Owning a pet hamster is one of life’s greatest joys. These pint-sized bundles of cuteness are adorable, loving, entertaining, and inexpensive to maintain. They also take up minimal space and don’t require constant attention like most other pets.
One of the best aspects of having a pet hamster is naming them. Rewarding your hamster with a fitting name is the least you can do to solidify your newly found relationship. But once you do, will the hamster recognize it?
Yes, hamsters do recognize their name, but not right away. Hamsters are intelligent creatures and, over time, can learn to recognize their names as well as their owners’ voices. If your hamster isn’t responding to its name, you probably haven’t trained it to. Below is everything you need to know about teaching hamsters to recognize their name and yours too!
Can I Teach My Hamster to Learn Its Name?
Yes, you can teach your hamster to learn its name, but it takes patience and effort to do so. The best way to teach your hamster its name is through treats. Here’s how you do it.
Stick a treat near the hamster’s rat cage and call out its name slowly. Don’t shout, or you might startle it. Instead, use a gentle and soothing voice to beckon the rodent over. You might have to do it over and over for stubborn ones.
Repeat this every day until the hamster becomes aware of its name. That way, the next time you call its name, it should come running even without a treat. You’ll have to be patient with your little fuzzball, but all that waiting will pay off eventually.
How Long Does It Take for a Hamster to Learn Its Name
It’s hard to pin down the exact time it takes for a hamster to learn its name because intelligence and obedience vary from one hamster to the next. However, it will take the average hamster about one or two weeks to learn and remember its name.
Teaching your hamster its name without a treat takes longer for it to learn its name. Without an incentive, the hamster won’t have much to look forward to hence the delay. If your hamster takes too long to learn its name, you can always call in an animal behavioral expert to help.
New hamsters also take longer to learn their names because they first have to complete an acclimatization period before they’re comfortable in their new environment. Only then can they start learning and responding to their names.
How Can I Tell Whether My Hamster Is Learning Its Name?
There are a few telltale signs that your hamster is starting to recognize its name. They include the following.
How to Build a Solid Bond With Your Hamster
To build a solid pet-owner bond, it is important to teach your hamster its name. And It’d be hard to do so if your hamster runs away to hide whenever it sees you. Here’s how you can build a strong bond with your hamster to achieve your bottom line.
You can begin training your hamster to learn its name once you build a strong bond with it. A little gentle petting while calling its name helps accelerate the learning process. However, avoid any sudden movements since hamsters startle easily. Once it learns its name, you can up the ante and teach it a trick or two.
The 4 Mistakes to Avoid While Teaching Your Hamster Its Name
Some mistakes could set you many steps back when teaching your hamster its name. Here are some mistakes to avoid.
1. Getting Frustrated
It’s easy to get frustrated when your hamster refuses to grasp its name despite numerous training sessions. Hamsters aren’t as intelligent as humans or other animals. Sometimes, they’re a little bit nervous.
Remember to be patient and keep at it for the best results. Your hamster might take a few days, weeks, or even months to learn its name. Whenever you feel frustrated, take a brisk walk outside to calm down and get right back to the training.
Consistency is key when teaching your hamster its name. Hamsters sit 4th on the list of top 10 animals with the worst memories on the planet. Therefore, having weekly training sessions won’t do much for it.
Instead, have at least a single training every day to achieve your bottom line. Inconsistent training sessions are a waste of time.
3. Mixing Name Training With Other Training Sessions
If you want to teach your hamster its name, stick to only that. Mixing it with other training sessions may confuse the little critter. Focus first on teaching its name before you can move to teach it tricks and other commands.
4. Failing to Reward Your Hamster
Training sessions without a reward are likely to hit a dead end. Be sure you treat your hamster to a little reward every time it responds to its name. This keeps the training sessions exciting and mentally stimulates them to learn faster.
You can offer it a treat either before or after the training session. It’s okay to stop the rewards once the training concludes.
Are There Any Benefits to Hamsters Learning Their Names?
Hamsters learning their names may seem like something fun and cute for your hamsters. But did you know that there are a few benefits to doing so? Some of these include.
Improves the Relationship Between You and Your Hamster
Nothing says “strong pet-owner bond” than calling your hamster by its name and the hamster responding. The bond between you and your hamster grows stronger every time you call it by its name, and it responds. Not to mention the numerous training sessions where the hamster gets familiar with your voice, scent, and presence. This love and trust will help reduce the hamsters’ stress levels.
It’s not uncommon for hamsters to hide or curl themselves up in the corner of their cages because of shyness. Training your hamster to recognize its name will help reduce its shyness, leading to a happy and fun-loving hamster that enjoys your company.
Makes It Easier to Learn Tricks and Commands
Teaching your hamster new tricks and commands will be much easier once it has a firm grasp of its name. That way, you can get it to stand, sit, or roll over to impress your guests.
Hamsters recognize their names, but only if you train them to. How long it takes for yours to do so depends on the training approach you take. Remember, patience and consistency are crucial to teaching your hamster to recognize its name. Stick to it, and your hamster will respond to its name in no time. If it doesn’t, then maybe a professional can help.
Featured Image Credit: Victor FlowerFly, Shutterstock