squirrels food vs hamster food

squirrels food vs hamster food

squirrels food vs hamster food

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squirrels food vs hamster food
squirrels food vs hamster food

Feeding Pet Squirrels

 Squirrels are quick critters who need to eat throughout the day to maintain their energy levels and body weight. A varied diet is crucial in keeping them healthy but you also need to make sure you feed your pet the appropriate foods, not just any variety of foods.

Legumes

Squirrels can eat a variety of plants, including legumes. Peanuts are probably the most popular and widely loved legume, but they aren’t the only ones you should be feeding your pet. Peas, lentils, and beans are all excellent sources of plant protein. You should aim to provide a few legumes in a squirrel’s daily diet.

Nuts

Everybody knows squirrels like nuts. Walnuts, acorns, almonds, and other nuts are all loved by squirrels. They love to hold them in their tiny paws as they eat. Nuts are a great source of protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and even fiber for a pet squirrel. Provide a few nuts a day as treats to your pet squirrel.

Seeds

Seeds should be the bulk of your squirrel’s daily diet. Pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, safflower seeds, and other large seeds that are found in most parrot or squirrel mixes should be available to your pet squirrel. These will provide the bulk of their calories and nutritional content but should not be the only food you offer. Squirrels who live solely on seeds will lack calcium in their diet and will most likfely become overweight.

Vegetables

After seeds, vegetables are the most important part of your squirrel’s daily diet. Sweet potatoes and corn are popular choices and also very nutritious for your little pet. They provide key vitamins and minerals that seeds, nuts, and other foods don’t offer your squirrel. A nice chunk of a vegetable will also give your squirrel a natural water source and add some variety to the diet.

Fruits

Handheld pieces of berries, melons, apples, and other fruits can be offered sparingly. Too much fruit will cause diarrhea. A little bit every day will give your pet a small number of natural sugars and carbohydrates that they need to balance out their diet.

Insects

While you may not like the idea of your little squirrel munching on a crunchy mealworm, your little rodent friend sure might! Squirrels will often enjoy the occasional mealworm or super worm, or may even jump at the chance to chase a cricket. Insects can be another way to add vitamins and minerals like calcium and vitamin D to your squirrel’s diet. Moths are another option if your squirrel is adventurous and wants to jump and chase things.

squirrels food vs hamster food
squirrels food vs hamster food

Formulated Pellets

Some companies make squirrel pellets that are formulated to be balanced nutritionally for squirrels. Many Northern and Southern flying squirrel owners prefer to feed these pellets with some added nuts, seeds, and other foods to ensure they are providing a well-balanced diet. Parrot biscuits and monkey biscuits can also be fed as additional food but are not formulated to be the primary diet for pet squirrels.

Supplements

Many squirrels, especially flying squirrels, will need a calcium and vitamin D3

supplement if they don’t get enough from the food they eat. In order to make sure your squirrel is getting enough calcium and vitamin D, you can dust fruits and vegetables with calcium powder made for reptiles a few times a week.

Pet squirrels will eat a variety of things but that doesn’t mean you should let it eat whatever it wants. Nutritious cereals and crackers are popular treats with squirrel owners but sugary and salty snacks should be avoided. With all the options you have for feeding pet squirrels, you shouldn’t have any trouble getting a variety of foods into your furry little friend.

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Hamster fresh food

squirrels food vs hamster food
squirrels food vs hamster food

 

SHOULD I FEED MY HAMSTER RAW VEGETABLES?

As a pawrent, this might be the common questions you ask, especially if it’s your first time with your pawbaby! But no worries, questions will be answered in our Hamster Fresh Foods guide.

 

In addition to their indisputable nutritional value, fresh treats are also 100% natural, readily available and very economical. However, fresh foods should be provided only occasionally as special treats for your hamster, and only in small amounts each time. Any fresh food must be introduced very gradually, as sudden large portions is likely to upset their digestive system.

 

Observe your hamster closely when introducing them to new types of fresh foods. If they have a negative reaction to it, stop feeding it immediately and remove it from their diet. The recommended serving for fresh foods (listed below) is not more than two servings per day, one fruit/veggie and one protein/other per day, especially for smaller breeds of hamsters such as winter white, dwarves and robos.

 

Hamsters love to hide and hoard their food, and since fresh foods decay rapidly in our tropical climate, thus, always remove any uneaten pieces of fresh foods on the same day you provided them, and do a check of their food stash for fresh items.

