Protozoal Gastroenteritis in Hamsters
Protozoa are single-celled organisms that are capable of causing disease in hamsters, the most common of which is protozoal gastroenteritis. Although healthy hamsters often carry protozoa in their digestive tracts without adverse reactions, hamsters that are young or stressed may develop intestinal infections and diarrhea as a result of a weakened immune system.
Protozoal infections are treatable with the aid of anti-protozoal drugs. However, preventing the infection from occurring in the first place is more practical than treating to cure it.
- Abdominal pain
- Dull and depressed appearance
- Profuse watery diarrhea, which may or may not be foul smelling
- Loss of appetite (anorexia)
This infection is transmitted via the ingestion of contaminated feed and water. Contaminated bedding material may also act as a source of protozoal infection.
In addition to observing your hamster's symptoms, the veterinarian can diagnose a protozoal infection by examining the hamster's feces.