Do Hamsters Eat Ants?

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Written By Editorial Staff
Reviewed By Ashley Jones

Veterinary Experts

Hamsters have grown in popularity as a pet in the United States. They are small, easy to maintain and found in many homes.

Due to the rise in popularity, many readers have questions about taking care of their pet hamsters. A few owners have asked if their pet hamsters can eat ants.

Hamsters are omnivorous animals which means they can surely eat the ants without any problem.

But is it safe for them to eat ants? Do they like eating ants? Will ant harm your hamsters? Stick around to find out more.

My pet hamsters cage attracted a lot of black ants, and I always wondered why it was so. Finally, after conducting thorough research, I understood the cause of the problem.

In this blog post, I will share my experience and the knowledge that I gained from animal experts. So let’s start with the first question.

Do Hamsters Eat Ants?

Yes, hamster’s can eat ants. Hamsters are omnivores, which means they eat both plants and animals, including tiny insects. Some hamsters will eat ants as long as they are not too big. They are not hazardous for hamster’s. 

We do not recommend adding ants to your hamster’s regular diet. Ants can have strong bites and attack the hamster. In addition, they are not very tasty for your hamster. Try giving crickets or mealworms instead.

Domesticated Hamsters are not used to eating live food and will rarely attack ants proactively. However, hamsters may eat the ants if they are too problematic and biting it. This is usually due to self-defense rather than the motivation to eat live ants.

Are Ants Harmful To Hamsters?

Ants are known to have strong and painful bites, so if an ant happens to bite your hamster, it will cause a lot of pain and agony. Generally, they will not attack the hamster unless they are fire ants.

Fire ants can attack a hamster and cause a lot of damage. Regular ants may just pinch and crawl next to the hamster. They are more likely interested in your hamster’s food bowl 😊

In the wild, ants may normally not attack hamsters as there are various alternate food sources; however, fire ants can and do attack small animals and reptiles such as the hamster.

Another aspect that requires attention is the matter of poisoning.

Many ants come from the fields and may have harmful chemicals attached to them in the form of sprayed fertilizers, insecticides, etc.

If your hamster ingests them, it can cause an upset stomach or make it very sick, requiring a trip to the vet.

So be careful if you find ants (especially fire ants, the red ones) in your hamster’s cage.

Pay immediate attention to the reason behind the presence of ants in your hamster’s cage.

It would most likely be something like food you have given your hamster lying around unattended.

Why Does My Hamster Cage Have Ants?

Your hamster cage has ants because food crumbs lying in the cage have attracted the ants.

If you notice any carpenter ants or fire ants in the cage, it is best to take out your hamster and clean the cage thoroughly.

Then, spray a little bug repellent and let it dry. Then, follow the instructions below to get rid of ants in the cage.

You must act fast whenever you see ants in your hammies cage. Fire ants are known to devour small insects and rodents.

How Do I Get Rid Of Ants In My Hamster Cage?

There are many ways to get rid of ants in your hamster’s cage, as follows:

  1. Clean your hamster’s cage regularly with a small animal cage disinfectant. Remove any food crumbs and wash the cage nicely with warm water. Keep the hamster safely away in a container till the cage is clean and dry. You do not want your hamster near wet soapy compounds.
  2. Use an ant bait trap around the cage or in the path of ants. Ants love this stuff and will take it back to their colony, and it will kill all other ants.
  3. Apply Vaseline around the hamster’s cage along the edge of the cage. Vaseline is usually harmless to hamsters and very effective in keeping the ants out of your hamster’s cage.
  4. Spray some Boric powder around the cage. This will prevent the ants from getting into the hamster’s cage. It is non-toxic for mammals.
  5. Hamsters are slow eaters, so one way to avoid this situation is to feed them only when they are hungry so that food does not lie around and attract ants.
  6. Never leave fresh fruit and vegetables in your hamster cage, as this will attract a lot of ants.
  7. Avoid feeding anything too sugary to your hamster. Hamsters are not clean eaters, and they drop bits and pieces everywhere in the cage, thereby inviting the ants.
  8. Look out for wet injuries on your hamster as blood, and wound smell may attract fire ants. I have seen fire ants take down many injured insects and small animals. So be careful.

Sometimes you can manually remove the small number of ants that may have entered the cage. But again, addressing the root cause of the infestation will generally help you take effective action against ants.

Many readers have shared that they did not know how to get rid of the ants from their Hamsters cage.

One of them even reached out to us and informed us that they cleaned out the cage as instructed, and later, when they returned, they found four ants near the hamster’s food bowl.

So, the food kept in the cage is undoubtedly one of the main culprits for ants in your hamster’s cage. Try tip numbers 2, 3, and 4 discussed above in such a case.

It will surely help you eliminate ant problems in the hamster cage.

Many pet owners end up moving houses due to ant infestation. But fret not; it is very easy to get rid of the ants bothering your hamster by following the steps outlined above.


Hamsters are great pets that are easy to manage. Paying attention to matters such as ants in your hamster’s cage will help you maintain a safe environment for your little pet.

In conclusion, hamsters may sometimes eat ants, and they are not harmful if ingested but do not add live ants to your hamsters’ diet.

Further, when you find the ants in your hamster’s cage, follow the tips given above to find the root cause of the problem and eliminate the ants.

If you do not address the root cause and wash the cage, the ants will return. Ant baits, boric powder, or Vaseline should help keep the ants away from your hamsters cage.

I hope this blog post enables you to get rid of ants in your hamster’s cage. Thank you for reading!

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