So you decided to get a hamster – Great!

Welcome to the community!


hamster-girl Are you looking to buy a dwarf hamster from a respected pet store or adopting from a local SPCA? Do you know the best place to purchase one?

No matter what type you decide to get, here are some suggestions to help you locate your new trusty companion:

  1. Local Pet Shelters
  2. Local Pet Stores
  3. Local Newspapers & Community Sites

***certainly these are my personal views and I created this site hoping that I can provide new and existing owners with information that may be useful to them. I encourage you to explore and learn more on your own and feel free to send me any feedback or personal experiences so I can add to this site. Thanks!

Purchase a hamster from…

1. A Local Pet Shelter

spca This is a good choice**(please read note below in Cons section). Often, pets are abandoned by families that can no longer offer them a good home – hamsters are often one of these pets.

Rating: 3star

Pros: Giving an abandoned pet a new home and the loving care that they would otherwise not receive at the shelter – that’s the best! Often volunteers and caretakers are also knowledgeable and are pet owners themselves – so they are available to answer your questions.

Cons: Often, shelter staff are unable to identify the age of them- and since they only live for around 2 years, it’s difficult to say how long your companion will be around.

**Another major concern is that they can get easily stressed from their surroundings. Most pets that arrive at animal shelters are often stressed – meaning that they may develop serious health problems stemming from such stress – leading to a shorter life span. (I’ve found from experience that this can happen.)

Therefore, I would not recommend getting a youngster pet from the SPCA…nor do I recommend that you get your first dwarf hamster from the SPCA – you should have a good experience with your first pet without having to worry about whether it has been in a stressful environment prior to your getting him/her.

Contacts: Contact your local SPCA to find out if there are any available for adoption.

Adoption fee: ranges from $5-$10+ for small animals


2. Local Pet Stores

This is probably the most popular avenue to getting a pet. Most large chain pet stores like Petsco, Petcetera, SuperPets, or PetSmart will carry a large selection of hamsters in their small animals department.  Pet stores are great places to purchase a pet along with all the essentials needed to house your pet. I’ve purchased pets from pet stores and they have all been great!

Rating: 4stars

Pros: A great selection of pets are offered at all times. One stop shop for your pet and pet supplies. Generally, records of pets are more or less kept up to date.

This is a great place to get your first one as these pets most likely grew up in a minimally stressed environment.

Cons: Sales staff tend to be very minimally trained on the pets they sell – so it’s best that you obtain a book on your pet instead to learn more. I’m sure that not all pet sales staff is this way, in fact, I’ve met a few very helpful ones – but overall, from my personal encounters and from friends, that’s the trend.

Politically, a lot of people are also against pet stores because they feel that pet stores over breed pets for sales.

Contacts: Visit a retail chain website to locate a store in your neighborhood:

Retail Price: ranges from $3-$20+ for small animals


3. Local Newspapers & Community Sites

This is a good way to get a pet if you have the time to wait. Because of the nature of personal postings, it’s important that you do more research to make sure that the pet and also prices are reasonable.

Rating: 3star

Pros: If the time is right, sometimes you can get great deals on your pet and pet products.

Cons: Research will be needed here to ensure that ad postings are accurate. Get a second opinion.

Contacts: Local Newspaper & Community Websites like craigslist.

Adoption fee: ranges from $0-$20+ for small animals.


Have questions? Would you like to post your opinion here? Please email amy@dwarf-hamsters.com. Thanks!