Official Hamster Names
These existing hamster names are beautiful!
This page is a list of actual hamster names. If you're looking for good name ideas for your hamster, go to this page.
I absolutely love that hamsters have a wide variety of names. Some are funny and descriptive, while others are beautiful and meaningful. Each name highlights something special about a hamster and the story behind the name.
Here's a chart with the names. Scroll further down for a description of these names.
What Does "Hamster" Mean?Because hamster contains the word "ham", I've been asked this question a lot: "Are hamsters related to pigs?" Haha! Innocent question!
The answer is negative! Although both animals are cute and cuddly, the word hamster actually comes from the German word, hamastra, which means "to hoard". In many cases, a hamster's physicality shapes its name.
(Hammy is a more affectionate but widely used informal term.)
Scientific NamesEvery species is given a unique scientific name. This name allows people to talk about the same species without confusing it with another which is a common issue with non-scientific hamster names.
It also tells you what features a particular species has that lead it to be grouped with similar species. (Read more about the hamster's scientific classification here.)
For example, all hamster species share the same family and subfamily but different genera. Here are some samples of hamster genera:
When in doubt, the hamster's scientific names are your best choice to use. The downside is it is harder to remember than other names and too formal for casual conversation.
Named After DiscovererIn some cases, hamsters are named after the people who first discovered the species. Some examples of this are:
Named By LocationMost hamsters have a locational name and are usually the main name hamster fanciers will use. It is easy to remember but can sometimes be misleading and confusing.
For example the Phodopus Campbelli and Phodopus Sungorus were originally thought of as the same species until research proved that wrong. The scientific community corrected this interpretation by assigning unique scientific names.
But the hamster community and writings on these two species all referred to them as the Russian hamster or Siberian hamster. Even today, on websites and books, these hamster names are not as reliable.
What we can do is try to refer to their other names more often. Campbelli could be called "Campbell" (discoverer name) and "Winter White" (coat-based name) for Sungorus!
Named By Coat TraitsCoat-based names are more recent designations. With the craze of home breeding for exotic coat colors, a variety of hamster names were created to describe particular colorations.
Unfortunately, these names are usually created for Syrian hamsters only so far.
Here are some examples:
These names are more well known amongst fellow breeders. Their creativity and playfulness often mirror the creators' pride and excitement!
ConclusionI love how these names tell a little story about the hamster itself. Maybe their actual names will give you some ideas for names for your hamster. I wonder what hamster names you'll come up with!