Can hamsters eat avocado? I’m glad you asked. Doing research before feeding your hamster new foods is of crucial importance. Today I’m going to explain everything you need to know before feeding avocados to your hamster.
Humans love avocados and they’re very good for us. If you’re eating one you might be tempted to share it with your hamster so they can also enjoy some of this delicacy and nutritional benefit.
But can hamsters eat avocado? And more importantly, is it good for their health? Hamsters have a very different digestive system compared to humans so things that are healthy for humans are not always healthy for hamsters and vice versa.
Also, if you feed your hamster the wrong diet they can become obese. You have to keep in mind that they’re very small creatures and don’t need a lot of food. So, let’s find out if hamsters can eat avocados and if it’s good for them.
Is avocado nutritious for hamsters?
Avocados contain the most fat of any fruit in the world. They contain a staggering 160 calories per 100 grams with 132 of those calories coming from fat. This is partly what makes them so delicious to us; over time, we’ve evolved to enjoy eating food that has a high-fat content.
In addition, they contain the following nutrients, vitamins, and minerals:
- Vitamin K
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin B5
- Vitamin B6
- Vitamin E
- Small amounts of magnesium, manganese, copper, iron, zinc, phosphorus, and vitamin A.
As you can see, they come filled with nutrition. Nevertheless, for hamsters, the amount of fat in this fruit is too just too much. They CAN eat and digest them, but it’s not recommended. A few bites of avocado contain enough calories to give your hamster its complete daily caloric allowance. This makes it very easy to overfeed your hamster when you’re giving them this regularly. This can result in your hamster becoming obese which comes with all sorts of underlying health problems.
For instance, to demonstrate how easy it is to overfeed your hamster on avocado: A hamster weighing 90 grams needs around 25 calories per day. If you give him 15 grams of avocado he’s already consumed 24 calories, which is pretty much his entire daily calorie allowance.
Avocados are also quite acidic. This is no problem for humans, but in hamsters, it can cause digestive and intestinal problems. Something you definitely want to avoid.
Overall; avocados are not really nutritious for hamsters. They aren’t toxic, but the nutrition in them is not beneficial for hamsters and the high amount of calories makes it very easy to overfeed them when you feed them this fruit.
Can hamsters eat avocado seeds?
You might think that hamsters can easily eat avocados. After all, they have pretty strong teeth and shouldn’t choke on something as soft as avocado, right? Well, if you’re careful and give your hamster only the part of the avocado that’s soft and mushy without any skin then they should be fine (choking wise at least).
However, if you’re not careful the skin and the pit can splinter and this can cause your hamster to choke on it. If you do decide to give your hamster always make sure that there’s no skin or any splinters of the pit in the piece you’re feeding them.
If you do decide to feed avocado to your hamster, make absolutely sure that you remove the seed.
Avocados and hamster teeth
You might be surprised to hear this, but avocados can be surprisingly damaging to the teeth of your hamster, but not for the reason you might think. Hamsters have very strong rodent teeth, so their teeth won’t be damaged by the soft, mushy fruit directly. But what can happen with foods like this is that it gets stuck on their teeth.
Unlike humans, hamsters can not brush their teeth, so when avocado gets stuck on their teeth it can cause bacteria to grow and damage their teeth. This can result in several nasty problems, abscesses and tooth decay being the most common. This is very painful for your hamster, and definitely something you want to avoid because if this happens you’ll have to take it to a veterinarian to get it taken care of.
In addition, since hamsters have cheek pouches they’re even more vulnerable to avocado. Soft foods like this can give them an impacted pouch. An impacted pouch means that the hamster cannot empty its cheeks of the food it has stored. This is more common with soft food because those foods are harder for hamsters to remove from their cheeks with their paws.
So, can hamsters eat avocado?
Hamsters can eat avocado, but it’s not healthy for them. The acidity and fat content in it are not good for them. They can easily become obese if you feed it them too frequently and there aren’t many beneficial nutrients in avocados for hamsters. There are many much better foods for hamsters out there that do not have the same risks associated with them that avocados do, and I highly recommend you feed them different treats.
If you do decide to give your dwarf hamster avocado, make sure that you do not give them too much. Seriously, only a VERY small amount is more than enough for a hamster. Secondly, make sure that you’re only feeding it the part of the avocado that does not contain any skin or pit. Also, keep an eye out on your hamster afterward to ensure that it’s not developing problems with its teeth or an impacted pouch.
Alternative foods that hamsters can eat
You might be disappointed that you can’t share your avocado with your hamster, but don’t worry. You can feed plenty of other healthy snacks to your hammy. I’m going to give you a list of ideas below to help you get started.
- Romaine lettuce
- Cheese in small amounts
- Whole grain bread
Hamsters cannot eat avocados. It’s not too high in fat and too acidic. Also, they can be a choking hazard and do damage to their teeth because the mushy fruit can get stuck on them and be hard to remove.
If your hamster accidentally eats a small piece of avocado it’s nothing to worry about, but don’t purposefully feed it to them. There are plenty of other fruits and vegetables that you can give them as a treat instead!
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