The kiwifruit is a type of berry known for its fuzzy skin and bright green flesh. Kiwi is grown widely throughout New Zealand, hence the name, but is originally from mainland China. Its soft texture and unique flavour make it popular worldwide, and you might have wondered whether kiwi can be a safe fruit to treat your hamster. Generally, hamsters can eat kiwi without any issues, however there are a few things that hamster owners should be aware of.
Is Kiwi Good For Hamsters?
There are a variety of benefits to feeding your hamster kiwi. The fruit is rich in vitamins and minerals that are important parts of a hamster’s diet. Some examples of the nutrients found in kiwis are:
- Vitamins A and C – key to improving the eye health and skin health of your little furball
- Antioxidants – these protect a hamster’s body from free radicals, helping to prevent disease
- Fibre – can aid digestive health and reduce stomach problems
- Vitamin E – important for ensuring good bone strength
How Much Kiwi Can I Feed My Hamster?
While kiwi may generally be healthy for your hamster, it’s important to note that this is only the case when it is consumed in moderation. There are a few components of kiwis that aren’t so good for your furry friends, such as their high sugar content.
As hamsters are quite prone to weight gain and diabetes, be sure to only provide them with small pieces of kiwi. The fruit also has a very high water content and this can cause diarrhoea if it amounts to a large portion of your hamster’s diet. For an adult hamster, a piece the size of your fingernail will be a safe amount of kiwi, and can be given once or twice a week.
Do Hamsters Suffer Any Side Effects From Eating Kiwi?
Aside from the potential for weight gain, one of the main issues surrounding kiwis is their citric content. Citrus fruits can be dangerous for hamsters, as they tend to irritate their sensitive digestive systems. Although there is only a small amount of citrus in kiwis, it can still cause problems in large doses. To avoid this, make sure to keep the portion sizes for your hamster small.
It’s also a good idea to remove the seeds from any kiwi pieces that you give to your hamster. They’re not toxic, however they are very small and can pose a choking hazard for little mouths. Aside from these issues, kiwi can be a delicious treat and is perfectly healthy as an occasional snack.
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