Safe Treats for Pocket Pets

Do you have a hamster, gerbil, Guinea pig, bunny, or mouse for a pet? These tiny furballs can make wonderful pets. Just like their larger cousins, pocket pets need a comfortable habitat, a good diet, and stimulation to stay healthy and happy. These little ones also love snacks! Not all foods are suitable for small animals, however, so you’ll want to choose your furball’s treats carefully. A local Livonia, MI veterinarian lists some safe treats for pocket pets in this article.


Many veggies are safe for smaller animals. Carrots, broccoli, and cucumber are all good options. Summer squash, peas, and celery are also suitable. Bunnies and Guinea pigs also benefit from leafy greens, such as kale.


Melons, pears, apples (not the pips or seeds), papaya, bananas, and berries are safe for most pocket pets. Fruit can be high in sugar, so be careful not to give your furball too much! Citrus fruits can be too acidic for some little animals, so ask your vet for recommendations before giving them to your little pal.


For larger pocket pets, such as Guinea pigs and rabbits, you can grow tiny pots of organic herbs on your windowsill, and then give your little pal the whole pot as a treat. Parsley, sage, rosemary, thyme; dill; and cilantro are a few good examples.


Hamsters and gerbils can enjoy very small amounts of cheese; cooked egg; cereal; bread; or pasta. Mealworms, crickets, or waxworms may also be on the menu every now and then. If you have a Guinea pig or bunny, avoid these foods.

What To Avoid

Always research new foods before handing them over to your little furball, and introduce new foods slowly and in small amounts. Do thorough research on your specific type of pet, as what is safe for one animal may be toxic to another. Many foods that are safe for us can be very dangerous to our four-legged friends. Garlic, chives, onion, avocados, chocolate, junk food, fried food, and sugary foods are all on the no-no list. Kidney beans; cayenne; raw beans; rhubarb; and the leaves from potato and tomato plants can also be toxic to tiny furballs. Ask your vet for specific recommendations.

Do you have questions about your pet’s diet? Contact us, your local Livonia, MI veterinary clinic. We are here to serve all your pet’s veterinary care needs.

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