When you start keeping a hamster, the first question that many owners ask themselves is, are hamsters omnivores?
Hamsters are omnivores, they eat 80% vegetable and 20% animal food. With this diet, they get enough nutrients, fibers, proteins, vitamins, and minerals that they need.
Hamsters eat vegetable food more often and it is not dangerous if they eat a slightly larger amount, while animal food should be in strictly limited small amounts.
If the hamsters eat only plant food they can survive, but they need to ingest protein through commercial pellets that replace animal proteins.
In today’s article, you will learn what hamsters eat as omnivores, as well as other questions related to their diet.
Are hamsters omnivores?
Hamsters are omnivores, they can eat plant and animal food. They eat pellets, seeds, vegetables, fruits, and grass from plant food. From animal food, they eat meat from insects, mostly from crickets or worms.
Especially the hamsters that live in nature eat this kind of food, while the hamsters that we keep at home have also enriched their diet with supplements of vitamins and minerals such as calcium.
Hamsters in domestic conditions have a much better choice of a variety of food, while hamsters in the wild cannot always choose what will be on their menu.
What does the hamster eat from plant food?
Although hamsters are omnivores, they mostly eat plant foods.
Hamsters mostly eat plant food:
- Grains and seeds – from peanuts, wheat, and flax seeds, but you must be careful about the amount you give them.
- Vegetables – they mostly like to eat pumpkin, carrots, celery, cucumber, spinach, parsley, lettuce, and other types of vegetables.
- Fruits – pears, apples, grapes, watermelon, blueberries, bananas, and strawberries.
Vegetable food is the main source of nutrition for hamsters, and therefore sometimes eating a little more is not so terrible for their health.
What animal food does a hamster eat?
Hamsters can eat food of animal origin, which helps to ingest various nutrients, especially animal proteins, which are important for them.
In the daily diet of hamsters, animal food should be represented by about 15-20%, and the main part of the diet should be plant food represented by 80%.
Animal food that hamsters eat is the following:
- Chicken meat – is an excellent source of protein that helps them grow and develop their body. But you must be careful not to give them large quantities, it is enough to give them 1/4 teaspoon three times a week.
- Beef – 1/4 of a teaspoon of beef can be given to them once a week because it contains zinc, iron, and other healthy nutrients.
- Pork – he can only eat them once every two weeks, again in a very small amount.
- Egg – half a spoonful of boiled egg, the best is the white, which will provide them with protein for stronger muscles and development of their body.
- Insects – crickets and worms can be given to hamsters, whether live or dried, two to three times a week.
- Fish – it is enough to eat once every two weeks for 1/4 teaspoon, to use the proteins.
When giving animal food to hamsters, you have to pay more attention to the quantity than plant food, because too much animal food can have a bad effect on their health.
They are small animals that cannot process too much animal food, it would be too hard for their digestive system.
Can hamsters eat raw meat?
Hamsters can eat insects, but they cannot eat raw chicken or beef.
Live meat is too risky for their health because they can get infected with bacteria and parasites and seriously harm their health and their life.
Only cooked chicken or beef is allowed for them, only in that way they will safely use proteins and other nutrients.
The same applies to fish, they must not eat raw fish, only boiled or roasted fish is safe for them.
Are all hamster breeds omnivores?
Yes, all breeds of hamsters are omnivores, whether they are Syrian, Chinese, or Roborovski hamsters.
All breeds of hamsters have the same diet, they differ only in the amount they eat.
For example, Syrian hamsters as the largest can eat the largest amount of food, while smaller breeds eat smaller amounts.
Are hamsters in the wild omnivores?
Hamsters living in the wild are omnivores, just like the hamsters, we keep at home.
A bigger problem for hamsters in the wild is that they often can’t choose what to eat or can’t always find a variety of food.
It may happen that they eat only plant food for several days, especially if they fail to find a cricket or other insect.
Hamsters in nature unfortunately have a shorter life span because they cannot feed themselves properly and often they lack certain nutrients for their organism.
Can hamsters be fed vegan food?
Although hamsters are omnivores, they can survive and feed only on plant food.
But in order to survive, they will need to take in sufficient amounts of protein, because in their daily diet, they need to take in about 16% of protein to meet their needs.
Especially the commercial pellets can replace the animal diet because they contain supplements with proteins, vitamins, and minerals.
What can hamsters not eat?
Hamsters are omnivorous, but that does not mean that they can eat any type of food, some types of food are harmful and dangerous for their health and life.
Hamsters must not eat:
Hamsters should also not eat canned food because it contains additives that are harmful to your pet.
Your pet must not eat chips, chocolate and pizza, and other similar types of food because they contain fats, sugars, salt, and other additives that are harmful to them.
Are hamsters cannibals?
Generally, hamsters are not cannibals, but sometimes it happens that mother hamster will eat their dead babies, or eat the babies if they have no other choice for food, they will eat them to survive.
Are hamsters herbivores?
Hamsters are not herbivores although they eat plant food. They also eat animal food and are omnivores by nature. Hamsters must eat a varied diet to meet their nutrient needs.
Are hamsters carnivores?
Hamsters are not carnivores, they also eat plant food to meet their nutrient needs. Carnivores are animals that cannot survive without eating animal food, and hamsters are obviously not such animals.
Hamsters are omnivores, they can eat plant and animal food. However, about 80% eat vegetable food and about 15-20% animal food, thus satisfying their needs for their organism.
Domestic hamsters have a much better and more varied diet, unlike hamsters living in the wild, who cannot always have a choice of what to eat.
Being omnivores, hamsters get a lot of fiber, proteins, vitamins, and minerals, which improve their health.