We, humans, enjoy eating chocolate, and we often want to give some to the hamster, but we must not because chocolate can kill the hamster.
How long does it take a hamster to die after eating chocolate?
IF hamsters eat chocolate they can die very quickly. The amount and type of chocolate affect how long it takes for the hamster to show symptoms and die.
In today’s article, you will learn all about the dangers of eating chocolate for hamsters, and what to do when hamsters eat chocolate.
How long does it take a hamster to die after eating chocolate?
A hamster that eats chocolate can die very quickly from the effects of theobromine.
How quickly the hamster will die depends on the type of chocolate it ate, the amount, as well as the size or breed of your pet.
Theobromine is the main ingredient in chocolate that causes death in hamsters and is in most amounts in dark chocolate.
Theobromine is an ingredient that is found in large quantities in chocolate, especially dark chocolate.
When theobromine is introduced into the body of hamsters, it is metabolized very slowly, that is, it breaks down slowly and accumulates and becomes toxic for them.
Even very small amounts of theobromine can be harmful to their health and can cause fatal consequences or death.
It only takes a few hours for the theobromine to start working after the hamster eats the chocolate. Hamsters’ heart rate starts to increase, and they become nervous and have seizures.
The most dangerous moment is when, due to theobromine, hamsters get problems with the respiratory system and cardiac arrhythmias, which can be fatal and kill the hamster.
Everything depends on the amount of chocolate or theobromine that the hamsters will take into their body, the hamsters can have milder or more severe symptoms that can end fatally.
What types of chocolate are the most dangerous for hamsters?
All types of chocolates are harmful to hamsters, but some have more and some less theobromine.
Here are the chocolates that contain theobromine:
- cooking chocolate 400-450 mg/oz
- dark chocolate 150-450 mg/oz
- milk chocolate 45-60 mg/oz
- white chocolate in minor amounts
This is approximately how much theobromine various types of chocolate contain and may vary depending on the brand of chocolate.
Cooking chocolate has a massive concentration of theobromine and can be fatal to small hamsters.
Dark chocolate has a similar amount of theobromine to cooking chocolate, which is why this chocolate is too dangerous for hamsters.
Also dark chocolate has a very high percentage of cocoa and a high concentration of theobromine that can be fatal to the life of hamsters.
Unlike dark chocolate, milk chocolate contains a lower amount of theobromine.
There are more milk ingredients in milk chocolate, but it has a lower amount of theobromine and is less harmful to hamsters.
White chocolate has the least amount of theobromine because it is made from butter, and does not have the solids of cocoa.
But don’t be fooled and give white chocolate to the hamster, because it has a lot of fat and sugar which are again very harmful to the health of the hamster.
Signs of chocolate poisoning in Hamsters
All chocolates are harmful and can cause theobromine poisoning in hamsters.
Sometimes you may not notice when your hamster finds a piece of chocolate on the floor and eats it, so you should pay attention to its behavior.
When hamsters eat chocolate, you should watch out for the following signs and symptoms.
Heart rate – when hamsters eat chocolate, they immediately get an increased heart rate from the action of theobromine.
Uncontrolled movements – theobromine leads to movement problems in hamsters, their shaking, and limb spasms.
Diarrhea – among other problems, theobromine also causes diarrhea in hamsters and disrupts their digestive system.
Seizures – hamsters may have seizures caused by theobromine poisoning, and movement problems. In such situations, it is necessary to immediately take the hamster to a veterinarian to help the pet.
Frequent urination – occurs in hamsters after the introduction of theobromine into their organism. Then your pet will urinate much more often and in larger quantities than normal.
How toxic can chocolate be to hamsters?
Depending on the amount of theobromine ingested in the hamster’s body, as well as the size of the hamster, the toxicity of chocolate can be more or less pronounced.
Here are some factors that affect the severity of theobromine poisoning in hamsters.
The importance of the amount of theobromine
The most important factor in the effects of theobromine on hamsters is the amount they will eat.
The bigger the amount they eat, the bigger the consequences will be for your pet.
In any case, chocolate should be avoided, because even the smallest amounts can cause serious harmful consequences for your pet.
Size of hamsters
The size and weight of the hamsters have an effect on the health consequences of eating chocolate.
Smaller and lighter hamsters will undoubtedly have more severe consequences and the risk of greater poisoning.
Smaller hamsters have less efficient metabolic systems that will have more health problems than theobromine.
The type of chocolate
Dark chocolate and cooked chocolate contain the most theobromine and cause the most harmful effects on hamsters.
Milk and white chocolate contain less theobromine and cause less harm and less poisoning in hamsters.
However, all chocolate should be avoided and not given to hamsters to eat.
The health of hamsters
Depending on the health of the hamsters, some of them will have more serious and others lighter consequences of eating chocolate.
Younger and stronger hamsters may have fewer reactions, while older and sicker hamsters will have more severe effects from theobromine.
The digestive system itself in each hamster can behave differently when eating chocolate, although in general, all hamsters will have problems that can end fatally.
Exposure to theobromine
The longer the hamsters are exposed to theobromine, the greater the chances of them getting poisoned.
Long-term exposure to theobromine can only cause the accumulation of this ingredient in their body and cause more and more harmful consequences for their health and life.
What to do if hamsters eat chocolate?
If hamsters eat chocolate, you need to act quickly to save the life and health of your pet. Here are some steps to help your little hamster.
Contact with a veterinarian – is needed so that you can explain to the veterinarian what happened to the hamster, tell him how much chocolate he ate, and what symptoms he is showing.
Veterinarian examination – after taking the hamster to the vet, he will perform an examination to see how the hamster is doing after eating chocolate. He will check his vital organs to find out how serious your pet’s condition is.
Treatment at a veterinarian – usually consists of using activated charcoal to absorb the theobromine in hamsters, after the veterinarian will cause the hamster to vomit in order to remove part of the chocolate in its body.
After treatment – it is necessary to monitor the situation with your pet, whether it will eat or not regular food, and similar things.
Prevention – once chocolate poisoning has happened to your hamster, you need to be careful in the future so that the same thing does not happen again.
The chocolate should be kept away from the hamsters so they cannot come into contact with it and eat it again.
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Chocolate alternative for hamsters
Since chocolate is too dangerous for hamsters, never let them eat this food. Hamsters should eat fresh fruits and vegetables such as cucumber, carrot, spinach, apple, pear, and banana.
Hamsters can eat seeds and nuts, such as sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, and flax seeds.
Whole grains of barley, oats, and quinoa are excellent choices for rodents to provide healthy nutrients.
High-quality pellets for hamsters are a good basis in their diet and they should be represented in the menu for your little friends.
Read more: Can Hamsters Eat Salami? Let’s Find Out
Hamsters must not eat chocolate because it can cause fatal consequences and death.
The theobromine in chocolate is toxic and can kill your pet in no time. Dark chocolate has the most theobromine, while white chocolate has the least.
it does not necessarily mean that the hamsters will always die if they eat chocolate, it all depends on the amount, the size of the hamsters, and their health.
In any case, whether or not chocolate kills hamsters, it is harmful to them and should never be part of their diet.