Last updated on May 8th, 2023 at 08:19 pm
Pretzels are a delicious food we often eat in the morning or for a snack and enjoy this bakery delight. We sometimes think about whether our hamsters can also eat pretzels and whether we should give them some.
Do hamsters eat pretzels?
Hamsters can technically eat small amounts of pretzels, although it is not recommended to introduce them into their diet. If you decide to give pretzels to hamsters, it should be under constant control because of the harmful consequences that salt, fat and sugar can cause.
In today’s article, we will find out why hamsters should or should not eat pretzels and the benefits and risks of consuming this bakery food.
What should we know about pretzels?
Pretzels are very popular all over the world over time, they have been perfected and are much easier to eat; in the past, they were difficult to chew.
Pretzels are made in various types, but they all have a salty taste and a unique crunch.
In America, specifically in Philadelphia, pretzels are very popular. In the United States, April 26 has been declared pretzel day.
At the same time, people eat pretzels and drink beer to alleviate the presence of salt, making them thirsty and drink liquids.
Can hamsters eat pretzels?
Hamsters can eat pretzels in very small quantities once a month, never as regular food, because it does more harm than good for our pets.
Hamsters can eat pretzels, enjoy the crunch of this food, and will eat as much as possible.
Salt is the most dangerous ingredient in pretzels and you have to be very careful about the amount, otherwise, the hamster can get serious health problems.
That’s why we highlight that when you give him pretzels, he should be under your supervision, never let him decide how much to eat.
Also, baby hamsters, pregnant and nursing hamsters cannot eat pretzels, never give them this kind of food, because it can lead to health problems for them.
How many pretzels can hamsters eat?
As we discussed, hamsters can eat pretzels in very small quantities.
Syrian and Robo hamsters can eat one bite-sized piece of pretzel once a month. Dwarf hamsters should eat a small piece once every two months, and their digestive system cannot process larger amounts of pretzels.
This applies to adult hamsters, while baby hamsters should not eat pretzels.
What to do if hamsters eat too many pretzels?
If the hamsters accidentally eat a large number of pretzels, we should immediately give them a larger amount of water, so that they can more easily process the food, that is, the pretzels.
If the hamsters only eat a large number of pretzels once, they probably won’t have any major problems, but if this happens constantly, there may be serious consequences for their health.
Therefore, always be careful where you leave pretzels and ensure that hamsters do not have access to them; that’s the only way to prevent this kind of mistake from happening again.
What the composition of the pretzels looks like
To clarify why pretzels are a risky food for hamsters, we need to look at their composition and nutritional values.
Here’s what the composition of one cup of pretzels looks like:
- fibers 1.4 g
- sugar 9 g
- protein 4 g
- carbohydrates 32 g
- sodium (salt) 496 mg
- fat 1.2 g
- potassium 89 mg
You can easily see from the composition that the pretzels contain too much sugar, salt, and fat, and all of these ingredients are always dangerous for our furry friends.
Side effects of pretzels for hamsters
Pretzels are quite risky for hamsters to eat; the ingredients they contain can harm their health.
Here are some of the risks:
- Kidney problems – because the pretzels contain a lot of salt, which will cause problems with their kidneys.
- Diabetes – the sugar in the pretzels is quite large; it can cause diabetes and other related diseases for your pets.
- High blood pressure – since pretzels are high in calories, they increase blood pressure in hamsters and humans.
- Imbalance of electrolytes – pretzels cause a disorder of electrolytes, with which hamsters have problems with the amount of water in the body, problems with nerves, etc.
- Obesity – fats in the composition of pretzels are a potential risk for hamsters to gain weight and problems with their movement and coordination when running.
- Risk of heart attack – because salt disrupts other physical functions in the hamster’s body.
- Osteoporosis – again due to the salt that causes problems with the performance of functions in the body of hamsters, more precisely with the amount of calcium, while the bones of our pets can become weak and breakable.
- Dehydration – apart from kidney problems, salt also causes dehydration in hamsters, so we should give them more water when they eat pretzels.
We recommend you consult a veterinarian before you start giving pretzels to hamsters, especially if you keep dwarf hamsters.
Benefits of Pretzels for Hamsters
Although pretzels are a poor choice of food for hamsters, there is still something good in their composition.
The benefits are as follows:
- Proteins provide the energy needed for hamsters to play and run throughout the day.
- Fiber – helps to improve the digestion of food and the entire digestive system.
- Vitamin C – the most important vitamin for the health of hamsters who cannot produce it on their own, so they have to get it through food, otherwise, there is a risk of scurvy.
- Calcium – is an excellent mineral that helps hamsters have healthy and strong bones and healthy teeth.
- Iron – helps to reduce the chances of anemia and to have healthier blood for our furry friends.
We must point out that the benefits of pretzels for hamsters are very small, the amount of healthy ingredients in the pretzels are very small in percentage, and it is not enough for pretzels to be a portion of good food for hamsters.
Simply put, the percentage of bad ingredients, that is, the bad effects, is much higher; therefore, pretzels are not a good option for hamsters.
read more: Can Hamsters Eat Pancakes?
An alternative to pretzels for hamsters
Pretzels have many harmful ingredients, primarily salt, and calories, so there are much better types of food for our hamsters.
Give them seeds from sunflowers, pumpkins, etc., or a mixture of different seeds.
Vegetables and fruits are always a better option for hamsters than pretzels; here are some of them:
- an apple
- sweet potatoes
- green beans
All these types of food are excellent for the health of hamsters because they offer nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that they need to be healthy and have a longer life span.
What snacks can I feed my hamster?
Hamsters cannot eat snacks, but they can eat foods similar to food in the wild. You can give them carrots, cucumber, spinach, and vegetables.
Is it OK for hamsters to eat cheese?
Hamsters should not eat cheese because this food has high amounts of sodium and fat, and is not a healthy solution for your pet. If your hamsters enjoy eating cheese you can give them a pea-sized amount once or twice a week.
Hamsters can eat very small amounts of pretzels once a month, although this type of food is not recommended in their diet.
Pretzels are harmful to hamsters because they contain too much salt and other harmful substances such as fat and calories, and sugar is also a problem.
If hamsters regularly eat pretzels, they will get diabetes, obesity, dehydration, kidney problems, and danger to their lives.
The risk of pretzels is too great if hamsters eat regularly or in large quantities. However, you can give them the pretzels occasionally so that they can enjoy their crunchiness and be a dessert to enjoy.
Much healthier food for hamsters is seeds, vegetables, and fruits, which offer healthy nutrients to improve their health and have a longer life span.
read more: Can Hamsters Eat Rice? What You Need To Know