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Old 05-18-2017, 10:09 AM   #1
tylerandloki
Newborn Pup
 
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 7
Question Is Bernie too fat?

I have a 3-month-old Syrian hamster, and I've just been made aware that I haven't fed her exactly how you should, and I'm very embarrassed. I noticed because I thought she looked a little chubby today. Is she too fat? Do hamsters normally look like this? I've only had a long-haired Syrian before, and it was hard to tell what he looked like under his long fur. I COMPLETELY forgot that you were supposed to introduce fresh food gradually, so I've just been giving her fresh foods like I have my old hamster fresh foods. I've given it every day, and way too much fruit. I will change this IMMEDIATELY, but my main concern is her weight. Does she look to fat to any of you? How should I feed her? How often are you actually supposed to give fruits and veggies? I feel like an awful hamster owner
Any advice on her weight is very appreciated!
Ps. The picture is around a week old. She looked a lot chubbier today, but it might've just been how she was sitting? I doubt that she's gained a lot of weight over just a week.
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Last edited by souffle; 05-19-2017 at 11:15 PM.
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Old 05-18-2017, 10:30 AM   #2
AprilPearl
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Default Re: Is Bernie too fat?

Awww Bernie looks very cute - and perfectly fine to me, though it’s hard to tell without a weight. How much does she weigh? Have you looked at the syrian hamster weight thread?

Syrian Hamster Weight

There is actually a very broad range which could be healthy for her, depending on how big she is naturally.

My current hamster was 13 - 15 weeks old last Saturday (not sure exactly as I was only told he was 8-10 weeks when I first got him) and he was 133g then. Two weeks after I got him (so that would be aged 10-12 weeks, about the age of Bernie now) he was 116g. So, that should give you an idea of the right sort of weight for a young hamster and what rate they should gain at. Bear in mind though, that Bernie is a girl and females do tend to be larger than males. At the same time, one of Souffle’srecent litter was 134g at about 7 weeks old! But, if your Bernie is from a pet shop she should be smaller than that. I find weighing once a week is a good way to keep track of things. She should keep growing until about 6 months old, though she may continue to gain a bit after that. The average weight for a full grown syrian tends to be between 140g and 200g, though as you can see from the thread I linked above, hamsters can be healthy above or below that, depending on the individual.

Bottom line is: If you are feeding her the right amount of the things she needs and she is looking and behaving healthily, she probably is.

You can feed fruit and veg daily and many do: a small piece up to once a day is enjoyed by most hams. If you haven’t been feeding it already you should introduce it slowly as it isn’t essential and too much too fast can cause tummy problems. However, as she seems to be showing no adverse effects, I wouldn’t worry about it. How long have you been feeing her fresh food? If it is more than a week, then she probably is fine.

How do you mean, you have been feeding her wrong? I am sure others will advise in more detail, but I am sure you have not been doing as wrong as you think and it is good that you are trying to do the best for him now. So long as he is getting a good quality mix such as harry hamster as the main component of her diet (1 tablespoon a day is about right), she will be getting all the nutrients she needs with no added extras, though these are always appreciated. A bit of animal protein won’t go amiss either if it is not present in her mix. For example, some mealworms, boiled egg, or chicken.

EDIT: I added some more info in about weight that you might find helpful.

Last edited by AprilPearl; 05-18-2017 at 10:48 AM.
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Old 05-18-2017, 10:46 AM   #3
tylerandloki
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Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 7
Default Re: Is Bernie too fat?

Quote:
Originally Posted by AprilPearl View Post
Awww Bernie looks very cute - and perfectly fine to me, though itís hard to tell without a weight. How much does she weigh? Have you looked at the hamster weigh in thread? There is actually a very broad range which could be healthy for her, depending on how big she is naturally.

You can feed fruit and veg daily and many do: a small piece up to once a day is enjoyed by most hams. If you havenít been feeding it already you should introduce it slowly as it isnít essential and too much too fast can cause tummy problems. However, as she seems to be showing no adverse effects, I wouldnít worry about it. How long have you been feeing him fresh food? If it is more than a week, then she probably is fine.

How do you mean, you have been feeding her wrong? I am sure others will advise in more detail, but I am sure you have not been doing as wrong as you think and it is good that you are trying to do the best for him now. So long as he is getting a good quality mix such as harry hamster as the main component of her diet, she will be getting all the nutrients she needs with no added extras, though these are always appreciated. A bit of animal protein wonít go amiss either if it is not present in her mix. For example, some mealworms, boiled egg, or chicken.
Hello, and thank you for your reply! I don't have a scale that shows grams, but i get one when I go to town on Monday, because I have no clue how much she weighs at the moment.
It's good to know that you can give fruit and veg daily, because that's what I've been doing with both my past hamster and Bernie. Many people say to only give once or twice a week, and it got me worried that I'd been feeding them completely wrong. However, I will follow your advice and feed less - I think I've been giving too much.
I've been giving Bernie fresh food since I got her, so about a week and a few days. Thank goodness she hasn't gotten sick, there's a good chance she could've. But no diarrhoea or any sign of discomfort at all, so I suppose she's okay now.

Thank you very much, that does calm me a bit. I genuinely hope it isn't as bad as I think. I know her mix hasn't been the best quality, but I'll pick up Harry Hamster mix on Monday along with the scale. I do give her meat once a week, and she doesn't enjoy mealworms, but I'll make sure to add a few more sources of protein

Again, thanks!
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Old 05-18-2017, 10:53 AM   #4
AprilPearl
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Default Re: Is Bernie too fat?

Just so you know, I edited my original post so there is more info init now that you might want to read.

Yeah, mine does not like mealworms either. I think it’s like marmite: some hamsters love them and some hate them. Freeze dried chicken is really good as a protein source because it stores well. I think feedinv about 7% protein in their diet is reccommended.

Advice varies on the veg. I don’t personally, but many members here feed it daily with no problems. A finger nail sized piece is fine but really no more if you are feeding daily. It also provides them with fiber which they need, particularly as they get older.
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Old 05-18-2017, 02:20 PM   #5
wildpandora
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Default Re: Is Bernie too fat?

i am absolutely no help in telling you if Bernie is overweight or not but i will tell you, she is so stinkin cute!!
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Old 05-18-2017, 10:58 PM   #6
cypher
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Default Re: Is Bernie too fat?

It's hard to tell from a photo but she looks ok, hamster weights vary so much although it's a good idea to weigh them just so you can keep a track of any gains or losses telling whether they're the right weight is easier by feel & look really.
You can feed fresh veg daily, that's fine & certainly won't cause weight gain, a lot better than feeding lots of treats, I wouldn't give much fruit though, it's too sweet & acidic so should just be a rare treat.
About a tablespoon of her dry mix is probably about enough for a day.
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Last edited by souffle; 05-19-2017 at 11:16 PM.
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Old 05-19-2017, 05:01 PM   #7
tylerandloki
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by cypher View Post
Haven't seen your other thread yet so this might have been said already!
It's hard to tell from a photo but she looks ok, hamster weights vary so much although it's a good idea to weigh them just so you can keep a track of any gains or losses telling whether they're the right weight is easier by feel & look really.
You can feed fresh veg daily, that's fine & certainly won't cause weight gain, a lot better than feeding lots of treats, I wouldn't give much fruit though, it's too sweet & acidic so should just be a rare treat.
About a tablespoon of her dry mix is probably about enough for a day.
It hasn't been said, and thank you very much!
How much veggies can I feed her per day? I think I've been giving too
much. Is a tablespoon of cucumber/carrots or something of that sort okay?

Quote:
Originally Posted by AprilPearl View Post
Just so you know, I edited my original post so there is more info init now that you might want to read.

Yeah, mine does not like mealworms either. I think itís like marmite: some hamsters love them and some hate them. Freeze dried chicken is really good as a protein source because it stores well. I think feedinv about 7% protein in their diet is reccommended.

Advice varies on the veg. I donít personally, but many members here feed it daily with no problems. A finger nail sized piece is fine but really no more if you are feeding daily. It also provides them with fiber which they need, particularly as they get older.
Yes, I saw that, thank you so much, it was very helpful!
So it seems! I've never had a hamster that likes mealworms, I really do think it is like marmite to them. I got freeze fried chicken today, I think she'll like it. I don't eat it, so now she has chicken supply for a while, haha.
That sounds reasonable, I'll switch to that from now on!

Quote:
Originally Posted by wildpandora View Post
i am absolutely no help in telling you if Bernie is overweight or not but i will tell you, she is so stinkin cute!!
Aw, thank you!

Last edited by souffle; 05-19-2017 at 11:17 PM.
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