There are different groups of food arrangements that are known to vary depending on the type of animals. Foods that are plants, herbs, and vegetables are listed for herbivores. Carnivores, on the other hand, are recognized to eat various foods that are composed of animal materials. And lastly, the type of animals that requires both plant and animal material on their dietary menu is deemed to be omnivores.
Rabbits are categorized to be herbivores. For that reason, what they need in order to be healthy and survive is plant material. They are known to require fibrous foods in order to sustain themselves. A highly fibrous diet makes them very smart and would give them great energy in doing their daily activities.
When their food has been mixed with other composites that will not sustain them such as foods that include high fat, water, and sugar, their daily routine can be affected and will give them less ability to act faster compared to eating foods that are in line in their daily dietary requirement. Besides, a diet that consists of unlikely nutrients can lead to further digestive issues and other unpromising conditions when it comes to their health.
Rabbits Dietary Requirement
A rabbit that is healthy and is considered to be a well-balanced one is typically engaged in eating foods that are usually composed of nutrients that can only be found from grass-based hay and other fresh and leafy greens. Much has been known, but these cute little bunnies need only a small mass of pellets in addition to their main course with a confined amount of snacks and treats such as vegetables and fruit.
With them living in their original home, rabbits are able to meet and satisfy their daily dietary requirement. Yet, when we are talking about them living in their owner’s made home, sometimes their nutritional needs aren’t met and are withheld due to lack of knowledge.
When the nutrients that their body needs aren’t fulfilled, it can just lead them to further health issues and some harmful influences on their overall wellness.
One of the common problems that rabbits are facing when it comes to nutrient deprivation is gastrointestinal complications. This difficulty typically arises when the rabbits are fed with low fiber, high sugar, and carbohydrates. It can also affect their overall well being when given loads of fruits and vegetables as their snacks that are composed of nutrients that aren’t really beneficial for them.
Presenting the rabbits to foods that are high in carbohydrates can just cause enteritis. This disease is described as an excess of calcium, and unwanted bacteria that can eventually produce infirmity related to the kidney. It can also cause toxemia during their pregnancy. This normally occurs when a pregnant rabbit isn’t given and presented with a proper diet that is required.
Nutrient deprivation can only result in seizures, and the worst part scenario is urolithiasis. Urolithiasis is a disease that is affecting the development of urinary stones. This happens when they are given a diet with high calcium composition.
The problems above can only be prevented if the owners are not too reluctant to give them food that isn’t only enjoyable for them but is also healthy and safe. In the next section, we will be discussing in detail the different foods that can be too harmful to the rabbits.
What are the foods that can cause harm to the rabbits?
Rabbits are known to have a delicate and specialized digestive system. They have a unique skill in processing foods that are rich in fiber and other nutrients. With them having a delicate digestive system, it is your sole responsibility as their owner to give them only what they need. Just the same as humans, they also need to be kept from eating foods that can harm them. These includes:
- Crackers, Bread, and Paste
- Animal Products
Though avocados are considerably nutritious for humans, these nutritional advantages go differently for the rabbits. Even avocados are packed and are loaded with various minerals and vitamins; this doesn’t change the fact that it is not safe for the rabbits to eat. Why?
Avocados consist of composites and substances that are toxic to the rabbits. It includes a persin. Persin is considered to be a fungicidal toxin. It is an oil-soluble aggregate that is structurally comparable to a fatty acid. This substance is not only present to the main highlight of avocado, but it has been leached from the seeds itself.
Persin is greatly harmful to the rabbits. When this substance reaches the rabbit’s digestive system, the effects won’t only influence the digestive tract alone, but it can cause behavioral changes, congestive heart failure, breathing difficulties, and the worst part? It can lead to death.
- Crackers, Bread, and Paste
According to PETA, foods like crackers, bread, and pastes are harmful to rabbits. Not only that, it can cause further digestive problems, but these foods can potentially lead them to enterotoxemia. Enterotoxemia is also identified as pulpy kidney infection or overeating.
Though rabbits may like crackers, bread, and paste, these will be too harmful to them due to the substances that are in it. Especially if they are given a large amount, the nutrients that it is composed of can just lead to further digestive problems. It is high in calories and is a great source of carbohydrates and sugar.
