We’ve all heard of the famous saying “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” But have you ever wondered if this saying also applies to our furry friends, particularly hamsters? Well, we know that hamsters are omnivores, eating both meat and plant-based foods, but can they take apples? Are there any health risks associated with taking apples? Well, we’re here to answer your questions.
Apples are a great and healthy treat for hamsters. While they’re generally safe, there are some safety precautions you should take before feeding them to your pet so that he or she doesn’t get sick!
With that said, if you were wondering whether you can share with your furry friend a piece of this tasty treat, then you definitely can. Below are some of the tips that you should take into consideration before you offer your hamster some apples.
Tips When Giving Your Hamster Apple
Tip #1 Only give your hamster organic, pesticide-free apples.
Make sure that there are no chemicals or pesticides used in the growing of the apple you’re about to feed him or her. This is an important step since pesticides can prove to be fatal for hamsters.
Tip #2 Wash the apple thoroughly before feeding it to your hamster.
While organic apples may not have pesticides, there could be microorganisms on them. You don’t want any bacteria or dirt in his or her mouth, so make sure you wash the apple thoroughly before giving it to your furry friend.
Tip #3 Don’t let your furry friend eat the entire apple.
Feed him or her smaller pieces of apples to avoid any risks associated with taking larger apple chips. Always monitor how much he or she eats, and if he or she starts feeling sick after eating an apple, then you should immediately take him to the vet for a checkup.
Tip #4 Discard the core and seeds
The core and seeds of an apple can pose some health risks, such as choking or intestinal blockage, which is why you need to discard them. These parts also consist of cyanide components that aren’t safe for your pet.
Tip #5 The apple’s skin should be edible by hamsters.
The skin of apples is safe for your pet, but only if they’re organic! Make sure that you discard any non-organic skins because those can have pesticides or chemicals that are harmful to hamsters.
Health Benefits of Apples For Hamsters
We’ve all know the health benefits of apples to the human body. But how about when it comes to pets such as hamsters?
Apples are rich in vitamin A, which is great for strengthening the immune system of your furry friend. Specifically, apples have carotenoids and antioxidants that can help prevent cancer.
In addition, they are a rich source of vitamin C, which is vital for the growth of cells. It also boosts the immune system and helps in collagen production.
That’s not all; they also contain iron, magnesium, phosphorus, sodium, calcium, potassium…the list goes on! All of these components can help your hamster live a long and healthy life.
Apples are good for the heart as well! They have lots of fiber which is great for preventing cardiovascular diseases. In addition, they can improve digestion because apples contain pectin – a type of soluble dietary fiber that aids in relieving constipation and other stomach-related discomforts.
As seen we have lots of apple benefits. Hence, apples are definitely something you should share with your hamster! So go ahead and give him or her some today!
But before that, first know the right amount to give your hamster friend, which brings us to our next point!
How Much Apple Can My Hamster Eat?
The next thing you will want to know is how much apple you can give your hamster. You have to balance between making your hamster happy and avoiding health complications that may emanate from eating too much apples. So, what amounts of apple are perfect for hamsters?
Well, that will depend on the hamster breed you have. Larger hamster breeds need more food, while smaller ones need less. It also depends on the age of your pet. An adult hamster is good to take an apple, unlike baby hamsters whose digestive system still needs to develop.
How much apple should a Syrian Hamster eat?
Syrian Hamsters are the largest breed of hamsters, so they have a higher intake capacity than all other breeds. When it comes to supplementary food like apple, you should only give them a 1/4 teaspoon at most twice a week. Making apple part of their daily diet can easily attract obesity!
How much apple should a Dwarf Hamster eat?
Dwarf Hamsters are the smallest of all hamsters. For these beings, you should only feed them 1/8 teaspoon of apple at most twice a week. Ensure that you do not exceed this much as apples have high sugar content and overfeeding can easily attract health issues like obesity.
How much apple should a Roboroviski Hamster eat?