 

WHAT FRESH FOOD IS GOOD FOR MY HAMSTER?

Below are lists of different categories of fresh foods to try with your hamster, and tips on how to prepare them. Bear in mind that just like you, your hamster will have preferences when it comes to food and may like some better than others. Always remember to provide your hamster with your standard or unique food mix you’ve created on top of these yummy treats to ensure a balanced and nutritious diet for a healthy hammy!

squirrels food vs hamster food
squirrels food vs hamster food

 

THE GREENS

Hamsters are a huge fan of salads and will love the fresh greens provided, and will welcome it as a juicy supplement to their dry mix. Filled with vitamins and fiber, and very hydrating, they make fantastic hamster snacks! Here’s a recommended list of nutritious greens:

  1. Asparagus

  2. Artichoke

  3. Beansprouts

  4. Broccoli

  5. Bok Choy

  6. Carrots

  7. Cauliflower

  8. Celery

  9. Corn or Baby Corn (Did you know that even fresh plain popcorn without butter and salt are actually one of a hamster’s favourite snacks?)

  10. Cucumber

  11. Kale

  12. Sweet Potato – This can be served to your hamster but they have to be COOKED before being served! Raw potatoes cannot be fed to hamsters!

  13. Romaine Lettuce

  14. Spinach

  15. Squash/Pumpkin

  16. Tomatoes (Stalk & Leaves removed as they are toxic to hamsters!)

Although Iceberg Lettuce is one of the “safe” greens for your hamster, it is not recommended as it has little nutrition value, and the high water content can cause diarrhea.

Simply follow our recommended list of green leafy vegetables which are safe and nutritious and you won’t have to worry about watery stools!

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THE FRUITS

Fruits are also high in vitamins, fiber and water content that can be beneficial for your pawbaby! Always remove the seeds before feeding any to your hamster. Seeds are known to be choking hazards for hamsters, and some kinds, such as apple seeds, even contain chemicals that can potentially be lethal to your hamster.

 

IMPORTANT STEPS TO TAKE FOR FRUITS:

 

Stick to organic or unwaxed fruits. If not, always wash the wax off with warm water or carefully wash the skin of the fruit (if edible). This will help remove any unsafe traces of pesticides or chemicals.

 

Cut to remove any seeds, stems or leaves that may be harmful.

 

Cut into hamster appropriate sizes for serving!

 

FRUITS SAFE FOR YOUR HAMSTERS

  1. Apples, Pears

  2. Bananas

  3. Grapes

  4. Berries – Strawberries, Blueberries, Blackberries, Cranberries, Elderberries

  5. Papaya

  6. Apricots

  7. Cherries (Seedless)

  8. Dates

  9. Figs

  10. Guava

  11. Honeydew Melons

  12. Kiwis

  13. Kumquat

  14. Lychees (Seedless)

  15. Mangos

  16. Peaches (No stone)

  17. Peas

  18. Plums (No pits)

  19. Pomegranate

  20. Starfruit

  21. Watercress

  22. Watermelon (Seedless)

  23. Tomatoes (To be fed when ripe without stem or leaves)

  24. Dried Organic Coconut

squirrels food vs hamsters food
squirrels food vs hamsters food

PROTEINS

Did you know that hamsters are omnivorous? You can feed your hamster meat proteins to help with their growth and development. Especially if your hamster is young, they require a higher level of protein compared to an adult hamster  (As per Pipsqueakery, <6mth 19-20%, 6-18mth 17-18%, >18mth 15%) . Listed below are some protein rich foods that you can feed your hamster.

It is important to note that most animal protein foods have to be COOKED before being served to your hamster. One should never feed a hamster raw meat or raw eggs as they contain high levels of bacteria and parasites that can be deadly to them.

Fatty meats are also discouraged as it is not a natural food for hamsters. Feeding them high quantities of fatty meats can increase the risk of obesity, heart, liver or kidney diseases.

  1. Cooked Chicken Breast (Or freeze dried ones from the pet shop)

  2. Dried crickets

  3. Eggs – Boiled (feed whites) or scrambled with no oil/milk

  4. Low Fat Cottage Cheese

  5. Mealworms (from the petshop)

  6. Plain low fat yogurt

  7. Tofu (If you’re worried, blanch it in hot water for 10 seconds before feeding your pet, a recommended serving of one teaspoon a day would be good enough)

GRAINS, NUTS & SEEDS

Nuts make super fun treats for your hamsters! Shelled nuts can provide enrichment and play time, with your hamster working out for it’s rewards. However, do take note that nuts are high in calories and fat content. Feeding your hamster one nut a day or one every two to three days is recommended, as overfeeding them nuts can lead to obesity .

