Step 3: The wait!

Step 1: The Application!

You've decided to adopt from us and are ready to get started? First of all, thank you for choosing us!

Take a look at the required guidelines and be prepared to meet them. It's okay if you don't know what cage, wheel, or food you'll be using yet, just start thinking about it!

  • Cages must meet or exceed 600 square inches with a bar spacing of no more than 1/2 inch. No wire ​bottoms.  No Crittertrails or Habitrail Ovo. See our Cage Page or ask us for ideas! 
    • Please note that 20 gallon longs are no longer considered suitable housing. They only provide 360 square inches!
  • Wheels must be 9" or larger and must offer a solid running surface. No wire or mesh wheels. See our Wheels page for ideas!
  • We highly recommend feeding Harlan Teklad--it's what we believe to be the best. See our Feeding and Nutrition page for more details.
  • Soft, paper-based bedding is recommended. Hamsters must NOT be kept on cedar or pine bedding! These products can severely damage their respiratory systems and lead to irreversible damage and/or death. 
  • Syrian hamsters must be kept solitary—no exceptions!
  • We STRONGLY discourage breeding our hamsters. However, if you are planning on breeding your hamster, please let us know up front. We would rather point you toward our best stock than have you breed a hamster that would have been better as a pet.

You've got all that down? Great!

Sometime within the week prior to pick up, we send out an email with the link to our online contract. This contract is standard, basically asking you to promise to give the hamster a good life and understand that they are still an animal, and some bumps in the road are to be expected--but in turn, we promise to be there to help, any time!

Then, we get to the best part--pick up! We typically schedule adoptions on the Saturday and Sunday immediately following the pups' ​6 week "birthday." We do LA County adoptions on the Saturday, and both of us attend. From there, we host our respective adoption events (Erin in OC and Tony in Ventura County) on Sunday. If you're unable to attend one of these events, we are able to schedule a private adoption.

LA County adoptions are held at the Crystal Spring Picnic Grounds in Griffith Park.

OC adoptions are held at the Baker Ranch Community Park in Foothill Ranch.

Ventura County adoptions are held at the Peach Hill Park in Moorpark.

Finally, we get to final payment. We collect the final $30, in addition to any purchases you want to make. Then, we say our million "thank you's!," give you a great big hug, and send you and your new baby on your way!

Adoption Process

Step 4: Confirmation Emails

We work on a first come, first served basis to determine waitlist position--but we realize that that isn't totally fair when it comes to choosing a pet! Because of that, we also use recommendations. While we work with the babies, we take notes on their temperament and determine personalities. Using these notes, we try to determine which hamster will be best for each home so that we can guide you in the right direction when your turn comes. 

At 4 weeks of age, the hamsters get their adoption photo shoot--this means we get really cute, clean shots of each pup! All of these photos get sent out to the first person on the waitlist, and we specify their recommended hamster. We will also provide extra information on that pup at this time. They are then free to either reserve that hamster, or they can ask about another one they are interested in.  We will provide photos and more information on any pup they want to know about until they decide on their ideal pet. At this point, we ask for a $20 deposit, and the hamster is considered reserved. Then we send the rest of the photos to the second person in line and start the same process over again. This continues until all the hamsters have been reserved.

We are often asked if folks have to reserve from their "local" litter (Example: I live in Orange County, so can I only adopt from Erin's litter? Is there an extra cost associated with adopting from Tony's litter?). The answer is "no!" You are always free to reserve from any of the available pups, and we will handle transportation of the animals at no charge.

Step 6: Pick Up, Contracts, and Payment

Step 5: Choosing a Hamster

Our wait times are usually between 4 and 6 months from the time of application. We know this is a long time, especially for folks with young children! We do our best to keep you updated, but the best place to keep up with our Cheeks and Squeaks is on our social media. We ask that you follow us on Facebook or Instagram (if you're able) so that you can see they hamster's progress and get to know us as well!

Also keep in mind that the 4-6 month projection includes the more fun and "active" period of watching our hamsters grow, choosing your new hamster, seeing all the cute baby pictures, and getting updates from us. We find that because of this more interactive time, the wait doesn't feel as long as it sounds!

However, we understand that life happens and you may change your mind during this time. If that happens, just shoot us an email and ask to be removed from the list. No hard feelings!

You should expect to receive and email from us within 30 days of your application. However, we are human and there are only two of us--please forgive us if we take slightly longer, especially if you apply close to a holiday. We WILL get to you!

When we email you, we will probably approve your application, explain our wait times, and offer to "officially" add you to the waitlist. If you accept, we will add you to our list based on the time we received your application.

If there is a discrepancy on your application, we will address it at this point so that you can be aware and fix it early on. The main issues we will chat you up about are having a small cage or using unsuitable food. If you indicate that you are open to making the necessary changes, we will add you to the waitlist based on your date of application as well.

Once the babies are born, we need to know who will be adopting from us. This is because we start to work with the babies and determine, based on your application and our personal correspondence, which hamster will be best for you!

So, at this point, we send out an email asking you to confirm that you still want to adopt. All you have to do is reply and we will keep you on the list!

Step 2: You've sent in your application. Now what?