While you can find vitamins and minerals in fish, protein and omega-3 fatty acids are two of the most common nutrients that they possess. Hamsters require a protein rich diet from both plants and animals since they are omnivorous mammals. So yes, fish may be able to provide all that essential amino acids but is it safe for your hamster to consume?
Can Hamsters Eat Fish?
Yes, hamsters can eat fish but only sparingly. They are an excellent source of lean meat which are better for health than red or processed meat. They are also wonderful sources of protein, vitamins, minerals and omega-3 fatty acids.
However, your pet hamster can only eat certain types of fish and not all. Some fishes like king mackerel contain high amounts of mercury which can be dangerous to your pet if ingested. Such types of fishes should be avoided.
Can Hamsters Safely Eat Raw Fish?
No, hamsters cannot eat raw fish. This is because they could be contaminated with bacteria and other harmful parasites that can make your hammy sick. They should be thoroughly cooked to kill those pathogens before your hamster can safely have some.
Can Hamsters Safely Eat Cooked Fish?
Yes, hamsters can eat small portions of cooked fish. It is safe and healthy for them to consume because it is pathogen free. They should be washed properly and cooked without the addition of seasonings or oil so that they don't cause your hamster any health issues.
Can Hamsters Safely Eat Fried Fish?
No, fried fish is not a healthy food for hamsters to consume because it contains too much saturated fats. These fats can upset their stomach and possibly make them obese.
Can Hamsters Safely Eat Cod?
Yes, hamsters can definitely eat cod moderately. Unlike the king mackerel, they hardly carry any traces of mercury. They should be thoroughly washed and cooked plain.
Can Hamsters Safely Eat Sardines?
Yes but only in very small quantities. Canned foods usually contain sodium and other preservatives that may harm your hamster. They also contain oil so be very careful that your pet doesn't eat more than the moderate serving.
Can Hamsters Safely Eat Salmon?
Yes, they can. This type of fish is very healthy for your hamster to consume since they hardly contain any traces of mercury. Instead, they are abundantly packed with vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids.
How Much Fish Can Your Hamster Have?
It mostly depends on their size and breed. Some are more robust than others and possess a stronger digestive system.
The amount of fish a Syrian hamster can have may be larger than the amount a Roborovski breed can have. Dwarf hamsters usually have the smallest amounts because they have the weakest digestive system of the three breeds.
So, Syrian hamsters can eat a teaspoon serving of fish once or twice a week. The Robos can eat a teaspoon serving of fish once a week. The Dwarf hamsters including the winter white, Russian, Chinese, and Campbell’s can eat a teaspoon serving of fish once a month.
What Benefits Can Your Hamster Get From Eating Fish?
Your hamster can enjoy a lot of benefits from eating fish as long as they don't consume more than they should. Some of these health benefits can be gotten from the nutrients they provide like:
- This nutrient helps in tissue repair and muscle development.
- They help in enzyme production and hormone regulation.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids:
- These fatty acids prevents inflammation in hamsters as well as skeletal muscle lesions.
- They also help in preventing autoimmune disease in hamsters.
- This vitamin helps in mineral absorption and prevents bone disorders like rickets.
- Where proteins are needed to promote hormone regulation, iodine essentially helps to create thyroid hormones.
- They are also needed to fight and protect your hamster from certain types of cancer.
- They help to fight against oxidative stress and improve immunity
- They also protect hamsters from cancer and aging caused by free radicals.
What Are The Side Effects of Feeding Your Hamster Fish?
These side effects may result from giving your hamster raw fish, their excessive consumption or intolerance of fish. It is necessary to properly research what they can and can't eat and how much their body can take without getting distressed. Below are some side effects linked to fish:
- Dehydration and increase in blood pressure due to high levels of sodium present in fishes like tuna.
- Letting your pet eat too much fish can make them obese.
- Heavy metals like mercury can be found in large amounts in fishes like king mackerel. If your hamster eats them, they could end up falling very ill.
- Some fishes may carry pollutants and harmful bacteria which can cause health issues in hamsters. This is why it is necessary to have them thoroughly cooked first.
How Do You Prepare Fish For Your Hamster?
Hamsters cannot have raw fish because they could be contaminated with some very harmful pathogens. They may also carry pollutants from eating decaying matter, so it is best to have them cooked to destroy and possibly reduce the risk of your hammy falling ill.
You must first ensure that the fish is fresh before washing them thoroughly in warm water. Try to remove as many bones from the fish as possible and place them inside a pot containing boiling water. Cook for 30 minutes without adding any ingredients or oil.
Once it is ready, set it down and allow it to cool. Now you can serve.
Can hamsters eat fish? Yes, it is safe for hamsters to eat fish provided they are properly cooked and free from mercury. They provide a lot of health benefits and are rich in proteins and omega-3 fatty acids. They also contain vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
While your hamster can have cooked fish, they should not be given fried fish because they contain a lot of saturated fats. These saturated fats can be linked to obesity and certain heart diseases.