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Old 11-14-2018, 02:22 PM   #1
pranjyboy
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Question over weight ?

hello, iv'e had my Syrian for nearly 8 months now. he was quite young when we had got him, and now that he's a lot older he's gotten a lot bigger. I've been treating him to a couple yogurt drops every other day, but im worried im giving too much. how can you tell if your hamster is over weight ?
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Old 11-14-2018, 02:29 PM   #2
mangoandmimi
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Default Re: over weight ?

They don't usually get overweight unless they're not exercising as much as they should, or aren't eating too well. If you post a picture someone can probably clarify if he is or isn't anyway.

I would definitely stop with the yogurt drops, those are very unhealthy. If you want treats try bits of veg, seeds (sunflower & pumpkin go down exceptionally well) and occasionally nuts and fruit. They go down just as well if not better and not half as unhealthy. I probably wouldn't feed one yogurt drop more than once every 1-2 weeks but personally I don't see the need to feed them at all.
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Old 11-14-2018, 07:26 PM   #3
Chicleteer
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Default Re: over weight ?

What a coincidence to see this thread -- I also have an eight-month-old Syrian that I've started wondering if I've been giving her too many high-fat treats (nuts, sunflower seeds, dried mealworms) and whether she's getting heavy. I just weighed her tonight and she's 185 g. (A couple months ago she was more like 155 g.) She looks a little chunky to me these days, but it's my first hamster and I'm just not sure. I'm attaching (hopefully successfully) a picture of her and would also welcome input. Good luck on your hamster, Pranjyboy, and thanks for the suggestions, m&m.
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Old 11-15-2018, 07:11 AM   #4
mangoandmimi
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Default Re: over weight ?

Can’t seem to see the attachment Chicleteer but I think that’s my fault - 185g is within normal range for a Syrian so I doubt she’s overweight.
Yeah you don’t want to go crazy with the sunflower seeds & mealworms, a couple extra is ok. What I sometimes do is take a spoonful of the food my hamster gets every day and pick out the mealworms and a couple seeds in that and feed them separately. So I guess she feels like she’s getting treats lol! Then you’re not adding loads to the diet to risk making it too unbalanced. I wouldn’t give nuts that often either but every so often is ok.
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Old 11-15-2018, 07:54 AM   #5
Chicleteer
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Default Re: over weight ?

Thanks, mangoandmimi. I’m sorry you can’t see the picture. But she isn’t obese or anything. I like the idea of separating out the seeds and mealworms, although I normally give her Oxbow Essentials Hamster and Gerbil pellets, a few small veggie and fruit chunks on top, and then the nuts and seeds separately in her playpen area.

I also recently discovered she LOVES porridge/oatmeal. I have given her about a teaspoon of it three times a week and have tried to think of that as more of a treat and cutting back on the nuts and seeds.... She seems healthy overall and is quite active. Guess I just want to be a good hammie-mom!

Last edited by Chicleteer; 11-15-2018 at 08:04 AM. Reason: Posted before finishing by accident
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Old 11-15-2018, 08:07 AM   #6
mangoandmimi
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Default Re: over weight ?

Oxbow isn’t brilliant for hamsters really, it would be better to put her on a seed mix to give more variety. There are a couple of decent ones where you are so you could think about that maybe.

Edit- sorry didn’t see your edited version lol. If she’s getting seeds it’s fine but oxbow still isn’t really necessary, there are better lab blocks out there.
Porridge is good too although I’m not actually sure how often it should be fed as I rarely feed it myself!
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Old 11-15-2018, 08:37 AM   #7
Chicleteer
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Default Re: over weight ?

The Oxbow mix does look pretty boring to me anyway. Is Hazel Hamster a good mix, do you know? I keep hearing about Harry Hamster, but I’m guessing that’s what’s available in the UK and perhaps Hazel Hamster is a similar product in the US...?
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Old 11-15-2018, 09:18 AM   #8
mangoandmimi
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Default Re: over weight ?

I think Hazel hamster has been confirmed to be identical to Harry, not sure if the protein % is still labelled differently which was a bit confusing. Can’t say I’m thrilled with the look of either of them which is probably an unpopular opinion - last time I used Harry hamster half of it was corn and the other half pellets. But lots of Syrians do well on it and it’s quite popular over here.

Alternatives are Higgins vita garden (no added sugar, decent variety) which I probably like the look of most. Wouldn’t say the variety is brilliant but it looks most healthy. A lot of people use Higgins sunburst (does have added sugar + has extra fruits) because it has better variety. There are others, Sunseed Sunsations looks ok too but not seen anyone use it really. Often the protein is too low to work with or its not good quality, others have questionable ingredients. And unfortunately I’m not that familiar with many other US foods as not really looked into it!
Those do need protein supplementing so check the fat content is acceptable if you’re using mealworms as it’ll likely end up too high with those foods. It would make more sense to use freeze dried chicken or a higher protein lab block, or both.
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Old 11-15-2018, 11:40 AM   #9
Chicleteer
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Default Re: over weight ?

Thanks so much for the ideas, m&m! I just checked, and I’m able to get both of the Higgins products on Amazon. I’ll take a closer look and try one of them. I really like the idea of being able to separate out the seeds and using them more as a treat. (Besides, she would probably pick them out first to eat, anyway, and not get enough of the other stuff.)

I also sometimes give her a little piece of chicken or a chunk of cooked egg white for extra protein.
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Old 11-16-2018, 12:13 AM   #10
pranjyboy
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Default Re: over weight ?

thanks for all the suggestions, i usually use the pets at home regular hamster feed, and , as a first time owner, i use the treats to associate the bad events ( like when im holding him ) with good ones ( the treats ). but i didn't realize how bad they really were ! as an additional treat i add in the rosewood naturals herbs plus every week, but i realize now how much sugary foods they contain. he now weighs about 157g so im guesing i shouldnt be too woried. anyhow ill consider trying out new healthy treats for him. i've heard some foods you should mplement gradually so they're bodies can adjust. which ones would you suggestto start off with ?
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