Thursday, 24 December 2009
Tuesday, 17 November 2009
Fjerten escaped. She was soooo eager to get her morning snack, she was practically jumping up and down. I opened the side door to her cage instead of the top door. This hasn't been a problem before, as she's been way too shy to get particularly close to my hand. This time, however, she more or less jumped up and suddenly she was outside on the floor. Oh noes!!
Freedom! But she only had it for like 2 seconds. I grabbed her so fast! :-) Lucky for me, she ran towards the wall and then to the right, which means she was aiming to get behind her cage. If she'd turned left, she would have been under the sofa before I'd even had time to blink. And then I don't think we would've ever seen her again.
True to form, she screeched when I caught her. Something tells me she'll be even more freaked out than usual over the next few days.
Sunday, 15 November 2009
39 grams of broccoli
22 grams of hamster pellets
2 pieces of Kellogs AllBran
1 piece of regular bread
1 piece of white bread
1 piece of mango
4 pinches of rolled oats
2 pinches of cereal
Her food bowl right now:
So she hasn't actually finished all 22 grams of hamster pellets, but it's not far from it.
Also, there are two of these little beasts, so in a week they've eaten a whopping 78 grams of broccoli and 44 grams of pellets between them, plus heaps of rolled oats and some cereal!
Saturday, 14 November 2009
Food to Knerten today: one piece of AllBran (below).
In the evening, she got a small taste of trilltrall's dinner. This is the first time she's had white bread.
Friday, 13 November 2009
Food items provided to Knerten Friday morning:
10 grams of hamster pellets
10 grams of broccoli
a little oats
She was even more excited to see me this morning than she was last night. She was basically running around in circles. I tried to film a little of how excited she was, sorry the video is so dark - poor Knerten, living in dark little corners.... Anyhoo, two-legs approaches!:
And just so we won't forget her, I filmed Fjerten a little too! :-)
Thursday, 12 November 2009
I guess she can be forgiven for not being incredibly happy with it. She was totally excited to see me, as two-legs finally = bringer-of-food in her tiny little brain. The hamster pellets that I feed these guys are supposed to prevent selective feeding, but that doesn't really happen. They both like to leave the brownish pellets behind. Anyway, Knerten isn't getting a refill until tomorrow - she needs to learn to eat brownish pellets!
Wednesday, 11 November 2009
Tuesday, 10 November 2009
I knew the 8 grams from Sunday wouldn't last very long. Broccoli seems to be Knerten's main source of fluids. She drinks much less water than Fjerten, but also eats a lot more broccoli.This evening she also got a little mango. I rarely feed the little ones fruit, because of the high sugar content, but occasionally they do get a small taste:
Monday, 9 November 2009
A piece of trilltrall's breakfast. ;-) Should give her something to chew on for 3-4 days.
This evening she also got some of trilltrall's cereal:
Sunday, 8 November 2009
*sigh* What can you do. It'll be a while yet before she's as tame as Knerten.
Here's Knerten having some rolled oats:
Knerten in my hands:
Knerten having cereal:
Knerten in trilltrall's hand (we had to bribe her with AllBran!):
I decided I would record for a week how much the two of them actually eat. However, that turned out to be a bit of a hassle, so I'll settle for just recording Knerten's meals. They eat about the same, so...
This project started at 1pm today, Sunday November 8th. I cleaned their cages and then refilled their food bowls.
Today, Knerten got the following food items:
12 grams of hamster pellets
8 grams of broccoli
a little rolled oats
a little cereal
1 piece of Kellog's AllBran
My kitchen weight isn't sensitive enough to be able to tell me the gram weight of the oats, cereal and AllBran, so I have to settle for photos there. The silly weight just told me 0 grams.
So. This is the food provided to Knerten today, Sunday Nov. 8th:
Friday, 30 October 2009
Thursday, 29 October 2009
Oh well. How about this:
She still has a tendency to nibble my fingers, but I suppose she'll stop eventually, like Knerten did. Fjerten is just... a little slower on the uptake. ;-)
I'm glad she's well. She gave me a bit of a scare last week. I was cleaning her cage and suddenly noticed bloody footprints in her running wheel!! She never looked sick or anything, was eating as normal, no injuries to be seen, etc. So I Googled. And according to various sources, female dwarf hamsters can be prone to have vaginal bleeding for no apparent reason. Normally it's not necessary to take the animal to the wet and the bleeding will just stop on its own. There were some more bloody footprints the day after I'd cleaned her cage, but there's been nothing after that and she's still acting all normal. So I'll put it down to one of those inexplicable and harmless bleedings I read about.
