Robo Dwarf Hamster – All About Roborovski Dwarf Hamsters

robo dwarf hamster on exercise wheel

Robo dwarf hamsters, or Roborovski dwarf hamsters, are the fastest and smallest dwarf hamsters. In fact, a robo dwarf hamster can run over a hundred miles1 in a single night. If you’ve seen them in pet shops, you’ll also notice they’re almost always on the wheel. They definitely look much more active than other dwarf hamsters.

A robo dwarf hamster measures about 2 to 2.5 inches long. Due to their size and speed, they’re not as easy to handle or tame as campbell’s or winter white dwarf hamsters. Robo dwarf hamsters originate from Russia, Kazakhstan, and northern China. In the wild, they eat grains, fruits, vegetables and small quantities of insect and meat. When kept as pets, the average lifespan of a robo dwarf hamster is about 3 years and can even go up to 4.

Here’s a video cut of a documentary on robo dwarf hamsters:


As shown in the video, robo dwarf hamsters are able to live in groups. However, this is in the wild where they have plenty of space to roam.

Pet robo dwarf hamsters may be able to live together, but only if they were raised together in the same enclosure from young. Even then, they may still end up fighting or being aggressive towards each other when they’re older and more territorial. Many people who have multiple robos living in the same cage have had injuries or even deaths resulting from fights.

If you intend to put more than one robo dwarf hamster in a single cage, you’ll probably want to check on them daily to make sure they are not fighting. They should be separated immediately if there are any signs of fighting or injury.

You should absolutely not house a robo dwarf hamster with another species of hamster or any other animal for that matter.

Robo dwarf hamster colors

You can usually find robo dwarf hamsters in two colors in stores.

Agouti
This is the normal color for robos and is a very light brown/beige color with gray roots. Some would also describe this as sandy. Agouti robo dwarf hamsters have cute “white eyebrows” and no dorsal stripe.

White-face
The white-face robo dwarf hamster looks similar to the agouti one except its entire face is white. You’ll sometimes find a white-face robo hamster referred to as a “husky” but they’re essentially talking about the same thing.

Other colors
Other colors may also be available but they are much rarer and usually can only be gotten from breeders. For example, a Platinum robo dwarf hamster looks like a white-face except it is lighter and can fade to pure white when they are older.2 Other colors include the (pure) white roborovski, red-eyed and mottled or pied.

Robo dwarf hamster care

Caring for your robo dwarf hamster is the same as any other dwarf hamster. You will need the right supplies (cage, bottle, wheel, bedding, food, etc), feed them the right diet, and keep their cages clean. All of these and more information on how to take care of a robo dwarf hamster are covered in our dwarf hamster care guide.

Taming your robo dwarf hamster

ErinsHamsters on YouTube has a great video on taming your robo dwarf hamster.

10 tips for taming your robo dwarf hamster

  1. If your hamster is new, give it time to get used to its surroundings before trying to tame or handle it.
  2. Only attempt to handle your hamster when it is awake. The best times are very early in the morning or in the evenings as your hamster will be awake and active at these times.
  3. Initially, your hamster may run away after sniffing your hand or fingers. This is normal.
  4. Let your hamster come to you instead of grabbing it. A robo dwarf hamster is usually too fast for a beginner to grab hold of properly. You can use a toilet roll or a cup and let your hamster crawl into it to move it around.
  5. Tame your hamster in an empty box that’s low enough for you to put your hand in easily but high enough so they can’t run away.
  6. Put your hand flat in the box and let your hamster come to you. Again, don’t try to grab it. Allow the hamster to get used to your scent.
  7. Offer your hamster treats but don’t try to force it to eat anything.
  8. Tame your hamster over multiple sessions a day rather than a single long session.
  9. Be patient, if you keep trying over a period of time, your hamster will eventually learn that you’re not a threat.
  10. Play with your robo dwarf hamster daily so that it remains tame.

If you have any questions about robo dwarf hamsters or other tips to share, be sure to leave a comment. Thank you for reading!

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References and further reading:
  1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roborovski_hamster []
  2. Oak Farm Rabbits and Rodents – Oak Farm Roborovskis []
  • Ciara Kelly

    hi! my hamter is a male and hes very shy. I try to feed him treats about once a day but he wont eat it and wont eat much of his pellets and seeds. ive tried strawberry yogurt, a granola mix treat, and now im trying an apple type treat. could he be sick??

    • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Sarah Yee

      Hi! How much food are you giving him and how long have you had your hamster?

      • Ciara Kelly

        I give him about a palm size of pellet and seed mix. ive had him for about 3 weeks now. today I let him smell my hand while I was offering him a treat and he let me touch him briefly on his back and he wasn’t too scared but he’s still hiding behind his wheel and his bottle if I try to adjust a few of his toys and essentials in his tank :(

        • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Sarah Yee

          Hmm…dwarf hamsters need only about a tablespoon of pellet or seed mix daily so I guess he’s not really sick but just can’t finish that much food.

