Health

Roborovski are quite robust animals and are not prone to anything in particular as a species. Your pet may still get ill so please read on. There are many general ailments and injuries that could occur with your pet but I’ve listed the usual suspects below. These are all health concerns affecting any small rodent and none are specific to the Roborovski.

Respiratory illness is not common but any unusual noises, sneezing or discharge from the eyes and nose should be referred to your vet and treated with a course of antibiotics.

This species of dwarf hamster does not generally suffer with diabetes. It’s possible as they are mammals but it’s rare. They, therefore, do not need any changes to their diet to combat this. Excessive drinking is usually a urine or kidney infection (see below)

Infections in the urinary tract including the kidneys can happen if the water bottle stops working due to dehydration. Roborovski don’t normally drink a lot so tap the the ball at the end of the spout at each water bottle check to make sure it’s still working as it can be hard to judge otherwise.

Obesity is an issue for some roborovski and this can be remedied by cutting back on either the amount fed or frequency of feeding and checking your hamsters weight regularly. Based on my own hamstery, your roborovski could be 20-45g but the best indicator of obesity is the chest area. This is where your robo will store excess fat and once this becomes too large the fur will rub off and you’ll have a bald spot! The only reason for losing hair in this area is because your robo needs to lose weight. Just adding a wheel will only work if your hamster chooses to use it so reduce the food first.

One effect of being overweight and male is that your pet won’t be able to reach those sensitive areas that need cleaning. This can result in an unpleasant discharge or lump around or near his penis. You will need the help of a confident vet to remove any lumps but discharge can be treated with warm (not hot) water, hibiscrub from your vet and a cotton wool ball.

Female roborovski shouldn’t have any discharge or bleeding from their vulva area and anything like this should immediately be treated by a vet. It could be pyometra (womb infection) or similar so do not delay.

Lastly, your roborovski is not immune to cancer. Lumps can pop up on animals but are not common. Any mammal can get cancer so have your vet check any lumps you might find. I’ve encountered this only twice in Roborovski and both have been in the upper neck region leading me to suspect them to be thyroid related. Both animals were euthanised as treatment was not possible.