Can Hamsters Eat Strawberries?
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Most of us love strawberries: They’re sweet, summery, and delicious, not to mention great for our health!
The question is, though, can hamsters have strawberries? If so, how many strawberries can a hamster have, and how often can they eat them?
The quick answer is “yes,” hamsters can eat strawberries, but far less than you might imagine.
Before you run to the farmer’s market in search of strawberries to shar with your little friend, read on.
We’ve curated a complete guide to strawberries for hamsters, with answers to all the most common questions.
Strawberry Nutrition Stats
Hooray for strawberries! They’re among the best when it comes to low-calorie fruits, yet they offer plenty of satisfaction.
If you eat a one-cup serving of strawberries, you’ll get approximately:
- 46 calories
- 1 g carbohydrates
- 9 g fiber
- 1 g protein
- .4 g fat
Strawberry Nutritional Facts
Even though they are relatively low in calories, strawberries are brimming with vitamins and minerals, including antioxidants to help keep cells in top condition.
That same one-cup serving of strawberries offers about:
- 2 mg vitamin K
- .6 mg iron
- 220 mg potassium
- 6 mcg folate
- 7 mg vitamin C
- .1 mg vitamin B6
- .6 mg manganese
- 7 mg magnesium
- .1 mg copper
- 6 mg phosphorus
Can Hamsters Have Strawberries?
Yes – but not in large quantities. Strawberries aren’t a high sugar fruit but portion control is important!
Is Strawberry Good For Hamsters?
Yes! Strawberry contains so many vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that it can be a healthy snack for your hamster.
Here are a couple of things to remember:
- Only give fresh strawberry to your hamster, or offer dried strawberry with no sugar added.
- Don’t give your hamster frozen strawberries with added sugar, and don’t offer them dried strawberries with preservatives or sugar added.
Do Hamsters Like Strawberries?
Yes, hamsters love strawberries! There might be a few hamsters out there who don’t like strawberries but we haven’t met them.
How Much Strawberry Can A Hamster Eat?
Your hamster can nibble a nice-sized portion of strawberry!
Here’s how much strawberry to feed a hamster:
|Adult hamster||1 small strawberry or ½ medium strawberry or ¼ large strawberry|
Don’t run for the refrigerator just yet. Your hamster can safely eat strawberry and this can be one of the first sweet treats you offer your pet. The way you introduce it matters, though.
Here’s what to do:
- If your hamster has never had fruit, you can offer them a very small sliver of strawberry – about ¼ of a small strawberry. Wait 12 hours and watch for signs of diarrhea. So long as your hamster seems fine, you can give them half a small strawberry the next time and a whole portion the time after that.
- If your hamster already eats a variety of fruits and vegetables, you can give them the full amount and watch for diarrhea over the next 12 hours. If everything is normal, then you can feel free to add strawberries to your hamster’s regular food rotation.
How Often Can A Hamster Eat Strawberry?
You can give your hamster strawberries up to three times a week, but not on the same days as you offer other sweet treats unless the entire portion of fruit being offered consists of tiny amounts that add up to just a single hamster-sized serving of fruit.
It’s easiest to just rotate foods so your hamster has access to different nutrients over the course of each week.
If your hamster is brand new to the family, then they might not have had fresh food before. In this case, you shouldn’t give them strawberry.
Sad, we know – but we want to make sure that your hamster gets off to a healthy start!
Instead of strawberry or other sweet fruit, give a new hamster something mild like cucumber, and make it only a tiny portion to begin with – about ¼ of a cucumber slice might be perfect.
Over the next several days, gradually continue offering your hamster veggies in tiny amounts – just a little bit every other day. This way, their digestive system will have time to adjust.
By the second week, you can try introducing strawberry to your hamster and gradually work it into their diet if they like it and if it agrees with their digestive system.
The Correct Diet Is Important
Wild hamsters eat quite an astonishing array of foods and we’re pretty sure that strawberries are on the list when they’re available!
Keep in mind, strawberries shouldn’t make up a large portion of your hamster’s diet. Instead, you’ll want to offer hamster pellets designed to provide complete nutrition.
In addition, you might want to offer the following things:
- Fresh Timothy hay in unlimited amounts – wonderful for nibbling and very good for keeping your hamster happy and well-adjusted. Hamsters happily line their habitats with hay for nesting and tunneling!
- Clean, fresh water is essential. Rinse and refill your hamster’s water bottle at least once a day.
- Chewable treats need to be available at all times. Without them, your hamster’s teeth can become overgrown and very painful. Hay cubes, coconut shells, untreated softwood sticks, and unbleached loofah are favorite options, and there are lots of fun hamster toys to help keep your pet entertained and healthy, too.
- Birdseed is a good source of healthy fat and hamsters enjoy eating it. Offer about a teaspoon per week.
- Small bits of fresh fruit and vegetables can be provided as treats once a day or once every other day.
- Hamsters are omnivores! Consider offering fun protein snacks such as dried mealworms.
Because hamsters love to stash their leftovers away in their bedding and enjoy snacking later, it’s important to remove uneaten strawberries and other fresh food as soon as your hamster’s initial nibbling session comes to an end.
This might sound unfair but it’s for the best – if your hamster stashes fresh veggies or fruit, mold could develop and your hammy could become very sick.
What Are Other Healthy Alternatives To Strawberry In A Hamster’s Diet?
Strawberries are a really yummy all-natural hamster treat but there are lots of other options to try!
Here’s a list of some hamster-approved vegetables that make great treats every now and then.
- red lettuce
- buttercrunch lettuce
- green beans
- winter squash
- summer squash
- sweet potato
- baby corn
- beet tops
- potato (cooked only)
- swiss chard
- bibb lettuce
- bell pepper
- yu choy
- bok choy
- sweet corn
- carrot tops
Even though lots of fruits, veggies, and herbs are perfectly safe for your hamster to eat, it’s very important to take a few minutes to research each new food you consider introducing.
For one thing, there are some foods that are toxic to hamsters. In addition, you really need to know how much to feed your hamster and how often that exciting new food can be offered!
For the time being, it’s good to know that giving your hamster strawberry is safe – and it’s a fun way to add something really yummy to their diet!
Frequently Asked Questions
Is strawberry safe for hamsters?
Yes! It’s safe to give strawberry to a hamster. Be sure that you wash the berry really well before you hand it over.
Can strawberries make my hamster sick?
Unfortunately, the answer to this question is yes. Strawberry can give your hamster diarrhea if they eat too much of it at once or if it isn’t properly introduced. When you’re careful about the amount and schedule, your hamster should be just fine.
Can hamsters have strawberry leaves?
Yes, if you wash them really well! Hamsters usually like strawberry leaves and you can give them one or two at a time as a nutritious treat.