How Long Can Hamsters Go Without Water?

Are you a new hammy owner? As a new pet owner, you might have a myriad of questions about their overall needs and care. One of the most important concerns that most hammy owners tend to have is with respect to their food and water intake, and the overall nutrition. Most pet parents ask, “How long can hamsters go without water?” For more insight, go through this post!
How Long Can Hamsters Go Without Water

Hamster’s Need for Water

So, how long can a hammy survive without water? Typically, hamsters are capable of surviving only a few days without any intake of water. Whatever might be the situation, it is a highly alarming situation and should be taken care of deeply. Ultimately, the overall health conditions, age, temperature, and environmental conditions will determine how long a hamster can survive without water. However, daily drinking water is highly recommended.

Hamsters that are unhealthy, old, or too young tend to more vulnerable to side-effects of the lack of water. But, why should you even take the chance? It is because dehydration can indeed turn out fatal for any being out there. Additionally, there can be several short-term as well as long-term problems for your pet when the situation goes unnoticed. 

How can I Tell If My Hamster is Dehydrated?

Is your hammy ignoring his water intake? Is he feeling sick? Lack of water or dehydration in hamsters can turn into a poor situation. However, once you diagnose the problem and its cause, you can easily resolve the same to ensure the best-ever health of your pet. Hamsters should drink water on a daily basis. Therefore, if you feel that your little one is dehydrated, he will need medical aid right away.

There are some ways in which you can see whether or not your creature is dehydrated. Some signs to look out for are:

  • Hammy Not Drinking Water: It is one of the most obvious one, but also a concerning one. You can indeed come across hamsters who are used to drinking less water. However, if you have observed your animal not drinking water for around 1-2 days, it is high time you look into the matter. 
    The best way you can do this is by marking water level in the respective water bottle or jar. Keep checking every 24 hours. Hammies are known to consume around 10 ml of water for every 100 gram of hamster on a daily basis. If you have a dwarf variant, it is hard to notice him drinking water. However, you can take photographs from some angle to keep a record.
  • Skin Getting Dry and Tight: Try scruffing your pet and observe how the skin will pull back. Try pinching gently on the back of the animal’s neck. It will not hurt him. In case the skin here will snap back into its place immediately, the creature is just perfect. If it takes some time to regain its natural form, it implies that the pet is dehydrated.
  • Creature Appearing Tired and Weak: There is no denying the fact that dehydration makes your body tired. In case of your hamster, the animal will only have meagre energy to eat and breathe. In case your hammy is not spending energy on other activities like running around, jumping, or playing with other cage mates, it could be a sign of some health issues. 
    In addition to the overall lack of energy, you can also observe a dry or flaky nose in case of dehydration. and in extreme cases, even a nose bleed.
  • Hamster Appearing Thinner: While dehydration does not directly leads to weight loss in hamsters, it could still pose a wide range of health threats. In case the weight loss is sudden and significant, it could be a sign. 

Can a Hamster Go Overnight Without Water?

Depending on the ongoing health status and environmental conditions, your hamster might decide to spend the night not drinking water. It is completely normal –just like humans. However, to ensure top-notch health and well-being of your pet, you should make sure that the hammy is not dehydrated. 

How Long Does It Take for a Hamster to Die of Dehydration?

Typically, a hamster can survive without water for a maximum of 4-5 days. In the given period, as the creature will lose a significant amount of fluids from the body, it will eventually become a fatal situation. Dehydration turns out to be a major problem as the cells of the body do not function properly in the absence of water. Eventually, the cells might end up shutting down completely. 

also, you need to keep an eye if your hamster is not drinking and running too much on the wheel as it may cause faster dehydration

Can a Hamster Die from Not Having Water?

The water requirements of hamsters tend to be quite confusing. This is because it ultimately depends on the size of your hammy. Whatever might be the reason, in case your hamster is left without water for a period of 3-4 days, it will eventually die out of dehydration. 

The body of these creatures is not designed to go without food or water at a stretch. In total, they can only go up to 3 days. When these creatures are forced to go without water for several days, it causes distress in them. Eventually, a wide number of health problems develop –leading to death. 


As a pet parent, you indeed wish the best for your little one. The best thing you can do for your pet is to ensure the regular supply and intake of proper food & water. Make sure that your pet has access to top-quality water bottles that do not break, leak, or clog. 

In case you have to leave the house for some days, ensure proper steps and make sure that your pets are never left alone for a significant amount of time. 

You should also aim at keeping the cage of your pets clean and completely stocked with fresh food items as well as ample fresh water. Make sure that you are doing everything in your effort to make your hamsters have a great life!

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a little about me
Hi, im Sofia
Hi, im Sofia

I'm a mother of 2, hamster enthusiast, animal lover, and blogger. I have had five hamsters in my life, each with their own personality!

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