Tuesday, 27 October 2009
Monday, 26 October 2009
She's all kinds of brave these days. :-) The camera spooked her at one point, but that's to be expected.
She approaches when I walk into the living room in the morning. Wanting her snack. Aw, she's so cute! Not quite as calm as Knerten yet, but better. Ever better.
Saturday, 24 October 2009
Saturday, 26 September 2009
But NOT TODAY! Today Fjerten actually climbed all the way into my hand. Only for a second, but still. =) And she didn't bite. The little beast actually bit me the other day hard enough that it hurt. I suppose she wanted more cereal... But not today. Today she was all smiles and loveliness and whatnot. Watch:
Friday, 25 September 2009
Fjerten was nice and again almost climbed into my hand for her snacks. She didn't dare go all the way this time either, though, and I didn't have my camera handy, so...
Knerten has been asleep all day and didn't make an appearance until just now (9pm). When she did finally wake up, however, she was her usual friendly self as evidenced in video below:
There's hope for the little beasts yet! :-D
Sunday, 20 September 2009
Today however I managed to catch Fjerten on video while on her best behaviour. This is about as sociable as she gets. The trick is to make absolutely no sudden movements and offer plenty of trilltrall's cereal:
Monday, 14 September 2009
This is trilltrall's photo studio:
As you see, it's the "digging box" with an added white background for the occasion and a red rose in case the little beasts should decide that flowers are fun. Dear old Pearl quite enjoyed chewing on flowers. Turned out Knerten & Fjerten aren't much interested in flowers, though. Poor little ones, they don't know what they're missing.
The camera is on a tripod - a relatively new purchase, trilltrall got it when we were in Gothenburg. It's a Swedish tripod! Some extra light on the chair to the left and voila - neat little studio for dwarf hamster photography.
So, it turns out system cameras, unsurprisingly, are the right tools for taking pictures of Roborovkis. Crank up the ISO, fast shutter speed, apperture low... or so I'm told. ;-)
A few shots of the lovely Knerten:
There are also photos of the ever elusive Fjerten! Behold, Fjerten in all her glory:
Saturday, 12 September 2009
She's such a sweetie!
Wednesday, 9 September 2009
Monday, 24 August 2009
Friday, 7 August 2009
Yesterday it was time to clean cages again and I figured it would be another good opportunity to get some footage + get the dwarfs used to being handled.
Got off to a bad start: I mistakenly assumed Knerten was asleep in her house and so just placed her house in the digging box. Then proceeded the take her cage apart so I could clean it, only to discover that she wasn't in fact in her house. Turned out she had been asleep in the cage, in a little nest she'd made for herself. Of course she freaked out completely when my removing her roof woke her up. I had to make a grab for her before she leapt out on the floor. She wasn't happy. Then she came out of her house to find snacks only once while in the digging box. At that point I picked her up again and she shrieeeekkked. The way only Fjerten has done before. *sigh* I think this project is doomed!! And are dwarf hamsters really supposed to make that screeching sound??
I didn't get any footage of Knerten in the box yesterday at all. Here she is after I'd cleaned her cage, having a sand bath. She was acting so weird, just sitting there doing nothing for a while. Don't think it really shows in the video, though.
She also did a great deal of running last night.
Fjerten wasn't any better, but at least she made a little bit of an appearance while in the box:
I'm tempted to give up the taming project...
Wednesday, 5 August 2009
Wednesday, 29 July 2009
This is Knerten from last night, jumping off of my hand after gobbling up a few pieces of cereal.
On Saturday she was all nice & smiles & whatnot, and I even lifted her out of her cage and my friend Leisha Camden even got to pet her a tiny little bit. No such happy feelings yesterday, as you see.
Ah well. Things take time.
Wednesday, 8 July 2009
I fully expect them both to survive and thrive and not miss us one iota. Except that Knerten, being the intelligent one, probably will miss the occasional snack she gets when I try to tame her. She'll probably come running when we get home next Thursday. She did last time we were away and I assume a week isn't long enough for her to forget about us completely.
