Hamsters handled frequently from a very young age usually remain docile and rarely bite. Those with docile temperaments and a history of not biting can simply be picked up by using one or both hands, and then held in both hands or in one hand held against the body.
Many hamsters develop untrustworthy personalities and begin to bite because they have been handled roughly or suddenly disturbed or awakened. Hamsters whose personalities are not well known must always be approached cautiously.
A glove or small towel can be used to pick up these hamsters, or the animals can be encouraged to crawl into a small container, which is then removed from their enclosure.
Unknown hamsters and those known to bite can also be picked up and restrained by grasping a large amount of skin behind the head. As much skin as possible should be grasped between the thumb and index and middle fingers because their skin is so very loose. In fact, hamsters can literally turn nearly all the way around within their skins and bite a handler if this caution is not heeded!
Form a cup with hands and place it over the hamster and gently press your palms against the animal as you pick it up.
Grasp the loose fold of skin behind the neck with your thumb and index finger. Cup your other hand under the animal’s rump and grasp the hind legs between your thumb and index finger.
Carry the hamster in the same position in which you picked him up.