So you are intending to improve your hamster’s diet. You want to bring in more fresh vegetables and fruits. You know that your hamster should have a healthy diet, so you read up, and you have found out the kinds of food to give them. It’s all going well until you come across celery in your search results…
The information seems mixed, some people saying it is fine to feed it to your hamster, and others saying it isn’t. The problem is, you don’t know who to trust! So, can hamsters eat celery?
Celery is safe for hamster consumption. However, if you are intending to feed your pet this kind of vegetable, stick to the safety precautions otherwise it may cause your furry friend health issues.
What Is Celery?
Celery is a green leafy vegetable. It comes from seeds, which are usually planted during autumn or spring. The stalk of the plant has strings running through it. The leaves grow along the bottom of the stalk and sometimes there are flowers at the top of the plant.
This nutritious vegetable was first used as a medicine, but after the late 19th century, it was used for cooking more often. It is now commonly found in salads and sandwiches. However, some people still use it to treat their various ailments.
Is Celery Safe For Hamsters?
Yes, celery is safe for hamsters provided you feed in moderation. You need to watch how much you give them and stick to the safety rules in order for your pet not to get sick.
Keep in mind that any type of hamster food offered in excess can cause serious health issues to your pet.
Therefore, whether it’s celery, normal hamster food, or treats, always ensure portion sizes are limited.
Is Celery Bad for Hamsters?
The fact that celery is safe for hamsters doesn’t mean your furry friend can eat it without considering its potential side effects.
First, celery contains some natural chemicals that can cause blood pressure spikes. This means that you should only give them a pinch of celery at a time if any.
Second, some people say that this vegetable contains phytoestrogens which is another word for hormone-like substances. Such may cause early puberty in young female hamsters.
Third, too much sodium is also bad for hamsters, and celery contains a lot of it. This vegetable has the third-highest amount found in any other food after dried seaweed and olives.
Again, too much fiber intake can lead to diarrhea. This vegetable has high fiber content, so it is highly likely your hamster will get sick from too much celery.
And while these are among the adverse effects it may cause, the chances of them are very minimal, especially if you are ready to stick within the limits.
Nutrition Stats of Celery
Ever wondered why people who are dieting tend to choose celery more than other forms of vegetables?
Well, it’s because this green vegetable packs a few calories but a high density of nutrients. Actually, it is believed that the strong taste of this low-fat vegetable comes from high nutrient density.
A single cup of diced raw celery is estimated to contain the following;
- 2 calories
- 5g of carbohydrates
- 6g fiber
- 0.5g of protein
- 0.1g fat
As seen, it doesn’t pack lots of calories, but it contains very high fiber and low fat. It has no saturated fat, cholesterol, or high amounts of sugar.
Nutritional facts of Celery
As seen, celery offers carbohydrates, fiber, and negligible amounts of protein and fat. However, that’s not all.
This healthy vegetable has essential nutrients that can benefit your hamster’s health. It contains vitamin A, B vitamins, folic acid, calcium, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, manganese, copper, iron, and zinc, among others.
It’s also a great source of antioxidants that help protect cells from free radicals that cause oxidation. This, in turn, reduces the risk of cancer occurring.
In other words, feeding your hamster pet a few pieces of celery leaf can provide numerous health benefits, which gets us to the next point.
Health Benefits of Celery
From the powerful vitamin punch and numerous other nutrients you’ll get in celery, it isn’t surprising that this hamster treat can provide lots of health benefits.
Firstly, as already stated, it contains vitamin A. The function of vitamin A is to maintain healthy eyes; it is also good for the immune system as well as other organs. Vitamin A also helps with bone and tooth formation.
Secondly, celery has vitamin K1 (menadione). Although not too much of this particular nutrient can be dangerous, it helps with blood clotting, which means it reduces bleeding risk.
In addition, the cancer-preventing antioxidants reduce the risk of oxidative stress that damages cellular DNA. This, in turn, prevents cells from mutating into cancerous ones.
That’s without forgetting that celery contains the mineral calcium that strengthens bones and teeth.
Those are just a few of the many numerous health advantages celery offers your hamster.
As such, celery can benefit your hamster’s health in numerous ways, but feeding them too much of it is not recommended under most circumstances.
