Do Hamsters Live In 10-Gallon Tanks? (Explained)

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Despite being low-maintenance and lovely pets, hamsters do come with unique set of responsibilities.

They are low-maintenance and lovely pets, though you should consider all the factors before getting one.

Let’s see if hamster tanks are big enough for them as one of the requirements.

Do Hamsters Live In 10 Gallon Tanks? (Explained)

It is impossible for a hamster to live in a 10-gallon tank because it is too small. Since hamsters enjoy roaming around, a 10-gallon tank does not offer enough space for them. 

In addition, hamsters need separate areas for sleeping and eating, so they need more space.

The dimensions of a 10-gallon tank are 20 inches long, 12 inches high, and 10 inches wide.

Although these tanks are popular among pet owners, keeping a hamster in them seems unfair.

There simply isn’t enough space for hamsters to live in a 10-gallon tank for long. However, you can temporarily keep a hamster in a 10-gallon tank before moving it to a bigger house.

It is not possible to accommodate a 10-gallon tank for hamsters in the US because the minimum cage size is 360 square inches, which is 24 inches by 15 inches and at least 12 inches tall.

As stated above, hamsters are active critters. They need a lot of space for eating, sleeping, and pooping. After that, they need toys, so they don’t become bored.

You will always find hamsters on tubes, hideouts, spinning wheels, and ladders. Therefore, a 10-gallon tank will be too small for them to live in.

Your 10-gallon tank will be too small for eating, drinking, bedding, and toys for free time. Let’s see what hamsters need, since they come in various sizes.

Dwarf hamster:

Dwarf hamsters require more space than a 10-gallon tank can accommodate. Their adult size is around 2-3 inches.

Syrian hamster:

A 10-gallon tank is not enough for Syrian hamsters. Adult Syrians range from 5-7 inches in length, so they need a large house. A 30-gallon tank is perfect.

Robo hamster:

The 10-gallon tank is not sufficient for a Robo hamster. The size of a robot hamster is similar to that of a dwarf hamster, and they require a larger cage.

Is A 10-Gallon Tank Large Enough For A Hamster?

There is no way a 10-gallon tank can house a hamster. Hamsters are tiny little creatures that love to roam around. While some are shy, most are active and exuberant.

Most people think a hamster can live in a 10-gallon tank, but they are wrong. Hamsters need a minimum of 360 square inches. In other words, the area should be 24 inches long and 15 inches wide.

The hamster needs a separate area for excrement, eating, drinking, and sleeping. There is also a need for space for playing with toys.

If you keep your hamster in a 10-gallon tank, it may become aggressive, irritable, and depressed. That’s why it is best to get him a 20-gallon tank.

In A 10-Gallon Tank, How Many Hamsters Can Live?

No hamster can live in a 10-gallon tank. It would be animal cruelty to keep more than one hamster in a 10-gallon tank. Hamsters should be kept alone.

The fact that hamsters cannot live in a 10-gallon tank is already enough of a stress. Furthermore, hamsters kept together often fight over space. Therefore, it is inhumane to keep two hamsters in a 10-gallon tank.

The recommended size for two hamsters is a 30-gallon tank. Although they are small, they need space for their daily activities.

What Tank Size Does A Hamster Require? How Much Space Does Your Hamster Need In A Cage?

If you keep your hamsters in a tank larger than the minimum requirements, they will love you. Syrian hamsters are much bigger than Robo and Dwarf hamsters.

In the US, hamsters require a minimum living space of 360 square inches, which is 24 inches long by 15 inches wide. A 20-gallon tank is a suitable living space for a hamster.

You must provide enough space for hamsters to run 4-5 miles each night. Dwarfs and Robos need a 20-gallon aquarium.

If you want to keep two hamsters together, you will need a larger space. A 30-gallon tank is recommended for two hamsters.

Is A 10-Gallon Tank Big Enough To Keep A Hamster? What Happens If Hamster Cage Is Too Small?

The natural growth of a hamster is not sustainable in a 10-gallon tank. It is crucial for your pet’s well-keep being as a pet owner to ensure his or her well-being.

To mall hamsters happy, they need tubes, a standard 8-inch wheel, and chew toys. Syrian hamsters need larger wheels.

The following complications arise when you keep a hamster in a small cage.


A hamster that is unhappy will start chewing the cage materials or other things it does not normally chew. 

You will see it behaving strangely and attempting to find more space. This damages its teeth.


Hamsters that are happy will only bite at their food or chew toys.

In a small tank, they cannot even fit essential elements that keep them happy. A lack of space will make them lethargic. If they are not allowed to roam around, they will become lethargic.

It gets worse when you keep a Syrian in a small tank, because a small tank cannot provide a quality life for your hamster.

An unhappy hamster will continuously climb up the cage to escape this hell.

Excess grooming:

Hamsters groom themselves as part of their natural behavior but if your hamster is bored, he or she will groom excessively. 

Hamsters with skin issues exhibit this behavior. Small cages often cause skin issues such as rash, mites, and allergies in hamsters.


Aggression is another sign of a dissatisfied hamster. It will bite your finger and react aggressively whenever you approach it. A small living space contributes to this behavior.

Consult your veterinarian if you notice unusual behavior in your pet.

Animals That Can Live In A 10-Gallon Tank Forever

The 10-gallon aquarium is quite popular among pet owners as a starter tank. You can keep a variety of animals in a 10-gallon aquarium: reptiles, small fishes, amphibians, crabs, and many others.

The following animals can be kept in a 10-gallon tank as long as they are kept in bigger tanks.


Among lizards, geckos and pygmy chameleons do well in 10-gallon tanks.


Ten-gallon tanks are suitable for Kenyan sand boas, Rosy boas, and egg-eating snakes.

Freshwater fish:

Fishes like Tetras, Pygmy corys, Butterflyfish, and Golden dwarf burbs do well in 10-gallon tanks.


The Pacman frog and the Fire belly toad are excellent choices, but Reed frogs and African clawed frogs can also be kept for a long time.

Saltwater fish:

In a 10-gallon tank, clownfish, firefish, and small wrasses thrive.

In a 10-gallon tank, there are hundreds of species you can keep. Consult a professional for more information.


Keeping hamsters in a 10-gallon tank is not an acceptable practice when it comes to hamsters. The animals will be satisfied in larger tanks. 

There are no drawbacks to keeping several animals in a 10-gallon tank, but it is a no-no for hamsters. For hamsters, a large tank is a necessity rather than a luxury.


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