For Those Who Care

hamsters for those who care

For Those Who Care

Hamster care book for a public library? Of course we need materials on hamster care, both in youth and adult collections. This particular book is presented because I think the sub title “For Those Who Care” is weird. Question: does balance in the collection mean we also cater to those who don’t care?

The author comments that the popularity of hamsters is because they have a short tail. Moms, evidently, are spooked by rodents with tails. I guess dads are okay with any kind of rodent.

Aside from the age and the weird title, the content looks okay.  I am concerned about the cat in the 3rd picture below that seems to be assessing the vulnerabilities in the current hamster housing. Poor hamster doesn’t even know he is probably that cat’s next meal.



hamsters back cover

introduction to hamsters

hamster homes

hamster breeding




  1. That comment about mothers is sexist, but 100% correct as far as mine was concerned – she was disgusted by mouse tails but tolerated hamsters. We had five hamsters, one at a time. As pets go, they were cute, short-lived (the one who lived the longest lasted for two and a half years), and didn’t have much in the way of personality.

    Pet books should always be weeded rather quickly, since pet caring guidelines change so much. I doubt anyone would allow that tiny little cage now!

    1. Plus, I look askance at any book that encourages animal breeding. The last thing the world needs in a bunch of unwanted animals… as anyone who’s ever volunteered at an animal shelter or rescue can tell you.

  2. As for the cat, my cat used to lay atop the hamster aquarium all day long (covered with chicken wire, with a giant atlas as a platform.) Never bothered the hamster one bit, and the cat was bored enough to just fall asleep there…

  3. Hamsters and I don’t get along. Every single hamster I have encountered, from childhood to age 60, have bitten me!
    So, as far as they go as pets, I do not care!

    I currently work in a pet store, and hamsters are nasty little/cute little balls of fluff. Little girls ooh and aah over them. Parents, usually mothers, like them because they don’t have “rat’s tails.” We warn people to wake hamsters up with a pencil eraser, so the hamster bites that instead of a finger!

    Rats are much better pets. Rats want to be with you, hamsters don’t. Rats are smart, hamsters aren’t. Rats don’t die from “wet tail,” hamsters do.

    A suggestion about breeding – call local pet stores BEFORE you breed! They may be interested in buying, but many stores don’t by locally. We buy many of our animals locally, but not hamsters.

  4. My mom doesn’t care for hamsters because they look too much like mice, but she thought the two guinea pigs I once had as pets were really cute.

  5. Hamsters make terrible pets for small children. Solitary, nocturnal, and have been described as soft furry staple guns.

    Incidentally, the business about “three found in Syria” is a wilful lie. The original Syrian hamster was one female, with a litter variously reported from 8 to 11. She ate the others–whether as a personal aberration or a species-standard response to extreme stress. (Like, say, being captured immediately before your babies were due.) Another reason to think twice about breeding; it remains a common hamster behavior.

    And then there’s the way they show Syrians and dwarfs in separate, context-less pictures so the reader has no idea what the difference is.

  6. I was too young to remember it, but way back when my brothers decided to go into the hamster breeding business. They got a male and a female, breed them, then sell the babies off as soon as they could for 50 cents each. One day the hamsters escaped. The neighbor later told my mom about how her cat had been catching “a lot of strange mice with no tails.”

    And like Louise said, hamsters often eat their young. Cannibalism – great lesson to teach the kiddies.

  7. I think guinea pigs are much better pets than hamsters. They rarely bite or act vicious. My guinea pigs never bit me but I once had a hamster that bit right into my finger without warning. That was not a fun experience, to say the least.

  8. “For Those Who Care” is a series of pet care books, covering pretty much every species people own as pets. I think they’re from the early to mid ’90s, so out of date now.

  9. “Poor hamster doesn’t even know he is probably that cat’s next meal” never was a truer sentence spoken.

    I lived in Denmark for 2 months when I was 15, and the host family had hamsters. One evening there was a fluffy pile of hamsters, then the next morning there was a pool of blood and a cat with hamster fur on its face. I found it kinda hilarious, (cause I’m twisted like that), the host family did not!

  10. I suspect hamsters received a boost in the late 1990s with the animated “Hamtaro” childrens’ TV series (and tie-in Game-Boy Color cartridges) and a revival of “Hammy Hamster”. My daughter was a devoted viewer of “Hamtaro” at the time and convinced us to get a a Siberian hamster, which she named “Sandy” after one of the female characters in the cartoon. Since hamsters have a relatively short life-span, poor Sandy ended up buried in our backyard within a year or so and her cage ended up in the basement for the next 15 years. 🙂

  11. The subtitle is to distinguish this series of books from the popular (& competing) series “I Could Care Less.”

    1. Agreed, I’ve only used those small aquariums for transporting my hamster when moving homes – also cages are much more preferable for ventilation and recreation purposes (but make sure it’s not too high so the hamster doesn’t take a bad fall if it loses its grip on the cage’s walls/ceilings)

  12. I had hamsters as a kid, they even had babies a couple of times, but like our fish and our parakeet, they didn’t last, thanks to a cat named Martini.

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