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Can Hamsters Eat Cucumbers? What You Need to Know!

Nicole Cosgrove

May 24, 2021

Hamsters are cute little creatures that make excellent pets for households of all types. They like to be handled and interact with their human family members. Hamsters are nocturnal, so they spend most of their time sleeping during the day and playing at night. However, they are known for adopting the schedule of their family members, so they may come out to play in the middle of the day. Hamsters are happy to eat, morning, noon, or night too.

They eat an omnivorous diet made up of fruits, vegetables, and ideally, insects. While they can be fed commercial food in place of the insects, any fruits and vegetables should be fed fresh and straight from the kitchen. When it comes to the types of veggies that hamsters eat, you may be wondering whether they can eat cucumbers, or are cucumbers safe for hamsters? Cucumber is a good source of nutrients and fiber for humans, but is it good for hamsters too? Good questions! The short answer is yes, cucumbers make a great addition to any hamster’s diet. Here is everything you need to know about feeding cucumbers to hamsters.divider-hamster

Why Cucumbers Are Good for Hamsters

Some hamsters do not like drinking plain water and can become susceptible to dehydration. Luckily, the bulk of a cucumber is made up of water, which can help keep your hamster hydrated and healthy throughout their life. Cucumber also contains a large amount of fiber, which will help keep your hamster’s digestive tract healthy. Cucumbers are filled with vital nutrients that support a healthy immune system in hamsters just as they do humans.

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Image Credit: monicore, Pixabay

Notable nutrients found in cucumbers that benefit the health of hamsters include vitamins A and K, magnesium, potassium, and silica. Cucumbers are so rich in nutrients that they are known to be an effective cancer fighter. Because cucumbers are so low in calories, you do not have to worry about your hamster becoming obese and unhealthy due to eating too many of them.

The Dangers of Feeding Cucumbers to Hamsters

While cucumbers are a healthy snack for hamsters, there are a couple of dangers that should be considered before cucumbers are offered to your hamster for the first time. One consideration to make is that hamsters are small and do not need too much cucumber to benefit from the nutrients. If too much cucumber is offered to a hamster in one sitting, it could lead to looser stools and frequent urination, which may flush nutrients out of the body prematurely.

Another danger to consider is that cucumber skin can be a choking hazard to hamsters when offered in large pieces. This is especially true for younger hamsters that have not developed all their teeth yet. Therefore, cucumbers should be peeled or cut into small, manageable pieces before they are offered to hamsters.

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Credit: Evgenya T, Shutterstock

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Cucumber Feeding Tips, Tricks, and Ideas

Your hamster does not need more than a slice or two of cucumber once a week to reap the benefits of this watery vegetable. Simply give your furry pet a thin slice of cucumber to munch on or cut a few tiny chunks up their them to gobble down. However, there are a few fun and interactive ways to hand out cucumbers.

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Image Credit: ka_re, Pixabay
Consider these ideas:
  • Hollow Out a Cucumber. Cut a cucumber in half, and then scoop most of the pulp from the inside of one half. Let your hamster use the hollowed cucumber as a snack tunnel for a while, making sure that the entire half a cucumber does not get eaten.
  • Make a Cucumber Stew. Mix a teaspoon of well-chopped cucumber and a tablespoon of yogurt to create a thick stew that your hamster is sure to love.
  • Make Cucumber Balls. Cut a cucumber in half, and use a melon ball scooper to scrap a ball of flesh out from between the skin. The cucumber ball will serve as both a toy and a snack that will keep your hamster busy while in their habitat.
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Conclusion

There are many good reasons to feed your hamster some cucumber occasionally, thanks to its impressive water content and valuable nutritional profile. However, your hamster will not lose out on a happy and healthy life if you choose to feed them other types of fruits and vegetables instead. There is no reason to go out of your way to buy cucumber just for your hamster if the rest of your family does not enjoy eating it. Instead, opt for the produce that your household does regularly consume for financial and convenience reasons. Do you plan to feed cucumbers to your hamster from now on? Let us know why or why not in our community comment section.


Featured image credit: monika1607, Pixabay

Nicole Cosgrove

Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand. She has a strong love for all animals of all shapes and sizes (and particularly loves a good interspecies friendship) and wants to share her animal knowledge and other experts' knowledge with pet lovers across the globe.