How Long Can A Hamster Go Without Food? All You Need To Know

One of the most common skepticism among Hamster owners revolves around the subject of How Long Can A Hamster Go Without Food? Particularly during circumstances when you have to leave behind your little fluff ball critters at home and are unwilling to inconvenience anyone in taking care of your buddy for you.

If you are in the same boat and are wondering How Long Can A Hamster Go Without Food? And if it will be convenient for your pet? Well, to answer your query, hamsters could go about 3-4 days without food (following the day they last had food).

Now that you have this insight, you may feel certain that leaving your little buddy alone for a short period is probably fine. However, if you are going to be gone for an extended period, you should definitely ask someone to look after your Hamster for you.

Additionally, there are a few important considerations to remember. Allow us to assist you with this refresher course!!

How Long Can A Hamster Go Without Food and survive?

The quick answer is that hamsters can live for 3-4 days without eating or drinking water. However, never leave your Hamster without food or water for long extended durations, as they can easily contact health issues if not properly cared for.

Furthermore, the length of time a hamster can go without food is determined by several parameters, including the Hamster’s age, how well you’ve cared for them, whether they are sick or well, the temperature of the room it is in, and so on.

What is the maximum amount of time a hamster can go without Water?

When it comes to Water, the answer is a little more complicated than when it comes to food. It’s because hamsters’ water requirements vary depending on their size and weight. A hamster needs 10ml (one-third of an ounce) of Water per 100gm of bodyweight every day.

how long can a hamster go without food

For instance, if we hypothetically consider a fully developed Syrian Hamster weighing, say 180gms, then this will imply that its daily water needs will be somewhere around 18ml per day.

Therefore, aligning with this hypothesis, if your Hamster drank Water this morning, it’ll be fine for the next two to three days. Filling your pet’s water bottle before leaving is a good idea to keep on the safer side.

Remember, this estimate of 2 to 3 days is based on the assumption that the fluff ball hasn’t eaten anything. The amount of water it needs changes based on the food it consumes. And this is the case because hamsters also extract Water from the food they eat. 

A diet consisting primarily of dry grains and pellets gives little to no water, but it does supply greater protein.

A diet enriched with fruits and vegetables, on the other hand, will offer a sufficient amount of water for your pet, and your Hamster will be able to go without water for up to 3 days.

How to leave your hamster food and Water for a few days?

If you’re leaving your Hamster at home and won’t be able to find anyone to look after it, here are some suggestions to prepare for the same. 

When preparing to leave food and Water for your Hamster for a few days, the amounts vary depending on how long your Hamster will be alone.

For instance, if you’re going to be gone for 48 hours, your Hamster, presuming it’s a fully grown adult and healthy, will do fine with only one serving of pellets and the Water it already has in its tube. 

If you are going to be gone for an extended period of time, your Hamster will require more food and Water. 

Installing two water bottles onto your Hamster’s cage is a smart suggestion when it comes to leaving enough Water for your Hamster while you’re away.

This will act as your backup if one of the bottles breaks or stops dispensing Water and ensures that there is enough water to drink.

Furthermore, to ensure that your little buddy has enough Water, it is best to fill the water tube completely. For rough estimates, a water tube with a capacity of roughly 150 ml/5 fl oz may last for nearly 7 to 8 days. 

In the case of food, provide our Hamsters with plenty of protein sources that won’t spoil if they sit in the cage while you’re away. Fill the food bowl with items that are high in protein.

Provide your Hamster with the following items to ensure it has adequate food for five days: 

  • For around three days, provide dry food such as grains, seeds, and pellets (roughly 2-3 teaspoons of dry food every day).
  • A dry biscuit — say the ones weighing six grams/0.2 ounces apiece, will sustain for roughly three days if your Hamster also consumes pellets and grains, side-wise. 
  • Cucumber, apple, seedless grapes, carrot, lettuce, and a few slices of water-based vegetables and fruits Whatever you can get your hands on. It’s preferable to avoid cabbage.

While you intend to be away from your Hamster, keep in mind its personality. Is it good at portioning out its food when you feed them, or is it greedy and eats it all at once? Based on the attitude, you can figure out how much extra you should leave them.

How do you rehydrate a hamster?

If you feel your Hamster is dehydrated, you must take the required precautions as a responsible Hamster owner. However, in case you believe the situation is out of your control, take your Hamster to the veterinarian right away.

Hamster, Animal, Rodent, Cute

Keep in mind that rehydration is a lengthy procedure. So please don’t put your Hamster under any unnecessary stress by pushing it to drink water. 

