poor eyesight

How Do Hamsters Survive With Poor Eyesight?

Like many animals hamsters have developed their senses over thousands of years in the wild.

They have evolved into the creatures we see today through the different challenges and trials they faced over this time.

These challenges and trials have meant they have learnt to survive in their habitat even though they are prey animals and are hunted by many different predators.

As prey animals, they have had to evolve their senses to cope with the challenges that have come their way.

Their eyesight is one such sense that has evolved over time to where it is today.

Why Hamsters are crepuscular

Hamsters are crepuscular animals which means they are most active around dawn and dusk and then through the night.

In the wild they have had to develop their senses to be able to see at night so as to evade predators and to have to deal with the challenges that living at night-time have to offer.

Their eyesight helps them with this as they can see in the dark better than humans can.

They also use their sight to navigate and create different burrows that make up the living spaces.

However this is brought limitations to their sight as well.

An adult hamster can generally only see 1 or 2 inches past their nose.

So why is a hamster’s eyesight so poor?

The limited eyesight of a hamster unfortunately is a detriment of them being night-time creatures.

As they rely on their senses to guide them at night the eyesight has become more limited as a result as it is not been needed as much.

However they can see better in very dim light then when the light is bright.

This is why they are crepuscular animals rather than truly nocturnal creatures.

When the light is bright they are almost blind.

So how do hamsters survive with poor eyesight?

The answer is

They use their other senses to get around

During the day time, they rely on their other senses to guide them such as the nose and whiskers.

As crepuscular animals who are nocturnal in nature they spend much of the day sleeping and then are very active from dusk.

Then during the night they use all their senses to guide then in the foraging for food.

Taking your hamster’s poor eyesight into consideration is essential for understanding their nature and characteristics.

This means that when they look up at you they can’t see you as such but they can hear you and  can smell you.

Their sense of smell is powerful and helps to guide them.

You would never know to look at them for they had such poor eyesight because they are extremely good at navigating their way around.

Getting to know your hamster and their eyesight

It is only when you get to know them that you see that the eyesight it is not so good.

They can navigate all kinds of situations because of their senses and agility, so can get themselves out of tight situations and solve problems using the senses that they have.

They are very intelligent creatures and follow their nose and whiskers most of the time.

If you follow a hamster in a hamster ball you will see that most of the time I do not know where they’re coming but all work out in the end

What eyesight they do have they use their advantage.

Because of the position of the eyes they are able to see around them at short distances.

They have a much wider range of eyesight than we do and are able to see greater angles than our eyes can.

It is the range in front of them they have trouble seeing.

Again this takes some getting used to understanding this will help you in your relationship with them.