I'm very glad the heatwave we've been having is definitely over now, that way I don't have to worry about the little ones' water supply. I'm rather concerned about Knerten in that dept. Her water bottle stays where it should (thanks, again, to electrical tape), but I think she has a hard time actually reaching it. It's too close to the cage wall, I think. When I cleaned her cage here the other day, I didn't totally dry off the plastic bit that makes up the 2nd floor of her cage. She came running and licked the remaining drops of water off of the bottom of it. Instant angst!! I confiscated poor Fjerten's food bowl and turned it into a water bowl for Knerten. The problems with that solution are many and obvious, but at least she then had access to water. Thankfully it's now +17 C rather than +33, though, so I'm not that concerned.
Really need to find her another water bottle, though. Which is hard, what with the plasic cage that doesn't work with regular issue water bottles. Anyone got any ideas?
Saturday, 4 July 2009
We've had a heatwave here in Oslo for two weeks. Yesterday we hit an all time high of +33 C. Officially. That's hot.
A consequence of which has been that the hamster cages have, well, stunk. Which they normally don't. It's not that long since last time I cleaned their cages, but I just had to get rid of the lovely scent of dwarf hamster pee.
As usual, the little ones got the chance to run aound a little in the digging box. Here is Knerten being her adorable self, eating rolled oats out of trilltrall's hand:
And here she is showing off how big she is!
Friday, 26 June 2009
We are now ready for Phase 2 of the taming of Knerten. Things are progressing quite nicely. Food is always a nice incentive with these guys, and today's snack was a little bit of trilltrall's (non-sugary) cereal.
I'm currently working on getting Knerten to climb all the way into my hand and, the important bit, to stay there even though I move my hand. The long-term goal is to be able to lift her without her freaking out. Eventually, maybe, even out of her cage...
But that is some way off yet. This is Knerten in my hand today, I was able to deposit her on top of that little nest by my hand there, although perhaps it was her running off of my hand more than it was me actually putting her down. The video is a little dark because of the location of Knerten's cage - I end up getting in the way of the light whenever I reach into her cage. Next time I want to film her, maybe I should move the cage first so the light falls from a different angle. Anyway, behold:
Not bad, eh?? =)
Tuesday, 23 June 2009
Today, however, is another day and just now she took a vegetable snack from my fingers. Ok, so she was "hiding" in her tunnel at the time and I held the snack in front of her little face, but it still counts! She didn't run away, after all.
(As it happens, both the little ones are big fans of this particular vegetable snack. I like to pretend that it's good for them, veggies and all... ;-) )
Friday, 19 June 2009
Fjerten was up this morning and got a tiny little taste of trilltrall's cereal. She wasn't brave enough to actually come get it from my hand, but she seems slightly less terrified these days. When she gets scared she tends to not hide for so long anymore. Baby steps, thy name is Fjerten.
Sunday, 14 June 2009
Poor Fjerten is currently sulking in her tunnel again, but I'm sure she'll get used to the idea of a clean cage soon.
So it's a bit of a project. The box with dirt there was made for Pearl so she'd have something fun to dig in. Now Knerten and Fjerten have inherited it.
trilltrall assisted with the cleaning today, much appreciated of course. He took some nice shots to be posted later.
Unusually, the animals haven't freaked completely since the cleaning happened. Knerten doesn't seem perturbed at all. Fjerten spent some time sulking in her tunnel, but she seems ok again now. It would be good for them if they learned to accept that cage cleaning is necessary sometimes.
Thursday, 11 June 2009
The same little ones today, June 11th:
Maybe it's just me, but I think they've grown! ;-)
And in hamster news, Fjerten was bold enough to almost take a piece of AllBran from my hand this morning. She sat inside her little tunnel, but only just. Her nose was almost on the outside, and she nibbled the AllBran while I still held on to it. Of course, as soon as I moved even a fifth of an inch, she ran deeper into the tunnel to hide. What can you do. Baby steps.
Friday, 5 June 2009
Unsurprisingly the animals survived spending the weekend home alone. The water bottle was secure and Knerten apparently properly hydrated. trilltrall and I had a good weekend down in slightly more southern climes and everyone was happy.
The past week I've been waiting for the animals to do something blog worthy. That, and waiting for trilltrall to experiment with his new camera by taking pictures of the little critters. There have been no blog worthy acrobatics and no pics from trilltrall. What's a poor blogger to do?? Let's talk about flowers. :-)
Summer has reached the high north, at least where I work, and there are both white clover and red clover just by my bus stop out there now. Pearl was always such a sucker for white clover, so I figured maybe the little robs would appreciate it too. I think it was Tuesday I brought some home with me. It was a resounding success, wouldn't you know.... :
Me presenting white clover to Knerten:
Knerten approaching said flower:
Fjerten just completely ignored it. Silly two-legs, bringing flowers!