You may rehydrate your Hamster by doing the following:

  • Using an eyedropper or a tiny syringe, rehydrate by mouth (no needle). Every half hour, place a drop of Water on the Hamster’s mouth while holding it firmly but gently. More than a drop at a time could be harmful.
  • Try to get them to drink more Water. If regular Water isn’t helping much, try electrolyte water. In their enclosure, place a water bottle as well as a water bowl.
  • If you can’t get your Hamster to drink Water straight, try feeding them cucumber and apple pieces. Cucumbers and apples contain a lot of Water. However, avoid excessive feeding as it may cause your Hamster to become diabetic.
  • Your local pet store should have rehydration solutions formulated specifically for Hamsters. If you can’t find it there, visit any online website for the same. 
  • If you’re still worried about your pet, consult the veterinarian.

What Does It Take To Keep A Hamster Healthy? 

In general, a hamster lives for about three years, depending on how well it was cared for by its owners throughout its formative years. While caring for the hamsters, you should ensure that they are kept at appropriate temperatures and are sheltered from extreme cold or heat.

You must ensure that they are not given food that causes them to gain excess weight and that they are given good foods such as pellets, seeds, fruits, veggies, and Timothy Hay.

You must also keep them away from any water and avoid getting them wet. If the Hamster contracts pneumonia, they are at risk of becoming frail. In the future years, this would be an issue for them.

How long can a hamster be left alone? 

Hamster, Syrian Hamster, Golden Hamster, Pet, Animal

To answer your query, they can only survive for 3-4 days at most. Your Hamster won’t mind if the cage isn’t clean, and as long as you give them their three days’ worth of food before you leave, they’ll be fine.

However, there’s always the risk that they’ll knock their water bottle off the cage, causing it to leak or break, leaving them without Water or soaking wet( which can make them sick). As a result, 3 to 4 days is a bit of a stretch. At the very least, have someone check on them once or twice.

Do Hamsters Follow a Food Storage System? 

Food is stored by many hamsters, especially if you feed them too much food during the day. You might not be able to see where your Hamster keeps their food, especially if they keep it close to where they sleep.

Pellet food, in addition to the provided fresh food, can be stored by hamsters. Fresh food molds and decays much more quickly than pellet food, so keep an eye on it in your Hamster’s cage. Eating moldy or decayed food can be harmful to one’s health.

How Often Do Hamsters Need Food and Water?

Hamsters are desert animals by nature. This is why they frequently tend to hoard food within their hamster cage.

Golden Hamster, Hamster, Animal, Nuts

And due to this characteristic behavior, you shouldn’t be concerned if you’re going to be gone for a few days, providing them with a definite amount; your Hamster is likely to have food saved away for such an occasion. Even if they hoard food at times, you must feed them on a regular basis.

Depending on their size, hamsters require 1–2 tablespoons of pellet meal per day. Some owners like to add fresh delicacies to the mix.

However, it’s critical to provide hamster-safe diets while limiting the number of high-sugar foods your Hamster consumes, such as fruits.

Remember that pellet food will provide your Hamster with the proper nutritional balance; thus, any additional meals should only be given as a rare, little treat.

Please don’t give your Hamster so many that they quit eating their pellet food. Hamsters require continual access to clean water as well. Most hamster owners prefer bottles that can be hung from the cage’s sides.

What Are the Consequences of Leaving Your Hamster alone for an Extended Period of Time?

While the simple answer to the question of how long a hamster can go without food is about 3 – 4 days. However, food isn’t the only issue to consider when leaving your Hamster alone. Other issues to take into consideration are: 

  • Illness or disease 
  • Injury 
  • Water scarcity 
  • The temperature of the room 
  • Disturbances in their confinement (e.g., fallen water bottles or wheels) 
  • Escape 
  • Nervousness when being handled

When you are away from home and fluff ball, you may not realize something is amiss until it is too late. Even if you leave plenty of food and Water for your Hamster, an injury or disease could prevent them from accessing the required quantity.

When you aren’t home for an extended period of time, you should have someone come and check on your Hamster.

They can help you by delivering your Hamster to the veterinarian if something appears to be amiss, as well as monitoring the room temperature, food, and water levels.

Hamster Health and age factors

Cute, Small, Golden Hamster, Medium-Hamster, Curiosity

Your Hamster will not survive the absence without food and water as long as an adult if it is still an ‘infant’ (under three months). Young hamsters are more vulnerable than adults and require more food and attention.

