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Can Hamsters Eat Tuna?

Who doesn’t like eating a good tuna melt every now and then? Add to that the fact that it’s extremely nutritious, and you’ll understand why tuna is so popular among the health-conscious. 

But, if you’re a hamster owner who’s wondering if your pet can partake in the yummy delights of tuna, you won’t want to trust your beloved hammie’s snack to a whim, even if he seems interested.

So can hamsters eat tuna? Although hamsters are omnivores and can eat meats (such as insects and small bugs), it is best to keep your hamster away from tuna with its high-fat and high-sodium content. Also, some tuna has small bones in it which could pose a problem.

As cute as it would be to split a can of tuna with your hammie for lunch, it’s just not a good idea.

Even though hamsters are omnivores and can chow down on fruits, veggies, meats, and grains, feeding your hamster tuna may result in health concerns for your little pal. We’ll go over this issue more thoroughly below and also discuss some better things to feed your little hammie.

What’s The Deal With Hamsters and Tuna?

The more inquisitive-minded hamster parents will likely be wondering why I’ve advised against feeding hamsters this particular meat.

The thing is, hammies are prone to obesity, which may sound unbelievable, but it’s true. What’s worse, an obese hamster can also develop secondary complications like diabetes, heart problems, and a shortened life-span. 

Tuna has a high-fat content. One hundred grams of fresh tuna contains around 4.9 grams of fat, whereas canned tuna clocks in at 0.8 grams. That doesn’t sound like a lot – but considering your hammie’s size, it’s more than enough. 

Additionally, canned tuna also has a pretty high sodium content. Ingesting too much salt can affect your hammie’s delicate digestive system and lead to dehydration. Your hamster’s vet-approved food should already regulate how much salt they’re getting; you don’t want to throw that off.

Lastly, feeding your hamster tuna can result in a choking hazard due to fish bones. I suppose you can go around this problem by giving your pet canned tuna, but there’s no way to be entirely sure about how much fat or sodium you’ll be introducing to your hammie’s system. 

Anyway, tuna fish is not exactly a natural part of your hamster’s traditional diet – ever see a hamster snag a tuna with one paw? You can see why small bugs are the more natural part of their diet instead.

To Feed Or Not To Feed Tuna to Your Hamster?

In light of the potential problems related to tuna we’ve just gone through, perhaps it’s best if you don’t feed your hamster tuna at all. 

However, if your heart’s set on giving your hammie a little taste of the sea, then it’s best to err on the side of caution and limit the tuna to periodic treat (don’t even bother trying it weekly). 

Offering your pet about a 1/2 teaspoon of mashed tuna will be more than enough, though you may want to start with an even smaller serving to ensure there are no tummy upsets. 

Remember to mash the tuna before offering it to your hammie, and ensure you buy the cans that do not include oil. 

If you’re feeding your hamster a well-balanced diet of pellets – the chances are that your pet isn’t lacking for anything, nutritionally speaking. Not to mention, giving your hamsters veggies and fruits as a treat is way more beneficial. 

Plus, if you want your hamster’s diet to include more protein, you can always opt to feed your pet scrambled or boiled egg (bite-sized portions), or crickets and mealworms, which are more likely the kind of meat they’d be getting in the wild.

So although you probably can give your hamster tuna with no issues, it’s probably better not to. And if you’re dying to try, start with just a little tuna that’s been well mashed and packed in oil-free packaging to be certain it will agree with the little guy’s stomach.

What Should Your Hamster’s Diet Consist Of?

Alrighty, now that we’ve covered whether or not you can feed your hamster tuna – let’s move on to what the ideal hamster diet should contain. 

A good rule of thumb to follow regarding hamster feed is to look for options that contain around 3 to 6% of fat and 18 to 25% of protein for the average adult.

Having said that, if you’re dealing with a baby hamster (or a pregnant hamster), then a maximum of 9% fat and 40% protein is best. That’s because mama and baby hammies need a lot of protein to grow and stay healthy. 

Another essential aspect of a hammie diet is carbohydrates. Hamsters are active little creatures, and they can burn off their calories pretty quickly. That’s why hamster food with a sizable carb content will help keep your pet up and running for longer. 

Related Questions

Just in case you have more hammie-related queries, here are a few more related questions to bring you up to speed. 

What Foods Can Kill Hamsters?

While hamsters can eat most types of vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds, certain foods can end up poisoning your pet. These dangerous items include cherry pits, mushrooms, garlic, tomatoes, eggplant, apple seeds, avocado, elderberries, peach pits, rhubarb, chocolate, and more. 

What Kind of Meat Can Hamsters Eat?

Cooked beef and chicken are two safe meat-option you can feed your hamster.

However, remember to provide your hammie meat in bite-sized portions. You can also shred or mash the meat to ensure your pet can’t choke on it. Additionally, never try to season cooked meat you’re planning on feeding your hamster.

You can also go for the “meats” your hamster would be eating – bugs. Crickets and mealworms tend to be easy to find at pet stores.

Can Hamsters Drink Milk?

Hamsters can drink milk, but feeding them too much milk or whole milk isn’t a good idea.

Even though hamsters aren’t lactose-intolerant, they’re prone to obesity, and that’s why it’s best to give them skim milk. Also, avoid feeding your hamster flavored milk, especially chocolate. Chocolate is poisonous to hamsters. 

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