Tonight I didn't bring them any.
I have seen the animals tonight though. Knerten got up relatively early tonight (10pm) and started running in her wheel. She ran aroundfor the camera a little when I approached:
And even Fjerten was up for a snack:
Man, she needs to have her cage cleaned. Maybe that will be done tomorrow. I suppose I could clean their cages more often, but on the other hand... They are very small animals, their bodies can only produce so much waste. (Yeah, yeah... excuses, I know!)
Thursday, 28 May 2009
Knerten's water bottle and its whassname-thingies in close-up:
Of course, we can't go away for the weekend and risk the water bottle falling down again and poor Knerten suffering the consequences.
Lucky for Knerten, for some unknown and hardly logical reason, trilltrall has electrical tape. One of the many uses of electrical tape: making sure a dwarf hamster has a steady supply of water which won't suddenly fall down while there are no two-legs around. Behold:
That should work, don't you think?
This weekend the animals must make do without any two-legs around. trilltrall and I are heading south to spend the weekend with his parents and the beasties must survive alone from Friday morning until Sunday night. And here’s the really brilliant thing about (dwarf) hamsters: you can leave them alone for a weekend or even a week, no problem! Just make sure they have enough food and water.
Of course we could always get a friend to watch the animal(s) if we ever got pets that can’t be left home alone for a week. It’s not that. But it’s really so very convenient that we can leave them alone without having to get other people involved every time we’re going away for the weekend or on vacation or whatever. It’s brilliant.
Also there’s no guilt about leaving your pet stuck in its cage for several days, as robs in any case aren’t the sort of pets that need to run around outside their cage. You really don't want to let them out and let them run about - you'll never catch them again! It's hard enough to catch Fjerten while she's in her cage. I can't imagine how we would catch her if she ever got the opportunity to run around on the floor.
Monday, 25 May 2009
I've kept an eye on this list from Norsk hamsterforening (the Norwegian hamster society) when deciding which veggies and flowers and other plants to feed the little beasties. Most notably I've made sure to avoid everything on the no list. I have no idea what level of knowledge or authority these people have, but I figured it couldn't hurt to have a list of foods to avoid.
I haven't been too adventurous when it comes to food with Knerten and Fjerten yet. I feed them a mix of hamster pellets (prevents selective feeding) and they always have a piece of fresh broccoli to go with it.
And then in addition to pellets and broccoli, I experiment! ;-)
What I have established so far about Knerten and Fjerten's tastes:
Cherry blossoms - they don't like
Peas - they don't like
Colt's foot - they don't like
Dandelion leaves - Knerten likes, Fjerten not so much
Sweetcorn - they like
Broccoli - a godsend
Cauliflower - nomnom
Avocado - they like
Cucumber - they like
Celery - they don't like
Celeriac - they like!
Nectarine - not a favourite
Kellog's All-Bran - NomNomNom
Rolled oats - they like
Peanuts - they luvs!
Walnuts - dwarf hamster heaven
Yoghurt - they don't like
It's almost summer now, so I expect to be giving them more flowers in the next 2-3 months. I look forward to that experiment! :-)
For some reason, I'm surprised that Knerten and Fjerten don't like exactly the same things that Pearl did. I shouldn't be surprised, I mean, they are a whole different species!
Sunday, 24 May 2009
Recently I have realised that I don't have a lot of photos of Pearl. And only one video. She was such a tame sweetheart, people could hold her for themselves when they visited. I didn't need to take a lot of photos to show her off. I guess that must be why, though I regret it now. She was very tame, she never bit anyone, and she'd come and climb across the ceiling of her cage every morning to get her morning snack. She loved to climb. She sucked at it, though, and it was sometimes scary with the thump
Below are some of the few photos I have of my darling Pearl. She died from old age on Dec 1st 2008, some 20 months old.
This video is Pearl eating a white clover. She loved white clover and cherry blossoms. Cherry blossom season is just over here now and I did give Knerten and Fjerten this delicate delicacy too, but they didn't care for it. I wonder what they will think of clover, which I certainly will also give them later in the summer.
Rest in peace, Pearl. This is the last photo of her, taken the morning I found her dead. It wasn't unexpected, as she had been showing signs of getting old. It was still a sad day.
