Top 10 Ways to Keep Your Hamster Healthy
Posted August 22, 2012 in Small Animal Health & Care
Whether you're a hamster veteran or just welcome a new furball into your home, these tips will help you keep your hamster healthy and happy!
- Let your hamster eat well! However, what they eat is just as important as how much they eat. Hamsters like to pick out the tasty fattening food first out of the dish. Often you’ll see the sunflower seeds disappear first, followed by the less fatty (and less tasty) seeds. It’s very important that you provide your hamster with well-balanced food. Just because they love sunflower seeds doesn’t mean that’s all they should eat! Kids like cookies but need their fruits and vegetables, too.
- Speaking of fruits and vegetables – hamsters need them too! The best treats for hamsters are foods that are similar to what they might eat in the wild. Fresh (rinsed with water) veggies are good, and examples include carrots, squash, broccoli, cauliflower, cucumber, romaine lettuce, spinach and other greens. Fresh fruits (rinsed in water) are good too, such as apples, pears, bananas, grapes and most berries. But remember never to give any citrus fruits like oranges, limes, lemons or grapefruit. Only give small amounts at a time.
- In addition to fresh fruits and veggies, hamsters love whole grain breads and cereals. Also, protein is an important part of a hamster’s diet as well. Plain scrambled or boiled eggs are a nice treat. The thing to remember when fixing your hamsters' dinner is that moderation and variety are very important. Always provide the standard seed and pellet mix daily, and only offer some of these treats in addition to it.
- Make your hamster’s bed. Choose your hamster’s bedding carefully. Some times of bedding, such as cedar shavings, can cause skin irritations because of the oils in the cedar chips. Change your hamster’s bedding regularly, and while you’re at it, give his cage a hearty scrub. Also, be sure to rinse his water bottle, as room temperature water can grow algae and acquire bacteria that will make a hamster sick. Your little furball will by much happier (and less stinky) in a clean cage.
- Hamsters appreciate spacious and exciting living quarters as much as we do. Your hamster needs space to exercise and keep fit in his own cute way. Paper towel tubes, plain brown boxes and other items are cheap entertainment and provide your hamster with something to chew on regularly.
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