Hamsters have sensitive digestive systems, and anything can throw them off track. Even if they’re omnivores – meaning they can eat anything – it doesn’t mean they can eat a ton of it.
Luckily for hamster owners, blackberries are completely safe for hamsters. So yes, hamsters can eat blackberries, and they do, in the wild.
But things aren’t that simple if you want your furry hammie to live a long, happy life. Read along to find out why.
Are Blackberries Safe For My Hamster?
Yes, in the majority of cases. The trick is not to go overboard with blackberries in your pet’s diet.
You might notice signs that your pet is allergic to blackberries or that you’ve offered him too much of the good stuff. These signs relate to digestive issues, mostly diarrhoea, but this can lead to dehydration.
Usually, this happens if you give your hamster a fist full of blackberries, or in case he stashed some and ate them rotten. It’s wise to call your vet immediately if you notice something off with your hammie after eating blackberries.
How Can I Add Blackberries Into My Hamster’s Diet?
The trick is to start slow, as with any new food to find out if your hamster likes blackberries or if his body can tolerate them.
Give him a small piece, maybe half or a quarter of blackberry, depending on your hamster’s size. Notice if there are any weird reaction for three to four days after that. If all’s well, you can give him another piece of blackberry.
Limit your hamster’s blackberry intake to about half a teaspoon, twice per week, and everything should be fine.
What Are The Benefits Of Blackberries For Hamsters?
There are tons of health benefits of blackberries for your hamster, such as:
- High antioxidants intake aid your hamster’s immune system.
- Are packed with polyphenols, vitamin C, manganese, folate and fibres that support your hamster’s health, improve blood circulation and delay neurodegeneration.
- Have a low-glycemic index, which is amazing because hamsters are prone to diabetes.
- Have few calories, and so your hamster won’t gain additional weight.
- They reduce bad LDL cholesterol in hamsters.
- They are rich in fibres, so they help regulate your hamster’s digestion.
Are There Any Potential Negative Effects?
There are always side effects to anything, especially if you overfeed blackberries to your hamster. The potential negative effects include vomiting and diarrhoea because of an excess of vitamin C and fibres. If your hamster becomes severely dehydrated after his diarrheic episodes, he might die.
Remember that hamsters will stash pieces of blackberries for later. If these rot in their cage, the cage becomes an unsafe environment, filled with bacteria that can harm them. That’s why you should carefully clean your hamster’s cage after offering them blackberries.
Can Syrian Hamsters Eat Blackberries?
Yes. Just read the tips above on how much blackberries you should feed your furry friend.
Can Dwarf Hamsters Eat Blackberries?
Yes, blackberries are safe for dwarf hamsters too, especially thanks to their low glycemic index, as dwarf hamsters are at risk for diabetes.
Can Hamsters Eat Blackberry Muffins?
That depends on how you cook your blackberry muffins and how frequently you serve them. If the muffins are sugar-free, a small, raisin-sized crumb is probably fine, especially thanks to all the important nutrients and fibre from eggs and flour.
If you’re planning to give your hamster store-bought, sugar-plumped blackberry muffins, think again. The high sugar intake might put them in danger, while the low-quality flour might cause them intestinal issues.
Your hamster can eat blackberries – hooray! Just remember to limit the size and number of servings per week so your furry little friend can enjoy all the health benefits of blackberries and none of the side effects.