She then spent some 5 months in the freezer, wrapped in hamster cotton, until the snow melted and the ground finally thawed. In April 2009, two years after she moved in with us, we went for a little walk in the woods and stuck her in the moss at the foot of a pine tree. I like to think that maybe a fox ate her when she finally thawed. If not, we all know what happens to dead animals. In either case, IMHO, a more dignified end than just being thrown out with the garbage would have been!
Robs are nocturnal. I am most definitely not. The result of which is that I'm usually sound asleep by the time the little beasts get active.
However, last night I didn't get home until closer to midnight and Knerten was at it running in her wheel. It would've been fun to sometime, somehow, measure exactly what distance she runs in the course of one night. Fjerten too, for that matter. They run and run and run and run... Gråperle/Pearl did also, but she also climbed a lot. Fjerten has Pearl's old cage with plenty of climbing options, but I never see her climb except when something has scared her and she's trying to get away fast.
Saturday, 23 May 2009
Jet died some time ago, and Annie now keeps gerbils instead. Like she said, she might keep robs again, when she only has 0-15 minutes a day to spend on a pet. They are indeed extremely low maintenance. But if you want a pet you can actually pet, well, just maybe robs aren't for you.
Thursday, 21 May 2009
She's a sweetie. She's still jumpy, but make no sudden moves and she'll approach your fingers expecting food. (Though she still makes the mistake of assuming that fingers = food...)
Tuesday, 19 May 2009
There are strictly speaking 3 sub-species of dwarf hamster: Campbell’s (Phodopus campbelli), Roborovski (Phodopus roborovskii) and Winter White Russian (Phodopus sungorus). The Chinese hamster (Cricetulus griseus) is not really a dwarf hamster, but it’s only slightly bigger than the genuine dwarf hamsters and therefore often labelled a dwarf itself.
I have no idea whether Pearl/Gråperle was really a Campbell's or if she was a Campbell's/Winter White hybrid. The two can interbreed and apparently there's plenty of confusion about which is what. The sign in the pet shop at Tveita simply said "dwarf hamster mother of pearl" which I've since learnt isn't any sort of a dwarf hamster species at all... You can't trust pet shops. She looked very, very much like the classic, typical Campbell's, though. I'll find an old picture or two and post those.
In the case of Knerten & Fjerten, the sign in the pet shop said "dwarf hamsters". Next time I'm so getting hamsters from the bigger, better and all-round much more trust-inspiring pet shop at Alna! I was there recently and, coolness!, they even had a Chinese hamster, which I hadn't seen 'in real life' before.
Well, I suppose "next time" is 3 years away, as Robs have an average lifespan of 3.5 years! :-)
Saturday, 16 May 2009
Around 1:30pm today she was up for a snack. Again. Robs love to snack during the day, even though they are nocturnal. So you do get to see them, actually, assuming you're at home during the day. I'm usually not, though, so... Anyway, it was a little easier to film her today and I ended up with this:
She is so sweet. :-D
Tuesday, 12 May 2009
Here's a link to the video in his web album! You need to click the photo, and then click the next photo that appears. And then there's suddenly live footage of Knerten & Fjerten!
|To nye i hjemmet|
Monday, 11 May 2009
I just sometimes go days without seeing Fjerten at all. She's small, that's for sure (hence the name, actually - Knerten is the bigger one*), but not invisible. Imagine the weapon they would make; Incredible Invisible Dwarf Hamsters! They could totally be deadly undercover agents!
But reality is boring and they aren't. Invisible. They're just so very skittish that I hardly ever see them. Especially Fjerten. I'm not exaggerating at all when I say I sometimes don't see her for a couple of days. Robs are mostly nocturnal, which I most definitely am not. trilltrall sees more of the little monsters than I do, only he doesn't care much.
This means robs are lovely pets if you're a night person. However, if you need your sleep, get a Campbell's...
*This makes some sort of sense if you speak Norwegian
I recently bought two new dwarf hamsters as my darling Campbell's dwarf Gråperle (also known as Pearl to some) died of old age in December 08. However, I ended up with Roborovskis this time around. Two females from the same litter, they were supposed to get along well and to keep each other company. Of course no such thing happened and I had to buy an extra cage within the first few weeks.
The two fighting females are called Knerten and Fjerten, and this blog is about them. The Incredible Invisible Dwarf Hamsters. Let's see how this goes.