Hamsters are lovely little pets that love to eat different types of meals. Their special treats are fresh fruits and vegetables. When it comes to giving a stable and healthy diet to hamsters, you need to introduce variety along with the regular diet. For this purpose, the best thing you can do is to give them fresh fruits. One such question lingering in your mind would be: can your hamster eat strawberries? The simple answer is yes. Your hamster can eat strawberries but with certain limitations and guidelines.
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In this article, we will explain all you need to know about feeding strawberries to your hamsters. This article will also cover some benefits and possible side effects of giving excessive strawberries to your hamsters.
Guidelines for Serving Strawberries to your Hamsters
Following are the guidelines that you must follow while introducing strawberries to your hamster’s diet plan.
Sweet Strawberries – Make sure that the strawberries you are giving to your hamsters must be sweet. If the strawberries are sour, they can become problematic for the digestion system of your pet and can also cause throat infection, resulting in cough.
Fresh and Washed – The strawberries you are planning to give to your hamster should be fresh and washed properly in order to remove any pesticides. As your hamster, will only need once strawberry at one time, you can just cut the outer part and serve him the inner part. If any pesticide is injected by your hamster, it can cause problems for the immunity system of your pet.
Food Testing – Whenever you are planning to introduce a new item to the food plan of your pet, it is recommended that you do food testing. Food testing is the way to go and is suggested by pet experts as well. The best way to do food testing with strawberries is to feed a minute amount if the fruit to your pet. Make sure that you do not give your hamster a complete strawberry, the fruit should be cut in tiny slices. When he eats the fruit, wait for a couple of days to check any possible side effects. The side effects may include diarrhea and coughing. If nothing like this happens, it is safe to add strawberries to the list of eatables of your pet. If your hamster doesn’t like strawberries, you can select from other fresh fruits like grapes and bananas.
Serving Size and Frequency – Strawberries contain a lot of sugar. Remember strawberries are a special treat and not a regular meal option. A few bites (not strawberries) once or twice a week is good enough for your hamster.
Hamster Size – the serving size also depends on the size of your hamster. If you have a large pet, you can give him a bit more as he would not be satisfied with a little number of strawberries. For a smaller pet, small chunks are appropriate.
Hamster Breeds – As strawberries are high in sugar, it is also important to analyze them in the context of hamster breeds. Some hamster breeds like Syrian hamsters and Roborovski hamsters, you can increase the quantity. For example, you can serve them a full strawberry once a week. As far as winter white, Chinese and Russian hamsters are concerned, half a strawberry is enough, this is because of the fact that these breeds are prone to diabetics and cannot handle an extra amount of sugar in their bloodstream. Hamsters also get the required amount of sugar from their regular diet as well.
General Care – While serving strawberries or any other fresh fruit or vegetables to your hamsters, you should keep one thing in mind and that is to make sure that you do not leave any uneaten fresh food in the cage. It can rot pretty soon and if your hamster eats that rotten fruit. It can be very dangerous for his health and can cause infections which can lead to other diseases.
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Health Benefits of Strawberries
Strawberries are very healthy fruit for both humans and hamsters. They have the following advantages for hamsters.
Digestion – Strawberries are helpful in maintaining a smooth digestion system in hamsters. Strawberries are rich in antioxidants which help in streamlining the bowel movements. One of the most common problems that your hamster suffers from is a digestion problem. So, strawberries served once a week are helpful in automatically adjusting the digestion system of your pet.
Bone Growth – Hamsters need strong bones and skeleton development. Strawberries can give them the required amount of potassium, Vitamin K and Magnesium that will help vitalize the bone growth.
Eye Health – One of the most amazing benefits of feeding the right amount of strawberries to your pet is the improvement in their eye health. Strawberries not only improve the eye-sight, but they also increase the eye beauty of your pet. Once your pet is being given strawberries in the right amount over some period of time, you will start to notice these positive changes in your pet.
Smooth Fur – Strawberries have this amazing power of improving the outlook and feel of your hamster’s fur. When it comes to cats and dogs, you can work on their fur with the help of supplements. As far as hamsters are concerned, no supplement can be given to them.
Reproduction and New Blood Cells – Strawberries contain folic acid. It is important for normal reproduction and production of red blood cells in hamsters.
Disease prevention – Strawberries have the amazing power of disease prevention in hamsters. They reduce the buildup in arteries which becomes the reason of many fatal diseases in hamsters. Strawberries can also help fight kidney diseases and cancer as well.
We know that these benefits are great for your hamster, but we recommend that you do not increase the intake of strawberries for your pet to reap more benefits as this can have some side effects as well.
Side Effects of Strawberries
If you are not careful about the serving size and serving frequency explained above, it is very likely that your hamster can undergo some negative changes in his body. An excessive amount of strawberries can cause sugar buildup in the blood that can lead to diabetics and it can cause the failure of sense organs. Increased intake of strawberries for hamsters can also cause obesity and lethargy. Symptoms are shown by irritated behavior and zero interaction with you and the toys in the cage.
Strawberries are safe and a good treat for your hamster. Considering their many advantages, their importance increases manifold but they should be served in moderation and care should be taken while serving them to breeds that are prone to diabetics. We are sure that if you follow our guidelines while serving strawberries to your hamster, your hamster will get all the above-mentioned benefits.