          Give him some more time, 3 weeks is really new for a dwarf hamster. It took me more than a month (I forgot how long exactly) to tame my Roborovskis with daily handling…and it’s a good thing he let you touch him now.

          Just keep doing what you’re already doing and he’ll get used to you bit by bit!

  • Sasha Black

    hi! i just got my hamster yesterday and she is a roborovski,
    she is a baby but is so small and im worried about how she will react to my little sister. she has had some time with me and she is like my best friend already! but im worried incase she bites my sister. she is only five and i haven’t let her hold her incase she gets loose and i cant catch her. what do i do?
    im twelve

    • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Sarah

      Hi Sasha! Since your sister is only 5, I would really recommend not letting your sister hold your hamster unless you’re absolutely sure she won’t grab the hamster too tightly or panic and drop the hamster or do anything that will scare the hamster.

      If you’re worried about your hamster biting your sister, you can let your sister wear gloves when she’s holding the hamster (if you’re sure she can hold the hamster properly).

      Also, you could set up a ‘play area’ that your hamster can’t get away from if she gets loose. This can be done by stacking books or boxes or anything that can make temporary ‘walls’ for the hamster.

      Finally, make sure you/your sister is not holding the hamster from a height so that even if the hamster jumps off/if your sister accidentally ‘drops’ the hamster, it won’t get hurt.

  • Help

    I found a hamster on my front porch! I was able to catch it and took it to the pet store and they confirmed it was a robo hamster. I have asked my neighbors and they all say it’s not theirs. I think it may have come off a donation truck that had just left my house before I found it. It looks healthy and clean. Should I be concerned about keeping it? Do they normally carry disease? Thank you.

    • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Sarah

      Hi! A hamster on your porch?! Wow :O

      AFAIK, they don’t normally carry disease that can spread to people. Just practice good hygiene like you would with other pets (washing hands after playing, not tossing their poop around etc lol) and it should be fine!

      Remember to get a good-sized cage with all the stuff that a hamster needs (water bottle, wheels, hamster mix, bedding, chews, etc) if you haven’t already. Good luck with your new hamster! :)

      • Help

        Thanks for your quick response. Imagine my surprise when I saw it! It’s lucky it didn’t become cat food as we have a few that just roam around. Right now he is in an old cooler (no lid) with a pop tart box house and shredded paper bedding. I did buy a bad of food when I went to the pet store.

        Will a vet be able to confirm if he is healthy?

        • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Sarah

          He’s lucky you found him first! :D

          Yep, a vet should be able to confirm that

    • hailey

      if your really worried then take it to a vet but I think it’s fine

  • Nathan Silenzi

    My hamster has been smelling like poop for about a week and has eaten less. He is almost two years old. What is wrong?

    • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Sarah

      Could it be wet tail? Or diarrhea? If he doesn’t improve, I think it’d be better if you took him to a vet

  • hamsterlover339

    what are signs of wet tail ????

    • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Sarah

      The fur around the hamster’s tail is wet (hence wet tail) because of repeated diarrhea. The hamster may also become less active and stop eating/drinking as much

  • justine

    how long have you had your hampsters

    • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Sarah

      I’ve had my current hamsters for about 3 to 10 months :)

  • Robo hamster

    Hi! I am thinking of getting a robo hamster. Are they very hard to take care of? This is my first hamster, and I really like the robo, but is this a good option? I would also like to know when they need to go to the vet, and what vaccinations are needed.

    • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Sarah

      Hi! They’re not very hard to take care of but I find that they don’t like being handled as much as other types of dwarf hamsters.

      It depends on your preferences, I guess. If you want to handle your hamster a lot, I would recommend a winter white instead.

      Hamsters do not have to be vaccinated as far as I know, and they are brought to the vet usually only when they’re sick (or if their teeth grows too long but that can be prevented most of the time by having a variety of chews in the cage)

  • Aaron

    I just bought a white face robo. so should i let it familiar with the place(cage) for a week before trying to handle the hamster?

    • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Sarah

      Hi, yes but you probably don’t have to wait so long. A few days would be fine I think

  • niki

    Hi ive had my hamster sence september 23rd and he is just starting to get used to me and I want to know if you can get them fixed? If you can answer this I would be very thankful:)

    • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Sarah

      Hi niki, what do you mean by “get them fixed”?

  • Jayden

    I have 2 Robos. Their names are Nibbles & Dory. They are ADOROBLE! :)

    • hailey

      I love Robos too

  • Sierra Polk

    I’m debating whether or not to get my robo hamster the silent wheel,any wheel to be exact. I saw videos on YouTube where the hamster would be running on the wheel then they suddenly go flying out of it. I even read a story about a women who robo hamster had to be put down because of how seriously it was hurt. I don’t want my little buddy to get hurt. Do I have the right to be worried or am I overreacting?

    • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Sarah

      The silent wheel should be fine since it has a solid running surface. If you’re worried, maybe you could get a wodent wheel. It prevents the hammy from flying out since the wheel is enclosed (except for the entrance holes)

      • Sierra Polk

        Thank you. I’ll buy one later on today^_^

  • Nikola

    hi I am thinking of getting a robo dwarf hamster. did I make the right choice? will it like me?

  • Sergio

    My Robo Dwarf Hamster is a female and she stays still for a long period of time,she used to go on the wheel a lot.i just got her in 12/28/13 and today is 12/31/13.IS SHE GOING TO DIE

  • Nikola

    What cages do you suggest for a robo dwarf hamster?

  • Kimmy Perez

    I just bought one. As I was giving him his first bath. He started to bring back his food. It freaked me out. What’s wrong with him!?!

    • Sky

      Never give them a bath in water this causes wet tail, because it stresses them out. Be careful because wet tail can cause death. Take him to the vet immediately, and the best way to clean them is with chinchilla sand not dust. The dust causes their allergies to kick up. So please be careful next time.

  • Leah

    Ive had my hamster for about a week and she still doesnt like me. Shes scared of me. I put my hand out and she just sniffs it and then runs away and sometimes after sniffing kind of pushes the bedding in my direction and then shed sniff again and then kick again and do it over and over! HELP!!! Shes a robo dwarf and her name is Winter!

    • hailey

      go slowly at first go faster each day and try to put her in a hamster ball

    • Hamsta lover

      Robo Hamsters tend to be shy, don’t worry, I had my robo for 1 whole year and he still is shy. Just keep training her and you may be luckier than me!!

  • hailey

    how much food do I give my robo hamster

  • Omas

    Hi this is my second day with my robo, Fritz, and he just is so shy and won’t run on his wheel or eat/drink that much. I’m not sure if he has wet tail bc he won’t let me get near him to check to feel. I hope he’s ok I just got him from Pet Smart yesterday.

  • lara

    I have been doing research on robo hamsters and it says the tank has to be 3 feet long and 1 and a half foot wide

  • Andrea Davie

    Hey, I bought my first hamster a little over a month ago. I made the big mistake of holding him over and over again the first day I got him. I was just so exited to get a hamster. (It was a surprise) My robo hamster still doesn’t like me even after a month. I looked it up on the Internet, but everything I try doesn’t seem to work.

  • Jewels

    I HAVE A ROBO AND I THINK SHE’S A GIRL NOT SURE. I HOPE APPLES AND BROCOLI ARE GOOD FOR THEM WITH CELERY.

  • keltic

    I am a new robo mom. :) I bought two babies, that were housed together, but one died within 48 hours of being brought home. I’m very, very upset about that, to be honest. I specifically selected her because she was an interesting color and was so cute and tiny. Now I’m thinking that maybe she shouldn’t have been for sale in the first place. :( When I brought the pair of females home both seemed to enjoy their extra big cage and their food and toys. Then, just like that, the next night little Pearl was on the verge of death. :( Now I still have the other one, Petal, and I am worried that she will be lonely without her little cage mate. I’m afraid to go get another one because she has been on her own and maybe won’t recognize another of her siblings or cage mates anymore. :( What should I do? Will she be ok on her own? Will she be ok with another hammy? Does it even matter? :(

    • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Sarah

      I’m so sorry about Pearl :( Petal will be fine on her own. It would be risky to put her with another hamster as they could fight and both could end up injured.

      • keltic

        The store just called me to ask if I want another hamster. They are all from the same litter, the same cage that Pearl and Petal are from. I told him I’m afraid to introduce another, even if it is from the same group, when it’s been 2 days since Petal has been with another hamster, and 4 days since being with the others that are still at the store. He said they believe Pearl just was too small and she was very underweight so her death was probably caused by undernourishment from being with so many others and not getting enough food before I took her. When I brought her home on Friday night, she did eat a lot, so I’m confused. The guy I spoke to seems to think that is also indicative of what they said. She hadn’t been getting enough food and then stuffed herself when she could, but that it was too late. Do you think even getting another hamster from that same group that Pearl and Petal came from would be risky at this point? Has it been too many days without another companion, for Petal? Thank you for your help and kindness. I’m really sad.

  • Hamster Lover

    Hi i have a Roborovski Hamster she is a girl i got her 10/6/2013 i have been trying to hold her for a long time and she won’t get on hand and stay. When i try to hold her she runs away how do i get her to like me? And what is the best way to hold her?

