Lump on hamster

bettaf1sh 7789

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I’ve had my male Syrian hamster for about a week now, currently he lives in a 416 sq inch cage but I am getting one soon that will be about 580 sq inches. So far all is well, he’s active, eats, drinks, etc. but last night I noticed a small lump over one of his hind legs, I’ve poked at it and can’t really feel much and it doesn’t seem to bother him at all so I’ve ruled out any kind of abscess/infection and there’s a slight bump when I actually touch it, but it’s not very large and not super hard so I’m doubting it’s any kind of cancer. After doing some research, I learned that this is where the scent glands are, so I’m wondering if it’s just his scent gland that I’m seeing? Unfortunately with the current circumstances I can’t get him into a vet anytime soon, so I’m just gonna watch it for any changes, but I just wanted to see if anyone could confirm that it was indeed a scent gland I was seeing. Also he is a bit overweight (in his cage at the store he had a mound of probably 30 lab blocks) if that makes any difference.
 

SM1199

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Any way you could post a picture? Is the lump visible? Does it move with the skin or can the skin glide over it?

Although I have hamsters (they are technically my boyfriend's hamsters but we live together and share our pets and their care), I have never had Syrians. From my understanding, the scent glands of Syrians are supposed to be flat, whereas the scent glands of dwarves are raised and may be mistaken for tumors. It is possible it is the scent gland you're seeing, but it may be an abnormal one - glands of any animal can sometimes become impacted, which may lead to an abscess or infection, even if they are not now.

If it seems mostly uniformly spherical, it may be a lipoma either of the scent gland itself or very close to the scent gland, which are relatively harmless.

I work at a vet hospital, but my advice does not replace that of an actual veterinarian. Keep an eye on it and if it gets larger (measure/approximate its diameter now so you have an accurate comparison), see if you can make accommodations to bring him into a vet in the future.
 
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bettaf1sh 7789

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SM1199 said:
Any way you could post a picture? Is the lump visible? Does it move with the skin or can the skin glide over it?

Although I have hamsters (they are technically my boyfriend's hamsters but we live together and share our pets and their care), I have never had Syrians. From my understanding, the scent glands of Syrians are supposed to be flat, whereas the scent glands of dwarves are raised and may be mistaken for tumors. It is possible it is the scent gland you're seeing, but it may be an abnormal one - glands of any animal can sometimes become impacted, which may lead to an abscess or infection, even if they are not now.

If it seems mostly uniformly spherical, it may be a lipoma either of the scent gland itself or very close to the scent gland, which are relatively harmless.

I work at a vet hospital, but my advice does not replace that of an actual veterinarian. Keep an eye on it and if it gets larger (measure/approximate its diameter now so you have an accurate comparison), see if you can make accommodations to bring him into a vet in the future.
I don’t know that I could get a picture as it’s only visible when he stands up and stretches to reach something. Before reading about the scent glands, I honestly thought it was just fat or a lipoma as his sides bulge out as well (working on getting him to lose some weight). I’m not really sure how the skin moves around it as the only time it’s visible is when he’s standing, I can't really feel anything and I’m not sure if the hard bit I felt was just his hip. I was pushing and poking at it last night and couldn’t feel anything and he didn’t seem to be phased by it, so it’s obviously not painful. Would leaving it and just watching to be sure it doesn’t get bigger be my best course of action in your opinion? I just got him and with everything else going on and the fact that he acts totally normal, I feel making the trip to the vet at this point would just be unnecessary stress for the both of us.
 

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bettaf1sh 7789 said:
I don’t know that I could get a picture as it’s only visible when he stands up and stretches to reach something. Before reading about the scent glands, I honestly thought it was just fat or a lipoma as his sides bulge out as well (working on getting him to lose some weight). I’m not really sure how the skin moves around it as the only time it’s visible is when he’s standing, I can't really feel anything and I’m not sure if the hard bit I felt was just his hip. I was pushing and poking at it last night and couldn’t feel anything and he didn’t seem to be phased by it, so it’s obviously not painful. Would leaving it and just watching to be sure it doesn’t get bigger be my best course of action in your opinion? I just got him and with everything else going on and the fact that he acts totally normal, I feel making the trip to the vet at this point would just be unnecessary stress for the both of us.
Yes, that's your best course of action. I wouldn't bring him in any time soon either unless it starts to get bigger. Good luck!
 
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bettaf1sh 7789

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SM1199 said:
Yes, that's your best course of action. I wouldn't bring him in any time soon either unless it starts to get bigger. Good luck!
Thank you! That puts my mind at ease! I’ll just be sure to keep a super close eye on it and make sure it’s not growing or causing any pain. Hopefully it’s just some kind of lipoma or spot from him being overweight.
 
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bettaf1sh 7789

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I looked at it again this morning and honestly I think it’s just from him being chubby. It’s not at all visible when he’s walking, just seems like some fat on his side bulges out when he stretches.
 

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