When you are looking for a new snack for your hamster, vegetables are considered as the safest options. Vegetables usually don’t contain too much salt and sugar, which is safe for hamster. One of the most popular choices of vegetables for hamster is parsley. But before you give a new food for your hamster, it is important to double check its nutrients to make sure it is really not harmful for your hamster. So, can hamsters eat parsley? Let’s find out the answer from the explanation below.
What You Need to Know about Parsley
Parsley is a biennial herb that is often used for cooking. Parsley is rich in vitamin A and C as well as various antioxidants that are beneficial for human. Since it is beneficial for human, you might be tempted to give some for your hamster, especially since hamster also needs vitamins A and C to grow.
Actually, herbs are mostly safe for hamsters and there is a high chance that the hamsters like them as well. But if you grow your own herbs at home and you often let your hamsters running around freely, you also might want to be careful because some herbs contain substances that can harm your hamsters. Those herbs include bay laurel, cilantro and catnip.
Is Parsley Safe for Hamster?
So, can hamsters eat parsley? The answer is yes. If you have been giving parsley to your hamster, you have done the right thing because parsley is good for hamster. Parsley contains phosphorus and calcium and they are beneficial nutrients for hamster. They also contain sugar and salt, but the amount is very small. As a result, even dwarf hamster can eat it safely.
However, there are some things you need to be aware of before feeding parsley to your hamster. Firstly, you must wash the parsley properly before giving it to your hamster. It is possible that the parsley contains pesticides which can greatly harm such a tiny creature like hamster. The parsley itself is safe, but the pesticides are not. It is not only parsley, though. If you are giving vegetables to your hamster, make sure to wash them thoroughly to get rid of the hazardous chemicals.
Secondly, just because it is safe, it doesn’t mean that you can replace your hamster’s entire diet with parsley. Eating too much parsley can pose your hamster to some health risks because it contains acid. Acidic food is known to cause upset stomach and digestive problems in hamster. The amount of acid in parsley is actually not that high to the point it should be avoided at all cost, like orange for example. However, if the hamster consumes too much parsley, the level of acid in its body also will get higher, and the outcome will not be pretty. Eating three or four leaves per one or two day is enough.
Parsley should only be used as snack or complement for your hamster’s diet. Make sure to give your hamster balanced nutrients that consists of protein, carbs, vitamins and fats.