5 Types Of Hamster Breeds: Which One To Get As A Pet?

Hamsters exist in many breeds, characteristics, and habitats. Each of them has its preferences. As a pet, they’re awesome and develop friendly nature quickly with people around. But that depends on the type of breed you want to raise.

5 types of hamster breeds: which one to get as a pet? The Syrian hamster has been the most popular and favorable so far. They are super friendly and adapt quicker than the others. Chinese hamster following the dwarf hamster is also suitable to pet but requires proper attention and guidelines. Roborovski hamsters are quick; raise them only if you have enough space to provide them.

These hamsters are the ones we found suitable and favorable for you to have. Deep dive in and enlighten yourself by reading this post.

Most Popular 5 Types Of Hamster Breeds: Which One To Get As A Pet?

Talking about casual behavior and lifestyle, we have 5 popular hamsters here that are popular worldwide. Have a look at the table below.

Most Popular 5 Types Of Hamster Breeds
CharacteristicsSyrian HamsterRussian Dwarf HamsterDwarf Winter White Russian HamsterDwarf Roborovski HamsterChinese Hamster
1. OriginSyrian DesertRussiaSiberiaKazakhstanChina
2. Size7-8 inches3-4 inches2-4 inches2-2.5 inches2.8-4.6 inches
3. SocializingPrefersDoesn’t PreferDoesn’t PreferDoesn’t PreferPrefers
4. RunningSlowFastFastFastestQuick
5. ColorBlack, Brown, Cream, Golden, etc.Grey Brown with black tippingGrey BrownBlack-eyed, Cinnamon, Head Spot, etc.Dark Brown

1. Syrian Hamster

Talking about the most friendly and cheerful hamster, you cannot but name the Syrian hamster. You might even know it as a “Teddy Bear” hamster from many people because of its appearance; looks cute and fluffy.

Syrian Hamster


When we say friendly, we seriously mean it. Making friends with the Syrian hamster is easy. You must just play with it and feed it regularly for a week or two. That’s it; you just made your name in its friendship book.

Of their cool, calm, and cheerful nature, Syrian hamster is also preferable for children. Kids usually love them, mainly for their appearance. They are fluffy and perfectly grabbable by the tiny hands of the kids.

These hamsters are hazardous-free as well. So, no need to worry about giving them to children.


Talking about the size, they are a bit larger than the other hamsters. You can find them up to 8 inches in length. But again, they look different for their fluffiness. And this prevails in their character as well.

Syrian Hamster


On the one hand, the hamster is relaxed and calm; on the other hand, it is not a socialized breed. Keeping it alone in a cage or running wheel is preferable because it tends to fight with any of its breed or other breeds it finds around.


Syrian hamsters are nocturnal. So, you’ll find them sleeping or resting during the daytime. At night, you’ll find them full of energy. If you leave them in a running wheel, you can hear the running noise from outside the room; it runs fast at night.

Syrian Hamster

And with that activity and habitat, you can expect the hamster to live for 2-3 years without any problems. There might be some usual sickness or illness symptoms, but that can be cured accordingly.

2. Russian Dwarf Hamster

Two things from the name; dwarf and Russian. This hamster is tiny and comes in a compact and minute shape; thus, named a dwarf. And its origin is Russia. You might get confused at first sight because it looks more like a tiny mouse than a hamster. But actually, it isn’t a mouse.

Russian Dwarf Hamster


Russian Dwarf Hamsters are timid. They get scared easily. So, you can keep a partner alongside it. If you can’t just keep it around your reach, let it feel some presence. Then only it remains solid and steady. Remember, they’ll always want some attention from you to check if you are keeping an eye on it.

These hamsters are pretty good to raise. Because they are small and you won’t need to feed them and adore them now and then. A casual meeting and a regular food supply would be okay.

Russian Dwarf Hamster


Just like Syrian hamsters, Russian hamsters are also nocturnal. So, you’ll find them more active during the night. But they rest too much during the day. You can find them sleeping all the time or most of the time when the sun is up.


Speaking about raising them, they’re acceptable for experienced adults. For children, the hamster won’t suit them well. That is because they are timid and get scared quickly.

Russian Dwarf Hamster

On the other hand, children are mischievous by nature. No wonder what happens between them, and you might see one being a problem for the other. Better keep kids away from Russian hamsters.

3. Dwarf Winter White Russian Hamster

Having the same name, the white winter white Russian hamster is quite different from the Russian dwarf hamster. Both are of the same size, but their appearance is different.

Dwarf Winter White Russian Hamster

A glimpse of a darkish color tone is visible on the winter white hamster, making it look unique and stylish. It is also called Siberian Hamster or Djungarian Hamster.


