Hamster and Dandelions

chaman(z7MD)June 27, 2005

Recently we bot hamster as a pet for our grand children.Surprisingly enough, it prefers dandeloins over any other grass or vegetables as diet.The question is if we feed more dandelios(relative to other food) will it hurt the animal?

Your advice or relevant info. will be of great help.


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I haven't raised hamsters (had guinea pigs some years ago), but a number of websites recommend dandelion greens as part of a balanced hamster diet. I would just make sure the critter gets other foods including all its little rodenty vitamins and minerals, and that the dandelions don't come from a treated lawn.

That reminds me, I need to start working out on a treadmill. :)

    Bookmark   June 27, 2005 at 3:30PM
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Thank you Eric for information.

    Bookmark   June 27, 2005 at 5:41PM
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i know that most rodents relish dandelions. rabits and guineas love them, as do chinchillas and gerbils. i have had several hamsters but we always fed ours on hamser mix, (available in almost ANY petshop) that was always good and it provides everything they need, and you can then give them greens as a pleasant treat.

odd though it may sound, don't feed them any chocolate, i was told that a malteaser will kill a hamster. oh and hay can hurt them, use wood shavings. but not ceader or pine scented ones (even if its just got chips in there not chemicals) they smell nice unlike hamsters BUT they cause liver damage jus by being in close proximity to them (for the hamster that is). the nice smell is put there by the plant to stop things eating them and as a result is actualy mildly poisonous.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2005 at 10:17AM
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Thanks shortarse_hedgewitch for useful information.
Hamster we have does not like to eat,basil, thyme, parsley,corriander, murraya koenigii etc. which have smell in them.
Nature gave smell to vegetation so that some of animals will not eat them and at the same time it gave sense to some animals to stay away from eating such plants not get the deceases like one you have mentioned.
Feeding dandelions will keep them free from liver problems.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2005 at 3:52PM
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Hamsters can develop diarhea if overfed on greens. There is a fatal disease they can get, called "wet tail." Most hamster booklets warn about it. Juicy greens like iceberg lettuce supposedly cause the most problem.

I lost hamsters to wet tail some years ago due to a green dry feed, however, that was in pellet form. The standard pellets for hamsters were ok; it was a larger pellet that caused the problem.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2005 at 10:34PM
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i know that with a lot of plants the smell is a warning, but with some (e.g. onions) there is a double purpose chemical that is not only smell chemical but actualy causes the problem. i makes sence for the plant. the chemicals enter the hamsters sysytem mostly through the lungs

    Bookmark   July 4, 2005 at 1:29PM
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My sisters rabbit used to get into the garlic and dill patches when he had free run of the back yard, and I don't remember him having any problems with them.

Of course the way he smelled for the rest of the day let us know when he got into the garlic. ;)

    Bookmark   July 12, 2005 at 5:40AM
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flowersandthings(MidAtlantic 6/7)

Dandelions are a very nutritious food for herbivores and omnivores (us) alike. It is a great food for herbivore pets. A relative used to feed it to rabbits and it was very healthy. I have family who also raise cows and horses and both graze on dandelion and are very well. :)

    Bookmark   July 13, 2005 at 12:18AM
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