If you think of a hamster, chances are, you think of a cute fluffy little animal running in a wheel. Wheels offer fun and exercise for your little friend, but if your cage didn’t come with one included buying one can be tough. We round up some of the best hamster wheels around to help you find a good option for your hamster.
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The Best Hamster Wheels
- 1 The Best Hamster Wheels
- 2 Why Should Your Hamster Have A Wheel?
- 2.1 Wire Or Solid?
- 2.2 How Often Should I Clean The Wheel?
- 2.3 Will My Hamster Take To The Wheel Straight Away?
- 2.4 Can I Make A Do-It-Yourself Hamster Wheel?
- 2.5 How Much Does A Hamster Wheel Cost?
- 2.6 I Have More Than One Hamster, Should I Have More Than One Wheel?
- 2.7 What Should You Look For In A Wheel?
- 3 Conclusion
When choosing a hamster wheel you need to be selective. It needs to be good quality, the right size as well as silent enough not to irritate you. We’ve compiled a list of excellent hamster wheels and broken them down into further detail to give you the low down.
Here’s a list of the 5 best hamster wheels available to date.
Kaytee Run-Around Small Animal Exercise Wheel
The Kaytee Run Around Small Animal Exercise Wheel is constructed in the classic style with a wire frame and wheel. The wire is coated, which helps prevent rusting and makes it easy to clean. This wheel is designed so that your hamster doesn’t get his tail caught as he runs along. This wheel is relatively easy to clean, it should be cleaned at least once a week with a brush to get the dirt which may have collected in the nooks and crannies of the wire frame.
The wheel can either stand on any flat surface, or it can be attached to the wires of your hamster’s cage, giving a little more stability. Make sure that if you fit it to the side of the cage, your pet can actually get in and out of the wheel safely.
It comes in two sizes of interest to hamster owners plus a larger one suitable for chinchillas and rats; 5 ¾” for miniature hamsters, and 8” for standard hamsters. It is important that you choose the right size for your hamster’s health and comfort. Coming in a choice of red and blue, this is a budget option which will keep your hamster happy for hours.
Kaytee Comfort Small Animal Exercise Wheel
This budget priced wheel is solid plastic, which many owners prefer as it means that little feet and tails can’t easily get caught and damaged. The wheel has small ridges to enable your pet to grip the surface as he or she runs. You can either set it on the floor of the cage, or if you have a wire cage, you can fix it to the wire – just make sure it’s at the right height for easy access.
It comes in two sizes, the smaller 8 ½” model is ideal for standard hamsters, although perhaps it might be a little large and heavy for a dwarf hamster.
One notable thing about this wheel is that it runs relatively quietly, and this is a bonus if you keep your pet in your bedroom. The squeaking of a hamster wheel can be very irritating! Easy to clean, it comes in an attractive lemon color to suit most cages.
Ware Flying Saucer Small Animal Exercise Wheel
This unusual wheel is sure to attract comments from your family and friends – and maybe even from your hamster! Looking like a shallow saucer made of solid ridged transparent plastic, the Flying Saucer is readily accepted by most standard size hamsters, but note that it’s too heavy for your dwarf hamster to manage. The medium size is best for your pet.
One of the features of this wheel is that it is very quiet. While it’s not exactly silent, it’s certainly quieter than most. It’s designed so that small feet and tails can’t get trapped, so it’s safe for your furry friend. This futuristic-looking saucer wheel is pretty easy to clean with a nailbrush and should be cleaned weekly.
It’s good and sturdy and should survive even the continuous use that your pet will surely give it. The wheel comes in a variety of bright and attractive colors and goes well with a contemporary styled cage. It’s at the high end of the price range, but it’s so attractive that it’s worth it.
Kaytee Silent Spinner Small Animal Exercise Wheel
This is an attractive looking solid wheel which runs on ball bearings, giving one of the quietest wheel experiences you and your hamster will enjoy. Check carefully to make sure that you buy the right size for your pet.
It takes a little while to adjust the wheel so that it spins freely and runs silently. Like most silent wheels, it isn’t entirely noise-free, but it’s pretty quiet, allowing for a peaceful sleep for the owner.
The wheel can stand on the floor of your cage, or it can be attached to a wire cage wall. As usual, be sure that your pet can get in and out of the wheel safely. It comes in a variety of colors and looks smart and cheerful.
