Hamsters are omnivores, which means they eat both plants and animals (usually insects). In the wild, hamsters consume a wide range of foods, including insects, fruits, vegetables, seeds, and nuts.
Dairy products like eggs are a great addition to your pet’s diet for some extra protein, but can hamsters eat cheese? Surprisingly, hamsters can eat cheese, but only in moderation as an occasional treat.
You should opt for a low-fat cheese that is mild in flavor. All species of hamsters, including Syrians and dwarf species, can eat cheese. However, dwarf hamsters are thought to be at a higher risk of developing diabetes. Feed cheese very sparingly or avoid it altogether to be on the safe side.
Never give your hamster Blue cheese/Stilton as it is toxic. You should also avoid processed cheeses with strong flavorings.
Can Syrian Hamsters Eat Cheese?
Syrian hamsters can eat cheese, but only in small quantities every now and again. A lot of cheeses are high in salt and saturated fat, so it’s best to feed types that are low in fat. Unflavored cottage cheese is a good option, as it’s mild, low-fat, but packed with calcium and protein
Can Campbell’s Dwarf Hamsters Eat Cheese?
You can feed cheese to Campbell’s dwarf hamsters but use great caution. Dwarf species may be predisposed to diabetes, so it’s best to avoid fatty and salty cheeses. If you want to feed your Campbell’s dwarf hamster cheese, then choose a low-fat variety like cottage cheese.
Can Winter White Hamsters Eat Cheese?
As Winter White hamsters are a dwarf species, cheeses that are high in fat and sugar could increase their risk of developing diabetes. Only feed your Winter White dwarf hamster cheese occasionally and select low-fat cheeses.
Can Roborovski Hamsters Eat Cheese?
Like with other dwarf species, it’s best not feed Roborovski hamsters cheese very often. Refrain from feeding your Roborovksi cheeses that contain a lot of fat and salt.
Can Chinese Hamsters Eat Cheese?
Chinese hamsters can safely eat cheese, but it should not make up a large portion of their diet. Avoid feeding cheeses that are high in fat, salt, and strong flavorings.
What Are the Health Benefits of Hamsters Eating Cheese?
Although cheese isn’t the most nutritious treat to feed your hamster, there are a few health benefits to it. Cottage cheese (unflavored) is the best variety of cheese to feed your hamster as it’s low-fat and a good source of calcium and protein.
Cottage cheese is particularly beneficial for elderly or pregnant/nursing hamsters to boost their overall health. Due to its high levels of calcium and protein, cottage cheese is also good for young hamsters to help them grow.
Are There Any Risks of Hamsters Eating Cheese?
There are a few risks associated with feeding your hamster eating cheese, especially if you pick the wrong varieties. Cheeses like Stilton and Blue cheese are incredibly toxic to hamsters, so you should avoid them at all costs.
Processed cheeses should also be avoided, as well as those that contain high amounts of fat, salt, and flavorings. Feeding your hamster too much cheese can be detrimental to health and can make them sick, especially if they are a dwarf species.
Dwarf hamsters may be more at risk of developing diabetes, so you need to be careful with the types of foods you feed them. If you want to feed your dwarf hamster cheese, only use varieties that are low in fat and salt.
Cheese is not an essential part of your hamster’s diet, and there are many healthier foods to feed them. If you want to give your hamster a treat, consider vegetables or fruits.
What Kind of Cheese Can Hamsters Eat?
Hamsters can eat hard and soft cheeses, but they need to be low in fat and salt. The best cheese is cottage cheese, but mild Cheddar, pasteurized goat cheese, and mozzarella are also safe. Avoid smoked cheeses, Stilton/Blue cheese, Parmesan, mature Cheddar, and cheeses made with chives, onions, or garlic.
It’s a good idea to feed your hamster a varied diet to keep them fit and healthy. Although high-quality hamster food should make up the main component of your pet’s diet, there are other foods you can offer for some extra nutrients. These include:
- Vegetables (like broccoli, zucchini, and spinach)
- Fruits (like apple, pear, and peach)
- Herbs (like parsley and dill)
- Cereals and Grains (like cooked brown rice and whole-grain crackers)
- Proteins (like hard-boiled eggs and mealworms)
- Seeds and Nuts (like pumpkin seeds)
How Much Cheese Should My Hamster Eat?
Only feed cheese to your hamster in small amounts. Around a teaspoon of cottage cheese once a week is a good portion. If you plan on feeding your hamster another type of cheese, then a few tiny slithers a couple of times a month is more than enough.
Overfeeding cheese to your pet can lead to health issues such as obesity and diarrhea. Offer your hamster a tiny portion of cheese at first to monitor their reaction. If you notice any ill effects, then stop feeding cheese altogether.
Take out any leftover cheese from your hamster’s cage after a few hours. Eating spoiled food can make your hamster very sick. Cottage cheese, in particular, can go rancid fairly quickly if it’s left out for too long.
All species of hamsters can eat cheese as an occasional treat but use extra caution with dwarf hamsters. Only offer your hamster cheeses that are low in fat and salt, such as cottage cheese. Never feed your hamster cheeses like Stilton or Blue cheese as they are toxic.
High-quality hamster food should be the central part of your pet’s diet, in addition to semi-regular servings of foods like vegetables, fruits, and cereals/grains. A teaspoon of cottage cheese once a week is an adequate portion for your hamster. If you want to feed your hamster other cheeses, then only do so twice a month at most.