The hamsters are quick. They have furrier feet that help them move quickly around. Handling them could be difficult, but they’ll serve you best once you get their trust.

Dwarf Winter White Russian Hamster

Just because they can run fast doesn’t mean they’re not friendly. They’re sweet and can be your friend in a rapid time. And for that, you need to give them their space, their own vast space.


Whether running on the wheel or the ball, the Siberian hamster loves to be in pairs or groups. They enjoy the company and tend to play with each other. The breed doesn’t mind any partner of the same sex around.

Dwarf Winter White Russian Hamster

Instead of cages, the hamster loves to be in the tank. They create a separate kingdom among themselves there. Of their quick and restless nature, it is better to keep them away from children. Anytime, the hamster can run and become clueless.


Like a Syrian hamster, the Siberian hamster can last for 2-3 years on average. Also, that is kept in more excellent conditions, as their origin comes from snowy or cold places. They love to sleep during the day and play or work at night, just like most other hamsters.

4.  Dwarf Roborovski Hamster

Roborovski hamster can be called the posh hamster among the others. They are friendly and social but need a lot of space. Also, they don’t like to share spaces, food, or sleeping place. If you want to raise multiple hamsters of this breed, make sure to have all the requirements ticked.

Dwarf Roborovski Hamster


They could be self-concerned, but they are the perfect hamster to pet initially. You won’t have to give them much time, they love to live alone. Just provide them with food and show your faces regularly, and they’ll live happily with you.

Dwarf Roborovski Hamster

They love to remain in large tanks. This is their preferable as they are anti-social. Keep them locked in their preferred place, and you’ll see them grow. Just don’t forget to provide food to the animal. 


And they are the fastest hamster. You can’t compare their running speed and style with the others. Because of their small size, they are also difficult to catch and handle. They are called the cheetah of the hamster world. You’ll find it alive and active for 2-3 years.

Dwarf Roborovski Hamster

5. Chinese Hamster

Chinese hamster is comparatively medium in size. They range from 3-4 inches in length. The size makes them resemble mice. Many confuse the hamster with them as well in reality. But this hamster is the best to play with. 

Chinese Hamster

Habitat and Nature

They become joyous and happier as you give time and attention to them. The more time you spend with it, the friendlier it becomes. They’ll be craving so much attention from you that, at one stage, you can’t keep your sight away from the animal.

And keeping them satisfied requires a lot of demand to fulfill. They’ll want more of your adoring through your time spent, food routine, and toys. A running wheel can be a good toy for them to remain busy and play on it. But still, it’d want your attention.

Chinese Hamster

Chinese hamsters are not only friendly with humans but also among themselves. You can raise multiple Chinese hamsters, but slowly. Don’t leave many hamsters at a time in the same place. Instead, introduce them slowly, one by one, after a specific time interval.

Their average life span is about 2-3 years, only if you can pet them accordingly. Otherwise, most of them tend to live for 1-2 years. So, petting them should be a challenge for you. You better raise it if you’re capable of doing so.

If you’re interested in learning more about small animals, you may want to check out our article on rabbit vs hamster, as well as our article on hedgehog vs hamster. Our article on rabbit vs hamster compares these two popular pets in terms of their characteristics, care requirements, and suitability as pets. Meanwhile, our article on hedgehog vs hamster discusses the similarities and differences between these two adorable creatures in terms of their care requirements and behavior.


Here are some frequently asked questions for you to get more information on the topic. 

Q: Should you get 1 or 2 hamsters?

It entirely depends upon the hamster’s socializing ability. For example, if you have a dwarf Roborovski hamster, it’ll want to remain alone, whereas a Chinese hamster would love to be in a group.

Q: Can a Hamster bite? Does it hurt?

Yes. Hamsters can bite once they become aggressive. It is rare, but it happens sometimes. And once they bite, it surely hurts.

Can a Hamster bite

Q: Do hamsters need a bath?

Hamsters don’t require a bath usually. But to keep them clean, you can bathe them once every one or two weeks. It keeps their rear end clean, at least.

Final Words

Among the five types of hamster breeds, there are no forceful recommendations to pet any of them. You can raise any of them as per your choice and capability. All of them are listed for this purpose.

Also, you can raise more than one breed at the same time. It could be just difficult but never impossible, and you need to give them proper time and attention. And it would be your responsibility to supply the hamster with food and water. Don’t keep them starving; most importantly, provide them with comfortable space. 

Lisa G

Meet Lisa G, the founder and author of RodentsFact.com. 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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