Hamsters are adorable balls of fluff who seem to derive great enjoyment from a life that may seen monotonous and boring to their human owners. They spend hours running endlessly in wire wheels and rearranging the bedding in their domiciles. These busy creatures are low-maintenance, but they need proper care to keep their little habitats clean and bug free.
When pesky insects are present, it is natural to want to seek an immediate solution, such as a pesticide. Many insect repellents state that they pose no threat to domestic pets. Organic products that are chemical free may pose less of a risk to your little friend, but regardless of the product you choose, it's best not to try anything without running it by your veterinarian first. Even with a pesticide, you have plenty left to do to get rid of bugs in your hamster's cage.
A dirty cage is a breeding ground for unwanted pests. Good housekeeping, including clean bedding, is a must. Bugs thrive in warm and moist areas, so storing your hamster bedding in the freezer before use may reduce the occurrence of insects inside the cage. Hamsters aren't the best housekeepers, and are notorious for being messy eaters. Debris from food can draw bugs. Hamsters love a treat of fresh fruit now and then, but if the treat isn't consumed immediately or in its entirety, it may draw fruit flies. In the matter of keeping your hamster's cage free of unwanted insects, it is often what you remove from the cage, rather that what you put into it.
It Might Be Mites
The one staple in any hamster cage is the hamster herself, and unwanted bugs may be coming from your little ball of fur. Hamster mites are common and typically exist in small numbers. A minimal number of mites shouldn't bother your little buddy, but if her immune system is weak or she becomes unusually stressed, a few mites might become an infestation. Mites are almost impossible to see with the naked eye, but raw, reddened skin and intense scratching are signs that your hamster may be afflicted with a lot of these pesky insects. A trip to the veterinarian may be necessary to properly diagnose and treat persistent mites.
Another holding area for bugs waiting for a chance to invade your hamster's home may be her food container. While insects may not be present in food bags, insect eggs may be. These eggs can easily hatch in a warm environment. Keeping your hamster's food in the refrigerator in a clean, airtight container can prevent eggs from hatching. Removing uneaten food in her food bowl, as opposed to simply "topping it off," may keep your pal's dinner plate and cage free of unwanted pests.