Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Hamster Circus Tricks

I've discovered that my hamsters are incredibly talented. In fact, they might just run off and join the hamster circus. Here are just a few of the tricks they keep me entertained with.

Hamster Circus Trick #1:

Holly and Cotton often run together on the hamster wheel. It's pretty amusing, and sometimes there are funny collisions.

(video link above)

Hamster Circus Trick #2:

I've also discovered that Holly comes when called! When I put her in her hamster ball, she follows me like a dog. At first, I thought it was chance--that she just happened to come to me. But then I started testing her, putting her in different parts of the apartment and letting her roam for awhile before coming back and calling her. And when she sees me, she follows me. Yesterday I led her all the way from my room to the end of the kitchen and back again. Take a look, and--sorry!--please ignore the high-pitched cutesy voice!

(video link above)

Hamster Circus Trick #3:

Cotton as the habit of stuffing her mouth full of hamster food--but only the small, wheat-like kernels--and then depositing them in a pile somewhere. She can fit a suprising amount of food in her little cheeks; in fact, she can fit so much food in there, that she has to use her front paws to reach up behind her cheeks and squeeze it all out like a tube of toothpaste.

For the past three hours, the following scenario has kept Cotton Ball and Holly Golightly's little minds entertained:

Cotton fills her cheeks with little kernels of hamster food and then spits them back out again in her hamster wheel. She then spends the next few minutes scraping and digging at the wheel, trying in vain to bury her food. But it'll never work...after all, it's made of plastic!

Holly comes along for a run, sending the kernels flying all over the floor of the cage. After about 30 seconds, she gives up and moves on...after all, there are better things to do! Then Cotton comes along behind her, gathering the stray kernels from the cage floor and sucking them up back into her cheeks like a teeny tiny vacuum cleaner. After she's gethered them all up again in her cheeks, she returns to the wheel and deposits them yet again...and the process continues ad nauseum.

Part 1:

(narrated video link above, part 1)

Part 2:

(narrated video link above, part 2)

And finally, Hamster Circus Trick #4:

You know how sometimes cats get that crazy spooked look and then start running around the house wildly, tail puffed out, for no apparent reason? Holly has similar tendencies.

This morning I woke up and went to retrieve the cage from the bathtub. (Hamsters being nocturnal creatures, this is the only place in the apartment where no one can hear them at 3 a.m.!) Holly and Cotton were already up, and Cotton was running happily in the wheel. But Holly was darting up and down the different levels of the cage, and as I put the cage back into my room, she took one frenzied look in my direction and then climbed up the horizonal bars of the cage right to the top. But she didn't stop there--oh, no! She kept right on going, crawling upsidedown across the top of the cage, like a sloth. Using her paws to grab the bars, she shimmied from one side to the other, and when she met the opposite wall of the cage she simply dropped ungracefully onto her back.

This isn't the first time I've seen this trick, but unfortunately I haven't caught it on video yet. ...Video still to come.

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