Where Hamsters Hide & How To Find Them

If you are reading this post, that means you may have lost your hamster. Try not to panic! To succeed in your hamster hunt, you must think like a rodent. 

Where do hamsters hide? Hamsters do not like being vulnerable in open spaces, so you will need to get on the floor and look under furniture, behind large appliances, and inside small and dark spaces. Make sure to remove potential hazards while searching, including the larger pets in the home. 

Keep reading to get more detail on where hamsters like to hide and what you can do to find them!

How Do Hamsters Escape?

Try not to feel guilty if your hamster escapes. Hamsters are escape artists; most will choose to run if given a chance. Some hamsters chew through the bars of their cage, and some will chew a hole right through the bottom of the enclosure. This is why purchasing a hamster-proof pen made with steel wire made with hard metal, hard plastic, or glass is essential. Many hamster owners use glass aquariums for their enclosures, which is an excellent choice so long as it is not too warm in the hamster’s room.

While chewing hamsters can make quick work of wood or soft cage, most hamster escapes fall in the category of human error. If you need to correctly close or latch one of the cage doors after feeding, watering, or interacting with your hamster, know that your pet will undoubtedly take advantage of this mistake. Unfortunately, because a hamster’s sleep and wake cycle is the opposite of ours, you may not realize your hamster has escaped until several hours after you’ve woken up from a night of sleep. 

Keeping your hamster enriched can decrease their chances of trying to escape. To learn how to add some entertainment to your hamster’s life, check out my article Hamster Enrichment Ideas: Top Enrichment Ideas For Hamsters.

Remove Hazards Before Searching For Your Hamster

If you have a cat in the home, you will want to secure it before you start your search. Place it in a room you are sure your hamster is not occupying or in a crate or carrier. If you and your cat are hunting for your hamster, your cat (and its feline senses) will win. While cats are not the only potential hazard in the home, felines are uniquely adept at hunting down rodents – between their vision, sense of smell, agility, and stealth, our cats will almost always find our hamsters before we do.

Cats are not the only potential hazard in your home. You will also want to remove dogs and other cage-free pets from the search and keep your small children close to you or otherwise occupied so they don’t stumble upon your hamster without you. In addition, give everyone else in the home a heads-up about what is happening. Not only will this (hopefully) prevent them from accidentally stepping on your pet, but it would also be nice to have an extra couple of hands in the search.

Where To Find Your Hamster In The Bedroom

If your hamster cage is kept in a bedroom, that would be an excellent place to start your search. Because hamsters prefer to stay hidden, they often stick around near where they escaped for fear of going too far. Grab a flashlight, and get on your hands and knees. You will want to look under all the furniture – the bed, dresser, desk, or anything with a base that sits even an inch from the floor needs to be inspected (this is where that flashlight comes in handy). You will also need to pick through every item on the floor of the room – this task will be a lot easier if your room is tidy, but make sure you are thorough regardless. If you have a pile of clothes on the floor, you will need to gently pick each garment out of the pile and shake it out before placing it on top of the bed or dresser (don’t just lay it back on the floor, as your hamster can then scurry right under it while your back is turned). If you have shoes in your room, look inside each one. Look inside backpacks, blankets, stuffed animal piles, papers, and everything else on your floor. Remember to look in your closet like you did the rest of your room.

Where To Find Your Hamster In The Bathroom

Most bathrooms can be searched rather quickly since there aren’t as many places to hide in the bathrooms as in other rooms of the home. Nevertheless, we should always appreciate a hamster’s ability to find a hiding place in any room of the house. To search your bathroom, look behind the toilet, the vanities, the trash can, and inside the cupboards. If you have a stand-alone shower, check in there. Check behind the laundry baskets and inside any towels that may have been left on the floor.

Where To Find Your Hamster In The Kitchen

If you have gotten to the kitchen and still haven’t found your hamster (or if you keep your hamster cage in the kitchen and are therefore starting there), you may have to engage some muscles here. If hiding in the kitchen, your hamster may be under or behind one of your appliances. You will need to pull out every appliance you can, including your refrigerator and oven. Search around the gaps in your dishwasher, kitchen trash can, and lower cupboards. Look under your kitchen table, chairs, and benches. Check the entirety of your pantry floor if you have one, removing small appliances or food items from the floor to search thoroughly. Search anything that you leave on the ground, including pet bowls.

Did you know that you can give your hamster something to do outside of their cage? Visit my article What To Do With Your Hamster: 10 Fun Things To Try.

Where To Find Your Hamster In The Family / Living Room

When looking in your home’s family or living rooms, you will again need to get on your hands and knees and look under the furniture. You will need to look under the couches and chairs, even if they are pretty low. Use a flashlight if you can, but if you can’t see to the back, you will need to move the furniture. Look under the coffee tables, bookshelves, entertainment centers, blankets, dog beds, and even the wood stove if you have one. Like you did in the bedrooms, lift every item off of the floor to make sure your hamster is not hiding inside of it. 

Where To Find Your Hamster: Miscellaneous Hiding Spaces

If you have other rooms in your home, you will need to look there also. If you have a laundry room, you should search behind the washer and dryer and inside any laundry baskets on the floor. If you have a basement or an attached garage, you may also need to check those areas, especially if the doors to these spaces have small pet doors for a cat or dog to enter or exit. 

Unfortunately, it is also not unheard of for a hamster to get into the home’s walls. In your search, if you come upon a chewed baseboard with even a tiny hole, this may be where your hamster is hiding. In this case, you can try to coax your hamster out (see below).

What If You Can’t Find Your Hamster?

Keep hope if you have searched high and low and have yet to find your hamster. Hamsters are excellent at hide-and-seek, but they will eventually become thirsty or hungry. Return to your starting point – the room where your hamster’s cage lives. Pick up the cage and place it on the floor with the door open. This will make the enclosure easily accessible for your hamster. If you realize the cage needs a good cleaning as you move it, hold off – hamsters have an excellent sense of smell, and their scent may help to lure them back to their home. 

In addition, place some of your hamster’s favorite treats inside and around the cage. The smellier, the better – dry food may not do the trick here, but a cucumber, an apple slice, or even a tiny bite of string cheese may entice him from his hiding place. Hopefully, your hamster will climb right back into his cage to rest after snacking on his treats, and if this is the case, you can then close the cage door and breathe a sigh of relief.

Even A Thorough Hamster Search May Not Be Successful

Sadly, there is a chance that regardless of how well you searched, your hamster will not turn up. This is an unfortunate reality, and if you find yourself in this situation, try not to beat yourself up. Mistakes happen, and hamsters are not always very forgiving, often taking the first opportunity they find to get themselves into trouble. Imagine your hamster living a full and rewarding life of adventure out on the run with his new rodent friends.

How far can hamsters fall and be alright? To learn more, check out my article How Far Hamsters Can Fall and Be Alright: Fall Height Guide.

Recent Posts