Is timothy hay a good choice for hamsters? We’ll answer this question and a lot more in this comprehensive guide to timothy hay for hamsters.
If you’re interested in prices for timothy hay for your hamster, we’ll take you to some fresh, sweet timothy hay prices right now.
Alright, let’s get started!
What is Timothy Hay for Hamsters Used For?
Timothy hay for hamsters is used for dietary needs. Many hamster pet owners use timothy hay as an addition to their hamster’s overall diet. Of course, the staple of hamsters’ diet should be commercial pellets/biscuits. We’ll look into timothy hay’s overall roll in a hamster’s diet more in-depth later.
Can Hamsters Eat Timothy Hay?
Yes, hamsters can eat timothy hay because of its nutritional, dental, and affordable value. In fact, Timothy hay provides 8% protein and 32% fiber. Although not an essential part of a hamster’s diet, timothy hay is an excellent addition to a hamster’s daily diet, as there a very few possible negative affects. So, no, timothy hay is not bad for hamsters. In fact, here are 7 reasons why hamsters can/should have timothy hay in their daily or weekly diets.
1. Excellent Fiber Source
One of the best reasons why timothy hay is good for hamsters is its 32% fiber dose. Hamsters need fiber to help them have a motile digestive system. And a healthy digestive system makes for a healthy and happy hamster.
2. Great Mineral Source
Timothy hay also provides another great avenue for your pet hamster to receive good minerals that help your hamster thrive. For example, timothy hay contains a balanced ration of calcium to phosphorus.
3. Dental Health
A hamster’s incisors never stop growing. For the wild hamster, ever-growing teeth are necessary for their survival. However, since your hamster is not wild and not in need of excessively-long teeth, timothy hay provides a substance that can help wear down their teeth.
4. Regulates Weight
Timothy hay also keeps a hamster safe by helping to keep its weight in check because of its low calorie content. Obviously, an obese hamster may suffer from heart problems or other health issues. (If you’re curious about how timothy hay helps guinea pigs with their weight, read our article.)
5. Healthy Digestive Tract
We alluded to this earlier, but timothy hay is good for a hamster’s digestive tract. Hamsters with an unhealthy digestive tract can contract diarrhea or proliferative ileitis (also known as “wet tail”) when fluid accumulation inside the GI tract is greater than absorption. A poor diet is one contributing factor to Lawsonia intracellularis (the causation of proliferative ileitis), which is an infection that can potentially kill a hamster suddenly (learn more here).
Because of the high concentration of fiber, timothy hay is an excellent dietary supplement that will help keep your hamster’s digestive tract healthy and clean.
6. Low in Calories
You want to feed your hamster the right foods. Hamster “junk food” feeds him a lot of sugar, potentially resulting in obesity, other health issues, or even death. Timothy hay for your hamster is a great alternative because of its low sugar and low caloric intake.
7. Promotes Foraging Behavior
Providing timothy hay for your hamster encourages him to forage and burrow. Physical and mental stimulation is good to keep exercising within your hamster, keeping him healthy and happy!
Alright, that pretty much sums up the main reasons why hamsters can/should have timothy hay in their daily or weekly diets. Here’s a table overview.
|Excellent Fiber Source||32% of timothy hay is fiber, giving your hamster a healthy digestive tract.|
|Great Mineral Source||Provides minerals to keep your hamster thriving.|
|Dental Health||Timothy hay gives your hamster something to gnaw on to keep his teeth from growing too big.|
|Weight Regulator||Keeps your hamster’s weight in check.|
|Healthy Digestive Tract||Because of the fiber, resulting in a healthy digestive tract. Otherwise, diarrhea or wet tail can occur (bacterial infections).|
|Low in Calories||Less sugar and calories, which keeps your hamster at a good weight|
|Promotes Foraging Behavior||Encourages hamsters to be stimulated, physically and mentally.|
It’s important to understand that timothy hay should not be the foundation of a hamster’s diet. A hamster needs a balanced diet to fulfill its nutritional needs, which means other foods will also need to be included in his/her diet. For more information on other food options, you may wish to check out this source.
Is Timothy Hay Safe for Hamsters?
Yes, timothy hay is safe for hamsters because it is an excellent source of fiber and minerals, and low in calories. As we read above, there are many more reasons why hamsters not only can have timothy hay but why timothy hay is actually really good for hamsters.
There are several rare concerns that you do want to keep in mind, though.
Moderation is key. If your hamster begins eating excessive amounts of timothy hay and neglecting a well-balanced hay diet (along with other foods), your furry buddy may experience malnutrition.
