Can Hamsters Eat Ritz Crackers?

Are Ritz crackers safe for hamsters to eat? Not really, they have high salt and sugar content and can make your hamster very sick. Read on to learn more about why we don’t suggest feeding your hamster Ritz crackers.

What Are Ritz Crackers?

Ritz crackers are a common household staple all across the United States and Canada. They are generally small, round, buttery crackers that can be topped with everything from cheese or peanut butter to thinly sliced meats such as ham, bologna, and turkey.

Crackers such as Ritz are popular with children and adults alike, and these snacks can be found in nearly every grocery store.

Unsalted or Low-Sodium Crackers Can Be a Healthy Choice for Your Hamster, however Ritz crackers are not!

Can Hamsters Eat Ritz Crackers?

So, can hamsters eat Ritz Crackers? No hamsters should not really eat Ritz crackers, whilst they could probably eat a very small amount, they really shouldn’t due to the high sugar and salt content.

Benefits Of Ritz Crackers For Hamsters

There aren’t really any benefits of feeding your hamster Ritz crackers, only risks.

We don’t recommend feeding your hamster Ritz crackers.

Instead of feeding your hamster crackers like Ritz, you should instead feed them something such as pieces of fresh fruit (make sure to thoroughly wash all fruits before giving to your hamster), dried fruit (which has less sugar than fresh does), seeds or nuts, or specially designed hamster treats. However, treats are meant to be given in smaller amounts. If you do give your pet any type of treat make sure that it’s not more than 10% of its entire daily food intake. Additionally, make sure not to give too many types of different foods at once since this may actually confuse their system!

Risks Of Ritz Crackers For Hamsters

Before looking at the negatives of Ritz crackers, let’s look at the ingredients as this will give us a good idea of why they should be avoided!


There are several reasons why hamsters should not be eating Ritz crackers! Firstly, salt is actually really bad for hamsters. This means that any salty or processed snacks should never be given to your pet. Any snacks which contain lots of salt may cause significant health problems for your hamster if they consume it, and this includes things like pickles, olives, salami, bologna (ham), bacon and other similar types of food. These types of food may also make your hamster thirsty by pulling water out of its body tissues. These foods can also create changes in pH levels inside the hamster’s gut, which could cause a very serious imbalance.

Secondly, Ritz crackers contain a significant amount of sugar and fat! Whilst these may be okay for humans to eat, hamsters have evolved in such a way that they are no longer able to process sugars or processed fats in the same way that we do. Too much salt and too much sugar can lead to significant health problems for your pet, including diabetes and obesity. In some cases this can also include changes in behavior such as becoming more aggressive when they normally wouldn’t be or being less tolerant of other members of their own species. Additionally, fatty foods like those found in crackers can actually obstruct the small intestine of your hamster by creating a sort of “clog” in their gut, and it can even create life-threatening bowel obstructions.

How To Feed Ritz Crackers To Your Hamster

As already mentioned, we do not recommend feeding your hamster Ritz crackers.

How Many Ritz Crackers Can A Hamster Eat?

You should not feed your hamster Ritz crackers at all! Any food that is high in salt or sugar should not be fed to them under any circumstances.

If you have been feeding your hamster Ritz crackers and think that they might already be suffering from health problems due to this, we recommend taking them to a veterinarian for a check-up as soon as possible.

Other Than Ritz Crackers What Else Can Your Hamster Eat?

We have looked at if your hamster can eat ritz crackers.

Other than good quality hamster food, what else could you be feeding your hamster?


Grains are a staple food for hamsters. You should give about a tablespoonful each day. Grains can be found in commercially prepared hamster mixes, providing protein and carbohydrates. Avoid overfeeding fatty nuts (peanuts and sunflower seeds), as they can cause obesity.


Fresh, organic vegetables are the best choice for your hamster.

If you’re not using organic produce, be sure to clean it properly to get rid of any pesticides.

Whilst most vegetables are generally safe for hamsters, dark green vegetables are the best choice, so things like;

  • Artichokes
  • Broccoli spears
  • Carrot tops
  • Dandelion greens
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Spinach

Avoid iceberg lettuce and other high-water veggies or fruits (such as watermelon) to avoid stomach problems.


Like vegetables, most fruit is OK for hamsters in small portions, as a supplement to the usual diet.

Some good choices are;

  • Apples (with pips removed)
  • Bananas
  • Pears
  • Strawberries

Remember always remove any uneaten veggies or fruits from your hamster’s cage within 24 hours to avoid them going off.

Timothy hay

Often overlooked for hamsters, hay is a wonderful gnawing food that can keep your hamster’s teeth clean.

Fresh water

Your hamster should always have access to fresh water, changed daily.

What’s The Best Diet For Hamsters?

If you have a hamster, you need to make sure that you are feeding them the best food possible.

We’ve discussed if hamsters can eat ritz crackers, and whilst hamsters can eat a wide variety of things, their primary diet should consist of good quality hamster food.

There are a lot of options available for your hamster, but not all of them are good! If you want to learn more about the best hamster food, you can read our full review of the best hamster foods here.

If you just want to know what we recommend, it’s Kaytee Pro Health Hamster food.

The Kaytee Forti-Diet Pro Health Food was created by animal nutritionists to ensure that your hamster gets the correct nutrition within their diet.

To support digestive health, Forti-Diet Pro Health includes probiotics and prebiotics. This food is high in natural antioxidants for general health and immunity protection, as well as some bigger, crunchier pieces to promote dental health through natural chewing action.

Kaytee Forti-Diet Pro Health Pet Hamster & Gerbil Food, 3 Pound
  • Larger, crunchy pieces supports dental health through natural chewing activity
  • Prebiotics and probiotics to support digestive health
  • Naturally preserved for ideal freshness
  • A nutritionally complete diet for hamsters and gerbils
  • All natural


Ritz crackers are not a good food for your hamster, they have too much salt and sugar in them.

Don’t feed your hamster Ritz crackers under any circumstances!

You can give your hamster a lot of different things to eat, but their primary diet should always be high quality hamster food.

If you have fed your hamster Ritz crackers and your hamster has an adverse reaction after eating Ritz crackers, contact your local veterinarian immediately.

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