Our Djungarian hamster has had a big, wooden house (under the wheel) where she used to happily live since we got her a few months ago. But recently she stopped using it for sleeping. Instead she just burrows under her water bottle and sleeps there, using the house only as food storage.

Hamster terarium

What could be possible reasons for this behavior? Could it be the house doesn't satisfy her needs for some reason any more?

The house has multiple compartments, separated by tiny walls with holes so that she can crawl between them:

House internals

We tried to remove the walls, just in case, but she didn't care at all for this change.

1 Answer 1


This isn't necessarily anything to worry about. Hamsters like to change things up sometimes.

Actually, changing things up regularly helps prevent hamster depression. We want the hamster to have a safe place of his choice to curl up in, but we also want the hamster to have a variety of things to explore. So, rotate the objects in his habitat a couple times a week, so he will have a slightly different array of objects and activities.

What do I mean by "hamster depression"? When the hamster doesn't come out of hiding much, and just hides in his cave like a recluse.

Note, changing things too often would be stressful. Watch your hamster's reactions to your early experiments in rotation of objects in the habitat, and adjust your approach as needed.

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