I personally think every child (apart from those with allergies, of course) should have the experience of being a pet parent to a hamster. For myself, I had this honorable responsibility a few times in my childhood, each time teaching me to be careful, kind and nurturing. Even after they moved on to hamster heaven, as the backyard of my childhood home houses many carefully chosen places of eternal rest.
How delighted I was to receive the book Homemade for Hamsters: Over 20 Fun Projects Anyone Can Make, Including Tunnels, Towers, Dens, Swings, Ladders and More, by Carin Oliver. I don't even own a hamster at the moment and my heart skipped when I saw the potential for this creative gem.
This is a description of the book as outlined on their website. (And NOTE: It's not just for hamsters!)
Homemade for Hamsters features 20 easy projects for creating toys and exercise equipment for a hamster (and guinea pigs, small rabbits, gerbils, and pet rats and mice, too). The projects use materials and tools commonly found around the home. Treats may also be used and the book includes a list of those that are safe and not safe for a hamster.
The 20 projects are grouped according to the type of activities that hamsters enjoy and that enrich their life. Simple text explains how the projects meet these needs and how some just provide fun. The Nibble Necklace, for example, gives a hamster a chewing workout, and it is great for climbing and swinging, too. The Maze simulates a wild hamster's search for food. Making the projects and understanding their benefits will help a child to bond with their pet and commit to its care.
The projects are:
- Running Projects -- Wheel, Tunnels, Amazing Mazes, Obstacle Course
- Climbing Projects -- See Saw Tube, Climbing Wall with Ladder, Treehouse, Platform and Ramp, Swing, Bendy Bridge
- Digging Projects -- The Sand Bath, Miniature Landscape with Digging Pit, Digging Tower
- Chewing Toys -- Walnut Shell Toy, Treat Tubes, Treat Ball, Nibble Necklace
- Resting Toys -- Hideaway Caves, Hammie Hill Hideout, Castle, Round House.
Any and all hamster owners, regardless of age, will enjoy making these great projects as much as they will enjoy watching their pet having fun and staying fit and healthy.
The book is wonderfully illustrated and is printed on very durable paper for small hands. It really is a must-have book for hamster and small rodent owners. The ideas are fun, clever and simple. Overall a very inviting book for kids and adults. (and big kids like me, who are 52 years young)
The author is Carin Oliver, who is an artist with a love of nature and animals, based in Pittsburgh. This is her first book. (Fantastic job Carin!)