The size of this hamster falls between that of Syrian and Dwarf breeds. However, in terms of apple intake, you can give them 1/8 teaspoon of apple at most twice a week.
Can hamsters eat apples with skin?
Due to their delicate digestive systems, it makes sense for any hamster pet parent to want to know even the finest of details about their pet’s food. One of these details is if apples with skin can be consumed by hamsters.
However, unlike some sweet fruits that may require you to remove the peel, you can feed your hamster apple together with the peel. Actually, the apple peel contains a high level of insoluble fiber. A lack of dietary insoluble fiber in your hamster’s diet can lead to serious health problems like constipation or even impaction.
However, ensure that you wash the apple before giving it to your hamster, since apple skins may contain pesticides or chemicals that are harmful to hamsters.
Are Unripe Apples Good for Hamsters?
Now that we know ripe apples are healthy for hamsters, how about the unripe ones? Well, raw apples are not as beneficial to your pet’s stomach as ripe ones. In fact, they could even cause some serious stomach discomforts.
In addition, unripe apples contain tannins which can be really harmful if swallowed by your hamster. It is important that you make the distinction between a healthy apple and one that could make your hamster sick.
Are Apple Seeds Safe to Feed a Hamster?
Unlike the skin, apple seeds are not safe to feed your hamster. Apple seeds contain a deadly chemical called amygdalin. This chemical is broken down into hydrogen cyanide – a poison that can affect your hamster’s heart and nervous system.
Additionally, apple seeds can choke your hamster or cause an intestinal blockage if ingested in large quantities.
Potential Risks of Feeding Your Hamster Apples?
When you take safety precautions into consideration when feeding your hamster apple, you can both enjoy the benefits of apples together. That being said, there are still potential risks that you should be aware of before feeding your pet hamster apples regularly.
- High levels of sugar in apples can lead to obesity and diabetes for your pets.
- The seeds may become lodged in your hamsters tummy or intestines.
- The high level of insoluble fiber in apples is bad for your hamster’s digestion and can cause constipation.
- Overfeeding your hamsters with apples may result in diarrhea and bloating due to too much fiber.
- Watch out for pesticides and chemicals used in apple farming.
- Uneaten apples can go bad. Therefore, always make sure you remove any uneaten apples after your hamster has had enough (which of course should NEVER exceed the recommended levels).
As evident, apple can still pose a few risks to your hamster. However, as long as you take the necessary precautions, feeding them apples can be a beneficial bonding activity.
An Apple A Day Keeps The Vet Away?
So, good or bad for your hamster. Well, one thing to always remember is that any hamster food can cause digestive issues.
Again, not all hamsters are the same. Some may not react negatively when feeding them apples while others can, even when doing the right amount.
Therefore, always keep a close eye on your pet hamster when feeding them apples just in case their bodies react negatively to it. If the body response is negative, the best thing is to avoid giving them completely.
So, to summarize:
- Only give your hamster apple in moderation and ensure that it is thoroughly washed before feeding it.
- Only give 1/8 teaspoon to 1/4 teaspoon (depending on breed) of apple to your hamster at most twice a week.
- Avoid giving baby hamsters unripe apples because they contain tannins.
- Avoid feeding your hamsters apple seeds as they can cause digestive blockage and other digestive problems.
- Always ensure that you give your pet a fresh apple. Remove uneaten apples before giving them to your hamster so as not to let them go bad unsafe for eating.
- Feeding your hamster apples too often may result in obesity or diabetes.
- Make sure to give your hamster a healthy and balanced diet, fruits like apples should only come as supplementary food.
- Be careful when feeding your pet with fresh apple as some may not react favorably to it even when taken in small amounts.
- Keep a close eye on your hamster when feeding them apples just in case their bodies react negatively.
Apples make for a healthy snack option for hamsters, as long as you follow the right amount and take care to remove any seeds from them before feeding. Of course, apples should not be their only source of food as a healthy diet needs other nutrient-rich options.