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Hamster’s Red And Runny Nose Turns Bloody

Why would a hamster’s red, runny nose turn bloody?

By Karen Rosenthal, DVM, DABVP
Posted: March 27, 2011, 5 a.m. EDT

Q: My hamster had a cold, so I cleaned his cage really well and gave him fresh water and food. I read online that a hamster owner should become very concerned if a hamster becomes lethargic and less active. The day after I cleaned his cage, he seemed to improve. His nose wasn’t as red and less runny. But today, I noticed he had a bloody nose. How can I help him? I know it comes with having a pet, but I really don’t have the money for a vet.

A: It is difficult to know exactly what is happening with your hamster. You may be seeing blood or it could be a discharge that is tinged to a reddish color due to porphyrin pigmentation.

If you cannot visit a veterinarian, then try to keep his cage as well maintained as possible. It may be that your hamster is sensitive to odors in the environment, which is causing irritation of his respiratory system.

Make sure that airflow is as good as possible in his cage. Also, be sure that the material in his cage is not aromatic. Make sure that urine is not allowed to soak into his cage bedding and that his bedding is changed frequently. Try to keep dust levels very low in his cage area.

If this is a respiratory irritation, he should start to get better as you improve his environment.

See all of Dr. Rosenthal's Critter Q&A articles>>

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Hamster’s Red And Runny Nose Turns Bloody

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Reader Comments
Thanks I will ask my mom
Cat, International
Posted: 12/18/2013 5:40:17 PM
Hello Cat, I am very sorry to hear that your sister's hamster appears to be ill or injured. The best action in such instances is to have the hamster examined by a veterinarian who regularly treats hamsters. To find one, check this list LINK or search for a vet at the Association of Exotic Mammal Veterinarians website, www.aemv.org. Wishing all the best to your family and the hamster.
Marylou, Irvine, CA
Posted: 12/18/2013 11:01:21 AM
My sisters hamster got out of her cage and she got down the stairs and my gpa found her two days later with a bloody red runny nose and she makes weird sounds and I am very scared what should I do plz tell me
Cat, PA, PA
Posted: 12/17/2013 2:16:40 PM
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