Hamsters are one of the cutest, furry little beings that you could own as a pet. If you or your child own a hamster, you know how lovable, harmless, and friendly they are. They are also easily frightened which makes them all the more adorable. But sometimes, you might face an alarming and scary situation. It’s not uncommon to find your hamster bleeding from the bottom. However, it can be extremely worrying. There could be a number of causes for this occurrence.
1. Wet Tail Disease (Proliferative ileitis)
‘Wet tail disease’ is a serious condition that often affects hamsters. It is essentially a watery and severe form of diarrhea that needs urgent care. If not treated, it can be fatal. Before you panic, you should look out for some signs of this disease.
First, observe if the backside and bottom of your hamster are wet. Also, notice if it looks pale, dehydrated, and weak. This disease also results in the hamster losing weight quickly. More common symptoms include sunken eyes, abdominal pain, and a protruding rectum and blood in the stool.
You should also know that some hamster breeds are more prone to getting ‘wet tail’. These include Teddy Bear hamsters, Syrian hamsters, and Elderly hamsters. One breed that is least prone to getting the disease is Roborvski dwarf hamster.
As heart-wrenching as it looks and sounds- this disease can be treated if you notice the signs on time and act fast.
2. Infection in Bladder, Kidney, or Stones
If your hamster is bleeding from the bottom, this may also be a result of an infection in its urine, bladder, or kidney. Stones within the urinary tract may also be a cause as hamsters are quite susceptible to this issue.
When suffering from such an infection, their urine would have blood in it. Other symptoms include frequent urination, straining to urinate, and poor appetite. You may also notice your little hamster drinking more water than usual.
If your hamster is female, she might be bleeding due to an infection of the uterus called ‘pyometra’. It starts due to uterine secretions which encourage the growth of bacteria. The problem may occur after mating or pregnancy.
There are two types of pyometra: open and closed.
With open pyometra, blood or pus can be seen oozing out from the vulva. This may be why your female hamster is bleeding from the bottom.
A foul odor, discharge, and swollen stomach are some more signs of this infection.
This problem gets more serious with a closed pyometra as the blood and pus keep accumulating inside the hamster, and goes undetected.
4. Gastrointestinal Issues
Your hamster could also be facing digestive issues. If you notice your little pet lying in a corner, lacking mobility and behaving in an unfriendly or looks threatened- a stomach ache might be the reason.
Is your hamster vomiting or eating lesser or more than usual? Is it also exhibiting signs of diarrhea? Check for liquid around its’ cage. Blood is often a major symptom of stomach issues.
Tip: Click here to learn what to do if your hamster’s poop turns green.
5. Cuts or impact
It is always good to be cautious and rule out the major diseases or infections first. But a bleeding hamster is not always suffering from a serious condition. So don’t panic too soon.
It may even be a cut or scrape that resulted in bleeding. Closely look at the area and you might find a wound.
Another point to consider, did your hamster fall or get dropped on accident? The impact could also cause blood.
6. Cancer, tumor
Unfortunately, tumors commonly form in hamsters and gerbils. This is not what you should assume straight away when you see the bleeding.
However, an early diagnosis can improve the chances of successful treatment. Loss of weight and appetite, sores, abnormal swelling, seizures, collapse, and discharge or bleeding are signs of a tumor in hamsters.
First off, don’t panic. Seeing your pet in pain is terrifying and distressing, especially when you are clueless.
Stay calm. Observe your hamster, its’ condition and behavior, and if it’s’ worsening, then immediately go to the vet.
In the case of wet tail disease, antibiotics are the best treatment. These may be coupled with anti-diarrhea medications. If your little furball is too dehydrated, an intravenous liquid will be given.
Remember that this is a contagious infection. If you have more hamsters, you must isolate the infected one and provide it a clean environment.
If you suspect that the blood is coming from a UTI (urinary tract infection) then get a urinalysis done to confirm or rule it out. The infection does not usually go away on its’ own. Plus it can turn into a kidney infection.
Consult a vet immediately and they will most likely prescribe an oral medication like Enrofloxacin (Baytril). Keep an eye on your little ones’ condition throughout.
If you have a female hamster and you think she is suffering from pyometra-it needs prompt medical assistance. This infection can be deadly. There are options like surgery, antibiotic therapy as well as giving antiprogestin.
But every hamster is different and the vet can guide you towards your best option.
Hopefully, the bleeding is coming from a minor cut or wound. In this case, wash the area with lukewarm water and wipe with cotton. But ‘do not’ use bandages, anti-septics, or creams. If there is heavy bleeding, a vet is your go-to person.
Words of comfort
When it comes to your pet, you can’t imagine losing it especially when it is so dear to you. When you find your hamster bleeding from the bottom, you might immediately think of the worst situation possible. This will only let down all your hopes at a time when your pet needs you.
Stay positive till you can. Rush to the vet if you are extremely worried. And remember to follow their advice and instructions. We hope your hamster heals and has a quick recovery.