If you’ve been researching hamster cages, you may have come across recommendations that don’t align with the needs and well-being of these adorable pets. But fear not, because we’re here to guide you towards the best hamster cages that are both ethical and humane, ensuring your furry friend lives a happy and healthy life.
Understanding Hamster Cage Requirements
Before we dive into our top picks for hamster cages, let’s first understand what makes a good hamster cage or enclosure. Hamsters need plenty of floor space to run and forage, so size is crucial. For Syrian hamsters, we recommend a minimum floor space of 775 square inches, while dwarf hamsters require at least 615 square inches. Additionally, a minimum height of 12 inches allows for proper bedding and burrowing.
The Top Hamster Cages in the US
When you walk into a pet store, you’ll find that most, if not all, of the cages available are unsuitable for hamsters. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of the best hamster cages in the US, taking into account the needs of your beloved pets.
1. Niteangel Bigger World Hamster Cage
The Niteangel Bigger World Hamster Cage is the “gold standard” in the eyes of many hamster owners. Its large size, open design, and aesthetic appeal make it a fantastic choice. While it resembles a tank or terrarium, it’s easy to assemble and ship right to your doorstep. Whether you have a dwarf hamster or a Syrian hamster, this cage is a perfect fit.
2. MEWOOFUN Large Hamster Cage
Similar to the Niteangel Bigger World, the MEWOOFUN Large Hamster Cage offers a tank-style design that meets our minimum size requirements for both dwarf and Syrian hamsters. Although it’s slightly smaller, it still provides ample space for your furry friend to explore and play.
3. PawHut Extra Large Wooden Hamster Cage
The extra-large PawHut cage is a fantastic choice for Syrian hamsters. With over 1,000 square inches of floor space, it provides a well-distributed area for your hamster to roam and burrow. We recommend removing the bottom shelf to create even more depth for your hamster’s natural burrowing instincts.
4. Prolee Hamster Cage
The Prolee Hamster Cage offers a wooden enclosure with 800 square inches of open floor space, making it a suitable choice for both dwarf and Syrian hamsters. It features liftable lids for easy access and a slide-open front, providing a comfortable and secure habitat for your furry friend.
5. Bucatstate Hamster Cage Metal 2.0
The Bucatstate Hamster Cage Metal 2.0 is a metal terrarium-style cage that offers 774 square inches of floor space. While it falls slightly below the bare minimum for Syrian hamsters, it provides ample room for dwarf hamsters to explore and burrow.
6. Prevue 528 Small Animal Home
The Prevue 528 Small Animal Home is a popular choice among dwarf hamster owners. Its simple design, with a tubby base and wire sides, offers a practical and spacious environment. With a removable level and a deep base, your furry friend will be able to burrow to their heart’s content.
7. Savic Hamster Metro
The Savic Hamster Metro is a suitable choice for dwarf hamsters. With a bar gap size of 9.5 mm, it prevents crafty dwarf hamsters from escaping. Although it comes with some plastic levels and accessories that may not be ideal, you can easily customize the cage to better meet your hamster’s needs.
Tanks or Terrariums: Alternative Housing Options
If you’re considering alternative housing options for your hamster, you might want to explore tanks or terrariums.
Tanks offer an ideal enclosure for hamsters, providing ample space and depth for burrowing. Plus, without bars on the sides, there’s less mess from bedding being kicked around. For dwarf hamsters, a 40-gallon breeder tank is a great starting point. Syrian hamsters, on the other hand, would thrive in a 55-gallon or 75-gallon tank.
Terrariums are another option that combines the security of a tank with additional ventilation. While purchasing a new terrarium can be quite expensive, you can often find used ones in your local area. Some terrarium examples that can work well for hamsters include the REPTI ZOO 85 Gallon Reptile Glass, REPTI ZOO 67 Gallon Reptile Large Terrarium, Prolee Reptile Terrarium Tank, and OIIBO 50 Gallon Reptile Terrarium.
DIY Cages: Unleash Your Creativity
For experienced hamster owners, creating a DIY cage can be a fulfilling and cost-effective option. Here are two popular types of DIY cages for hamsters.
DIY Bin Cages
Bin cages are affordable and provide the necessary space for your hamster. However, finding a suitable storage bin can be a challenge. Remember to measure the bin’s middle section, as the top measurements may not accurately represent the available floor space. By cutting out sections of the lid and sides, and adding wire mesh for ventilation, you can create a comfortable and secure environment for your hamster.
DIY IKEA Cages
Transforming IKEA furniture into hamster cages is another creative option. While typical wooden cabinets may not withstand urine, specific IKEA pieces lend themselves well to this project. The IKEA Detolf, for example, can be turned on its side to create a long enclosure. The IKEA Linnmon and IKEA Kallax also offer opportunities for customized hamster habitats.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is the Kaytee CritterTrail Super Habitat suitable for hamsters?
While the Kaytee CritterTrail “SUPER Habitat” meets the size requirements for hamsters, we don’t recommend it due to its materials and build. The flexible bars and ill-fitting top door make it easier for hamsters to escape, and its current high price doesn’t justify its quality.
Is the Omlet Qute Cage suitable for hamsters?
The Omlet Qute Cage may appear stylish and modern, but it doesn’t provide enough space for small pets like hamsters. With limited floor space, it falls short of the minimum requirements for a comfortable living environment.
Do hamsters need tall cages?
Contrary to popular belief, hamsters don’t require cages with multiple levels. In fact, levels can pose risks for hamsters due to their limited climbing abilities and depth perception. Instead, focus on creating horizontal space and providing deep bedding for your hamster to burrow and explore.
Do hamsters need to burrow?
Absolutely! Hamsters are natural burrowers, and it’s essential to support this instinct. Ensure you provide a minimum of 6 inches of bedding or substrate, allowing your hamster to create their burrows and tunnel systems.
Hamster Care: An Ongoing Process
If you started your journey as a hamster owner with an inadequate cage, you’re not alone. Many informed and compassionate hamster owners have made the same mistake. As we learn more about proper hamster care, our approaches evolve. Remember, caring for your hamster is an ongoing process, and each step you take towards providing the best possible environment is a testament to your dedication and love for your furry companion.