Hamster eating funny video 1 Make hamster food yourself: 13 great ideas and valuable tips

Make hamster food yourself: 13 great ideas and valuable tips

A complete and nutritious diet is the basis for a happy and healthy hamster.

In addition to purchased ready-made food, you should therefore also resort to fresh ingredients and ideally feed your hamster with homemade treats.

In this article we show you 13 ingenious tips on how you can make hamster food yourself.

What to look for in a complete hamster diet?

A balanced composition of macro- and micronutrients is important. This includes carbohydrates, protein and fat as well as minerals and vitamins but also fiber.

A complete feeding can be achieved through seeds, animal protein, vegetables, green fodder and fruit. With our tips, it also becomes species-appropriate.

Ready-made food vs. homemade food

Buying ready-made food for hamsters does have its advantages…

It’s easy, comparatively inexpensive, and may even make you feel like you’re on the safe side.

But on the one hand it is not sufficient for a balanced and complete feeding, on the other hand commercial feeds are often not adapted to the different requirements of hamster species.

Mixing the hamster food yourself is therefore a wonderful alternative with several advantages.

Among these are that you can offer a lot of variety and easier species-appropriate feeding.

By getting more involved with your hamster’s diet, it will also be easier to adjust the food to meet specific needs in the event of illness, pregnant females or very young animals.
Tip 1: Offer daily variety

Even the best food will not perfectly meet your hamster’s nutritional needs day after day. Sometimes your hamster has been running in the wheel longer and therefore needs more calories, other times it is mainly vitamins that are important to support the immune system.

If you offer variety every day, this is completely unproblematic. This will provide the hamster’s body with everything it needs.

It is ideal to vary the fresh food.

Herbs, grasses (such as dandelion), vegetables and animal protein can be wonderfully alternated. Since your hamster only needs a very small amount of these, you can branch off much of your own food. If you use parsley or dill in cooking, feel free to give your pet a sprout.

The same goes for cucumber, carrot, celery, fennel, plain yogurt and many other foods.

A piece of protein from your egg for Sunday breakfast will please the hamster just as much as a blueberry from your fruit salad or a small kohlrabi leaf.

This not only enriches the menu, but also contributes to a healthy supply.

Tip 2: Let food work out

What is often neglected with hamsters and all other pets is to let them work out their food.

The food is often conveniently served in a bowl. The hamster can help itself at any time.

Climbing, running or searching are therefore not necessary.

However, it is precisely these activities that keep your rodent busy and physically and mentally active. After all, all senses have to be used when getting food. Digging for it, climbing for it or unpacking it requires that it was previously tracked down with the sense of smell.

So hide the food well and pack it if necessary!

Suitable for this purpose are all dry feeds, such as seeds, kernels and grains. Given in cardboard rolls or small boxes, your hamster must first open the packaging to get to the food.

Vegetables pinned to a branch invite climbing and keep the fresh pieces away from the bedding. This will keep them from getting dirty.

Grain food, however, can also be placed on the litter as long as it is not sawdust. Bark mulch, stones or pieces of bark are better.
Tip 3: Grow your own green fodder

Without an own garden and especially in winter it is difficult to provide harmless green fodder.

Although dried herbs, hay and vegetables as well as vegetable greens can serve as substitutes, especially in the case of vegetable greens this can be unfavorable. This is because pesticides or other contaminants cannot always be ruled out.

Therefore, go for organic quality and grow additional “hamster meadows”. For this purpose, small plant pots are sufficient, which can easily be placed on the windowsill in winter.

Grasses, parsley, dill, dandelion, sunflowers, daisies and thistles can be grown in this way.

The young shoots can be harvested as needed or you can provide your hamster with the colorful “hamster meadow” directly in the cage, so that he can help himself depending on his current appetite.

This way you kill two birds with one stone. You don’t have to remove the leftovers of the food and your hamster has the freshest quality possible.

Note: Plant several pots at different times. This way the plants have a chance to grow back. This is mainly useful in the winter when the plants grow slowly due to the few light hours.
Tip 4: Compose your own dry food

Here you have to keep in mind that dwarf hamsters have different needs than golden hamsters. They need more animal protein – preferably in the form of (dried) insects.

Suitable are:

house crickets
Brown shrimps

For golden hamsters, it is sufficient to offer one or two mealworms per day.

