Some people think that Guinea Pig are just real big hamsters, but this could not be any further from the truth. Although both critters are rodents, they come from completely different places and their biology is extremely different. Even from their origins, the Hamster and the Guinea Pig differ. While Guinea Pigs are known to be rodents that thrived primarily in South America, Hamsters made their home in Russia, China and some other places in Eastern Europe and Asia. Considering the places where these little critters are found in the wild, it is pretty easy to assume that their diets are widely different, since the weather around them along with some other biologic characteristics and traits, set them apart from one another. So, long story short, Guinea Pigs and Hamsters are not the same small animals. And because of their differences in many aspects, they require different care. That includes their lifestyle, their needs, their living conditions and of course, their diet. So, can Hamsters eat Guinea Pig food?
When it comes to eating habits, Guinea Pigs gnaw on their food pretty quickly and swiftly consume their nutrients. As they are animals that thrived in hot weather, they do not hibernate, therefore, they do not have to be adaptable when it comes to preparing for winter. The opposite is true when we talk about Hamsters, since their instinct is to brace the cold with tons of food, which is why they use their cheeks as pouches to hold on to as much food as they can. A Hamster’s cheeks can grow stretch so much that their face can become three times as big, just by the sheer amount of seeds and nuts that they store in there.
So, can Hamsters eat Guinea Pig food?
Because of this instinct to store their food in their cheeks is why you cannot feed Hamsters the same food that you would feed a Guinea Pig. The regular, run of the mill Guinea Pig pellets would not keep well into the cheeks of a greedy little hamsters and could rot, potentially harming the health of your cheeky little fluff. Other than the moisture factor of their inner cheeks, a Hamster’s little body isn’t able to withstand the amount of nutrients comprised in Guinea Pig pellets, ordinarily. Most foods targeted to Guinea Pigs contain a certain amount of complements such as vitamins and oils that aren’t healthy for Hamsters to consume.
Other than that, Hamsters need a varied diet in order to stay healthy and happy. They need a lot of protein and a sprinkling of some healthy fruit and veg. Hamsters are Omnivores, which means they eat plants and meat, while Guinea Pigs are Herbivores, which means they only eat plants. Because of this, the diets of the animals are very different from one another. Nevertheless, there is one food that both animals can have in common, and that is Timothy Hay. Although it isn’t sustainable for a hamster to live off of only hay, if you’re in a rush and you’re struggling to find something that is safe to feed your hamster, this might be the best bet. Going for that option might give you the chance to calm the hunger of your fluff and give you wiggle room to find the best alternative of Hamster Food, but you shouldn’t do this for longer than a day.
So the answer is no. Guinea Pig food cannot be fed to Hamsters. If you found this article insightful, and you want to learn more about your hamster’s nutrition, you might be interested in checking out: