Can Rabbits Eat Strawberry

Can Rabbit Eat Strawberries
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Who doesn’t like a fruity snack? More so, Strawberries are a favorite summer fruit. Mid-May to early July is usually the best time to pluck fresh strawberries in the eastern and midwestern northern states. Although, strawberries are one of those fruits which are available in supermarkets year-round in most of the areas. Strawberries provide vitamins, fiber and high levels of antioxidants known as polyphenols — without any sodium, fat or cholesterol. Since it’s a naturally sweet fruit, the natural sugar content in the fruit is relatively high, although not as high as some other fruits. Strawberries are also known for their antioxidant abilities and are a good source of manganese and potassium.

How Safely Can My Rabbit Eat Strawberries

Strawberries are not toxic for your rabbit. They can eat and even enjoy this juicy fruit. But only small quantities should be given to them. Larger quantities or frequent feeding of strawberries can cause serious gastrointestinal, teeth decay and weight problems. Most rabbits are able to digest the fruit in small quantities but there are some who suffers from indigestion, diarrhea and vomiting.

According to vets, half-cut or a medium-sized strawberry is safe to be given to you pet once in a while. They should not be fed strawberries or any kind of fruits every day. Rabbits tend to get addicted to sweet delicacies and may refuse to give up the food. Fruits should be given in small quantities occasionally after they have had their full meal comprising of hay and veggies.

Whenever you give your rabbit fruits, avoid offering the same type and create a weekly meal plan that consists of various types of fruits in small quantities. Moreover, you should try to replace fruits with root vegetables like carrots and beetroots.

Baby rabbits or kittens should not be fed strawberries. They may show the liking for the fruit but it is not safe for their stomach and teeth.

How To Feed Strawberries To My Rabbit

Whenever the kittens are old enough to begin eating fruits or you want to introduce a new fruit to your adult rabbit, introduce any type in small amounts and rather slowly. Look for signs of discomfort, soft stool and indigestion leading to gas. A medium-sized or a teaspoon size fruit once a few days should be practiced. If your rabbit shows ill-effects after consuming these fruits, stop feeding them immediately. Consult your vet if the symptoms are severe and your rabbit is not showing signs of recovery.

If fruits are not suiting your rabbits, instead give them the recommended foods which are mainly hay and small amounts of high-fiber pellets and some fresh foods, especially organically-grown leafy greens.

Can My Rabbit Eat Strawberries Leaves

Bunnies can also eat strawberry plant and leaves. They munch on the tender leaves, shoot and flowers. Some reports suggest, strawberry leaves are much healthier than fruits. Strawberry leaves can be added to the menu of leafy that is safe for the rabbits to eat. Other greens that are safe to include in their meal are carrot tops, mint, kale, cilantro, spinach, basil and more. The meal should contain 75% of leafy-greens and the remaining can be fruits and water.

Buy organic fruits and vegetables to avoid pesticides and other toxic chemicals. Or if you grow them yourselves, make sure to not use toxic chemicals or pesticides. You can remove these substances, if present on your bought food items, by washing them thoroughly using lukewarm water.

Source: Katka Pruskova

What Happens If My Rabbit Eats Too Much Strawberries

Upon eating huge quantities of strawberries, any of the following can happen and may need vet intervention.

Weight gain: Strawberries have high sugar content and thus calories, which increases the risk of weight gain. In turn, weight gain can lead to obesity and increase the risk of diseases like arthritis and diabetes.

Gut problems: Their lagomorph digestive system is designed to digest cellulose and not sugar, fats or carbohydrates. Strawberries have lots of sugar and carbs while the rabbit’s stomach cannot process them. They have a very sensitive digestive system.

Follow These Simple Guidelines To Keep Your Bunny Safe:

– Start feeding your rabbits strawberries in small quantities and gradually increase the amount basis on their weight index.
– Fruits and vegetables are special treats and should not be the majority of your rabbit’s diet.
– Feed your bunny hay or grass in large quantities for their daily diet.
– Don’t feed baby rabbits strawberries or any kind of fruit. We recommend waiting around 8 weeks before doing so.
– Wash the fruit and vegetable thoroughly to remove pesticides and toxic chemicals.
– When introducing new foods, watch your rabbit’s reaction. Stop feeding if your rabbit shows signs of upset stomach.

How To Keep My Rabbit Away From Strawberries

If you grow strawberries in your farm, barricade the area so that your rabbit cannot enter without your help. And if you are buying them from market, keep these berries or fruits on a high shelf to keep it out of their reach. Whenever you offer strawberries or any type of fruit, cut them in pieces that you want to offer instead of giving them the whole fruit and waiting to take it away once they have eaten as per your expectations. Included different types of fruits in their meal instead of sticking to a few. Eating varieties of fruits will give them a taste of every type and not get hooked up to any certain fruit of their liking.

A quick look on which foods are safe for our rabbits:

Bottom Line

Strawberry plants, leaves, and fruits are safe for rabbits. However, strawberries and other safe parts of the fruit should be given in small quantities as occasional treats. Also, frequent feeding of strawberries can lead to them getting used to the fruit, which should be avoided. The meal plan for your rabbit should include majority of hay and pellets. Do not feed strawberries to baby rabbits since they cannot process sweet foods at all. When you offer them fruits for the first time, look for signs of discomfort, soft stool, vomiting or anything remotely not normal.

Also, dried fruits are much higher in sugar than fresh or frozen fruits, so you should avoid giving them to your pet.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

– Can rabbits eat dried strawberry?

Dried strawberries have even more sugar. Giving them too much sugar may affect their stomach by encouraging bad bacterial growth leading to indigestion and discomfort.

– Where do newborn rabbits get their nutrients?

The only source of nutrients for the newborn rabbits or kittens is their mother’s milk for the first 2-3 weeks after their birth. Basis on how their stomach is receptive to when solid food is introduced, a kitten can go for extended weeks only relying on their mother’s milk.

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