Do you have time to take care of it? While they can be pretty low maintenance creatures, it's best to know that you'll have the energy to clean it two or three times a week (once if you're lucky). You need to be able to check if it has water, food, and is in good health quite often.

What kind of hamster do you want? There are Syrians, the most common and usually the most healthy. Teddy Bear Hamsters fall into this category as well, and can be quite cute. They get mean if you don't handle them, most breeds do. There are the smaller dwarf hamsters, that are generally meaner but create less waste to clean up. There are a lot of different kinds out there, make sure you know a bit about the breed before you bring it home.

Are you prepared for the noise and possible mess? They can be both, and usually are, depending on the cage and toys. Hamsters chew on the bars of their cage, or the plastic, respectively, and it can be very annoying for a light sleeper. The wheels often make noise, and the digging and scratching and running around can drive you crazy at times. They will dig in their cage and kick bedding out the sides creating mess, if there is too much, or just because they feel like it.

Do you even have a good place to keep this thing? It can't be too hot or too cold, too drafty or not ventilated enough. Most places have somewhere like this, but not all do. A closet is not a good place to keep your hamster.

If you have mice in your house, you have to watch that they can't get into your hamsters food, or their cage. The mice may spread diseases to your little hamsty, and that isn't so nice. If you don't have mice but your house is easily accessible to them, be prepared to deal with the little rodents entering your domocile. They'll be attracted by the hamsters food and scent.

Overall, having a hamster is a positive experience, as long as you're suited to be a hamster owner. :)

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