Grains like peas are one of the foods that can likely cause gastrointestinal problems. Peas are composed of sugar and starch that can influence the rabbit’s cecum PH. When given in great amounts, the rabbit’s cecum PH will be set unlikely and may lead to further problems.
Lettuce isn’t good and is harmful to the rabbits. It is composed of lactucarium that can possibly cause health problems for them when given with a huge amount. Lactucarium is similar to opium. It can make rabbits high when given a great amount.
Not only that, it is very dangerous for the rabbits due to lactucarium, but lettuce is mostly composed of water that can cause the rabbits to be overweight and obese. Therefore, feeding them food that is highly rich in nutrients that is invaluable isn’t that appealing.
- Animal Products
Being known to be a herbivore, rabbits are designed to only eat plant materials such as hay and grass-based foods. With their delicate digestive system, foods that aren’t meant for them to eat are dangerous. Their digestive system is intended for meals that are low in starch, sugar, and carbohydrates. They can mostly gain disturbing health issues when presented with foods that are rich in fats, carbohydrates, and protein.
Animal products such as beef, pork, chicken, lamb, venison, duck, wild boar, turkey, and other meats that are highly composed of fats, carbohydrates, and protein are too dangerous for them. Besides, any meat or foods that are produced by animals such as eggs is a very bad idea.
Not only that, the nutrients from animal products are not beneficial for the rabbits, but these foods can also give them upset stomachs.
Onions are also one of the dangerous foods that you shouldn’t want to give to your rabbits. Not only that, it can give them bad breath, but this culinary addition can further lead them to multiple health issues.
Onions carry a toxin that can create unlikely complications for the rabbit’s overall wellness. It includes thiosulphate. Thiosulphate is an oxyanion of sulfur. It is a substance that can destroy or eventually damage the rabbit’s red blood cells. This disease is known as hemolytic anemia. When given to the rabbits, their red blood cells get damaged faster than they can be made.
Not only that, it contains thiosulphate, but onions are also composed of organosulfur. Another substance that includes sulfur. This composite has been identified to evoke a pathological ailment to the rabbits. When spread broadly, the substance can lead to numerous digestive problems.
Rabbits are classified as lagomorphs. They are designed to dissolve soluble fiber in their cecum. Their main dietary requirements are said to be those foods that are rich in fiber and food that contains nutrients from hay.
As fiber is one of the essential nutrients that are needed in the rabbit’s digestive system, without it, further issues in their digestive function are likely to happen. This includes diarrhea, cecal mobility problems, gas, bloating, and the like.
Cauliflowers are low in fiber. Though it may have a little, this is way out of the rabbit’s dietary requirement. When given a great amount, it can lead to further digestive problems. Why?
As discussed earlier, it is low in fiber; when given a vast amount, nothing will trigger the rabbit’s digestive system to function, which can result in diarrhea, cecal mobility problems, gas, bloating, and etc.
Corn includes shells or husks that the rabbit’s digestive system is too weak to process. These husks or hulls have a diverse composition, which includes a polysaccharide complex. This group of substances is the aggregates that rabbits wouldn’t be able to absorb and digest.
Furthermore, these hulls can create blockages on the rabbit’s intestines, which can further lead to wounds, and eventually more unlikely impacts on its overall health. Even when the coin is boiled or cooked, the hull can still cause intestinal blockage.
Another thing that makes corn unlikely is its starchy and high sugar content.
Nuts are not good for rabbits. It is packed with sugar and starch that is not beneficial for its overall health. It can only wreak damage to the rabbit’s gastrointestinal tract. With a high content of sugar and starch and low in fiber, it can only cause constipation, bloating, and gastrointestinal stasis or bacterial excess in the gut.
Not only is it rich in starch and sugar, but nuts are also filled with fats that can further lead to digestion difficulties.
Rabbits are also like humans. They are designed to eat plant materials. But though they are designed to eat grass-based hay, there are some foods that are good and bad for them. With that being said, they need to eat diets that not only that they enjoy, but will be safe and not poisonous for them.
Being a pet parent, keenly overseeing your rabbits, is a good idea. However, watching them will not be as good as being knowledgeable enough with the foods that they should and must not eat. After all, you are the sole responsible for your rabbit’s health security.