Can hamsters eat arugula? | How much arugula is safe?

can hamsters eat arugula

Arugula is a type of leafy green veggies that are packed with vitamin c, vitamin b, and vitamin k, which are essential nutrients for all warm-blooded lifeforms. We know that hamsters eat vegetables primarily, but is it okay to give hamsters arugula?

Hamsters can eat arugula, and this leafy vegetable provides hamsters with beneficial nutrients to support bone health, white blood cells, a hamster’s muscles, and proper oxidation of red blood cells. Too much arugula can cause digestive issues in hamsters, so only use arugula for occasional treats.

When hamsters eat arugula, they are getting a balanced diet high in beneficial nutrients. But there are some important details to be aware of. In this guide, we are going to tell you everything you need to know about arugula and its safety as a food source or treat for your hamster.

What leafy greens can hamsters eat?

Leafy greens, and leafy vegetables as a whole, offer hamsters a healthy food choice that contains several healthy antioxidants and essential vitamins and minerals.

A leafy vegetable can help lower the risk of heart problems and improve the functioning of practically every organ in the body, and this includes hamsters as well.

So let’s explore some of the leafy vegetables that hamsters can eat.


When hamsters eat baby arugula, arugula seeds, or a regular arugula leaf, this can be detrimental to a dwarf hamsters’ moisture needs, due to the high water content. If you currently do not have a dwarf hamster, this is not as pronounced.

When hamsters eat arugula, their blood cells, both white and red, receive the most benefit since arugula encourages improved circulation and oxidation of a hamster’s circulatory and respiratory systems.

But too much arugula can make a hamster sick due to possible bloating from the excess water.


Spinach is one of the most popular foods for feeding hamsters. This leafy green is packed with several vitamins and minerals and does not seem to cause bloat and digestive upset in hamsters.

Spinach is a cornerstone of any hamster’s diet thanks to its vitamin C content, so you can feed your hamster as much as you like granted you avoid overfeeding your hamster.


The lettuce family which includes, regular, iceberg, and romaine lettuce, is packed with nutrients for hamsters, but also comes with a lot of water.

To avoid stomach pain in your hamster, feed them small quantities of lettuce at a time.

Bok Choy

Like arugula seeds and leaves, Bok choy is also filled with vitamin K. Bok choy is a spicy tasting leafy green that also comes with a fairly high level of moisture content.

Although Bok choy is certainly beneficial, it also should only be given to your hamster in very tiny portions.


Watercress is an aquatic leafy vegetable that comes from the same species of plants as cabbage. Watercress is packed with vitamin C, but as its name implies, it is also packed with moisture as well.

To keep your hamster healthy, it is advised not to feed them too many vegetables that have high water content.


Like arugula and Bok choy, kale is also packed with vitamin K. Any vegetable with vitamin K that hamsters eat has health benefits for a hamster body, but moderation is important since these leafy greens are almost always packed with water as well.


Broccoli is a leafy green, even though we commonly do not associate it as such. Broccoli is a healthy snack for baby hamsters and an adult hamster, but only in small quantities.

Broccoli also has very high fiber content, and this can further aggravate your hamster’s health. To find out more about the benefits of adding broccoli to your hamsters diet, check out our blog ‘Can hamsters eat broccoli?‘.

Collard Greens

Collard greens, like the other veggies on this list, are great for hamsters in smaller quantities. Collard greens are a popular hamster food since they make for a healthy treat based on their mild flavor and nutrient content.

Like the other vegetables mentioned, it is best to only feed your hamster collard greens as a treat since this vegetable can also cause stomach upset and bloat.

How much is a safe amount of arugula to feed a hamster?

How much arugula to give your hamster is based on the particular type of hamster you own.

For dwarf hamsters, overfeeding arugula is not recommended. When dwarf hamsters eat arugula, the peppery taste and water content of the vegetable can lead to digestive problems such as bloat.

In this instance, only put a small amount of arugula or dried arugula in the hamster cage. Alternatively, you can also feed arugula seeds to a dwarf hamster to try and better avoid these problems from occurring.

For Syrian hamsters and other types of hamsters, only allow these hamsters arugula about the size of a quarter. It doesn’t take much. Alternatively, to try and reduce the water content that can cause bloat, you can feed dried arugula to these hamsters.

For little hamsters, and certainly baby hamsters, arugula is not recommended due to the severity of stomach upset that can be caused. Smaller hamsters have smaller stomachs that can fill much more quickly as opposed to an adult hamster.

Feeding arugula to a baby hamster- be it a regular arugula leaf, dried arugula, arugula stems, or seeds- should be completely avoided. Give them tiny carrot slices instead.

Why does arugula cause bloating in hamsters?

When hamsters eat arugula leaf, the primary concerns related to this vegetable are digestive tract issues.

Bloat is a condition that arises when excess water or fiber has stalled in the stomach and thus the digestive tract of a hamster.

Since the arugula takes a long time to break down due to the water and fiber content, which creates excess gas, this can cause stomach swelling and discomfort in a hamster.

Furthermore, the fiber content in arugula can cause an increase in diarrhea since fiber cleanses the small and large intestines in hamsters. The fiber can also cause an increase in the passage of feces.

This in turn can lead to dehydration since the moisture content of the arugula is not enough to replace the electrolytes being lost in excessive diarrhea.



So, is it okay for hamsters to eat arugula? Yes, hamsters can certainly eat arugula and it provides many nutritional benefits for the rodents.

With this in mind, it is important to remember that arugula should only be fed to hamsters in moderation to avoid stomach and digestive issues including bloat or diarrhoea.

When in doubt, go with arugula seeds as a hamster snack due to their size.

Don’t know whether you’re under feeding or over feeding your hamster? Read our article:


We started this website to share our experiences with owning and looking after hamsters. Read our blog for tips and advice to help make your hamster happy.

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