The Birth

Litter of baby hamstersFemales Syrian hamsters usually give birth during the evening, night or early morning but sometimes give birth during the day. The female is active right up to the moment of birth. Before giving birth to each baby she tightens her abdominal muscles two or three times then sits up and crouches over as she gives birth to a single baby within a couple of minutes. A placenta, which looks like a small red blood sac, may be released after the birth of each baby and this is normally eaten by the mother as it is a good source of protein. Babies are born at approximately 10 minute intervals and the mother may be active between each birth. Therefore babies may be born around the cage but the mother will usually collect them all up and place them in the nest once birthing is complete.

After the female has given birth there is often spots of blood on the bedding or around the cage. This is caused by the passing of the placentas and is normal and nothing to be alarmed about. Severe bleeding from the female though should be cause for alarm.

The hamster pups are born naked, blind and deaf, weighing only 3 grams. If the hamsters are to be dark eyed the eyes can be seen under the skin but if they are to be red eyed the eyes cannot be seen at birth. They are born with teeth which allow them to suckle and their skin is transparent and once fed the milk can be seen in the stomach.

The female should not be disturbed whilst giving birth.