Belonging to the cabbage family, broccoli is an edible green plant. It has a large flowering head and is consumed as a vegetable across the globe. Can hamsters eat broccoli? Offering broccoli to hamsters is completely safe. However, as it is said, too much of anything is bad and broccoli needs to be given in smaller quantities. It should also be noted that you do not offer it for more than twice a week. Most of the hamsters would love to have it included in their diets, but like others they do have exceptions.
Leafy And Fruity Diet For Your Hamster
Like humans or other animals, too much variation in the diet can upset the hamsters. In case you have just brought the pet home, make sure you offer the same food that he had been offered at the pet shop for at least the 1st week. With time, you can slowly and steadily introduce new foods.
Pellets, food blocks and seed mixture is a common food that needs to be included. However, it must be supplemented with fresh fruits and veggies. Broccoli, pear, carrot, turnip are all safe for consumption. Make sure that they are offered in small quantities and the left overs are cleared from the cage on a regular basis. Including a lot of fresh water in the diet is a must as well. It would be advised to change the water on a daily basis.
Can Hamsters Eat Broccoli?
Yes hamsters can eat broccoli. They can eat steamed or raw broccoli. On the contrary, the change in texture can be a nice break from the crunchy hamster food. For offering steamed broccoli, heat it inside a covered microwave safe dish and add a few teaspoons of water. This should be done for about 3 minutes.
When steaming it on a stove, boil it with water in a covered pot for about 3 minutes. It should be followed by boiling it uncovered for another 8 minutes. This would ensure that the broccoli gets softer without eliminating all the vitamins. Make sure that you cool it down before it’s offered to your little friend. Broccoli is a good source of vitamins like E, K and C which hamsters also get from pellets. So a balance needs to be maintained, as excessive source of vitamin contents could lead to diarrhea and weight loss.
Important Facts About Broccoli
Broccoli as a vegetable is classified in Italica cutivar group of species named Brassica Oleracea. It is a large flower and usually comes in green color. When looked closely, it appears to have a tree like structure and has thick edible stalks branching out of it. It resembles the cauliflower that is from a different cultivator group but a same species.
It is high in terms of nutrients as well as vitamin A, C, D & beta carotene. Broccoli also contains folic acid, chromium, calcium and fiber. You would be surprised to know that Broccoli has over 33 cancer preventing compounds. When it is cooked, it releases indole which is a cancer fighting enzyme. It also contains different phytochemicals that has the ability of stopping the carcinogens to form and restricts them to attack the cells. Lastly, it has the ability of building enzymes which breaks down the carcinogens.
Dangers Of Feeding Broccoli To Hamsters
It is advised not to add additional flavors when offering your hamster steamed broccoli, such as butter, pepper, garlic or salt. For instance, even a small quantity of butter could lead to excessive weight gain among hamsters. On the other hand, adding salt might lead to sodium ion poisoning. Flavorings like pepper or other spicy elements can lead to upset tummy, while garlic is toxic in nature and should always be avoided. Steamed broccoli should be offered in moderation. In raw form, the only precaution you need to take is offering broccoli in smaller quantities and only twice a week.
What If My Hamster Doesn’t Like Eating Broccoli?
If he likes it then it’s great, but if he doesn’t like it, there is nothing to worry about. Pellets are already providing him the required vitamins and minerals. Moreover, there are a range of other foods that you may supplement broccoli with. Broccoli being a vegetable rich in vitamins is certainly a good option, but there are a lot more options which might offer the same benefit to your hamster.
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