Can Hamsters Eat Lettuce?
Hamsters are short-tailed rodents that belong to the subfamily of the Cricetinae. They are cute tiny house pets. If your hamster loves to eat lettuce, do not worry at all. They can have it. It is not toxic to them.
Please wipe out this misunderstanding that Lettuce can affect the health of a hamster. You should, however, be aware of the fact, which lettuce is okay for hamsters. Let us see, how good or bad is the use of lettuce for your hamster.
You will be surprised to know that lettuce can be an essential item of their food. If you add lettuce to their diet correctly, it will benefit their health. But, do not give it to hamsters on a regular basis. Lettuce is okay as long as you give it to them in a proper quantity.
What is Lettuce?
A leafy green, grown in the soil is lettuce. So it is basically a vegetable. Its origin is Egypt. Its production was for getting edible leaves and seeds oil. Nowadays, it has become a significant industry in California and Arizona. Its profit is three hundred million US dollars. In the US alone, the cultivation of lettuce is 75k acres.
Some Lettuces are Not Suitable
The health of your hamsters depends on the type of lettuce, they eat. Not all kinds are right for them. There are some types, which can lead to diarrhea and stomach problem. Beware of some lettuce types, which have no nutritional benefits.
Risks of Lettuces
For humans, iceberg lettuce is an excellent type of vegetable. But, for hamsters, it may be not suitable for them. Feeding iceberg lettuce to the mammal may cause infection. Let your hamsters avoid eating the iceberg lettuce. The reason is quite simple! It is just water having no nutritional benefits. It can be harmful to their little liver.
Too much quantity of water may disturb the functions of bladder, kidneys, and liver. They can also suffer from gastritis. If you still want to feed it to them, give a little amount every 3 days.
Washing lettuce before feeding it to your pet is a must. The experts recommend washing the lettuce before use. This is because its leaves may have pesticides or similar chemicals. The unwashed one can cause digestive problems. The size of hamsters is tiny. Their digestive system is fragile, too. Thus, a little amount of harmful lettuce can cause them serious issues.
Benefits of Lettuce
Hamsters are naturally attractive to munching the lettuce. You love to feed them the thing, they love to eat. The nutritional facts of all varieties of lettuce are different. However, most of the lettuce contains minerals and vitamins. Just like other vegetables, it helps them flourish.
Feeding the romaine lettuce to your hamsters is fine. The 100 grams of a Romaine lettuce leaf contains 72 KJ of energy, 3.3 grams of carbs, 2.1 grams of dietary fiber, 1.2 grams of protein and 0.3 grams of fats.
There is 36% vitamin A, 34% folate and 29% vitamin C in one hundred gram lettuce. The quantity of minerals in the Romaine lettuce is also great, i.e., 3% calcium, 7% iron, 4% phosphorus, 5% potassium and 95 grams of water.
Another useful lettuce is the loose leaf. It is the oak leaf, available in red and green color. Its other types are Valeria and Lolla Rosa. These are tender leaves full of flavor. The red leaf lettuce and curly leaf, both are also full of nutrients. There is a right amount of vitamins in the lettuce. Again, it is necessary to feed them in moderation.
Bok Choy is like a type of lettuce. It is good for the health of your hamster. Chinese hamsters are fond of this lettuce. Other safer lettuce includes carrot tops, artichokes, dandelion greens, spinach, and broccoli spear.
To Feed Suitable Amount of Lettuce
Just like various types of lettuce, hamsters are also of different kinds. Such as dwarf hamsters, Syrian hamsters, etc. There are twenty-four species of hamsters. Five types of them are pets. The size of a Syrian hamster is six to seven inches on average. The dwarf hamster, as the name signifies, is just three to five inches long. Campbell is a famous type of dwarf hamsters, available in the hamsters market.
Another kind of dwarf hamsters is winter white. Their size is round about four inches. The lifespan of both the dwarf hamsters is one and a half year. First and foremost thing is to give them lettuce in a controlled amount. All types of lettuce contain water as a significant ingredient. So, a small dose is sufficient.
It is right saying that excess of everything is terrible. The same is right about the lettuce. If your lovely pets make excessive use of lettuce, it can cause them to loose stool.
Start From A Small Amount of Lettuce
There are several benefits of even a small amount. The amount of lettuce depends upon the size of your pet. Syrian hamsters are big ones. They can have a 3rd of a lettuce leaf.
On the other hand, dwarf hamsters can eat 3rd of the 3rd of a leaf. Full leaf is much more for a tiny stomach of a hamster. So, feed them as much as their system can tolerate. You already provide them with water. They do not need much water.
What Happened If the Hamster Overeat Lettuce?
Be careful, if your pet has overeaten amount of lettuce. Immediately stop giving him lettuce, other vegetables, and watery fruits. After 24 hours, if diarrhea continues, take him to the vet.
It is not necessary that your hamster indulges in diarrhea or the liver problem, because of more amount of lettuce only. There can be some other reasons for diarrhea, such as a dirty cage, some intestinal problem, etc. So, try not to apply any treatment on your own.
Remember to give your hamsters a balanced diet. You can keep an eye on your hamsters. A professional veterinarian can give you the best advice. Never forget, you are accountable for the happiness and healthy life of your little hamsters. Because having a pet demands complete attention. Great care can add to the hustle and bustle of your home.
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