PetCenter Old Bridge

9 Harmful Hamster Treats

9 Harmful Hamster Treats

August 10, 2018

One of the ways that we tend to reward our pets for a job well-done is with a treat.

Most of the time it’s fitting because they typically respond by repeating the trick we taught them. It makes us happy and them, too. There are some foods that can be harmful however to our pets, and we don’t know it. For instance, what we may think are cute or suitable hamster treats may actually be dangerous and even deadly for them. At PetCenter, we believe in continuous education for our pet owners so we’ve compiled a list of harmful hamster treats that you should never feed to your pet. When in doubt, consult one of our knowledgeable Pet Counselors.

Grapes and Raisins

Seedless grapes and raisins can be dangerous. These tasty hamster treats have been linked to kidney failure. Eating them may initially seem harmless, but the symptoms can take a while to manifest.


Fiber can cause your hamster diarrhea which leads to dehydration. Because your hamster is so tiny, the slightest bit of dehydration can be dangerous and fatal.


Chocolate is a no-no to most animals, and they aren’t good hamster treats either! In fact, anything with caffeine shouldn’t be fed to your hamster. Caffeine can stimulate your hamster’s heart and cause it to race, but theobromine in chocolate can actually poison your pet. Allowing your hamster to consume chocolate could cause stomach and digestive problems, heart problems, and even seizures.

Apple Seeds

Apples are fine hamster treats, but the seeds are not. The seeds contain cyanide which is a poison. The trace amounts do not harm and not affect humans, but tiny hamsters can become ill quickly.

Potato Chips

Potatoes aren’t suitable for hamsters in general, but fried ones are even worse! They are high in calories and can cause obesity. Furthermore, the fat content in potato chips will make your hamster have digestive problems and be gassy!


Do not feed any part of the avocado to your hamster, because every single part of the avocado contains a toxin called persin. This includes the shell. Do not even allow your hamster to taste guacamole. The entire fruit should be kept away from your hamster.


High amounts of acid can be harmful to your hamster’s stomach lining and cause discomfort. Though it’s not deadly, it can still cause discomfort and you don’t want that. It may seem tempting to serve a pinch of an orange as hamster treats but don’t.


Onions are like chocolate because they consistently show up on the bad food list for most pets. It can be very toxic causing red blood cells damage resulting in anemia. Like grapes and raisins, it will take some time for the symptoms to appear, but they will, and it won’t be good. Any plant from the onion family is dangerous. This includes garlic, leeks, and chives.


You may think that celery sticks make good hamster treats because it’s mostly water, right? Wrong! They are dangerous for two reasons. They are high in sodium, which can cause bloating with the water content. Secondly, the consistency of the long celery strings presents a choking hazard for your hamster. Tiny pieces can be given to your hamster.

Though this is quite the list, you should know that there are plenty of healthy hamster treats! We’ve written posts in the past about good and homemade treats. Should you have any questions, just let us know!

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