Your hamster can get paralyzed. It may be paralyzed if the unwell hamster loses the use of its back legs to the extent where they become rigid, and it needs to drag its back legs. It may be suffering from cage paralysis or hind limb paralysis. The two problems exhibit the same signs, but hind limb paralysis is more brutal than cage paralysis.
Read on as I look into the causes of paralysis and what you should do if your hamster is paralyzed.
Hind Limb Paralysis
A hamster’s hind limb paralysis may be caused by a variety of medical issues. Hind leg paralysis is a disorder in which an animal’s ability to utilize its hind legs is impaired, and it may become paralyzed.
The possible causes include:
- Spinal trauma
- Bacterial or viral infection
- Bone and muscle deterioration due to a lack of activity, or a nutritional reason, primarily due to a vitamin E and D deficit
Vitamin D is required for the taking in phosphorus and calcium available in food. When the levels of calcium in the blood fall too low, the body reacts by disintegrating bones existing as a calcium supply.
The largest bones in the body, those around the hips and rear legs are frequently the first to succumb to this process. Calcium deficiency may cause muscles to become exceedingly weak and muscles and bones to become so weak that they can no longer support the weight of the hamster’s body.
A condition that may occasionally arise from a bacterial infection is one of the most common causes of hind limb paralysis. This occurs when the hamster acquires Campylobacteriosis, a bacterial intestinal illness.
The bacterium involved is Campylobacter, and the illness will initially express itself as a violent attack of diarrhea known as Wet Tail. While the infection is not usually life-threatening, it may cause serious health problems.
How Can You Treat Hind Leg Paralysis?
Some instances of hind limb paralysis can be cured, but some of the more severe cases are not. Allow a veterinarian to make the decision on whether to treat or euthanize the handicapped hamster.
Treatments for minor occurrences of injury or illness may aid in a complete recovery. Pain relievers and anti-inflammatory medications may aid with swelling and pain after an accident.
Treat a hamster for wet tail illness if it has an infection like Campylobacteriosis.
The hamster’s own defense system targets the PNS nerves in a case of Campylobacteriosis. The PNS (peripheral nervous system) is the set of nerves that govern the limbs outside the central nervous system, including the spinal cord and brain.
After acquiring Campylobacteriosis, the immune system of the hamster produces antibodies against the Campylobacter bacterium components, which subsequently target parts of the body’s nerve cells, which are chemically identical to the bacterial components.
The rear limb or the whole body may become paralyzed when this occurs. In the instance of hind leg paralysis, the problem should fix itself over time, with the pet recovering most of his limb function. In the event of complete bodily paralysis, euthanasia may be the sole alternative.
Cage Paralysis in Hamsters
Several factors might lead a hamster to seem unable to move or perhaps paralyzed. These include trauma-related spine issues, which are the most frequent in general practice.
Muscle disorders might also cause the hamster to walk in an abnormal manner.
Let’s look into the causes of cage paralysis in depth as follows:
Lack of Exercise
Your hamster’s muscles will become weak as a result of lack of exercise, which can lead to paralysis. Muscles and bones degenerate without enough activity, leaving them stiff and difficult to move.
The hamster is forced to drag its rear legs around.
Hamsters with cage paralysis can’t move at all in severe cases. As a consequence of this disease, hamsters are more prone to acquire stress, making them susceptible to numerous health problems.
Providing your hamster with activities is an excellent idea. Instead of wheels and translucent balls, which might injure hamsters, I would suggest tunnels and climbing gear.
Spinal trauma is a common problem that occurs when they fall or are dropped from a height It is also evident in hamsters who are allowed to move freely around the house and then get stepped on. Unfortunately, this problem is not treatable, and it is usually best to euthanize the hamster.
In certain cases, myopathies (muscle issues) may be caused by a diet that is insufficient in vitamins D and E; however, this sort of condition can typically be remedied by improving your pet’s diet. Provide high-quality proprietary food to prevent encountering this sort of issue.
The Hamster’s Sex
Cage paralysis may also be caused by a sex difference in the development of the male hamsters between the age bracket of 7 and 10 months. This is a minor and unusual issue in females.
What Should You Do When a Hamster Is Paralyzed?
What to do if your hamster is paralyzed will depend on your hamster’s length of time in that condition. If you notice the problem early, you may solve it by visiting the vet.
But if the problem has taken a long time or even 24 hours without you noticing, it may have reached a point where you cannot cure the hamster.
You should do the following when a hamster is paralyzed:
Take It to The Vet
If you notice the problem early, take it to the vet, who will advise you accordingly on the best steps to take. If the problem has gone too far, your vet will advise that you have your hamster euthanized.
Depending on the cause of the problem, a spinal injury may be tackled by performing steroid therapy or surgery; however, this is still a long shot but worth the effort to save your little friend.
If the hamster can still survive, it will be subject to medication that will help the hamster keep up with any pain it is experiencing. Signs that your hamster is going through a lot of pain include lethargy, lack of appetite, changes in behavior like biting when it usually did not, and it will withdrawal from normal activities.
Minimize Handling the Hamster
Handling your pet is a recipe for disaster. The hamster will feel more pain and, as a result, may bite you.
You should not handle your hamster unless it is absolutely necessary. Take precautionary measures like wearing thick gloves so it does not bite you as you handle them.
Make Sure It Is Comfortable
Keep your sick hamster warm and at a suitable temperature, ensure that they are well hydrated, and ensure that their environment is peaceful, clean, and quiet in order to provide them with maximum comfort.
In addition, you should shower them with affection and provide them with a comfy bed in which to sleep and snacks. You may only give them pain relievers if the veterinarian has recommended them.
Hamsters can get paralyzed; this is generally characterized by your pet losing its ability to move the hind legs. Paralysis can be either cage or hind limb paralysis.
I hope this article helps you understand the signs of a paralyzed hamster and what you should do when your pet is paralyzed.