For dwarf hamsters, the insects can be mixed directly into the food. This should consist of different components:

Mealy seeds: Millet, canary seed, milo, dari.
Oily seeds: Hemp, flaxseed, sesame, milk thistle, cardi.
Cereals: buckwheat, oats, barley, wheat, spelt, quinoa
Legumes: lentils, chickpeas, peas
Dried vegetables: celery, beet, carrots, parsnips, pumpkin
Herbs and herb seeds: Dill, parsley, chamomile, lemon balm, peppermint, lemon balm, nettle and basil.

The mixture should have a ratio of 70 to 30 in terms of floury and oily seeds. So for every 70 grams of floury seeds, there are 30 grams of oily seeds. To this you add a few spoonfuls of dried herbs or herb seeds, dried vegetables, grains and legumes.

Unlike hamster food with pressed pellets, this food is very natural and you can always provide variety. Vary the herbs and vegetables, among other things, depending on what is available.

Tip: Increase the amount of oily foods if the coat looks a little dull.

If your hamster’s protein needs are high because of pregnancy or a female is nursing young, legumes are ideal. Lentils, chickpeas and soybeans contain a lot of protein and can therefore also serve as a substitute for insects, meat, egg and dairy products.

Note: If you don’t want to buy all the ingredients separately, but still want to mix the food yourself, budgie food and canary food can be combined and added other components.
Tip 5: Control the consequences of feeding

A balanced and wholesome diet for the hamster is crucial for its health. High-quality food should therefore also show corresponding results.

Means: Your hamster should be slim, active and have a shiny coat.

If you notice overweight, weight loss or signs of illness, you should check the composition and quality of the food.

Especially oily seeds can quickly become rancid!

When buying the ingredients, you should therefore pay attention to high quality and check the packaging and shelf life. Dried herbs and dried vegetables, on the other hand, are easy to make on your own. Herbs are simply hung up or laid out in an airy manner.

We’ll tell you a great trick for vegetables in the following.
Tip 6: Pay attention to quantities

For golden and teddy hamsters, one tablespoon of dry food per day in combination with fresh food and hay is perfectly sufficient. For dwarf hamsters it must be even only a teaspoon.

These small amounts should also be adhered to for fresh food and protein.

This is important for several reasons: On the one hand, it prevents overweight. This in turn is a risk factor for diabetes and heart problems. Second, it prevents your hamster from accumulating large stores in its nest. Although this is in line with his instincts when kept as a pet, it can lead to mold and rot spreading, food becoming rancid or decaying and triggering diseases.

So check the nest regularly while your hamster is awake!

This way you can remove the supplies early if necessary.

Note: Still give your hamster enough food to build up a small supply. This will satisfy his instincts and lower the stress level.
Tip 7: Hay

A recipe for this is not necessary: You should provide your hamster with hay at all times.

This is important so that the animal gets enough fiber. In addition, hay serves to grind down the hamster’s nail teeth and occasionally as a cushioning material for the nest.

If you want to offer your pet variety, there are ways to adjust the taste and nutrients it contains. For example, you can add dried herbs, bundle the hay or fill cardboard rolls with it, creating an occupation at the same time.

It also keeps the hay from getting dirty.

It is also an ideal hiding place for dried insects, dried vegetables, nuts and seeds.
Tip 8: Vegetables

You may feed suitable vegetables for your hamster daily. This provides him with important vitamins, minerals and, unlike fruit, only a little sugar but larger amounts of fiber.

Fresh vegetables also contribute to the supply of water. Dried or dehydrated vegetables, on the other hand, will wear down the gnawing teeth.

Ideal are:

Tomato pulp

Leafy vegetables, such as spinach, but also lettuce you should better eliminate from the menu. This is because these contain potentially dangerous substances for the hamster in larger concentrations.

Nevertheless, you have a wide range of vegetables to choose from.

However, these should also only be fed in small quantities. A thin slice of cucumber, a small piece of carrot or a fingernail-sized piece of bell pepper is sufficient.

Make sure the vegetables are clean and that both seeds and unripe sections are removed. This is especially important with peppers and tomatoes, as these parts are potentially toxic to hamsters.

If you want to preserve fresh vegetables for a longer period of time, it may be worthwhile to purchase an automatic dehydrator. Alternatively, you can dry the vegetables in the oven.

To do this, place very thin slices on a baking tray covered with baking paper and let them dry for several hours at 100 °C with the oven slightly open. The best setting is convection.

