When your pet is as adorable as your hamster, it’s not that difficult to understand why giving them treats is so appealing. That said, it’s vital to give safe and healthy treats to your hammy.
So, when you’re enjoying fresh green beans and wonder if it would be okay to give one to your hamster, know that green beans are indeed healthy treats for hamsters, albeit in moderation.
Here, we give you all the details regarding green beans and hamsters. You’ll have a better idea of how many you can give your hammy and the best ways to prepare them.
The Nutritional Benefits of Green Beans
Green beans originated in South and Central America and are believed to have also been cultivated in Peru and Mexico. Green beans are now common vegetables eaten around the world. They are prepared sautéed, blanched, and steamed, used in casseroles, and loved as a side dish.
Green beans are an excellent source of minerals and vitamins.
Green beans also contain plenty of fiber and water.
Should Hamsters Eat Green Beans?
Green beans are healthy snacks, but they must still only be considered treats and not as a regular part of your hamster’s diet. Your hamster should be eating hamster pellets along with timothy hay, and the occasional fruits and veggies for a nutritionally balanced diet.
Hamsters that eat too many green beans will likely experience gastrointestinal issues, such as loose stools or diarrhea. This is due to the high amount of water, fiber, and sugars. So, while hamsters can have green beans, it must be in moderation.
What Is the Best Way to Give Green Beans to Your Hamster?
Any time that you introduce something new to your hamster, it should be done gradually—a tiny amount to start, so you can gauge if they might get an upset stomach from it.
Give your hamster a small piece (tiny enough for them to hold in their paws), and then monitor them over the next 12 to 24 hours for any sign of digestive upset. If your hammy doesn’t get sick and they seem to enjoy eating it, you can slowly add more pieces, but don’t give them any more than about ½-1” of a green bean total.
You should also only give them green beans once or twice a week. If you notice that they are having digestive issues, remove all fresh fruit and vegetables from their diet, and only offer pellets and hay for a while. You can try reintroducing veggies after a week or so, once you are sure they are back to normal.
If your hamster shows signs of gastrointestinal distress, such as diarrhea, bloating, or inappetence, that lasts longer than 24 hours, be sure to contact your vet to arrange a check up. These tiny creatures can become dehydrated quickly, and diarrhea can have severe consequences if it does not resolve within a day or two.
Some hamsters might never be able to eat green beans without experiencing issues, and others might not even like them in the first place.
Serving Green Beans to Your Hamster
You can give cooked or raw green beans to your hamster. If you opt for raw, ensure that you wash them thoroughly before giving a piece to your hammy. If they’re cooked, you’ll want to avoid any seasonings, which might prove harmful to your pet.
In other words, if you’ve made the family a casserole or a side dish with green beans, you shouldn’t pull one out and offer it to your hamster. But you can snag a fresh one before you’ve added any other ingredients. Just ensure that the green bean is cooled down enough to be eaten safely by your hammy.
Can Hamsters Eat Canned Green Beans?
Canned green beans are not the best options for hamsters. Most canned veggies tend to have preservatives and sodium added to keep them from going bad.
Are Frozen Green Beans Safe for Hamsters?
Frozen green beans are safe for hamsters, but only when you’ve thawed and allowed them to reach room temperature. Frozen vegetables usually retain most of their nutritional value, so they are great options if you don’t have access to fresh green beans.
What Other Veggies Can You Give a Hamster?
You can give your hamster all kinds of vegetables and fruits, but the same rules apply. Always introduce a new food in small amounts, and gradually build up to the serving size.
Remove the stems and seeds from most food items before giving them to your hamster. You should avoid all citrus fruits, like grapefruit, oranges, lemons, and limes. Remember, even safe fruits and vegetables are treats, and you should only feed a small amount of one item once a day.
Speak to your vet about your hamster’s diet and the best options for their main meals and any supplements.
Green beans are healthy vegetables that can add much-needed nutrition to your hamster’s diet. But you can have too much of a good thing, which is why your hamster should only be given about ½-1” inch of a green bean once or twice a week.
Too many green beans could result in an upset stomach, so it’s best to give them to your pet in moderation. Just start by feeding them a tiny piece of a green bean, and build up from there.
If all goes well, your hamster might regularly enjoy fresh green beans and reap the nutritional rewards!