Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Pregnant Dwarf Hamster Care and the Four Phases

Caring for a pregnant dwarf hamster is a wonderful thing. It might be hard to imagine, but there are around half a dozen baby dwarf hamsters developing inside of her belly! It's important to take good care of a pregnant dwarf hamster so that she gives birth to the healthiest babies possible. In order to do this, it's important to understand the pregnancy process from start to finish. The entire process can be broken up into four phases, conception, pregnancy, birthing, and baby care.

The first phase in the life of a pregnant dwarf hamster is conception. How does a dwarf hamster get pregnant? By mating of course, and we all know how much hamsters mate, a whole lot. But as a dwarf hamster owner, you should have control over this and be able to prevent any unwanted mating. If you're caring for your dwarf hamsters properly, it's very unlikely that you'll have any unplanned pregnancies. You should only really be getting pregnancies when you plan on breeding. By planning a pregnancy, you control every aspects of it (such as which hamsters mate, how old they are when they mate, etc.) and can ensure the healthiest pregnancy and offspring possible. Unplanned pregnancies result in a less then ideal situations and possibly unhealthy babies so you want to take the steps necessary to prevent them and only have pregnancies that are predetermined.

The next phase in the pregnancy process is the duration of the actual pregnancy, also known as gestation. One question that's often asked is how can you spot a pregnant dwarf hamster? If you are breeding it's best to consider the dwarf hamster pregnant from the time of mating. It is actually hard to spot a pregnant dwarf hamster at first but later into the pregnancy (about 10 days) you'll be able to see changes in certain physical characteristics of the pregnant hamster (such as size). The amazing part about a dwarf hamster pregnancy is how short it is. The gestation period lasts only 16 days. Imagine that! It only takes sixteen days from the time of conception to the time of birth. In this incredibly short time a litter of baby dwarf hamsters are created. Now during the pregnancy you'll of course need to take extra good care of momma hamster. Part of this is feeding her high-protein foods. Near the end of the pregnancy phase, you'll want to begin preparing for the birthing process.

The third phase of a pregnant dwarf hamster is the birthing process. During this period you want to leave your dwarf hamster alone. This also includes the days leading up to the pregnancy. You'll also want to prepare by making sure the hamster home is clean for the birthing. Now when the birthing actually begins there are a few signs that you can look out for to know when it is actually happening. One of these is the hunched position the mom will be in when giving birth. If you catch it, the birthing process is one of the most amazing sights you will see. Now it doesn't matter if the babies come out head first or feet first, some will come out one way and others another way, it is all perfectly natural. After babies are born the pregnancy process is technically over, but I still like to consider baby care the final phase a pregnant dwarf hamster goes through since it is also an important period.

The final phase of the birthing process is caring for the babies. It's important that you are very familiar with how to deal with the babies because, as babies, they need extra special care. In the beginning you need to leave the hamsters alone (and definitely don't touch them). After that we are fully out of the pregnancy process and into a new process of baby-raising. This is when you can start interacting with the babies and they will go through few different stages of growth in which they'll need to be cared for in different ways.

As you can see, a pregnant dwarf hamster goes through a lot. The entire process is very confusing to her and definitely has a major emotional effect on her. If she's a first time mom, this will be truer as she won't know what's going on so remember to take care of her well. The four phases of a pregnant dwarf hamster are conception, gestation, birth, and baby care. Knowing these four phases is important if you wish to care for a pregnant dwarf hammy.

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