Caring for hamsters will generally be simple. They’re pets that you have to spend time with, but it’s something that won’t be too stressful for most people to handle.
Hamsters can sometimes have health issues that will make you worry, though. Have you noticed that one of your hamster’s eyes is bulging?
What is it that causes a hamster’s eye to bulge? Is this an indication that the hamster has a disease of some sort?
Or perhaps it could be a physical injury? Keep reading to learn all that you need to know about this issue.
Many Different Things Can Cause Eye Bulging
There are many different things that are known to cause eye bulging in hamsters. This is a potentially serious condition that might even lead to the death of the hamster.
It’s commonly known as proptosis. All types of hamsters can have this happen.
To avoid this issue, you want to recognize the things that cause hamsters’ eyes to bulge. If you can avoid such problems, you should be able to keep your hamster healthy.
1 – Physical Trauma
Physical trauma can cause the eye to start bulging. Hamsters have poor eyesight and are known to bump into objects in their cages.
A hamster could get injured when fighting with another hamster, too. You might accidentally injure your hamster if you’re not careful while handling it.
An injury to the eye can cause it to start bulging. You must be careful to treat these hamsters right and to give them an environment where they’re less likely to get injured.
2 – Eye Infections
An eye infection could cause a hamster’s eye to begin bulging. Hamsters might have to deal with eye infections if they’re forced to use dirty bedding.
Sometimes this will occur when something gets stuck in the eye, too. Even bacteria from certain types of fruits and veggies can cause infections.
If your hamster has an eye infection, it’s important to treat it fast. You want to treat the issue before the eye bulging problem gets too bad.
3 – Dental Issues
Dental issues are fairly common problems for hamsters. Sometimes hamsters might have dental abnormalities that will need to be surgically corrected.
Abscessed teeth are also known to cause this issue. When this occurs, there’s excessive pressure that causes the eye to begin bulging.
A veterinarian can treat these issues with antibiotics and special procedures. A hamster can recover from this situation, but it’s imperative to act fast before the eye damage becomes permanent.
4 – Allergies
Something as simple as allergies could cause the eye bulging issue. Hamsters can sometimes have allergies to various things in the cage.
A hamster might be allergic to the type of bedding that you’re using. It could also be allergic to certain types of food or even scents in the air.
Your perfume or cologne could be bothering the hamster. Do your best to remove the cause of the allergy issues so that things will clear up.
5 – Glaucoma
Glaucoma is something that can happen to hamsters. One or both eyes might experience elevated pressure, and this can cause the eyes to begin bulging.
When a hamster has glaucoma, it’ll cause too much fluid to be present in the eye. The pressure keeps building as the fluid isn’t able to drain properly.
You’ll need to consult a veterinarian if you suspect that your hamster has glaucoma. This issue needs to be treated or the hamster will go blind or possibly even die.
6 – Hygiene Issues
There might be problems with cleanliness in the tank. Are you cleaning the tank often enough?
Water in the cage can get on the bedding and cause it to get moldy. Exposure to this mold can make the hamster sick and lead to bacterial infections.
You need to clean the tank and change the bedding often enough. Make sure that your hamster is able to maintain good hygiene so it’ll be less likely to experience eye bulging.
The Hamster’s Eye Can Fall Out
It’s possible that the hamster’s eye might fall out. The eye can bulge out of the socket completely.
Eventually, it might dry up and fall out. When this occurs, the hamster will die if it doesn’t receive a special surgery.
Sometimes it’s best to euthanize the hamster when it has its eye fall out. You’ll want to discuss this situation with your vet so you can do the best thing for your pet hamster.
Tips to Help Your Hamster Avoid Eye Bulging
There are many things you can do to help your hamster avoid eye bulging issues. You need to ensure that you’re looking after your hamster the right way.
First, you need to make an effort to keep the cage clean. Do your best to clean the cage regularly so that the hamster won’t be exposed to harmful bacteria.
Change the bedding regularly and make sure that your hamster isn’t allergic to its bedding. To have a good experience, it’s advised to use Aspen shavings as the bedding material.
Take some time to check your hamster’s teeth occasionally. Hamsters that develop dental issues are more likely to have bulging eyes.
You want to look at the teeth alignment and see that everything is alright. If something is off, you might want to discuss this with the veterinarian.
When handling the hamster, be careful not to injure it accidentally. Remember that you shouldn’t squeeze a hamster nor should you pull back the skin on its neck.
If your children like to handle the hamsters, it’s best to supervise them while they do so. Keep your hamsters safe by ensuring that they aren’t being injured during handling.
You now know that eye bulging is a serious issue. Sometimes it’s best to euthanize hamsters that lose an eye due to this problem.
Preventing this from happening is about maintaining a clean cage and watching out for allergy issues. You also need to be careful to handle the hamsters properly.
Now that you know what to expect it should be easier to get good results. Remember to contact a vet as soon as you notice issues with bulging eyes.
I have a bachelor’s degree in Film/Video/Media Studies, as well as an associates degree in Communications. I began producing videos and musical recordings nearly 15 years ago. I am a guitarist and bassist in Southwest MI and have been in a few different bands since 2009, and in 2012 I began building custom guitars and basses in my home workshop as well. When I’m home, I love spending time with my three pets (a dog, cat, and snake) and gardening in my backyard. I also like photographing wild birds, especially birds of prey.