Is Orange A Safe Fruit for Hamsters?
Fruits are good source of nutrients for hamsters. Unfortunately, not every food is safe for the small rodents. So, what kind of fruit is the best for hamsters? Can hamsters eat a piece of an orange? Let’s find out the answer below.
Can Hamsters Eat Orange?
If you want to ensure that your hamsters get all the nutrients they want to grow well, simply give them hamster mix that can be purchased at the pet store. Hamsters mix contains grain, seed, corn and other elements necessary for your hamster’s growth.
However, fresh ingredients like vegetable and fruit is also needed every once in a while to complete the nutrition your hamsters require. Since orange is one of the most easily accessible fruits and you probably have some in your fridge right now, you might be tempted to give some oranges to your hamsters. Furthermore, orange is rich with vitamin C, vitamin B1, potassium, calcium and fiber, which makes it a very energizing and healthy snack.
Unfortunately, orange is not a good fruit for hamsters. In fact, it can be dangerous for them. This is because orange is highly acidic. The acid can lead to upset stomach and even diarrhea. Diarrhea might not be a big problem for human. But for such a small and delicate animal like hamster, it can be fatal. Even though it contains many good nutrients and vitamin, the hamsters still will not be able to stand the high level of acid in orange.
If they cannot eat the whole orange, can hamsters eat a piece of an orange? Is it still dangerous? Actually, there are contrasting opinions about this. Some people said that yes, it is still just dangerous. The acid level in an orange is just too high that even a small piece of orange can put the hamsters in danger. And this warning is not only for orange. Other citrus fruits like lime, tangerine and basically any fruits that contain high level of acid are not safe for hamsters.
But some other studies show that if it is only a small piece every once in a while, orange is still safe for hamsters. Just make sure that the skin is peeled because there are reports that the skin is toxic for hamsters.
What Fruit Can You Give to Your Hamster?
If you want to be safe, you can simply scratch orange from the list and give your hamsters some other safer fruits. Thankfully, you have plenty of options. Some of the best fruits for hamsters include apples, pears, bananas and cherries.
Even though those fruits are safe and nutritious, it is very important to give them in moderation. Despite of the fact that apples, pears and the likes are not dangerous for hamsters, they contain sugar that will make your hamsters obese if they eat the fruits too much.
Fruits should just be addition to your hamsters’ main diet. Stick to their highly nutritional hamster mix. But please keep in mind that the hamster mix should not contain artificial colors and additives.