Is rocket safe for hamsters to eat? Yes, rocket is safe for hamsters and it also makes a great addition to their diet. Read on to learn more about the benefits of rocket for hamsters and how much rocket hamsters should eat.
What Is Rocket?
Rocket, also known as arugula or roquette, is a leafy green plant from the Brassicaceae family. It is usually found in Mediterranean-style dishes.
The leaves of rocket are typically dark green and have a slightly peppery taste.
The nutritional benefits of rocket include high levels of vitamins A and C, as well as antioxidants. Rocket is also a good source of dietary fiber.
Can Hamsters Eat Rocket?
So, can hamsters eat rocket? Absolutely! In moderation, rocket is an excellent source of nutrients for your cute and cuddly pet. It offers the same benefits as other leafy greens such as kale or chard, and it won’t affect them adversely in any way.
Just remember, too much of anything is never a good idea. Don’t let your hamster gorge itself on too much rocket at once as this could lead to gastrointestinal upset.
Benefits Of Rocket For Hamsters
So, what are the benefits of rocket for hamsters? Rocket is an excellent source of fiber, so it’s perfect if you’re looking to boost your pet’s digestive health. A diet rich in fiber helps keep their guts moving properly, which is especially important when they are eating hay all day long!
Rocket also offers a decent amount of different vitamins and antioxidants that can be beneficial for your hamster’s everyday health. Those who eat a balanced diet with lots of greens like rocket will notice positive effects down the line; some examples include healthier skin or fur, better cognitive function (helping them learn faster), and even more energy overall.
As far as the nutritional benefits that your hamster gains from eating rocket, it’s worth noting that they will receive a considerable amount of vitamins A and C alongside dietary fiber, which is very important for their digestion and health.
Rocket is an excellent option if you’re looking to offer your pet something different and nutritious!
Risks Of Rocket For Hamsters
Just like with any other new food that you introduce your hamster to, there’s always a possibility of gastrointestinal upset. Too much of anything is never good, and be sure to watch out for diarrhea if they eat too much rocket at once.
There are no known negative side effects associated with hamsters eating rocket, provided they don’t have too much of it in one sitting. In those circumstances, they may experience some minor stomach aches or discomfort as a result of having too much fiber all at once. However this will usually go away after a short time.
Although the small amounts of vitamin A found in rocket are very safe for your pet, larger doses can lead to issues such as drowsiness and vomiting (just like with humans). So don’t let them nibble on too many leaves lest they end up sleeping all day!
Hamsters are known for storing their food, and this can cause problems for a couple of reasons.
If any rocket are left uneaten in your hamsters cage, they could rot, start to smell and attract insects.
Your hamster may also store uneaten rocket in their cheek pouches, and it’s not uncommon for hamsters to develop abscesses, which can be sore for your pet.
That’s why it’s advisable to monitor your hamster when giving them rocket and immediately remove and discard any uneaten rocket from their cage.
How To Feed Rocket To Your Hamster
When giving your hamster rocket it’s important that you ensure they eat all of the leaves. If anything is left in their cage for too long, then this could become problematic.
Fresh, organic is always best. If not feeding organic, be sure to wash thoroughly to ensure there are no pesticides on the leaves.
If your hamster is very small it may be that they don’t have the jaw strength to chew up the leaves of rocket. This means that some or all of the leaves could go down into their stomach, which can cause problems, so you could try cutting it up into smaller pieces.
As with the introduction of any new food to your hamsters diet, if you are going to try feeding your hamster rocket, you need to monitor your hamster closely whilst eating them.
How Much Rocket Can A Hamster Eat?
Larger hamsters such as syrians can eat more rocket than smaller breeds such as robbos or winter white dwarfs.
If your hamster is new to the food, monitor them closely when introducing it for the first time and offer conservative amounts initially. You may need to gradually increase the amount that you offer if they are not taking to it or seem like they aren’t eating much of it.
The right amount of rocket for your hamster will depend upon their age, weight and activity level. This means you should monitor their appetite carefully over a few days so you can get an idea regarding how much rocket is too much or too little etc.
When feeding your hamster new foods, you should always start with a tiny amount to ensure that they like it, and that they don’t encounter an allergic reaction. So if you want to try feeding your hamster rocket then we would recommend giving a very small portion size, about the size of a teaspoon.
Another good way to work out what is the right amount of rocket to feed your hamster is to give them a portion they can comfortably hold within their hands.
Other Than Rocket What Else Can Your Hamster Eat?
We have looked at if your hamster can eat rocket.
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;
- Broccoli spears
- Carrot tops
- Dandelion greens
- Romaine lettuce
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)
Remember always remove any uneaten veggies or fruits from your hamster’s cage within 24 hours to avoid them going off.
Often overlooked for hamsters, hay is a wonderful gnawing food that can keep your hamster’s teeth clean.
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 rocket, 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.
- 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
If you have a hamster, then they can eat rocket! You just need to ensure that it is given in moderation.
Rocket is healthy and delicious and your hamster will more than likely really enjoy it as a treat in their diet.
Now you know if it is safe to feed your hamster rocket. Just remember, always start by introducing a very small portion of rocket to your hamster, and look out for any signs of discomfort or unusual behaviour.
If your hamster has an adverse reaction after eating rocket, contact your local veterinarian immediately.