Hamsters are lively little critters that love to play, but we can’t always afford the super fancy stuff you might see online or on TV. Instead, save some money and put your creativity to work crafting your own homemade hamster playgrounds and toys. If you’re short on ideas, we’ve got you covered. Scroll down for some creative ideas you can give a try today for your hamster to play.
The 8 DIY Hamster Playgrounds
1. DIY Hamster Cardboard Tunnel by WikiHow
|Materials:||Toilet paper rolls, glue|
|Tools:||Hot glue gun, scissors|
With nothing more than a few toilet paper rolls and some hot glue, you can fashion an elaborate cardboard hamster maze. If you have more than a few lying around, you can make surprisingly twisty, turny complexes for your hamster to explore. With a little brainpower, some scissors, and some other types of cardboard boxes like cereal boxes, you can construct a whole playground complex.
2. DIY Hamster Popsicle Stick Swing by The Dodo
|Materials:||Popsicle sticks, string, glue|
|Tools:||Hot glue gun, scissors|
Though its durability is in question, this quick and easy popsicle stick swing is sure to make a fun afternoon diversion for your hamster. It makes for a great shelf decoration, too. Use craft paint, string, and hot glue to customize your perfect miniature hamster swing or use heavier-duty wood glue if you want something long-lasting. This video guide is very easy to follow and walks you through the basics, but you can adapt it for nearly anything you can envision.
3. Silent DIY Hamster Wheel by Instructables
|Materials:||Plastic bowl, PVC elbow joints, PVC end caps, PVC 3-way joint, roller blade wheel, ball bearing, carriage bolt, washers, nuts, zip ties|
|Tools:||Drill, dremel tool (optional)|
If you’re familiar with PVC work and own a drill, there’s no reason you can’t cobble this silent hamster wheel together. If you’ve ever suffered any sleepless nights because of a squeaky hamster wheel before, this is a must-have plan to check out. The plan was originally for a hedgehog, but the author notes you can just sub a bucket for a shallow bowl. A Dremel tool helps to make more precise cuts but isn’t mandatory if you’re careful with the drill. Save your sanity and make one of these today!
4. Popsicle Stick Hamster House & Slide by Mechtatel
|Materials:||Popsicle sticks, balsa wood, glue, dowels|
|Tools:||Hot glue gun, utility knife|
If you’re in the mood for something ambitious, try your hand at building your own hamster house with a slide and dining area. It looks intimidating but the whole thing is made with easily workable balsa wood, dowels, and popsicle sticks—even the slide is just sticks! The hardest part will be designing your own unique house layout, if you’re so inclined. If you’re not as crafty, it’s okay to just follow the video guide exactly. Your hamster won’t know the difference.
5. DIY Cardboard Hamster Playground by Instructables
|Materials:||Corrugated cardboard, glue, twine/string|
|Tools:||Hot glue gun, utility knife, scissors|
If the more extensive plans above are too much for you, give this basic DIY hamster playground a try. It just takes some strong cardboard, glue, a hot glue gun, scissors, and a utility knife. The base plan is a good start, and you can add additional ramps, tunnels, or swings onto it if you want to make expansions later. The exact precision of your cuts doesn’t matter that much, and you could always spruce it up with paint if you want to make it look more presentable.
6. DIY Hamster Playpen by Victoria Raechel
|Materials:||Cardboard, glue, sand|
|Tools:||Scissors, hot glue gun (optional)|
Another accessible basic plan is this DIY hamster playpen, composed of just cardboard and sand. You don’t really need hot glue for this project, but it helps make the structure more durable. Hamsters love taking sand baths since it’s good for washing away dirt in their fur, and you can add additional toys or DIY constructs to make the playpen more of a playground.
7. Homemade Glass Hamster Playground by Hammy Time
|Materials:||Glass photo frames/Plexiglass panels, duct tape, craft paper|
For something a bit fancier but still easily DIYed, this flexible glass hamster playground is right up your alley. You can use plexiglass panels or old photo frames for your panels, decorating the edges with craft paper. Duct tape adds a flexible strength to the structure, but it’s still pretty fragile. We wouldn’t recommend using this one every day, but using plexiglass makes it more practical. It can be quickly disassembled for easy storage too.
8. Flexible Nylon Hamster Playpen by ThePiggyRoom
|Materials:||Pop-up storage cube, zip ties, clips|
Using just some pop-up storage cubes, zip ties, and clips, you can have your very own flexible hamster playpen. Simply add toys, a ball, and some other goodies in there to complete the scene and fold it up when you’re done. It’s ingeniously simple and you’ll love that it takes next to no storage space. Plus, the cherry on top is that it’s dirt cheap to buy the materials.
Hamsters love having new and creative spaces to play, but not everyone can afford fancy premade hamster mazes. Using just some hot glue and other widely available supplies like balsa wood or popsicle sticks, you can put together at least one of these today. Get to work!
Featured Image Credit: Johannes Menge, Shutterstock