  • RoborovskiLover

    Hi. I have a Roborovski hamster. She is a girl. I got her 10/6/2013 and i like just started holding her a few months a go but then i found out i was holding her wrong. So what would be the best way to hold her? And is it to late to tame her?

    • Kylie

      It’s never to late to tame her! My ‘perfect’ way is by picking the hamsters sides with two fingers! I hope this helps!

  • Xanxus

    Hi. My Robo is female and I got her 8/5/2014 just two days from now and her age now only about 5 weeks.When I put my hand and trying to take her,she will smelling me and the she trying to bite me.I don’t know why but every time I put my finger she will start smelling my finger and then try to bite me.Can you help me with this?

  • elsa

    Hello , We have a female Robo Her Name is Snow . That belongs to my 8 year old Doughter , We will be makeing a trip that will take 3 weeks. What would you sugest we do with Snow while we are gone ? My doughter is the only one that can handle her. And is a great Mama to her . I would hate to brake the bond that they have . Help!!!

    • Kylie

      Hi! I would feed and water Snow a bunch before you go! And i would clean her cage very good too!

  • Emma

    Hi, I have a female Robo named anny. She has been acting sorta strange like she’ll claw like she’s trying to get out of her cage. I take her out everyday play with her, feed her change her water. And I clean her cage out every week. I can’t explain what also she doing but it’s like she’ll be I’m one place and I would say go crazy. I really can’t explain what she’s doing. I have no idea what it is.. I’ve had her for about 2 months or 3. It just scares me because I have no idea what she’s doing..

  • Cortney

    Hey, my name is Cortney and my best friend Gimli is about 2 1/2 to 3 years old. He’s my first hamster and about a week ago I noticed that he had a missing patch of fur on his back and that he has dandruff. Is that normal? Also, his little scent gland (that’s what another website told me) has been leaking out some weird liquid and he has to take 5 minutes to clean his scent gland. I don’t know what’s wrong with him and I’m really worried, he is my best friend.

  • clarke

    Hi I am new To this my friends bought me a male called Clarke I have had him 11 days the first couple of days he let me handle him but now he just attacks me wen I go to pick him up can you help me please!!!!!! He’s got everything he needs he even got a three storey cage I just don’t know what to do

    • kylie

      Hi! i also had this problem. Put some gloves on and that will help you from getting bit and him stop being so crazy! i hoped this helped!!!!!!!

  • CHris

    EVERYONE IM SCARED I just got a lil robo female and I did the mistake of trying to grab her so I can put her in her cage I feel horrible I put the box she was in inside her cage and tipped it a bit so she could get in her cage but now she wont move or eat im so scared plz someone help me :((((((

  • julia

    how do i tell if my robo dwarf hampster is pregnant?

  • alex

    I think my robo is pregnant whatdo I do?

  • paula

    We’ve had 2 Chinese dwarf hamsters ho have lived together for the past 18 month and 1 of them kept attacking the other sadly she has died can the other 1 survive on her own .?

    • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Dwarf Hamster Blog

      I’m sorry for your loss. Yes, she can survive on her own — hamsters do not need a companion. This is for anyone else who has a similar situation in the future: hamsters should be separated immediately if they fight.

  • Becky

    Hi I’ve just got a robo hamster she was in the adoption area so was on her own I was just need a little advise on weather to get her a playmate. However if I did get her a playmate it wouldn’t be from the same litter and would be younger as the one I have was sat in the pet shop for 20 weeks. So I guess my question is, is it a good idea or not?

    • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Dwarf Hamster Blog

      Hi! That would not be a good idea unless you’re prepared to get another cage and set of accessories if they fight. Since she was already alone in the pet shop, she might not accept a new hamster if you try to put them together. Plus hamsters are perfectly fine on their own so she doesn’t really need a playmate ^^

      • Becky

        Ok thankyou for that advise. I did think about not getting another one tonight as she seems a lot better playing on her wheel and that. At first all she seemed to do was just run up on down the same bit jumping at the class got abit worried but she seems a lot better now.

        • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Dwarf Hamster Blog

          You’re welcome! They’re usually scared/unsettled for the first few days you get them since they’re in a completely new environment. But I’m glad she’s doing a lot better now :)

  • Christina

    I might be getting a male and female robo dwarf hamster…and I will breed them! I love little animals:) Where should I buy my water tube thing-a-ma jig?
    Thanks:)

    • http://dwarfhamsterblog.com/ Dwarf Hamster Blog

      If you love little animals, please don’t breed them.

  • Buddy

    For those who’ve had dwarf hamster before, i have an almost 2 year old robovorski dwarf hamster that has been constantly losing fur and has been biting on his stomach a lot lately. I just don’t want him to have to suffer. Would you recommend taking him to the vet from the store or could this be common? Thanks for your time!