Robo is short for Roborovski. Robo dwarf hamsters are the smallest and fastest dwarf hamsters, which makes them the smallest hamsters currently recorded.
They are lucky to reach 3 inches in length! These hamsters are very friendly in the sense that they don't usually bite. However, they're also unfriendly in the sense that they don't easily trust humans.
So while you don't have to worry about you or your family members being bit, it's unlikely the hamster will want to be picked up and will constantly run away. This can actually lead to some fun and, if done on a recurring basis, can lead to the hamster understanding that you are not chasing with intent to harm.
It might take a few months of dedicated interaction, but eventually the hamster might just grow to like you enough to at least allow being petted.
Despite this, they can be a little picky. They aren't big fans of store pellet food for hamsters; they'd rather have fresh food such as vegetables, insects, worms, seeds - anything but pellets actually!
- Robo dwarf hamsters live from one to three years.
- Other Names: Roborovski Dwarf Hamster
- Very active at night
- Color: Agouti – light brown/beige color with gray roots & Winter White - face with white belly – this one looks like agouti robo hamster except the face – it’s white.
- Family: Cricetidae
- Genus: Phodopus
- Gestation: 23-30 days
Roborovski's Hamster ( Phodopus roborovski ) are smaller than all other hamsters, and are also the fastest. They can be as small as 1.5 inches full grown. Their average lifespan is 3-3.5 years.
They are believed to have been discovered in July of 1894, but not kept in captivity until the 1970's in the USSR.
The Roborovski hamsters are not ideal pets for children, due to their small size. They are sociable and some say it is best to let them live with other hamsters of their own kind. Roborovski hamsters are not found in U.S. pet stores very often, but can be found from specialist breeders.
Roborovski dwarf hamsters originally lived in the desert dunes of Western and Eastern regions of Mongolia and parts of Northern China.
They are smaller than their White Winter and Campbell dwarf hamster cousins, and also have slightly longer legs.
They naturally have a coat that is sandy brown in color with a slate gray undercoat. Because of their high actively level they can be sometimes hard to keep as pets and they are too small for most wire hamster cages.
Most of these small creatures can squeeze themselves through the bars.
Roborovski hamster is an extremely clean animal and enjoys grooming itself and they love a good sand bath. Chinchilla sand is a good choice in a ceramic bowl or plate, that they can easily access and roll around in.
Even though there are different kinds, they all require about the same amount of care.
- Robo Dwarf Hamster Care
- How to catch an escaped dwarf hamster
- Breeding Roborovski Hamsters
Robo Dwarf Hamster Care
Tips on how to take care of your pet!
This hammy's care is very much the same care as the other types of dwarf hamster breeds. As they are so tiny in size, consider this when setting up their home and supply purchases.
Housing Your Pet Roborovski Hamster
All Dwarf hamsters require a small barred cage (often called mouse bars) so that they cannot escape.
A good alternative is an old fish aquarium, well-cleaned and with a mesh roof fitted (Roborovskis can jump quite high!)
Other cages people consider using are the Rotostak system or similar involving tubes and living rooms. These can be awkward for young dwarf hamsters to negotiate if there are tubes leading upwards.
Some cages have recently come on the market which are built especially for hamsters, but seem to be based on plastic aquariums. These are nice and roomy for a pair of dwarf hamsters.
Considerations when having two living together
Don't forget the toys!!
If you chose to house more than one Robo hamster together it is best:
- If they have known each other from birth and have remained living together (sam sex pairs).
- They will tend to be more tolerant of each other.
- Often it's the lack of space and available hamster food that causes stress and fights to break out.
Provide your pets with ample room and each with a hiding place of their own. That way should a fight break out, they have a place to go hide in.
If fighting persists, it's best to separate them, so have a backup cage, just in case!
As they are gnawing animals they will require wooden chew toys. You can obtain unstained and untreated wooden chew blocks from the pet store.
Please try and avoid using exercise balls as they can become stressed by feeling trapped inside and overheated.
Proper nutrition is Important for your Robo
Proper nutrition plays an important role in your pet's health, reproductive and life span. By providing your pet with pellets made for dwarf hamsters, fresh water, occasional veggies, avoid processed & junk food- will be to your pet's healthy benefits!
Roboroski hamsters eat normal hamster food mix and will also enjoy treats of small slices of vegetables such as carrot or cucumber.
Never give a hamster human chocolate as it is very bad for them. Your pet will also require access to fresh water.
It is particularly important to ensure that your young Roborovski hamster is able to reach his food and water bottles when you first bring him home. Their small size can make it quite difficult for them.
Robo Hamster bath!?
Dwarf Hamsters love baths but with NO water!!
Yes the Robo enjoys having a special type of bath, not with water! A sand bath of special sand, geared for Dwarf Hamsters, with a lot of space to roll around in~ allows your pet to clean off the oil on their coats.
And do Dwarfs love to exercise - why they need an exercise wheel
Robo dwarf hamsters love and need a lot of exercise. It has been said that in the wild they can run up to 5 Kilometers in an evening, so providing them with ample opportunity to exercise is important!
Remember their small size when purchasing a wheel. Select one the is gauged to their size and without rungs. A solid wheel is best and they will make good use of it.
How to catch an escaped dwarf hamster
You can make your own trap
Every once in a while your hamster might decide to "make a break for it" and escape his cage.
When this does happen you need to be prepared for it. Here are some suggestions to help you capture your hamster if this happens.
One way that you can capture your pet hamster is by using a can or small box. Just make sure to place it quickly over the top of him. This might be bothersome to you since you have to chase down your hamster.
If this is the case and it seems more troublesome than you could also use a bath towel or hand towel. Simply throw this over your hamster and then very quickly roll him up in it.
You can make your own homemade trap to catch your hamster. You will need a large coffee can or small bucket or a deep plastic box of sorts.
You will also need something to use for a ramp. This could be a piece of wood, screen mesh, plastic or cardboard even.
Next you will take the container that you chose, place the ramp you chose and tilt it against the container.
Next bait the trap and the ramp leading up to the container. Also place treats (small amounts) in the container itself. Your hamster will use his sense of smell to follow the treats you placed as bait.
He will climb up the ramp eating the treats and will also follow them right down into the container. Since the container has slick sides with nothing for your hamsters feet to gain good footing on, he will be unable to get out of the trap.
If you chose a trap as the way to catch your hamster don't be surprised if you catch him/her in late evening. Evening is when your hamster is usually more active and will be "out and about".
Most hamsters will sleep during the day and will "hide" from you. Whatever type of trap you decide to use you'll want to check it several times during the day.
Possibly even get up during the night and check as well. Once you've caught your little "escapee" he/she will be hungry as well as thirsty.
After catching him be sure and check him over good for any signs that he may have gotten hurt while he was out.
Breeding Roborovski Hamsters
Breeding Roborovski hamsters is not to be recommended unless you are very used to handling hamsters.
They can take a while to produce their first litter, but then litters can occur very regularly. Finding hamsters home for all the babies is very hard work, and it can be hard to tell the sex of young hamsters – even experienced hamster breeders check several times!
Roborovski hamsters are very small and quick and should be handled gently. It is possible to pick them up with care and patience.
Their speed and agility make them unsuitable as pets for very young children, unless parents are taking responsibility for them. It is very entertaining to watch them as they hurtle round the cage at top speed.
Roborovski hamsters make fun and unusual pets. They are full of quirky character and will reward your love and attention with hours of enjoyment.
Taking good care of your Dwarf Hamster is important! Remember they are REALLY cute, but are REAL pets that require care, food, exercise and housing.
Please be a responsible pet owner!