|Many people write asking me how to purchase some of my hamsters. People who live here in Southern California usually come to one of our CHA Hamster Shows (www.CHAhamsters.org) or they come to my house. You need to make and appointment, and they need to be reserved ahead of time. Others know people who are coming to this area and can hand carry them back (remember that it is difficult and usually expensive to hand carry hamsters on planes so check with the airlines first).
Others want me to ship hamsters to them. I do ship and have done it many times with no problems. Nevertheless it is expensive, and I don't take it lightly. With my work and other commitments, I also don't do it often. It is only legal to ship through the airlines. It is illegal to mail hamsters either through the US Post Office or with FedEx, UPS or one of the other carriers. All of them will tell you that their systems cannot safely transport hamsters -- and they can't. Still, people want me to risk it by falsely labeling the containers and lying about the contents. I will not do that. It is not only illegal but unethical and shows a disregard for my hamsters.
So the only other option besides picking them up personally is having them shipped through the airlines. The airlines will charge you $100 to most large US airports although some airports cost more. They can usually only be shipped if the temperature in your location, my location, and any intermediate locations are between 45 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit. In addition, there is the cost of shipping containers and the cost of the animals. I also spend a lot of time making and tracking the reservations, doing the paperwork, and delivering them to the airport. For all of these reasons, it is not feasible to ship just a few hamsters.
I do not ship to any quarantine countries (like England or Singapore). I don't think it is fair to the hamsters to subject them to an extended quarantine. Actually, I rarely ship internationally due to my time constraints. I much prefer handing over my hamsters personally.
You can e-mail me (CalHamAssoc@hotmail.com) for details if you are still interested and understand the constraints of shipping hamsters.