Can Hamsters Sneeze?

If you see your hamster sneezing, you might think that your hamster has tickles in his nose, and it would make them sneeze. However, they could sneeze due to some other reasons too. So, in this article, we are going to discuss the factors which could cause these conditions and the steps you could take to stop them sneezing, etc. So, let’s get into it.

What does a Hamster sneezing sound like?

Hamster sneezing would be more like the sound of squeaking. Hamsters would more or less depict the same symptoms as humans when they sneeze.

Is it normal for a hamster to sneeze?

It is normal for the hamsters to sneeze if they are suffering from a cold. Once the hamsters’ noses suffer from infections, they will likely sneeze. Furthermore, if there are dust pieces stuck on the noses, they would end up sneezing. If you spot the hamsters sneezing, you will have to take them to a pet doctor as promptly as you could as it could be an alarming condition. If you can’t spot any other signs of a cold, hamsters may tend to sneeze due to some other condition such as allergies.

Why is my hamster sneezing?

Hamsters may sneeze due to several reasons. For example, they would tend to sneeze if they are suffering from any breathing issue. Hamsters are not the type of animals that would get cold or flu-like diseases. However, they would experience respiratory infections which would make them sneeze. If you want to ascertain whether the hamsters are suffering from upper respiratory tract infections check whether they are carrying runny eyes or crusty eyes which may probably shut.

Besides, you could see them being lethargic and losing their appetite and sneezing when they experience an upper respiratory tract infection. Nasal drainage could be another symptom here and you could determine if they suffer from an upper respiratory tract infection. Keep in mind that these infections can contribute to severe diseases such as pneumonia too. However, if you treat them on time, hamsters can recover from this condition quite well.

Hamster’s Allergies and Sneezing

Hamsters will have allergies just like humans do. To overcome it, you need to ideally treat the symptoms by suppressing the release of histamine. This is usually done by using antihistamines and it will eradicate the allergens in the hamsters. Keep in mind that there could be hamsters that would be allergic to certain fabric softeners which you use to wash the fleece blankets and towels. Besides, some hamsters would show symptoms of allergies to bedding in their cage too. Not only that but also, there could be allergens in their food which would make the hamsters sneeze.

Apart from that, the dust in the environment could bring microscopic dust which would result in allergies in the hamsters. To attend to this, you need to switch their food, wash the bedding using unscented detergents etc. if the hamsters tend to showcase much more severe symptoms, you could consider having a humidifier also. If you cannot still see any progress you will have to pay a visit to a vet doctor which would be worthwhile.

Respiratory Irritants

There could be certain scents in the environments that would result in the hamster sneezing. For example, there could be perfume scents, pine and cedar shavings, and even scented candles which would result in sneezing the hamsters. Furthermore scented room sprays and plug-in style diffusers would also make them suffer from sneezing as they would also act as respiratory irritants. In addition to that, there could be some cleaning agents like carpet odors which would irritate the hamster’s tiny respiratory tract.

Other Reasons for Sneezing.

There could be other serious reasons which would result in sneezing the hamsters. For example, if there are tumors in the head and nose it would make them sneeze. However, you could rarely diagnose them as not many hamsters would go for MRI scans or CT scans. If you see the hamsters releasing any nasal discharge it could also be an alarming sign of a severe condition in the hamster’s body.

Suppose that your hamsters seem to be less lethargic or lose their appetite in eating or skip drinking, I suggest you pay a visit to the vet doctor as promptly as you could. In fact, it would be the wise thing to do here. They will prescribe appropriate antibiotics, and antihistamines depending on the severity of the condition.

Hamster keeps sneezing

If your hamsters seem to keep sneezing, it means something is wrong with them. In fact, it could be most probably due to a common cold or even pneumonia. Many mammals could develop cold, and hamsters are no exception. So, you would expect the hamsters to have a cold, especially during winter. Hamster colds could be contagious which means there could be a probability for you to catch a cold from the hamsters.

Hamsters may tend to suffer from colds and sneeze if their cage is in a cold drafty room. Further, if you don’t dry them fully after a bath or if they happen to sleep under waterbottles, it is very likely that they will suffer from a cold and end up sneezing. To ascertain if the hamsters are suffering from a cold you could see whether the hamsters are carrying a runny nose, laid-back ears, fatigue etc. in addition to that they would tend to sniffle a lot and tend to be less active too. Once this condition gets severe you could see them shivering and losing some weight too.

Can hamsters sneeze to death?

Believe it or not, sneezing could be deadly to hamsters. One might think that sneezing is a simple thing and it would not turn out to be lethal on the hamsters. However, it is noteworthy that hamsters would tend to suffer from the smallest speck of dust. Besides, it could be an early sign of a severe disease that your beloved hamsters may suffer from too. If the hamsters happen to sneeze whilst squeaking, you need to ideally pay a visit to the pet doctor as soon as possible. Even though you might think that sneezing is quite normal it could be an indication of an alarming fatal condition that your hamsters may suffer from.

How to cure hamster sneezing

First of all, you need to clean the cage as well as the bedding properly. Further, if you had consumed pine or cedar bedding I suggest you switch the bedding to safer bedding. For example, wood pulp bedding would be ideal. I don’t recommend using pine and cedar bedding as they could cause upper respiratory infections and allergies since they contain wooden oil. If required you could take the hamsters to a pet doctor also. If it is not possible you can give a solution of mild and lukewarm water mixed with one teaspoon of honey. It would help to treat the symptoms.

If the hamsters keep sneezing irrespective of the remedies they take, I suggest placing the hamster’s enclosure in a safe place. For example, it has to be a place where there is adequate airflow and ventilation.

Besides, don’t place it closer to any of the fireplaces or kitchen since the smoke coming out of them would make the hamsters sneeze. Furthermore, ensure the place you have kept the hamster cage is dust free. If you happen to use dusty hay, chances are that it could result in respiratory complications. As such I recommend you use good quality hay in the hamster’s cage as much as you can. In terms of the right bedding, I suggest you use proper bedding which would reduce the odor which would come out from it.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Do hamsters sneeze or cough?

Hamsters could do both sneezing and coughing. If you happen to spot your beloved hamsters coughing and sneezing it would be most probably due to an issue related to their respiratory system. It is somewhat rare to see hamsters suffer from a cold and if you spot them coughing and sneezing it is very likely that they are suffering from a URI. ( upper respiratory infection).

Is my hamster sneezing or squeaking?

This is much harder to understand since they are very small and you might hear both sounds similarly. But if you pay very good attention and observe your hamster for an hour or two you can hear clearly if they are sneezing or squeaking.

Should I be worried if my hamster sneezes?

If you see your hamsters are sneezing, you need to ideally start looking into it much deeper. As aforesaid it could be a sign of an allergy or any other disease.


I hope you found this article very informative and that you were able to learn about the factors which could make your beloved hamsters sneeze. In addition to that, we have covered the things which you could do to overcome this condition as well.

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