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.

Genera, Species Discoverer Location Appearance Other Descriptive
Mesocricetus Auratus   Syrian Hamster Golden Hamster, Standard Golden, Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear Hamster, Fancy Bear, Honey Bear, Black Bear, Dalmatian, Panda Bear, Polar Bear, Chequered Hamster, Long Haired Hamster Big Hamster, Standard Hamster
Mesocricetus brandti Brandt's Hamster Turkish Hamster  
Mesocricetus Newtoni Newton's Hamster Romanian Hamster, Rumanian Hamster    
Mesocricetus Raddei   Georgian Hamster, Ciscaucasian Hamster    
Phodopus Campbelli Campbell's Djungarian, Siberian Hamster, Russian Hamster, Russian Dwarf Hamster   Striped Hairy Footed, Furry Footed, Dwarf Hamster
Phodopus sungorus   Djungarian, Siberian Hamster, Russian Hamster, Russian Dwarf Hamster Winter White, Russian Winter White, Sapphire Hamster Dwarf Hamster
Phodopus Roborovskii (pronounced ro-bo-rov-skee or rob-o-rov-skee) Roborovskii (Robo, Rob)     Dwarf Hamster, Desert Hamster
Cricetus Cricetus   European Hamster, European Field Hamster Blackbellied Hamster Common Hamster, Giant Hamster
Cricetulus Alticola   Tibetan Hamster, Tibetian Ratlike Hamster, Ladak Hamster    
Cricetulus Barabensis   Chinese Striped Hamster Striped backed Hamster, Striped Hamster, Gray Hamster Rat-tailed Hamster, Dwarf Hamster
Cricetulus Griseus   Chinese Hamster   Dwarf Hamster
Cricetulus Kamensis Kam's Ratlike Hamster      
Cricetulus Longicaudatus       Lesser Longtailed Hamster, Desert Hamster
Cricetulus migratorius     Grey Hamster, Grey Rat-like Hamster Migratory Grey Hamster, Grey Dwarf Hamster
Cricetulus sokolovi Sokolov's Ratlike Hamster      
Allocricetulus curtatus   Mongolian    
Allocricetulus eversmanni Eversmann's Hamster Kazakh Hamster    
Cansumys canus   Gansu    
Tscherskia triton   Korean Hamster   Greater Longtailed Hamster


what are good hamster names?
Image courtesy of thephotoholic on freedigitalphotos.net

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 Names

Every 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:

  • Cricetulus - squeaking feature
  • Allocricetulus - other than squeaking
  • Cricetus - normal size
  • Mesocricetus - medium sized
  • Phodopus - short feet with plump soles

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 Discoverer

In some cases, hamsters are named after the people who first discovered the species. Some examples of this are:
  • Lieutenant Roborovskii - Phodopus Roborovskii (scientific name), Roborovskii's Dwarf Hamster or Robo (common name)
  • Discoverer W. C. Campbell - Phodopus Campbelli (scientific name), Campbell's Dwarf Hamster (common name)
  • Biologist Vladimir E. Sokolov - Cricetulus Sokolovi (scientific name), Sokolov's Dwarf Hamster (common name)
These names tend to be distinct and easy to remember. Unfortunately not all hamsters have a "discoverer" name.

Named By Location

Most 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 Traits

Coat-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!

Conclusion

I 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!








Top Questions:

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