Even if they’ve reached their full size, their bodies are still going through a lot of changes, and they need the extra nutrition, hydration, and rest.

But then, what is the right approach in the case of a senior fluff ball? Well, Hamsters can live for up to two to three years, depending on how well their immune systems evolved when they were young.

Therefore, if your Hamster is approaching the age of two, it will likely become slower and weaker, requiring more care and attention. It will be just as difficult to leave them alone as it would be to leave a baby hamster. 

Similarly, if your Hamster is healthy and free of obvious ailments or disorders, leaving him alone for a few days will harm it in no direct way.

However, If the Hamster is sick, we do not recommend leaving it alone, and if you really must go, emphasize finding someone who can check on him frequently and take up the reins during emergencies.

How Much Water Do Hamsters Consume As Pets? 

According to the research, a hamster should drink roughly 10 milliliters of water for every 100 grams of body weight. They prefer to drink water on a daily basis to avoid dehydration-related health issues such as heatstroke.

A pet hamster’s daily water needs vary depending on its size. Adult hamsters, on the other hand, require 5-10 mL of water every day. Your Hamster can also stay hydrated by eating fruits and veggies.

how long can a bird go without food? 

While the survival of birds without food is dependent and determined by a number of factors, this is an elaborate topic of discussion. However, the simplified answer to how long can a bird go without food is that a medium-sized bird can survive 1 to 3 days without food under ideal conditions. On the other hand, a normal bird cannot survive more than a day in harsh conditions. A medium-sized bird will likely die in less than 24 hours if it has little or no fat stores and is exposed to cold temperatures. A little bird with no body fat will most likely live for 12 to 18 hours without nourishment in freezing temperatures.

How long can a tortoise go without food?

A tortoise can go for three months (90 days) without nourishment on average. However, parameters such as age, size, species, habitat, and previous diet can all influence the time span, increasing or decreasing as required. 

How long can a spider go without food?

Spiders are popularly recognized for being one of the toughest organisms on the earth, apparently able to withstand almost all-natural obstacles thrown their way. According to the fact, depending on the type of spider and the environment in which it lives, they can go for up to 1 month to two years without eating. Larger spiders have a better chance of surviving than smaller spiders, whereas domesticated spiders have a better chance of surviving than wild spider species. Additionally, spiders possess a metabolic system that is relatively slow for their size, up to 50% slower than other species of the relatively same size. This means that their food will take longer to digest and that a single meal could take many days for a spider to digest.

How long can a tarantula go without food?

Tarantulas, a species of spiders, can go without food for several months or even a year at a time. This is because they can extract humidity from water sources, so if you’re going to be gone for a while, make sure you provide them with a good water source. These spiders don’t require a lot of nutrients to stay alive. Nonetheless, Water is the most crucial nutrient. They absorb several critical elements from Water.

How long can a dwarf hamster go without food?

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A dwarf hamster can go without food for a maximum time span of about two to three days. 


Golden Hamster, Hamster, Animal, Nuts

Therefore, clearing your doubts about how long can a hamster go without food, it can be safely deduced that for a maximum span of about 3 or 4 days. If you offer the right amount of hamster food and a water bottle, you can leave your fluff ball alone for a span of about a week. However, It is preferable if you can have someone look after your Hamster or at least check in on it once or twice a day. This way, you’ll always have a healthy hamster waiting for you when you return back to them.


How long can a hamster go without food or Water?

On average, hamsters can go without food or water for a maximum span of about 3 to 4 days, starting from the day they last consumed their meal.

Do hamsters need to be fed every day?

Because mealtimes are not constrained to when the bowl is filled, you only need to fill your Hamster’s bowl once a day. Allow the Hamster to devour the majority of the food in its storage before feeding them any more. This is because food held in its nest for an extended period of time may become stale. You’ll need to check your Hamster’s store from time to time; if it’s getting too huge, it suggests you’re putting too much food in his bowl or replenishing it too frequently.

Will a hamster starve itself?

A hamster would not deliberately starve itself because it despised the food. Since hamsters’ brains work differently than humans, they will eat to stay alive and avoid losing or gaining weight. Therefore, a hamster will eat even if it doesn’t enjoy the food because eating is a simple survival for them. Having said that, though your hampster will not purposefully abstain from consuming food, however, they may give up or consume less in case of any underlying issues such as sickness or disease. 

About the author

I'm Gulshan, a passionate pet enthusiast. Dive into my world where I share tips, stories, and snapshots of my animal adventures. Here, pets are more than just animals; they're heartbeats that enrich our lives. Join our journey!