Do Hamsters Purr

Do Hamsters Purr? How to Know if Your Hamster is Happy

If you have a hamster, you like to want to know whether it is happy and content.

Hamsters don’t purr in the same way that cats do, however, they often make short excited squeaks or “brux” by rubbing their teeth together when they are happy and contented. They can also sometimes squeak, hiss, or grind their teeth if they are unhappy. 

Keep reading to find out more about what your hamster’s noises mean.

Do hamsters purr when you pet them?

Unlike cats, hamsters do not purr when you pet them. However, they do often make other noises such as squeaking, squealing, hissing, or grinding their teeth, all of which mean something different about how the hamster is feeling. 

If your hamster squeals, hisses, or grinds its teeth, it may be a sign that it is frightened or stressed. If your hamster is in extreme distress it may let out a high-pitched squeal. These are the most common sounds made by hamsters.  

While hamsters are not usually quiet, especially at night, they do not tend to make a purring sound when they are happy. Hamsters do, however, experience emotions and feelings just like humans do, despite that they cannot express them as we can. 

Subtle signs such as a twitch of its whiskers may be an indicator that your hamster is curious or inquisitive of new surroundings. While if your hamster stops and freezes it can be a sign that it is scared. 

But, do hamsters make noises when they are happy? If you want to find out what each sign or sound means, notice how your hamster acts or what it does when it makes each sound. Hamsters have individual personalities, so it will depend on each one.

Some hamsters may squeak or squeal when they are happy, while others might make the same sound when they are scared. 

Hamsters do usually make the most noise to show that they are scared, agitated, or in pain. 


If your hamster makes a squeaking or squealing sound, it often sounds cute, however, may mean something more. This type of sound is often your hamster’s way of alerting you to something. 

Don’t worry if your hamster does make this type of noise, it is just trying to let you know how it feels. It may be that you have picked him up a bit too quickly or roughly, or he felt scared being picked up by someone else. 

If you have had your hamster since it was a baby, it is likely that it has become extremely tame and used to being handled, so will likely make these types of noises rarely. 

Hamsters can also make these types of squeaking or squealing noises when they are fighting other hamsters for dominance. It is especially important to keep an eye out for this if you have Dwarf hamsters together in the same cage. These hamsters do not always get along well together. 


While you will not hear this sound very often from your hamster, especially if it is taken good care of. However, this sound can be heartwrenching and it comes from a place of fear. 

A high pitched scream is your hamster’s way of telling you that he is terrified. It may be that you have only recently brought your hamster home and it is scared because he is not yet used to you or its surroundings. 


If your hamster hisses, it may be a warning sign. Hamsters can become aggressive, especially when they are stressed or scared. In the same way as cats, they give off a warning sign. 

If your hamster doesn’t want to be picked up or touched, it may run away and try to hide, bare its teeth or crouch down. However, if you continue to chase your hamster, it may hiss at you which if ignored will likely lead to a bite. 

Tip: Here’s what to do if a hamster bite drew blood.

Grinding sounds

If your hamster is agitated or annoyed, it may chatter or grind its teeth. This may be a sign that it doesn’t want to be handled or touched and it is a good idea to leave it alone. By showing or grinding their teeth they are warning before a possible attack. 

Happy sounds

Do hamsters vibrate when they are happy? A happy and contended hamster may show how it is feeling by making short, excited squeaks. They may also make a clicking noise or “brux” by rubbing their teeth together.

They usually make these types of noises when they are relaxed and happy. 


If your hamster coughs consistently it may be a sign that it has an allergy to its food or surroundings. If it causes a serious issue, it is important to seek a vet’s advice. 


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