Step 3:
Place the cotton swab or cloth on the irritated eye area and hold it there for a few seconds until it breaks the crust formed around their eyelids. If the crust is not easily removed, gently wipe it away until the eyelids can open without hindrance.
This process may take a few minutes, after which your Hamster should be able to open its eyes without any obstruction or further assistance.
If you encounter difficulties in removing this crust or if your Hamster still cannot open its eyes even after repeated attempts, it’s advisable to seek the assistance of veterinary professionals.
Furthermore, suppose your Hamster’s sore eye condition does not show improvement after a period, and signs of swelling and infection persist even after multiple cleanings. In that case, taking your pet to a veterinarian for timely treatment is essential.
Preventing Red-Eye Disease in Hamsters
To protect your Hamster from conjunctivitis and other eye issues, you can implement the following preventive measures:
Frequent Cleaning of the Habitat:
If your Hamster prefers to nest in its cage, clean it weekly to prevent harmful bacteria growth.
Additionally, the hygiene of your Hamster’s living area is crucial. Bedding or litter in the cage should be changed or cleaned every 2-3 days to prevent the risk of red-eye disease and other health problems.
If you suspect the bedding may irritate your Hamster, switch to a different brand or alternative products to safeguard your Hamster’s health.
Cleaning Food and Water Containers:
The containers holding your Hamster’s food and water should also be cleaned daily before providing fresh food and clean water.
Removing Stale Food and Water:
Stale food or water left exposed to the air can undergo oxidation, affecting your Hamster’s immune system. Therefore, remove old food and water to ensure your Hamster consumes fresh, uncontaminated provisions.
Cleaning Hamster Accessories and Toys:
Objects and toys in your Hamster’s cage should also be cleaned with soap regularly.
Cleaning the Eye Area:
If your Hamster frequently experiences sticky eyelids, regularly washing the area around its eyes with lukewarm water can help improve the situation. This will prevent liquid buildup around the eyes, especially in older Hamsters.
If you have more than one Hamster in the same cage, and one develops the red-eye disease, separate the affected Hamster until it fully recovers to prevent potential transmission to the others. Red-eye disease can be categorized as a contagious disease with a high risk of transmission.
Other Common Eye Issues in Hamsters
Besides conjunctivitis, Hamsters can also face other eye-related problems, such as:
- Foreign Object in the Eye: To check if your Hamster is experiencing this issue, gently separate its eyelids and carefully observe if a foreign object is present. If it’s something like sand or dust, you can easily remove it using a moist cotton swab or your fingertip.
- Protruding Eyeball: If your Hamster’s eyeball is bulging out of its eye socket, it indicates a severe infection or significant trauma. Seek immediate veterinary attention in such cases.
- Other Symptoms: Hamsters with sore eyes may also exhibit symptoms like the discharge of pus-like fluid, swelling around the eye, reddening of the eyelids and surrounding skin, and unusual behavior. If you observe these signs, your Hamster may have other eye conditions that require prompt veterinary advice.
This article has provided information about Hamsters with sore eyes, including the causes, symptoms, and how to deal with this condition. Monitor your Hamster’s health, mood, and behavior regularly to detect abnormalities and take appropriate action. If you have any questions about pet-related issues, feel free to contact us for quick and dedicated assistance.