Do Hamsters Sleep With Their Eyes Open? All You Have to Know!

People love to pet different types of animals nowadays. Hamsters are one of them. Owners love to explore their pets’ habits and are curious to know more! Many people query about their sleeping style and pattern. 

So, do hamsters sleep with their eyes open? No, hamsters do not open their eyes while sleeping. But this kind of behavior occurs when they are in a new place or uncomfortable. They can do this for fear, bright light, or noise. If not for these cases, it must be suffering from serious disease.

That’s not the end. In this article, you can find out the situations where they do so and also about their sleeping pattern.

Do Hamsters Sleep With Their Eyes Open?

No. Hamsters do not open their eyes while in a deep sleep. Many animals similar to hamsters, namely rabbits and guinea pigs, are often seen sleeping with open eyes. But hamsters do not follow them. 

However, mostly you can see the hamsters sleeping during the day time. They are more active during the twilight. So, you can see them sitting quietly with open eyes. That does not mean they are sleeping. They are resting or might be observing something.

Do Hamsters Sleep With Their Eyes Open

If you observe your hamster, you will be able to find them closing their eyes and quitting for a long time. When you wake them up, they will feel disturbed and will change their position and continue sleeping. But in some conditions, you can find them suddenly opening their eyes during sleep.

When Hamsters Sleep With An Open Eye?

In case of noncontinuous sleeping, they can open their eyes during sleep. But it does not mean they sleep with an open eye. In the following conditions, they might open their eyes for a long time.

When Hamsters Sleep With An Open Eye

Situation 1: In Bright Light

While sleeping, if you turn the light on or suddenly bright light applies on, they can open their eyes. That is because they do not like to sleep in a place full of light.

In Bright Light

Artificial light hampers their health as well. And night sleep is not so deep in comparison to day sleep. If you add light to that situation, they will perform that behavior and you will feel they are sleeping with open eyes. 

Situation 2: Feeling Of Fear Or For Safety

If they can feel any danger, they sleep in that manner. For example, if you bring any new pet into the house, or any unknown guest comes to see them, they will act like that. 

Hamsters Sleep With An Open Eye

Wild hamsters do this for fear of prey. For their safety and to avoid any unwanted attack, they keep their eyes open, then sleep for a few moments and again open.

Situation 3: Stress Or Loud Noise

Hamsters love a calm environment. They are afraid of the noise. While they are sleeping, a loud noise can wake them up and increase their fear. And continuously staying in that position make them hardly sleep. So they just keep opening their eyes. 

Situation 4: New Place

Pets cannot easily adopt new places. Likewise, your hamster may not be comfortable with the new place and that will hamper its sleeping pattern as well. Thus, it will keep its eyes open while feeling uncomfortable in its new home. 

Hamsters Sleep With An Open Eye

Situation 5: Cage Movement

If you mistakenly shake its cage, it will wake up. They can wake up more than twice the time after the accident. In that case, you can find them opening their eyes for a long time.

Situation 6: Partially Open Or Snoozing

Hamsters are often seen snoozing or daydreaming for a long time. They do this type of performance with an open eye. And you can think that they are sleeping. But if you touch them or call them, they will respond. 

Also, sometimes they are seen sleeping or snoozing with partially open eyes. But they will close their eyes while in a deep sleep.

Situation 7: Less Comfortable Place

Hamsters chew their bedding and place them in their resting places. They can not sleep properly if there is less or uncountable bedding. In that case, they might awake for a short duration.

Hamsters Sleep With An Open Eye

Situation 8: Sleep-wake Amplitude

Some hamsters’ sleeping patterns are different. They sleep for some time, then they wake up and repeat the same sequence. It may open its eyes for a long time during this process and snooze. 

But in a deep sleep, it will close its eyes. Then when it wakes up, it will stare in a fixed direction and then again fall asleep.

Situation 9: Dystonic Syndrome

It is an inherited disease. Here you can find your hamster in a frozen or fit condition with eyes open. You might think that they are sleeping. But do not let them alone in this situation. It is one kind of attack. 

Dystonic Syndrome

If your hamster is suffering from the dystonic syndrome, immediately go to the vet. Without treatment, it won’t cure. But if your hamster still has attacks after treatment, there is no way to cure it as this is not fully researched yet. The rate of attack will decrease with aging.

These all are the possible causes you finding your hamster’s eye in sleeping time.

If you’re interested in learning more about hamster behavior and physiology, you may want to check out our articles on how often to clean a hamster cage and whether hamsters have night vision. Our article on how often to clean a hamster cage offers advice on maintaining a clean and healthy living environment for your furry friend. Meanwhile, our article on whether hamsters have night vision explores the unique adaptations of these nocturnal animals and how it affects their vision.


These are some commonly asked questions by people about hamsters’ sleep.

Is my hamster sick as it sleeps with open eyes?

No, your hamster is not sick. Also, it is not sleeping with its eyes open. It might be observing something or playing like this. It will close its eyes while sleeping.

How do I know if my hamster is sleeping?

Your hamster seems like a statue if your hamster is sleeping. The temperature decreases when it is asleep and seems like it is dead.

How do hamsters sleep?

Hamsters sleep in sleep-wake amplitude throughout the day. They need 12 to 14 hours of sleep. But they do not sleep continuously.


Hamsters never sleep with their eyes open. Rather they sleep and wake after a few minutes, staring at something and again sleeping. They mainly open their eyes for a long time in this situation. Otherwise, if they do so it means they are afraid of someone or something.

They also open their eyes and freeze for a long time in a diseased condition. New places or stress can hamper their sleep. Also, they might be snoozing with their eyes open for a long time. No need to worry about all these conditions. But if it is still bothering you can consult with your vet.

Lisa G

Meet Lisa G, the founder and author of With over 3 years of experience studying and observing various species of rodents. Lisa has established herself as a credible expert in the field. Her passion for these often-overlooked animals shines through in her in-depth articles and engaging writing style. Follow her blog to learn fascinating facts and gain a new appreciation for the furry creatures that share our world.

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