If you own guinea pigs, you already know they like eating hay, greens, pellets, grass, and fruits. But can guinea pigs eat cucumber? Yes. Cucumbers are among the safest vegetables and these little creatures will love them. They can eat the fresh skin and seeds.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Cucumbers? Cucumbers have a rich nutritional profile that consists of vitamin B & C, calcium, and phosphorous which offer many health benefits. In addition to that, they are low in fat and calories. And because they are not harmful, you can offer this healthy snack to your furry friend.
Health benefits of cucumbers
Cucumbers are made of 97% water, so they can keep guinea pig hydrated during the hot season. From a scientific standpoint, these vegetables are good for the cardiovascular system. Good circulation means the guinea pig will have healthy blood vessels which reduce the risk of hypertension, heart attack, and stroke.
Just like in humans, the presence of vitamin C ensures guinea pigs don’t suffer from scurvy. If you’re not careful, this disease can lead to other problems like a swollen coat, internal bleeding, and loss of appetite.
Other serious conditions like skeletal muscle death can also occur. Secondly, these vegetables are rich in magnesium and iron which prevent conditions such as anemia.
Cucumbers are rich in phytonutrients that work as antioxidants. Not to mention, they contain trace amounts of vitamin A which protect the body from harmful free radicals. This essential vitamin also helps to fight inflammation and ensures the brain is in perfect health.
Cucumbers are loaded with fiber which is an essential part of guinea pigs diet. It helps to maintain a healthy digestive system.
Are cucumbers safe for guinea pigs?
Guinea pigs like foods that are crunchy and juicy. Because cucumbers fall into this category, you can be sure these little guys will love them too. What’s more, cucumbers contain large amounts of water which can lead to inconsistency in guinea pig’s droppings. When these pets diarrhea for long, it can be fatal. Of course, eating too much can cause bloating.
While guinea pigs can benefit from small amounts of calcium, they can get kidney stones and gallbladder problems if they consume these veggies in large amounts. So, as you feed these little guys with cucumbers, you may want to supplement with leafy greens.
Cucumbers contain vitamin C, but in fewer amounts compared to spinach and kales. What’s more, these succulent vegetables are low in calories so guinea pigs may not eat enough to meet the recommended daily intake.
Furthermore, cucumbers don’t contain enough minerals to keep the pigs healthy as the primary food source. With that in mind, you should consider this vegetable a refreshing treat on a hot day.
Do guinea pigs eat cucumber leaves, peels, and seeds?
Yes. The seeds are beneficial when taken in small quantities as too much can cause stomach problems. In fact, they offer more benefits than the other parts of the vegetable. These furry friends will enjoy every part of the cucumber skin.
However, you must ensure they are pesticide-free. Be sure to wash before giving them to your pet. If you want to be extra careful, you can peel the skin but you’ll be denying your guinea pig some vital nutrients.
Just like grass, a guinea pig can also eat the leaves of cucumber. But this should only be in small quantities. When preparing the diet, only toss a few leaves because too much can cause digestive disturbances.
How much cucumber is safe for your guinea pig?
You should feed your guinea pig two slices of cucumber three times a week. And because these pets are prone to digestive problems, you should introduce them to vegetables slowly. This will make them get used to the diet and they won’t diarrhea. Keep in mind that all guinea pigs are not the same- some will love the vegetables while others may refuse to eat.
If you notice something unusual after feeding these pets with cucumber, you should stop immediately. You may also want to mix cucumber with other vegetables to avoid diarrhea and bloating.
How to prepare cucumber for your guinea pigs
The cucumber you choose should not be bitter as it is a sign of the presence of toxins that are harmful to guinea pig’s health.
While you should always ensure you buy pesticide-free cucumbers, chances are that they may be sprayed when on the farm. If you’re not sure about the source of these vegetables, you should wash them.
Some experts recommend that you use warm water just in case there’s some waxing on the coat. Alternatively, you can peel the skin. This will help to get rid of the chemicals on the skin.
It’s worth mentioning that some pesticides are very strong and can penetrate to the fresh. And you never know; the peel could be their favorite bit. To ensure there’s no guesswork, you can grow organic cucumbers on your farm.
You should also chop the cucumbers into small pieces to ensure you don’t chock your pet. Slicing the vegetable will ensure you control the portion of serving.
Although you can feed the pets fresh chunks of cucumber, you can also prepare a salad. This may consist of pieces of cucumber, carrots, cabbage, or kales. You can also flavor the cucumber to make it tasty.
Finally, make sure you remove any part of a cucumber left in the cage after a few hours. This prevents bacteria buildup which may compromise the health of your pet.
Can you feed cucumbers to baby guinea pigs?
It’s recommended that you feed the guinea pigs with the mother’s milk for the first few weeks of their life. Although they can still munch pieces of leafy greens and grass, you should avoid feeding them with cucumbers until they are at least 6 weeks old.
Most experts recommend that you wait until the pigs are ready to feed on solid food before you introduce them to cucumber.
Final thoughts: Cab Guinea Pigs Eat Cucumbers?
When it comes to veggies for guinea pigs, cucumbers top the list. You should give your guinea pigs 2 pieces of cucumber including the skin, seeds, and fresh three times a week.
This vegetable contains essential minerals and vitamins that offer many health benefits including boosting the immune system, improving eyesight, and enhancing cardiovascular health.
You may also combine cucumbers with other vegetables to ensure the guinea pigs get an adequate amount of nutrients daily. If you stick to the above guidelines, there’s no doubt your pet will love cucumbers.