Exotic Nutrition Silent Runner Small Animal Exercise Wheel
The Exotic Nutrition Silent Runner Small Animal Exercise Wheel is one of the more expensive offerings on the market, and also one of the best. It comes in a variety of bright colors and sizes, the medium size is best for a standard hamster.
Because it’s made without an axle in the center, it’s very safe for your pet – they can’t get tangled up and potentially hurt in the wheel. There are four oval openings, allowing for different points of entry and exit, and a little bit of extra fun.
The wheel comes on a sturdy stand made from metal, which, although this is a good solid way to place your wheel, means that the wheel can only be positioned on the floor of the cage. The inner surface of the wheel is textured so that little feet can grip easily. The wheel is tail and feet safe. Genuinely very quiet, it’s a pleasure to have this wheel in your pet’s cage.
Why Should Your Hamster Have A Wheel?
Plenty of people believe hamster wheels are an optional accessory but we consider them an absolute necessity. There are two main reasons that your hamster should have a wheel in their cage – health and fun.
A wheel gives endless hours of exercise, which hamsters really do love. In the wild, they would spend most of their waking hours scuttling about searching for food and water. The wheel allows them to replicate this constant running activity.
In their natural habitat hamsters might run as much as five miles every night. So you can see that they are, as Bruce Springsteen might say, “Born to run”.
The exercise keeps your hamster fit, building muscle and preventing the animal from getting fat. It also keeps him or her alert and entertained. OK, to us it doesn’t seem like much fun, but to a hamster, it’s clearly a very cool and enjoyable activity. In fact, a wheel is so important that we like to have two or more different ones, and change them occasionally to make for variety.
Wire Or Solid?
You can get both wire wheels and solid plastic wheels. If you choose a wire wheel, make sure that you get one which is designed so that your pet’s feet or tail can’t get trapped. Wire wheels have the benefit of better ventilation and perhaps slightly better visibility as you enjoy watching your pet play. If you choose a solid plastic wheel, make sure it has ridges for easier grip for little feet.
How Often Should I Clean The Wheel?
Wheels and all toys, in fact, should be cleaned frequently – at least once a week. Soapy water and a nail brush will make sure that the wheel is spick and span. Rinse with a mild bleach solution, then finally with clean water. You should ensure the wheel is dry before you put it back in the cage, you don’t want your hamster to get damp.
Will My Hamster Take To The Wheel Straight Away?
Generally, hamsters will immediately love their wheel, and play on it for long periods of time. There is always the exception, and if your hammie doesn’t like his wheel, it’s a good idea to first check that it is running freely. If it is, then perhaps the type of wheel you’ve chosen just doesn’t appeal to him or her. In this case, get another one with a different style. They do need to have this important exercise toy.
Can I Make A Do-It-Yourself Hamster Wheel?
There are quite a few diy hamster wheel ideas on the internet, but a purchased wheel is probably going to be longer-lasting, safer for your pet, and maybe even cheaper. The wheel is so important that it pays to get the best you can afford. However, if you are on a budget, there are some fun ideas out there, but expect to have to replace your home made hamster wheel quite frequently.
How Much Does A Hamster Wheel Cost?
Like everything, you get what you pay for, but you can search out bargains. You can pay anything from around $7 to around $25 and up. Bearing in mind the use your pet will get from his favorite exercise toy, you might want to edge up to the higher end of that range.
I Have More Than One Hamster, Should I Have More Than One Wheel?
As this is so important for your pet’s wellbeing, the answer is yes, you should have for each of your hamsters.
What Should You Look For In A Wheel?
You need to make sure that the wheel has a strong construction, check for sharp edges and flimsy axles. It should also be flexible in terms of where you can attach it to your cage.
The size of the wheel should be small enough that your pet can power it, but large enough so that it doesn’t have to arch its back too much to drive it.
A silent or at least quiet running wheel is very desirable if you are going to keep your hamster cage in your bedroom.
An attractive appearance is also a plus and helps in making the wheel fit in with the general style of your hamster environment.
Hamster wheels are vital for ensuring that your hamster can get exercise whenever it needs to. Whether you choose a luxury version or a more simple offering, you are are doing the right thing by your hamster by giving a wheel so that they can run to their heart’s content.