Most hamster lovers know well that Hamsters love fresh vegetables and fruits. In fact, there are many more foods that hamsters tolerate, others they adore, and some they need to avoid. If your main goal is to give long life to your hamster then it is essential to know all of its eating habits.
Here we will help you to answer one of the questions that all of us lovers of these small animals ask ourselves regarding their diet and in particular:
Can hamsters eat strawberries? Strawberries contain many different nutrients that your hamster needs. However, moderation is the key, and including strawberries in their diet as a treat and not their main diet is the best way to let your hamster taste these fruits.
In the strawberry season, if you’re like me you’ll be buying a punnet or two to enjoy yourself. You might even go pick them from the fields and have some fun.
But you may be asking yourself are strawberries really healthy for your Hamster to eat? Let’s take you through the benefits that come with the consumption of this delicacy.
Benefits of Strawberries in Hamsters
Strawberries contain many different nutrients that your hamster needs to have a balanced diet. These are vitamins A, C, E, B, iron, potassium, magnesium, folic acid, zinc, manganese, copper, and other elements. It is therefore good to introduce strawberries and other berries to your hamster’s diet but only in moderation.
Let me explain in more detail why.
This juicy berry has many beneficial effects on the animal: it improves eyesight, cardiovascular activity, liver function; increases appetite; has a diuretic effect and has a positive effect on the genitourinary system.
It is good in the prevention of arthritis since many small rodents often suffer from this disease. It has anti-cancer and antioxidant effects; useful for females awaiting cubs; increases the immunity of the animal, and prevents colds as well.
It has a beneficial effect on gums and teeth; improves the digestive tract, helps with constipation; promotes the absorption of protein and other elements necessary for the hamster; useful for obesity; improves intestinal microflora. It is a source of vitamins, especially ascorbic acid.
Strawberries can preserve their healing properties in frozen form as well as fresh. Thus, in the spring-autumn period, when the animals need additional vitamins and minerals, you will always have some awesome fruits and berries to hand that you can pamper your pet with.
Remember that a thawed berry cannot be stored for a long time, otherwise, it will lose its beneficial properties.
How Can Strawberries Harm a Hamster?
Hamsters are Omnivores and therefore eat a mixture of foods in the wild which consists of insects and plant life matter. Their main food in the home as pets is Commercial hamster pellets and a mixture of fruits and vegetables. Hamsters need solid food, so berries and fruits should make up a very small part of their diet. Strawberries are no different.
With excessive consumption of this delicious berry, hamsters may experience the following problems: It contains sugar and glucose. If the hamster suffers from diabetes, then this berry is forbidden.
Diarrhea – can dehydrate the hamster’s body or cause other problems. The presence of acids irritates the mucous membranes of the digestive tract. This often leads to gastritis or a stomach ulcer.
Allergy – Strawberries may also be an allergen in hamsters. If a pet has previously had allergic reactions, then it is better not to give it strawberries.
Burdens the kidneys – Strawberries contain about 90% water and potassium, which causes a diuretic effect. If the kidneys cannot cope with the heavy load, then this can lead to the death of your hamster. All these side effects may not occur immediately, so you need to control the quality and quantity of this berry.
Foods to avoid: Don’t feed citrus fruits, such as oranges, lemons or grapefruits, to your hamster.
What Kind of Strawberries Can I Give My Hamster?
Hamsters should be given good quality strawberries. Don’t ever feed anything to your hamster that you wouldn’t eat yourself. It must be ripe and fresh and without damage or rot. Any fruits and berries which are not ripe should be abandoned when out of season, since too early production may contain excess nitrates, pesticides, and growth stimulants.
Strawberries treated with drugs in the store or on the market for long-term storage are not good for your hamster. It is best to use strawberries from your garden or at least organic ones. If this is not possible, then it is recommended to buy products from local growers/farmers during the season, and not imported.
Before giving to a pet, strawberries should be washed, sorted, and cleaned of stalks. Feed your two-month-old hamsters half of one berry 2-3 times a week. This is based on the assumption that your hamster has already consumed a small amount of this product, and no negative consequences have been noted after eating it.
The consumption rate also depends on the size of the berry. You can feed a small strawberry to a mature hamster. Dwarf breeds, for example, Dzungarian hamsters or Syrian Hamsters should be fed a very small amount of this sweet treat. Strawberries should be given after eating the main food so that the acids contained in it do not irritate the stomach.
Hamsters can be given strawberries, and it can become a part of a balanced diet. Give strawberries to your Hamster as we have recommended and ensure you check for any allergic reactions. For this reason, feed a very small piece of strawberry to your hamster.
Remember, if you have already given your hamster more than the recommended amounts and all the signs look good, this may be temporary. The effect will not appear immediately, although it is likely that everything will work out. The diet of the hamster is up to you. The pet will eat almost everything that you give it, even poison.
Storage and Management of Strawberries in a Hamster’s Cage
To promote proper digestion, always cut strawberries into small pieces before giving them to your hamster. After a little while ensure that you check that all the food is finished and there are no pieces left that your hamster might eat later thus cause poisoning or digestive problems.
For this it would be advisable to give fresh fruit to your hamster only when it is possible for you to be present, never leave it alone for several hours. Strawberry will attract flies, insects and can quickly go off in warmer climates.
For conservation, the same rules apply. You should ensure that you give your hamster all fresh food. The molds that can be created and any damaged areas can in a short time affect all the fruit, even if stored in the refrigerator. Always buy minimal portions or at least the right portions for daily consumption to avoid taking unnecessary risks for your hamster’s health.
If you live in the city and you have no chance of growing your own strawberries, the only solution is to get them from supermarkets. Here studies have shown that strawberries all have, at least some presence of pesticides.
If these strawberries are left for too long in the refrigerator, the mix of mold and pesticides can create stomach problems for hamsters. Consequently, this would not be pleasant for both for hamster owners and the hamster itself.
The rule of leaving them to soak with a teaspoon of baking soda before rinsing and serving to our pets is excellent, but if you have any leftover strawberries to store, they should be carefully dried.
Final Thoughts – Can Hamsters Eat Strawberries?
Many people buy and keep hamsters without realizing their dietary needs. For this reason, it is our responsibility to keep them healthy, and a large part of this forms proper nutrition.
Adding treats and additions to their food is a good thing.
But you know what they say ‘Too much of a good thing can be bad for you’.