Can Hamsters eat Basil?

Can Hamsters eat Basil?

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Can Hamsters eat Basil?

Basil is a leafy green herb from the mint family. It originates in Asia and Africa and comes in different varieties such as

  • The Sweet basil which is mostly used in Italian dishes and possesses a licorice-clove flavor.
  • The Thai basil as the name implies is very popularly used in Thai dishes and possesses an anise-licorice flavor.
  • The Lettuce basil which can be used in salads.
  • The Cinnamon basil has a flavor that is almost cinnamon-like, hence the name.
  • The Greek basil

Basil is a nutritious plant and it is very safe for human consumption. The question is, can your pet hamster have it too? Read on to find out.

Can you feed Basil to your pet Hamster?

Yes, you can feed basil to your hamster. It is safe for their consumption and it is a very favorable addition to their diet. It can boost your pet’s immune system and overall health since it is packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. It is important to note that this herb can only provide these health benefits when they are fed to your hamster in moderation. If not, they are subjected to health issues like urinary complications.


Do Hamsters actually like to eat Basil?

Some do while some don’t. It mostly depends on their taste preference. You could try feeding your pet a small piece of the leaf and see how it reacts. If it responds positively, then proceed to serve them with the prescribed amount for the age and breed of your hamster. 

If you notice any negative response like allergy, then stop feeding it to your pet and quickly take them to the vet for proper treatment.

What parts of Basil can your pet Hamster eat?

  • The Leaves: Hamsters can be fed basil leaves. It does not have any adverse effect on them so far it is given in moderation. 
  • The Flowers: Hamsters can also be fed basil flowers in moderation. They might hate or like it depending on their taste preference as some basil flowers can be bitter and some sweet.
  • The Stems:  This should be fed to them with more care than the other parts of basil. They are rich in vitamin C but also contain calcium that could be harmful to your hamster pet if overfed.
  • How much serving of Basil can your Hamster eat?

    Basil is considered safe and can be fed to hamsters without incurring any serious health risk but that does not mean you should be careless when serving them this leafy vegetable. Moderation is very important so you should feed them basil in well controlled amounts. 

    While it is not safe to give basil, no matter how small, to a baby hamster, Roborovski adult hamsters can be safely served 3 teaspoons of basil fortnightly. You could give them 3 average sized leaves in a week.

    The dwarf hamster breeds which includes the Winter whites, Chinese, and Campbell, are smaller in size and should only be given, ideally, 3 teaspoons in a month.

    Nutritional Facts associated with the herb Basil

    The following nutrients can be found in a ¼ serving of basil:


  • 8mg of magnesium
  • 6mg of calcium
    • 7mg of potassium


  • 317 IU of vitamin A
  • 1 mcg of folate
  • 9 mcg of vitamin K
    • 1 mg of vitamin C

    What Health Benefits are associated with Basil?

    There are a lot of health benefits your hamster can gain when you serve them basil in moderation. From wound healing to improving your pet's vision, these essential vitamins, minerals and other compounds present in the plant can perform a lot of function to manage their health. 

    These nutrients can also help keep their blood pressure in check and also reduce oxidative stress. Check below to find out which nutrients performs which functions.


    Vitamin C: 

    • This nutrient is responsible for healing your pet's wounds: It quickens the process and ensures that their immune system is strong. 
    • They also function as antioxidants to ensure that free radicals are destroyed or reduced. This prevents diseases linked to oxidative stress.
    • They also help to prevent scurvy which is a very common disease in Hamsters caused by Vitamin C deficiency.

    Vitamin A:

  • This vitamin also acts as an antioxidant to prevent ageing and diseases linked to free radicals.
    • Vitamin A and beta carotene found in basil helps to improve your pet hamster's eyesight: 

    Calcium and Phosphorus:

    • These two minerals are responsible for your pet's healthy bones and tissues and maximizing their bone strength.
    • Calcium also acts as an immunity system booster. It makes sure your hamster's immune system is strong enough to resist infection or diseases.

    Vitamin K:

  • This vitamin helps in blood clotting.
  • It also like potassium, calcium and vitamin C acts as immunity booster 
  • Dietary fibers:

    • This acts as roughages which aids in digestion, adds bulk to diet and prevents constipation.
    • They also, like potassium, prevents heart diseases in hamsters by keeping their cholesterol level and blood pressure in check. This improves the health of your pet's heart.

    Possible Effects of overfeeding your pet Hamster with Basil

    There are two possible outcomes of overfeeding your pet hamster with Basil. The first is digestive problems and the other may be urinary problems.

    • Digestive Problems: Basil contains dietary fibers which usually provides health benefits like ease of digestion and prevents constipation in your hamster. Unfortunately, It may cause some digestive problems like bloating when basil is served to them in high amounts. 
    • Urinary Problems: Calcium and phosphorus present in basil helps to keep your hamster's bones and tissues healthy and strong. It is beneficial to feed them basil in moderation but a build up of urinary problems like bladder stones is facilitated when they are fed in excess.


    Basil is a green leafy herb with sufficient nutrients capable of boosting your pet hamster's health. It contains essential vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, dietary fibers etc. When serving, take care not to feed them basil excessively but moderately. Yes, hamsters can safely eat basil but do not overfeed them. Overfeeding your furry pet may expose them to the risk of urinary or digestive problems.

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