my new hamster

Beyond the First Cage

After a lengthy run in the wheel, Cammie decides to explore the rest of her environment. First, she travels through some tunnels. Then she reverses direction. Hey, pretty cool, thinks Cammie, I can flip around inside these tunnels. She does not realize it, but soon she will be too big for that. Then she will have to master the art of turning around using "T" intersections, where she backs up in one tunnel to change direction. Or she will have to completely back up until she reaches another cage. We call that going "butt-backwards." Hamsters can do that extremely quickly whenever they want to.

cammie in tunnel

As Cammie, explores the tunnels and cages, she is learning her way around her very own "maze." I read once that the brains of hamsters, mice, and rats are well developed in the area that is responsible for map learning. That's why they are so good at running through mazes. And that's why they go around and around in their cages and tunnels. They need to learn the layout of their environment, as well as constantly check for any changes.

Hamster Rule #4: Always check the environment for escape holes.


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