Abscesses in Hamsters

Abscesses in Hamsters

Here we can see, “Abscesses in Hamsters”

Hamsters are relatively low-maintenance pets when it comes to health, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t prone to certain issues. Abscesses are one type of difficulty that hamster owners may encounter. Knowing how to identify these infections and treat them will help keep your hamster healthy and happy.

What Is an Abscess?

Pus is infectious material composed of white blood cells and bacteria that can build up to create a lump or pocket known as an abscess. Abscesses are most commonly found under the skin of hamsters, although they can also be found internally on organs or in the mouth.

Abscess Symptoms in Hamsters

A hamster’s head is the most likely location for an abscess. An abscess can occur anywhere under the skin or inside the body; however, it is most commonly found in the cheeks or neck. A lump or swelling is usually the most evident sign of an abscess, but this might be difficult to detect if the abscess is internal or in the cheek pouch.

Food in the cheek pouches can resemble an abscess. However, an abscess does not shrink when the food inside it is removed or consumed, whereas a cheek pouch does.

Pus and blood may be noticed on the fur in the surrounding area if an abscess ruptures. Because of the germs present, this may also have a highly terrible odor. Hamsters are normally meticulous cleaners, but the volume of diseased fluid produced by an abscess may be difficult to clean up or unreachable if it is on the neck or head.

Finally, if an abscess produces a systemic infection in a hamster, lethargy and a lack or decrease in appetite may likely ensue.

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  • Lump or swelling under the skin
  • Foul smell
  • Lethargy
  • Lack of appetite
  • Pus and blood on the fur


When bacteria infect the tissues of hamsters, abscesses form, and aggressive hamsters living with other aggressive hamsters are more likely to develop abscesses from bite wounds. In contrast, hamsters living alone may be wounded by their cage or toys. This infection is frequently caused by puncture wounds from cage bars and ladders.

Identifying Abscesses in Hamsters

To tell an abscess from a tumor, you must first determine what is inside the bump. Your veterinarian may feel the lump and assume it is an abscess, but the contents must be tested to confirm the diagnosis.

A sample of the abscess can be taken using a syringe and needle and examined under a microscope for germs and blood, or it can be opened up with a scalpel blade. If pus oozes from the wound, it will be clear that it is not a tumor. However, internal abscesses are more difficult to detect and diagnose and sometimes necessitate more intrusive procedures.


If your hamster has an abscess under the skin or in the cheek pouch, it must be drained first. Your veterinarian may have done this as part of the diagnostic testing while determining the contents of the lump, or they may need to sedate or anesthetize your hamster to conduct this task.

The abscess may then need to be flushed with saline and antibacterial agents, and antibiotics may be recommended for you to take at home. The precise treatment will depend on the location and severity of the abscess. A culture of the bacteria present in the abscess may be obtained on occasion to choose the right antibiotics for your hamster.

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How to Prevent Hamster Abscesses

A biting wound is one of the most common causes of a hamster’s abscess. To avoid this, keep your hamster alone in its cage. In any case, most hamster species are better kept as a single pet rather than multiples.

Another thing you can do to help prevent abscesses in your hamster is to make sure the cage doesn’t have any rough edges. Sharp points on the corners and doors of wire cages are possible. Ladders, wheels, and other cage toys can also be hazardous. Check these items regularly to help keep your hamster safe.

User Questions

Is it possible to treat a hamster abscess at home?

The abscess may then need to be flushed with saline and antibacterial agents, and antibiotics may be recommended for you to take at home. The precise treatment will depend on the location and severity of the abscess.

Why is there a bump on my hamster’s bum?

These are typical and cause no concern. Also, male hamster testicles develop in the spring, so two enormous swellings at the bottom end of your hamster are normally nothing to be concerned about. However, if you are concerned about your hamster’s health, please visit your veterinarian.

What causes tumors in hamsters?

It is assumed that hereditary and environmental factors have a role in the aberrant multiplication of cells that leads to tumor growth.

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Can hamsters live with tumors?

Hamsters with integumental tumors had a median survival duration of 350 days, while patients with reproductive system tumors had a median survival time of 120 days. Unfortunately, three hamsters died before, during, or soon after the operation or were killed right away.

Tumors are frequent in hamsters.

Tumors are frequent in many small animals, including hamsters and gerbils. Hamsters, for example, are regularly diagnosed with benign adrenal tumors or lymphoma, a cancer of the lymphatic system that can affect multiple organs. Tumors in the ventral marking glands of gerbils are prevalent and manifest as sores.


I hope you found this helpful guide. If you have any questions or comments, don’t hesitate to use the form below.


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