Guinea pigs eat a wide variety of foods from leafy veggies to fruity treats to fiber-rich hay. They have a fast metabolism and they eat a lot, not to mention the amount of poop that is produced.
Maybe you’ve sat munching on apples before and wondered if your pets can eat apples too. Let’s find out.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Apples?
Guinea pigs can eat apples safely. They can eat the apple’s skin, core, and fleshy parts. However, all seeds should be removed from the fruit before feeding it to them as the seeds are harmful. Being high in sugar, apples should be fed to them in small amounts to avoid negative effects like stomach upsets, diarrhea, and obesity.
Is eating apples good for guinea pigs?
Yes, eating apples is very beneficial to your pet. Apples serve as a wonderful treat for them.
You should not try to substitute treats, which in this case are apples, for your guinea pig’s actual meals. At all times ensure that they have fresh veggies and hay as their staple foods.
Apples are rich in vitamins and antioxidants. Their peels and core are filled with good fiber which assists in digestion processes.
If you have your own apple tree, you can pluck a branch and drop it in their cage. They will enjoy eating the leaves, chewing on the branch, and playing around it.
The leaves contain phosphorus, calcium, and potassium. All these nutrients make apples nutritious for your pet.
Are apples dangerous for guinea pigs?
Everything good has its bad side and for apples, that’s the same case. Although they are delicious to munch on, there are some side effects.
According to Humane Society, fruits are best served as occasional treats with their serving potions being small. This is due to their high sugar content.
A small apple wedge is always enough at a time. Also, a full apple could choke your pet which is something you don’t want to happen.
Guinea pigs have delicate digestive systems. This can make introducing new foods to your pet a challenge because their stomachs will easily get upset.
Giving apples for the first time could bring diarrhea before they can get used to eating them. Another cause of diarrhea is feeding them too much of it.
Too much fruit will upset your furry ball’s stomach so keep to the small slices.
Apples are high in sugar which will lead to your guinea pigs becoming obese if they eat too much of them. An obese guinea is an unhealthy guinea pig.
Obesity brings about challenges of its own compromising a guinea pig’s health and bringing problems in movement and self-grooming.
Due to the high sugar content on the fruits, guinea pigs could get diabetes just like in humans. A lot of sugar and calories bring about insulin insensitivity and diabetes.
Apples have a high acidic content like the Granny Smith apples. These can bring about mouth sores to your guinea pig.
When feeding apples, do not give other acidic foods on the same day or at the same time. You could also opt for sweeter apple varieties like the Red Delicious which is not only sweet but also low in acid.
Can guinea pigs eat seeds?
No, you should never give your guinea pig apple seeds. This is because they are toxic and dangerous for their health.
Apple seeds contain amygladin which becomes hydrogen cyanide when the seeds are chewed. Cyanide is a type of poison and it is toxic if in large amounts.
Avoid giving apple seeds to guinea pigs at all costs.
How to feed apples to your guinea pigs
The first step should always be to scrub and wash them clean unless you plucked them from your apple tree. Even then, it is good to wash them.
Apples are part of the dirty dozen as they rank fourth as the most contaminated fruits. They are sprayed with a lot of pesticides as they are prone to pests.
This makes it vital to wash them carefully to avoid poisoning your pet. Some people prefer peeling them before feeding but the peels are nutritious for guinea pigs.
Cut your washed apple into smaller pieces and give your pet some slices. It’s good to start small if you are just introducing your pet to the fruit to avoid stomach upsets.
Keep a keen eye on the guinea pig for 12 hours to observe any reactions from the apples like diarrhea. If there is none and your pet likes the apples, keep giving them more, gradually increasing their amount.
If their stool becomes loose, reduce the amount given and reintroduce in smaller amounts. You could have given more than enough.
Always give the fruit once or twice a week. Sometimes your guinea pig will not like the fruit and they could even ignore it entirely.
Reasons why guinea pigs may not like them are:
- They are eating apples for the first time and they are not used to the taste.
- They prefer different type of apples.
- They don’t like apples.
When feeding apples you can opt to either give them as a treat or mix up with other veggies. Apple alternatives for pets who cannot stomach them are strawberries, grapes, watermelons, etc.
Guinea pigs can eat apples and they love them because they are crunchy and sweet at the same time. Apples contain a high amount of Vitamin C which is an important requirement for guinea pigs as they do not have the ability to produce it for themselves.
Apples should not be a main meal for your pets. You should include a lot of fresh hay, veggies and Vitamin C pellets in their meals too.
Give them all parts of the fruit but avoid the seeds due to cyanide. The amount is not usually a lot but for small animals like guinea pigs a small amount is quite a lot and it could be dangerous.