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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-12-2006, 08:24 PM Thread Starter
 
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Quality hamster food?

I am new to the forum and just got into hamsters again (I had hamsters from age 10-18, now I am 26). I like to feed my pets good quality food, but I am not sure what is considered quality as far as hamsters go. I order Mazzuri chin food online because I don't like the stuff they sell in pet stores (too many treats generally).

I bought her Saturday at Petsmart. I bought Kaytee pellets (they are really big and she hasn't touched a single one-I changed them at few times) and sunseed, uh, seed (it has some pellets and various seeds and says "with garden vegetables" on the front). She seems to be eating some of the seeds (she usually plops her big butt in the bowl and hasn't bothered hiding it away anywhere) but I am just afraid she isn't eating enough or doesn't like the food I bought her. Maybe I just think she should be eating more because every other hamster I had would hide all their food away, but she doesn't do that. Should I change the kind of food I am feeding her, or is Kaytee and Sunseed good quality?

Also, should I dump out her food and give her fresh food everyday? My chins are picky eaters and won't eat food after it has been in their dish for about 24 hours. Or will she be okay with me just adding a little extra everyday?
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-14-2006, 07:32 PM
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i feed my hammie Brown's Encore...occassionally some veg...some cooked grains with lanolaic acid


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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-14-2006, 07:35 PM
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Kaytee and Sun Seed are decent but not the best foods available. If you can get Harry Hamster I'd definately try switching...it's a great food .




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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-14-2006, 08:15 PM
 
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Whatever brand you pick, you want a high protien, moderate fat, high fiber and try to pick one that corn is not first on the list of ingredients, has no added sugar or salt, doesn't use an ash filler, and doesn't add artificial colors or ethooxiquin preservative. There really are a lot of good foods out there- and relaly don't blame your hamster about not liking the lab blocks. Rodents need stimulation and variety in their food.
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-15-2006, 09:43 PM
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I wonder...what about making a homemade diet for your hamster?I dunno if this is done often,but I know for rats,people always (including myself) make homemade diets for them.That way you know what is in it and can make sure all the good stuff is in it,and sometimes substitute an ingrediant for something different,just to add variety.It is so much better then most pet store foods and here there is not a good selection of pet store food for rodents.It is more like junk food!




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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-16-2006, 10:34 AM
 
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pebbles loves broccoli!! and she has a banana chip once in a while , shes so cute , she tries to put the whole broclli floret in her mouth it s so funny!!!
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-16-2006, 12:12 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vanilla_Rat
I wonder...what about making a homemade diet for your hamster?I dunno if this is done often,but I know for rats,people always (including myself) make homemade diets for them.That way you know what is in it and can make sure all the good stuff is in it,and sometimes substitute an ingrediant for something different,just to add variety.It is so much better then most pet store foods and here there is not a good selection of pet store food for rodents.It is more like junk food!
I made my own mix for a while, but it is really hard to get the nuts and seeds raw and unsalted- I ended up spending a lot more money that way, and never eally sure I was getting the nutrients balanced. Now, I buy 3 different kinds and mix them with some add-ins (grains and cereals that make up about 1/5 the mix). I really don't like to stick to just one brand, as what happens if it is suddenly unavailable and you can't get it? Upset tummies- and possibly worse.

I do make my own rat mix and I also do a modified mix for the gerbils (the hamster mix, just with more goodies).
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-16-2006, 01:34 PM Thread Starter
 
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She still isn't eating the big pellets, I might give up on them and try another kind of pellets. I will look for the brands you guys suggested, but I am not sure if the pet store here carries them. The only brands I saw were Kaytee and Sunseed. She eats the seed better than she was at first. Maybe she was just adjusting.

I want to give her treats but I don't really want to buy a whole bag of carrots because I am sure they will go bad before she even eats a quarter of the bag. A guess a small broccoli florret might work. Would a half of a grape be okay as a treat? How about plain cherrios?
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-16-2006, 09:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jennawing
I made my own mix for a while, but it is really hard to get the nuts and seeds raw and unsalted- I ended up spending a lot more money that way, and never eally sure I was getting the nutrients balanced. Now, I buy 3 different kinds and mix them with some add-ins (grains and cereals that make up about 1/5 the mix). I really don't like to stick to just one brand, as what happens if it is suddenly unavailable and you can't get it? Upset tummies- and possibly worse.

I do make my own rat mix and I also do a modified mix for the gerbils (the hamster mix, just with more goodies).


