If you have a hamster, or are planning to get one soon, one of the questions probably running through your mind is, can hamsters eat bananas? Well, the answer to that is a resounding YES! Generally, hammies love to eat fruits and vegetables, just like rats – their more famous cousins.
Knowing what to feed your pet is crucial to their survival. For instance, if you feed them with spoilt food, they will more likely develop stomach problems. Even for pets as small as hamsters, which are known to eat about everything (they’re rodents after all!), it’s essential to stick to recommended hamster diets.
How Much Bananas Can Hamsters Eat?
Moderation is Key. While bananas are not known to harm hamsters, they should be served with other fruits, for a healthy and wholesome diet. Basically, you should feed your hamster several pieces of banana at most twice or thrice a week. Every banana feeding should ideally not exceed half a teaspoon.
In essence, bananas should be taken as treats and not as main meals when it comes to hamsters. As such, you should only give your pet only a small slice at a time. For instance, you can divide a smaller banana into three and feed them one piece in the morning, another at midday, and the last in the evening.
This is because hamsters are small animals, and can’t consume a large fruit. Moreover, make sure you wash the fruit before serving, and check them thoroughly for signs of rotting. Giving your hammie rotten bananas may cause diarrhea.
Can Hamsters Eat Banana Peels?
Yes, banana peels are safe for hamsters to eat. You, however, need to wash them with clean, running water thoroughly and cut them into small, manageable pieces. And since they are more or less bananas, you should also serve them in moderation, such that if you give your hamster a bigger amount of banana, you should give them an even smaller piece of banana skin.
Can All Hamsters Eat Bananas?
Yes, bananas are technically safe to eat for all hamster breeds.
However, there are some breeds that are highly susceptible to diabetes, and bananas (which have high sugar content), may hasten the onset of the disease. To start with, the breeds that should be okay consuming bananas include the Roborovski and Syrian Hamsters.
Breeds that may develop health problems due to banana consumption include Chinese Hamsters, Winter White Dwarf Hamsters and Russian Campbell Dwarf Hamsters. That is, however, not to say that they can’t consume bananas. You only have to limit the consumption to less than once a week – Once every two weeks should be okay.
So before going bananas on your hammie (pun intended), first find out what breed they are, and whether the breed is susceptible to diabetes or other health problems brought about by excessive sugars.
Benefits of Bananas to Hamsters
Bananas are very nutritious fruits, rich in magnesium, potassium, fiber, B6, and vitamins B and C. It’s hard to get these vitamins in individual foods, so if your hammie is not easily susceptible to diabetes, you should make sure to include bananas in their diet.
Additionally, the high fiber content in bananas makes them a perfect solution for treating constipation and other digestive problems. Fiber is also known to reduce blood pressure, the risk of leukemia and some types of cancer.
The Problem With Overfeeding Bananas
All the above-mentioned benefits of bananas to hamsters only apply when consumption is controlled and limited, and in synchrony with other healthy foods. Feeding your hamster too much bananas can cause diarrhea and dehydration (which could be fatal).
Notably, even breeds that don’t carry high risks of diabetes could get the disease if overfed with the sugary fruit. Your hamster could also become overweight, which could put them at risk of heart disease and joint pain. Overweight hamsters also become too lazy, and won’t play with you, which is the whole essence of having a pet.
Can Hamsters Eat Bananas Bottom line:
Hamsters, just like other pets, they need to be handled with care. When feeding them, you are advised to monitor any signs of discomfort or health reactions. In case you notice anything unusual, you are advised to seek specialized assistance from a vet.