what herbs can hamsters eat

What Herbs Can Hamsters Eat?

Hamsters are well known for eating almost anything or at least trying it if they like the smell of it.

So when it comes to feeding herbs to hamsters it really depends on the type of herb as to whether it is good for hamsters to eat.

We have a listed herbs that hamsters can eat and what we don’t recommend that they eat.

Herbs are very pungent and so are not the best for hamsters to eat due to their strong flavoring, so do be careful when feeding them.

What herbs can hamsters eat?

With these herbs, a general rule which is recommended to follow is to give them small amounts occasionally.

Two or three pinches of these herbs at a time is more than sufficient.

This is a recommendation,  but as always, food is always fed at the owner’s risk.

 

Basil

They can eat basil, but only in small amounts in moderation.

Its not good to give them too much, just a pinch of basil will suffice for them in their food bowl occasionally.

Give less to dwarf hamsters than Syrian’s and Robo’s and ensure it is washed thoroughly.

Oregano

A perennial herb which is sometimes called wild marjoram and is used often in culinary dishes because of the flavor of its leaves.

They can eat it in small amounts but don’t give them too much as it may make them sick

Dill

An aromatic annual herb which belongs to the parsley family.

Its seeds and leaves are used for flavoring and medicinal uses.

They can only eat it in small amounts on an occasional basis as it is particularly high in acidic content.

Sage

It is a perennial, evergreen herb and as a savory, slightly peppery flavor.

It is used in many different culinary dishes around the world, as an essential oil and for medicinal purposes.

Sage can be eaten in small amounts on an occasional basis.

Thyme

Is an evergreen herb with culinary, medicinal, and ornamental uses.

Thyme is grown in many countries around the world and is renown for bringing flavors out of culinary dishes.

It can be eaten in small amounts, a pinch or two at a time.

Parsley

Is a biennial plant with white flowers and aromatic leaves that are either crinkly or flat and used as a culinary herb and for garnishing food.

Hamsters can eat parsley but only in small amounts on a very occasional basis

Fennel

It is an aromatic yellow-flowered European plant of the parsley family, that has feathery leaves.

Hamsters can eat it in small amounts in moderation.

Mint

It is an aromatic plant native to temperate region, several kinds of which are used as culinary herbs.

Hamsters can eat mint in small amounts in moderation

 

So having looked at the herbs they can eat, what about the one’s that they can’t touch.

What herbs can’t hamsters eat?

These are herbs which may cause harm to your hamster if they are eaten either causing them to get sick or worse.

If they do happen to nibble on any of these, then do monitor them and consider taking veterinary advice.

 

Bay Laurel

Bay leaves are often used whole for flavoring in many culinary dishes.

They are eaten around the world and then they are removed before the dish is served.

However, unfortunately hamsters just can’t handle the flavor.

Borage

It is a herbaceous plant that has bright blue flowers and hairy leaves.

It is often used medicinally and as a salad green.

Commercial cultivation of borage is mainly as an oilseed today rather than for culinary purposes.

 However, it is not good for hamsters to eat.

Caraway

It is has a pungent, anise flavor and aroma

These aroma’s arise from essential oils such as anethole, limonene and carvone and is used as a spice often in rye breads.

It is very high in acidic content, phosphorus salt and calcium for hamsters.

Cilantro

It is an aromatic Mediterranean plant belonging to the parsley family.

Cilantro has leaves and seeds which are used as culinary herbs.

It is too acidic for hamsters to eat.

Catnip

It is a plant that belongs to the mint family and has down leaves, purple-spotted white flowers and a pungent smell.

Overall, not a good mix for hamsters, however cats love it.

Chervil

It is a plant that belongs to the parsley family and has small white flowers and delicate leaves that are fernlike.

Chervil is sometimes called garden chervil or french parsley.

It is often used to attract slugs and is used to bait them.

Chervil is not good for hamsters.

Chives

They are a perennial plant and are widespread in nature across a lot of Europe, Asia, and North America.

When it is used for cooking, its scapes and unopened, immature flower buds are diced and used as an ingredient.

However, they are too acidic for hamsters.

Epazote

It a pungent herb used in Latin-American cooking and for tea.

In its raw state, it has a resinous, medicinal pungency, that is similar to anise, fennel, tarragon and oregano.

It is not good for hamsters at all.

Garlic

It is a very strong smelling pungent tasting bulb which is used for flavoring in culinary situations and herbal medicine.

However, there is too much calcium, phosphorus and acidic content for them to handle.

Lavender (English)

It is a small evergreen, aromatic shrub of a small size from the mint family.

Lavender has blue-purple flowers and narrow leaves which are often used in medicinal purposes and have been since ancient times.

Its pungent taste and smell make it bad for hamsters unfortunately.

Lemon Grass

It is a tropical grass which produces an oil which smells like lemon.

Lemon grass is used in Asian cuisine as well as for medicinal and perfumery purposes.

It is too pungent for hamsters to eat.

Lemon Balm

It is also known as lemon balm, balm, common balm, or balm mint, and is a perennial herbaceous plant from the mint family.

It is too pungent for hamsters to eat unfortunately.

Lemon Verbena

It is a shrub from South America from the verbena family.

It  has leaves that are scented with lemon and are used as flavoring and to make sedative tea.

Hamsters can’t eat it, it is too much for them.

Lovage

It is a large, edible, white-flowered plant of the parsley family.

Its leaves can be used in salads, or to make soup or season broths, however it can’t be eaten by hamsters.

Marjoram (Sweet)

It is a cold-sensitive perennial herb or undershrub which has a sweet pine and citrus flavoring.

It is synonymous with oregano and is also called sweet marjoram and knotted marjoram.

But it is too strong for hamsters.

Nasturtium

It is a South American trailing plant that has round leaves and bright orange, yellow, or red edible flowers.

It is widely grown as an ornamental.

Unfortunately, it is not good for hamsters to eat.

Rosemary

It is an evergreen aromatic shrub belonging to the mint family and comes from southern Europe.

Rosemary has narrow leaves and is often used for culinary and perfumery purposes.

It is also not good for hamsters.

Salad Burnet

Also known as garden burnet, small burnet or, burnet and is a perennial herbaceous plant that can grow up to 90cm tall.

It is found in dry grass meadows and is an ingredient in dressings and salads and tastes like ‘light cucumber’.

Unfortunately, it is not good for hamsters to eat.

Savory (Summer)

It is a traditional herb and is popular in Atlantic Canada and is used like sage is.

It is the main flavoring for many fowl and is mixed with ground pork and other ingredients.

Unfortunately hamsters can’t eat it.

Savory (Winter)

It is a perennial herb that is native to warm temperate regions in the Mediterranean and southern Europe.

Savory grows up to 41 cm tall and goes well with meats and beans and used in stuffing.

It has a very strong flavor and is not good for hamsters to eat.

Scented Geranium

Its leaves can be used in tea, baked goods, salads, jellies and potpourri.

The leaves also manufacture chemicals in their leaves that have evocative scents.

However it is too strong for hamsters to handle.

Sorrel (French)

It is a perennial herb that is also called spinach dock and narrow leaved dock.

It has been grown for centuries and its leaves have a flavor that is similar to sour wild strawberries or kiwi fruit because of its acidity.

This makes it not good for hamsters to eat and is best avoided.

Tarragon (French)

It is a perennial plant that is used in egg, fish and chicken dishes and is the main flavoring for Bearnaise sauce.

It is also never grown from seed as its flowers are sterile but is propagated by root division.

Unfortunately hamsters cannot eat it.