  1. Bran & Wheat Germ

  2. Cooked Pasta, dried

  3. Cooked Rice, dried

  4. Dry toast

  5. Flaxseed

  6. Oats

  7. Peanuts (ideally raw and in shell, hamsters love it as a chew)

  8. Popped Quinoa

  9. Pumpkin Seeds

  10. Sesame seeds

  11. Soybeans

  12. Unflavoured Popcorn

  13. Walnuts (if with shell, drill a hole for hamster)

  14. Pine nuts

PLANTS & FLOWERS

Hamsters can also snack on plants & flowers but always make sure that they are safe before feeding them to your pet. Some that are more commonly fed to hamsters include: dandelion leaves and flowers, hawthorn leaves. It is recommended to get organic plants and flowers as your normal flora from your florist might contain dangerous traces of pesticides!

  1. Bramble leaves

  2. Blackberry leaves

  3. Chickweed

  4. Clover

  5. Cornflowers

  6. Dandelion leaves and flower

  7. Groundsel

  8. Hawthorn leaves

  9. Marigolds

  10. Michaelmas Daisies

  11. Roses

  12. Salvias

  13. Sow Thistle

  14. Sweetpeas

  15. Wallflowers

  16. Watercress

  17. Young grass

  18. Millet Spray

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What a balanced diet might look like!

CONTROVERSIAL FOOD AND FOODS TO AVOID

Some foods listed can be deadly to your hamster, or prove to be more harmful than beneficial to your hamster. Thus, we strongly warn against feeding your hamsters these foods. However, if you do decide to give your hamster a little taste of it, proceed with caution as a little too much can cause your pawbaby to suffer chronic health problems that might even lead to death.

squirrels food vs hamsters food
squirrels food vs hamsters food

1. Citrus Foods – Lemon, Lime, Grapefruit, Pineapple

Citrus foods are sour due to the high levels of acidity in it. Your hamster’s stomach cannot handle acid, and it can lead to uncomfortable stomach problems and diarrhea for your hamster. Thus, avoid citrus foods or fruits that can be too acidic and sour. However, sweet citrus fruits are safe in small amounts.

2. Almonds

There has been word going around that almonds are not safe for a hamster’s consumption. The almonds we, humans, consume are known as sweet almonds (usually sold unblanched with brown skins intact). They are longer, and well, almond-shaped, and safe for both human and hamster consumption.

The almonds to avoid are bitter almonds are rounder with a distinctive sweet scent. They are commonly found in Chinese medicine shops and are also used in perfumes. However, bitter almonds in large amounts are unsafe for human consumption, and for hamsters, a single kernel can be considered lethal (contains chemicals that breaks down to cyanide)

3. Spicy Foods + Garlic, Onions

Spicy foods and vegetables are unsafe for your hamster and can cause serious complications!

Onions contains N-propyl disulfide, a substance that can affect the red blood cells of a hamster. Steer clear of any spicy foods such as bell peppers. These are too abrasive and acidic for your hamster’s delicate digestive tracts. Furthermore, the nutritional value of bell peppers is minimal at best, so avoid them as far as possible.

4. Sugary or Salty Foods

Just as is the case for humans, sugar and salt can cause a host of health issues, including obesity and tooth decay. That is why it is important to always determine if there are hidden salt and sugars in your hamster’s treats, such as sucrose, glucose, fructose! If you are unsure if a snack or treat is unsafe for your hamster, always go through the ingredients carefully. It goes without saying that if the sugar or salt content is high, do not feed it to your hamster!

5. Chocolate

Chocolate is a very contested topic in small pet communities. Ultimately, chocolate is perfectly safe, however many owners still feel an initial knee-jerk reaction. Since the active ingredient in chocolate (theobromine) is toxic to dogs, many pawrents feel uneasy giving it to their hamsters, even though hamsters present no adverse reactions to theobromine.

6. Avocado

Based on research, avocado flesh is safe for your hamster, but not the pit or the skin. Should you want to feed your hamster some avocado, carefully remove the flesh and ensure there are no traces of the pit or skin on it.

Avocados have a very high fat content, so feed it to your hamster in moderation only.

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