I do the same thing


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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-16-2006, 09:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cocoa
She still isn't eating the big pellets, I might give up on them and try another kind of pellets. I will look for the brands you guys suggested, but I am not sure if the pet store here carries them. The only brands I saw were Kaytee and Sunseed. She eats the seed better than she was at first. Maybe she was just adjusting.

I want to give her treats but I don't really want to buy a whole bag of carrots because I am sure they will go bad before she even eats a quarter of the bag. A guess a small broccoli florret might work. Would a half of a grape be okay as a treat? How about plain cherrios?

i suppose it would not be too bad if in moderation...hamsters are prone to cavities if given too much suger...however a suppose a cherrio here and there should not be too much


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i will hold you forever
i will stand beside you forever
keep fighting
keep breathing
hold onto me and dont let go
NEVER let go
you are my world
make it through
i pray for you

VIXEY- March 25, 1994- October 11, 2006 at 10pm
SKRAT- October 21, 2005- January 15, 2007 at 5am
BAXTER- January 30, 2007
I will love you forever, always

Next time we meet again, it will be FOREVER

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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-17-2006, 03:38 AM
 
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I only have 1 hamster, but many other rodents (gerbils & Degus). I have recently started mixing my own hamster mix, as I had found the syrian hamster i foster (Miaka) dosn't eat millet, and well my gerbil mix is millet based, so it was more of a waste for her.

I haven't bought them again, but the Mazuri blocks for gerbils/hamsters, she really enjoyed them (gerbils didn't), you could add those as a pellet.

This is what my hamster mix looks like -


I buy most of my seeds/nuts/grains bulk, as long as they are not salted or have anything added to it, I buy organic when i can. I do mix a bag of 'hamster' food in, but it's kind of whatever is on sale and dosn't contain to many sunflowers or look dusty ect.

I also will give her a corn chip, or dried bread as a treat. Half a grape should be fine, you just have to watch with grapes as they are mostly water and can give a little critter the runs if fed to much. Fresh clover goes over well also (we don't spray).

Congratulations on the new hammy!
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-17-2006, 12:25 PM Thread Starter
 
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Cheerios have sugar on them? I always thought they were sugar free (and pretty tasteless, but my boyfriend eats them).

So corn is okay, just not as the main ingredient? Are those raisins and oatmeal in your mix (I think I see it in the picture)?

That is what I was afraid of with the grapes so I bought a little brocoli instead. I will see if she likes it when she wakes up later.

Thanks for all your help.
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-17-2006, 05:24 PM
 
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Corn is 'ok', but it's not the greatest. It's in my mix from the bag of hamster mix i bought andtossed in.
Yup Rasins & not just oats, but flax and other rolled grains. There also walnuts, almonds & peanuts, puffed wheat and dehydrated split peas.
I will probably toss in those Mazuri blocks again since she liked them so much.
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-17-2006, 05:33 PM
 
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Corn- most hamsters only eat the heart- so you don't really have to worry about them getting too much- unless you have the rare hamster that really likes corn, then you'd want to pick half of hte corn out. Fact is, though, a lot of mixes- you are paying say $5 for a lb (rough estimate) and 1/3 or 1/2 that weight is corn- corn is cheap, so you are not getting your money's worth.

I buy some layer feed- cracked corn for hens- and mix a bit in for the gerbils and a tiny bit into the hamsters. A bag goes a long way, so buy small, even though you could get a huge bag for the same price- as corn will mold if it sets.

Cherrios and other cereals- most do have added salt and sugar. Cheerios, kix, corn flakes, chex- all have a little added salt and sugar. Puffed wheat or puffed rice are better- and they are cheap. You can mix in cereals, nuts, a little dried fruit, etc- but you want the add-ins not to be more than about 1/4 of the total mix- because the mixes are already balanced for nutrition and that should be the majority of their diet. The main concern with sugar is getting more sugar than they can burn off in exercise- so as long as your hamster is active, and not overweight, a little sugar is helpful to give them energy. All carbs and fibers are broken down into sugars by the body, anyway- so adding TOO much extra is going to give them more than they can work off.

I would take the blocks you have and crush them and mix them in with whatever mix you change to. They are good utrition, yes- but not very fun and often difficult for them to eat.

Last edited by jennawing; 09-17-2006 at 05:38 PM.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-17-2006, 06:20 PM
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There are a few stores around here called "The Bulk Barn"...it is a GREYT place and thats where I get the ingrediants for my rat mix.Everything you can imagine is there in bulk...like all sorts of grains,nuts,fruits,candies,snacks...etc,etc!And they are awesome prices too!I can find everything for my rat mix there and spend way less than I would if I went to the grocery store to get the ingrediants!




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