During the drying process, vitamins and moisture are lost, but you can offer the vegetables as part of the dry food.
Tip 9: Fruit

Hamsters are not picky when it comes to eating. However, not everything they forage is healthy for the animals.

This is especially true for larger amounts of fruit.

Suitable for your rodent include:

Apple without peel and seeds

Even these, however, should only be fed in very small quantities: One serving of fruit per week is quite sufficient for golden hamsters.

This can be a blueberry or about half a teaspoon of melon.

For dwarf hamsters, such a portion every two to three weeks is sufficient.

The reason for this is the sugar contained in the fruit. Hamsters are prone to diabetes. Since sugar stresses the pancreas and thus increases the risk of diabetes, it should therefore be given primarily as a reward and treat.
Tip 10: Insects

Even as an owner of a hamster, many do not find it easy to feed insects. However, dried varieties make it easier. They last longer, cannot escape from the cage and also reduce the disgust factor.

Again, you should be careful with the amount°.

One complete grasshopper per week is sufficient for both golden hamsters and dwarf hamsters.

As a guideline, one mealworm per day.

If you feed high protein legumes at the same time, you should avoid insects. Too much protein puts a strain on the kidneys and can lead to organic damage.
Tip 11: Egg, meat and dairy products

Egg, scraped meat or raw ground beef and dried meat as well as dairy products are often gladly accepted by hamsters.

However, due to the high protein content, you should portion these foods well and feed them only occasionally.

An exception is when your hamster is pregnant or nursing young. More protein is needed for the growth of the babies and the formation of milk.

However, if you provide insects or legumes, you can do without additional protein sources. Of course, you can use them as a variety and feed them instead of crickets or peas.
Tip 12: Nuts and seeds

Cashew, walnut, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, pistachios and hazelnuts are very popular with hamsters.

No wonder, because the nuts and seeds are highly oily, high in calories and delicious.

However, for these very reasons, they should only be used as a treat. Otherwise, you risk oversupply, obesity and organ damage.

Our extra tip: It is best to use broken pieces as a reward or to tame the hamster. This allows the exercise or approach to be repeated more often. More than one kernel or half a hazelnut per day should not be offered.
Tip 13: Twigs and Co.

A very important factor in the diet of hamsters is to consider the grinding of the nail teeth. This is because teeth that are too long can produce life-threatening injuries, prevent food intake and even cause problems with drinking and grooming.

Therefore, in addition to hay and grains, as well as dried vegetables, twigs and bark represent important elements in feeding.

In addition, they provide your hamster’s organism with tannins and fiber, can serve as a climbing opportunity and can even be used as an attachment for fresh food.

Branches of all fruit trees and berry bushes, beech, birch and maple are well suited.

Make sure berry branches do not have thorns.
Tomato pulp

Leafy vegetables, such as spinach, but also lettuce you should better eliminate from the menu. This is because these contain potentially dangerous substances for the hamster in larger concentrations.

Nevertheless, you have a wide range of vegetables to choose from.

However, these should also only be fed in small quantities. A thin slice of cucumber, a small piece of carrot or a fingernail-sized piece of bell pepper is sufficient.

Make sure the vegetables are clean and that both seeds and unripe sections are removed. This is especially important with peppers and tomatoes, as these parts are potentially toxic to hamsters.

Feeding in case of illness

Sick or injured hamsters lose weight very quickly because they may not be able to eat properly and healing takes up existing reserves.

In these cases you must act immediately. Because even a golden hamster has only a small weight, which can lose weight quickly. So feeding is necessary here.

Offer your hamster food that is soft and therefore easy to eat. For example, vegetable and cereal porridge is recommended. If you do not want to prepare them yourself, use ready-made baby food without additives.

Alternatively, you can serve soft boiled vegetables, mashed fruit, soft protein and swollen cereal flakes.

Feeding during pregnancy

Pregnant and lactating females have higher caloric and protein needs, as mentioned earlier. If your hamster is undersupplied during this time, it can lead to organic damage and cannibalism.

Therefore, offer her more insects, legumes, egg and meat.

Be careful with dairy products, as the lactose they contain can cause digestive problems.
A little bit of everything

The best way to feed your hamster is to offer small amounts of many different foods.

This way you cover the nutritional needs and allow for variety.

We have shown you how to do this in this article. We hope you have fun spoiling your hamster with homemade food.

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