If you’ve ever considered owning both a hamster and a cat, you may have wondered how to ensure the safety of your furry friends. After all, hamsters and cats do not have a natural affinity for each other. While cats see hamsters as prey, hamsters view cats as life-threatening predators. To maintain harmony and keep your hamster safe, take some simple yet effective measures to cat-proof your hamster’s cage.
Using Plastic Cages or Aquariums
Typical wired cages may not be the best option when you have a cat in the house. Cats have sharp claws that can easily grip onto the wires, allowing them to access the hamster inside. Additionally, wire cages are lightweight and can be knocked over by a cat, leading to potential harm for the hamster. Instead, consider using a plastic cage or an aquarium as a safer alternative.
Plastic cages are enclosed from three sides, providing better security for your hamster. Opt for a plastic cage with a mesh top to ensure proper ventilation. Alternatively, aquariums are an excellent choice as they are too heavy for cats to move, and their enclosed structure prevents cats from sticking their claws in.
Placing the Cage at a High, Secure Location
Finding a secure location for your hamster’s cage is crucial. If you have a cupboard with multiple sections, placing the cage in the top row can keep it out of the cat’s sight and reach. Ensure the cage fits perfectly, leaving no space for the cat to disturb. If gaps exist, fill them with items or place hamster food on the sides of the cage to occupy the empty space.
If a cupboard is not an option, consider placing the cage on high shelves, as long as the cat doesn’t frequent that area. Remember, cats love climbing to elevated places, and you wouldn’t want to risk your hamster’s safety. Additionally, ensure that the cat cannot access the cage, as the mere presence of a cat can frighten the hamster.
Keeping the Cage in a Separate Room
Cats tend to spend time around their owners, while hamsters prefer solitude. Take advantage of this contrasting trait and place the hamster’s cage in a separate room where cats don’t usually visit. The less the hamster is in the cat’s sight, the more comfortable and safe it will feel. Remember to keep the door closed when you’re not in the room to prevent any mishaps.
Avoiding Cages with Tubes or External Accessories
While cages with tubes and various accessories can provide entertainment for your hamster, they can be dangerous when a cat is around. Cats, determined to reach the hamster, can break the tubes or accidentally detach external accessories. To prevent such incidents, choose a hamster cage without vulnerable extensions. Instead, opt for a larger cage that can accommodate multiple accessories to keep your hamster entertained and in good shape.
Understanding Hamsters and Cats
Understanding the nature, needs, and personalities of both hamsters and cats will help you better manage their coexistence. Hamsters, being prey animals, have an inherent fear of predators such as cats. Respect their need for privacy and space, as hamsters prefer to spend most of their lives alone. On the other hand, cats are naturally curious and have a hunting instinct, making it crucial to exercise caution when introducing them to smaller animals.
By following these guidelines and taking precautions, you can create a safe environment for both your hamster and cat to coexist peacefully. Remember, being a responsible pet owner means prioritizing the well-being of your furry friends.