A hamster hiding on a table

Where Do Hamsters Hide if They Escape

I still remember the day when I found my hamster cage empty. I was so worried and anxious. It took me five hours to find my lost hamster again and I’m going to share with you the best place to look and the home made trap I have used a few time with great success.

Where to Look for Your Hamster?

Hamster runs very fast. Within a few hours, it can run miles. Since the hamster is tiny in size and can hide even in a smallest of holes, you need to look at every corner of your house carefully.

Here is a list of the common places where you might find your hamster in your home:

In the book rake or wall unit:

If you are a bookworm and have many books, first check your book rake or the place you keep your books. Hamster is a rodent and like all rodent, it loves to nibble paper. Now, what is the best place to do lots of nibbling if not a book rake?

Rodent Sitting on a book

Inside the sofa:

If you ask me to look for my hamster, I will probably check my sofa first. Hamster can easily slide behind the gaps of two-sofa seats and can rest inside your furniture without your noticing.

In the kitchen:

Food is a hamster’s best friend. They can live without running or moving but the smell of food can bring it from anywhere to your feet. Look inside all the food cupboards. Also don’t forget to look inside all the utensil cupboards and inside the vegetable basket.

Warm places of your home:

If your hamster’s stomach is full, sleeping is the next thing it loves to do. So, check your clothes bucket, bags, shoes, boxes, inside the bed and all the warm places that are inviting for a sleeping hamster.

There are endless places in your home where a rodent can hide. You obviously need to think like a hamster. If you are a hamster and you run away from your cage, where can you hide within the four walls? If all your effort of finding your hamster went in vain, just wait for the night.

Wait Until Nighttime

rodent hiding

Hamsters are nocturnal. If you are looking for your runaway hamster and you did not find any success in the daytime, the night is the perfect time to set your trap. You know, the hamster love food so, spread some foods near the cage of the hamster.

Choose those food items that your hamster loves to eat and something that has a strong odor. Once you have setup some food just wait it out and see if he comes to you.

If you don’t want to wait up all night you can try out the hamster trap below that has worked for me on a few occations.

How to Create a Humane Hamster Trap?

Using some every day household Items it is easy to setup a humane hamster trap.

Bucket Trap:

Things you need:

  • A Bucket
  • A blanket or soft cloth
  • Lots of books, CD cases or DVDs
  • Some wet food
  • Some hamster fragrant food
  • Toilet paper roll


  • Choose a clean, deep bucket. Put a blanket or soft cloth inside the bucket. Make sure the height of the bucket is such that the hamster cannot jump out from it.
  • Put some fragrant food like peanut butter or apple or hamster readymade food inside the bucket.
  • Also, put some cucumber or food that can help your hamster to stay hydrated. Never leave a bowl of water in the bucket because it can be dangerous if your hamster gets wet because of the reasons we dicussed here.
  • Start arranging books or DVD cases as steps that reach the top rim of the bucket.
  • Cover the top of the bucket with tissue paper. When the hamster climb’s onto the paper, it will automatically fall inside the bucket.
  • Now, put some dry treats for your hamster on each step of the stairs you made. Make a trail so that the hamster can follow the trail and reach the top step of the stair.
  • Do not leave lots of food for the trail. Remember, your intention is to lure the hamster to the bucket and not to fill its stomach.
  • If you are living in a home with many rooms, try setting traps in multiple rooms, this will increase your odds of catching them on the first night.
  • Now, wait for the hamster to fall into your trap. This method works almost has proven very successful for me in the past.

Below is a slightly different variation of the trap I set but it should work just as well.

How Long Can a Lost Hamster Survive?

Hamsters are naturally smart animals. After running from the cage, the survival of the hamster depends on many factors. I have listed some for you.

  • You live in a small home or apartment and do not have other pets or animal inside your home. Your hamster can survive for 3-4 days maximum without food or water. If your hamster has found a source to fill its belly, it can last many days or 3-4 days after the food source has run out.
  • You live in a home with pets like dogs and cats. The chances of survival especially with cats can be very slim and you need to find them quick or keep the cat out the house.


What to Do if You Think Your Hamster Escaped Outside?

Garden Hiding

The only thing you can do if your hamster escapes outside is try to setup the trap outside but the problem is other animals will probably try to eat the food

Hamster can run miles in an hour. Their survival outside depends on the weather, the availability of food and the stray animals nearby your home.


Rest assured most hamster if they are lost in the house turn up within a few days of going missing, so try not to panic if after a few hours of searching you can’t find him.

I hope your hunt proves successful and if you have any tips you would like to share feel free to drop me a comment.

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