If fresh, 2nd or 3rd cut timothy hay is typically very soft. However, there can sometimes be random pieces of hard hay. This can potentially injure your hamster. Consider sifting through the hay for any hard pieces of hay and then chopping up the hay into smaller pieces for easier intake.
Is Alfalfa Hay or Timothy Hay Better for Hamsters?
Interestingly, timothy hay is lower in protein and calcium when compared to alfalfa hay. Similarly, alfalfa and timothy hay both have vitamins and minerals that are good for your hamster. While both alfalfa and timothy hay both have high levels of Vitamin A and Vitamin E, vitamins tend to degrade overtime. As a result, it is a good idea to feed quality commercial pellets and/or biscuits to your hamster. Hay should be used as a supplement. (read our hay guide for small pets).
How Much Timothy Hay Should I Feed a Hamster At Mealtime?
You can keep small amounts of timothy hay in the cage for your hamster to nibble or chew on at all times. Timothy hay should be given as a supplement to your hamsters overall diet.
What Does Timothy Hay do for Hamsters?
Here are some of the key benefits that timothy hay does for hamsters:
- Provides fiber
- Provides protein = energy
- Helps promote a healthy digestive tract
- Helps dental health
- Keeps weight in check
- Promotes foraging behavior
What Cut of Timothy Hay Should I Give Hamsters?
Typically, the best cut of timothy hay to give hamsters is 2nd cut of timothy hay.
Basically, there are 3 different types of timothy hay cuts: 1st, 2nd, and 3rd cuts. Unlike some crops that are only harvested once, timothy hay is harvested up to 3 times at intervals during one harvest season. Most farmers only harvest the first 2 cuts (since the 3rd cut grows late in the year). However, there are rare occasions when timothy hay is cut or harvested a third time in one harvest season.
The 2nd cut of timothy hay is ideal for your hamster because it is much softer than the first cut, allowing for safer and easier consumption by your furry friend. The 3rd cut of timothy hay is fairly rare, which keeps the 2nd cut your best, and most affordable option.
How Do I Feed My Hamster Its Timothy Hay?
There are several different ways you could do this.
- Simply place the hay in your hamster’s cage
- Scatter it from above and allow them to forage for it
- Place it in a bowl (in order to keep the hamster’s urine and bowel movements out)
What Hays Do Hamsters Use?
Some of the main types of hay that hamsters use is…
- Timothy hay
- Alfalfa hay
- Orchard grass
- Brome hay
How Much Does Timothy Hay for Hamsters Cost?
Timothy hay for hamsters costs differently depending on the company. So, we can’t speak for other companies but we happen to sell timothy hay ourselves! Feel free to see our prices!
Can I Put Hay in My Hamster’s Cage?
Yes, it is perfectly fine to put hay in your hamster’s cage as your hamster will enjoy to nibble on the hay.
How Much Hay Should Go In A Hamster Cage?
Somewhere between 2-4 inches of timothy hay is a good amount of hay to put in a hamster cage. Make sure that your hamster always has a clean bed of hay or straw to sleep on.
Who We Are
Hi! We’re Blue Mountain Hay, a high-altitude Timothy hay grower in the high altitudes of the Pacific Northwest.
Our high-altitude timothy hay is fresh from the mountain fields, allowing you to provide a nutritious meal for your pets.
We grow our hay in the high altitudes of the Blue Mountains. Higher altitudes create cooler temperatures, which makes our timothy hay grow at a slower pace. This increases the number of nutrients in each plant. Because of the slower hay growth, our high-altitude-grown timothy hay is much softer and richer in taste, making a great meal for hamsters. Plus, high-altitude hay means more digestible timothy hay for your hamster.
No Harmful Chemicals
Our timothy hay is a 100% quality product. Here’s why:
- No preservatives
- No artificial colors
- No flavorings
- No additives
So here’s a review table that sums up our timothy hay.
|Our Timothy Hay||Details|
|Fresh||Fresh hay, giving your pet a nutritious and tasty meal|
|High-Altitude Grown||This innovative farming process increases the nutrients in each plant.|
|No Harmful Chemicals||No preservatives, artificial colors, flavorings, or additives|
And here are some timothy hay for hamster product sizes:
|Timothy Hay for Hamsters – Product Size|
You can see the prices for our high-altitude-grown timothy hay for hamster below!
Wrapping it Up…
Alright, here are the 3 main takeaways you should remember:
- Timothy hay is good for hamsters because it gives them fiber, is low in calories, beneficial for their dental health, provides an option to forage, and has plenty of other benefits!
- Timothy hay can be used as a snack for your hamster.
- While we can’t speak for other companies, here are prices for our timothy hay products.
Keep good care of your happy hamster!
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