Guinea Pigs can enjoy eating some vegetables, herbs and fruit in moderation; however, hard seeds and sugary fruits such as kiwis, citrus fruits or bananas should be avoided to ensure optimal health and welfare for both them and you.
Nuts should also be limited as their digestive tract may not be designed for digesting them and can cause serious health problems. Other foods to limit include cabbage, cauliflower and gassy veggies.
Nuts can be quite caloric for guinea pigs, causing weight gain quickly as well as contributing to obesity, gastrointestinal problems and heart disease. Furthermore, nuts may contain fats that accumulate in organs and clog blood vessels as well as calcium which could lead to kidney and bladder stones over time.
As with any pet, guinea pigs should not be fed nuts, seeds, or dried fruits. Instead, focus on providing fresh leafy greens such as dandelion greens, rocket, snow peas and herbs along with fruit and vegetables daily for their diet. You may add pelleted food for extra protein and fiber but never meat or dairy as these foods do not belong in their natural diet and could potentially make your pet seriously ill if consumed.
Guinea pigs should consume primarily hay as the staple diet. Additionally, they need fresh fruits and vegetables, herbs, water, as well as some pelleted food as snacks.
Seeds should be avoided due to their high fat content as this may contribute to obesity in guinea pigs and result in additional health issues. Guinea pigs need a diet with reduced amounts of fats in order to remain healthy.
Avoid feeding your guinea pig anything with chemicals sprayed onto it as this can be very toxic to them. Also avoid giving any foods with garlic and rhubarb which contain oxalic acid, as they could potentially cause bladder stones. Also do not feed anything which has been exposed to chemical spraying – this can be very toxic to them!
Guinea Pigs should only consume fruits and vegetables that have no seeds, such as apple, banana (sliced with no seeds), kale, carrot tops, cucumber, Brussels sprouts, and dandelion greens. Basil is another good option since it provides lots of antioxidants while cucumber has high starch levels; thus should only be given once or twice every week as a treat.
Guinea pigs, as herbivorous small creatures, require daily chewing of fibrous plant material in order to digest it and wear down their teeth as part of digestion and wear down processes. Without this activity, their teeth would continue growing unchecked; without it they might chew on things such as cloth, paper, plastic and rubber (which could actually be detrimental).
Hay is an essential component of guinea pig diet and should always be available. Spread around their enclosure or contained within a rack/ball to keep their minds stimulated.
Guinea pigs should also receive daily vegetables such as leafy greens, red and green peppers, broccoli and parsley to provide vitamin C that they cannot synthesize themselves. Furthermore, pellets/nuggets designed specifically for guinea pigs contain essential vitamins A-E that cannot be found elsewhere such as supplementing fresh food sources like carrots. On occasion they can enjoy some fruit in moderation – however as fruit contains high levels of sugar that could contribute to weight gain.
Guinea Pigs require a balanced diet consisting of pellets, hay and fresh vegetables for proper nourishment. Vegetables provide vital vitamins such as soluble fiber, potassium, calcium, vitamin A and C as well as phytonutrients – compounds only found in plants!
Vegetables that contain high amounts of oxalate acid or calcium should only be fed occasionally as these foods can lead to bladder stones in guinea pigs. Foods like broccoli and cauliflower produce excessive gas production; feeding these too frequently could result in stomach upset.
Some of the best vegetables for guinea pigs include spring greens, kale, dandelion leaves, cabbage, broccoli stems and cores, radish tops, courgette squash and turnips. It is important to rotate these foods daily so your pig doesn’t become bored with one type of veggie!