How Much Celery Should My Hamster Eat?
The other thing you probably want to know about is what quantity is healthy for your hamster.
Now, as is the case with any other treat, the amount to offer will depend on the breed of hamster. Syrian hamsters being the largest, require a lot more food than the smaller breeds.
How Much Celery Should Syrian Hamsters Eat?
If you have a Syrian hamster, offer him at most 1/2 teaspoon of celery. This should come weekly. If it’s the first time you are offering your pet natural treats, begin with a small amount. You can divide the amount into two and feed him at different times. Once they get used to it, you can now offer the whole amount all at once.
How Much Celery Should Robo Hamsters Eat?
Robo hamsters are smaller than their Syrian counterparts. Thus, if you have a Robo hamster, offer him about 1/4 teaspoon of celery. Treat him with this about once a week. Even if they are used to it, ensure that you don’t increase the frequency.
How Much Celery Should Dwarf Hamsters Eat?
If you have a dwarf hamster, 1/4 teaspoon is the maximum amount you can offer to them. Similar to the Syrian breed, if it’s the first time then offer just a small amount at a time and split into two meals. Even when your pet gets used to this type of food, you should still keep to this quantity.
Can Baby Hamsters Eat Celery?
If you have a baby hamster, you might have noticed that not everything you can give to your adult pet can go down well with the baby. So, this question about whether baby hamsters can eat celery is legitimate.
Remember that while all breeds of hamsters are rodents, there are still minor differences in their physical makeup, which makes some foods bad for some while okay for others. For instance, different breeds have different sensitivities and allergies.
The vitamins and minerals found in celery can be okay for baby hamsters, but there are other ingredients that may not sit well with their stomachs. These ingredients include phytoestrogens (plant-produced estrogens), oxalates, and chemicals such as apiol (the essential oil of parsley). Oxalic acid is found in the leaves of celery.
Again, baby hamsters have a more delicate digestive system than adult hamsters. For this reason, we recommend that you avoid feeding your pet baby hamster celery.
Is Cooked Celery Good for Hamsters?
When we talk about feeding celery to hamsters, what comes into our mind is giving it to them in raw form. However, one may still wonder if giving it cooked may be a better option.
While cooked vegetables often work just fine for humans, that’s not the case when it comes to hamsters. Sure, it’s very unlikely that cooked celery will make your hamster sick. However, it loses many of its nutritional benefits when cooked, including its fibrous nature.
If you are wondering whether to give it raw or cooked, go for the raw option every time.
Can Hamsters Eat Celery Leaves?
While they can’t cause any harm when eaten, chances are that your hamster isn’t going to like them. That’s because they have a strong taste and smell, which hamsters aren’t too fond of. After all, who enjoys a bitter taste?
Can Hamsters Eat Celery Stalks?
Yes, hamsters can eat celery stalks. Actually, most of the fiber your hamster needs is found in the stalk. Keep in mind that the fibrous stalks help in both digestive health and dental health.
However, ensure that you remove the stringy part at the bottom. That’s because hamsters can’t digest it and it may cause them to have diarrhea.
Feeding Tips When Giving Your Hamster Celery
If you are thinking about giving your hamster this excellent vegetable, make sure to follow these tips:
- Make sure that the celery you are giving is organic. If possible, give raw or steamed celery without any additions.
- Always wash the celery with fresh water to remove any traces of pesticides or chemicals.
- Always give your hamster celery in moderation. Going overboard with treats may lead to the risk of obesity, bloating, and malnutrition in the long run.
- Begin with a small amount and slowly increase it to the recommended amount if your pet seems okay with it.
- When giving your hamster raw celery, chop it into small pieces that are easier to digest.
- Hamsters should be given fresh veggies and fresh fruits every week in order to maintain their optimum health.
As seen, celery is okay for your pet, but only benefits in moderation. However, for young hamsters and babies, in particular, it’s best to avoid giving them celery entirely.
If in doubt, always ask your veterinarian for advice before feeding your pet any kind of fruit or veggie. That’s the only surefire way to avoid the risk of making your pet sick.
But generally, celeries are safe and healthy for hamsters. Go ahead and try it, it may turn out your pet’s favorite treat!