Can Guinea Pigs Eat Broccoli?

Guinea Pigs Jul 15, 2021
Written by | Updated Jul 16, 2021
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Can Guinea Pigs Eat Broccoli?

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Can Guinea Pigs Eat Broccoli?

Love it or hate it, broccoli is one of the healthiest vegetables around – for humans, that is! But what about your guinea pig?

Is broccoli safe for your cavy to eat, and if so, how much is too much? As it turns out, guinea pigs can have a bit of broccoli, but perhaps less than you might imagine.

Ready to learn more? We’re about to tell you everything you need to know about broccoli for guinea pigs.

Broccoli Nutrition Stats

Broccoli is a high-protein, low-calorie vegetable with tons of antioxidants and quite a bit of fiber. Like other cruciferous vegetables, it tops the list of the best veggies to eat on a regular basis.

In just one cup of broccoli, you get:

  • 55 calories
  • 11 g carbohydrates
  • 5 g fiber
  • 4 g protein
  • .3 g fat

Broccoli Nutritional Facts

The nutrients in broccoli nourish your body and protect your cells from damage. It’s got lots of minerals to help your whole system stay healthy, too.

As veggies go, broccoli is among the most nutrient-dense options around! A one-cup serving gives you:

There’s a reason why broccoli is such a highly desirable superfood. It is absolutely brimming with essential nutrients that can help you stay healthy by lowering oxidative stress and protecting your cells.

It’s full of minerals to help maintain strong bones and promote proper muscle function, and it’s great for your heart.

A cup of broccoli offers:

  • 100 mcg vitamin K
  • 120 mg vitamin A
  • 457 mg potassium
  • 168 mcg folate
  • 101 mg vitamin C
  • .4 mg vitamin B6
  • .4 mg manganese
  • 62 mg calcium
  • 33 mg magnesium
  • 105 mg phosphorus

Can Guinea Pigs Have Broccoli?

The good news is that you can give broccoli to your guinea pig. The bad news is that too much of it might cause painful gas and bloating.

Is Broccoli Good For Guinea Pigs?

Here’s something you might or might not know – and it’s one of the reasons why we’re always talking about vitamin C for guinea pigs: Just as we humans can’t produce vitamin C on our own, neither can guinea pigs!

And just like us, guinea pigs can get scurvy without proper vitamin C supplementation.

Since it’s so high in vitamin C and other nutrients, broccoli is a great choice for guinea pigs. High vitamin A content is another thing to put on this veggie’s list of positive attributes.

Do Guinea Pigs Like Broccoli?

Most guinea pigs like broccoli but more than a few have been known to shove it off into a corner and eat something else instead. Next time you have a bit of fresh, clean broccoli on hand, try offering a tiny floret to your guinea pig and see if they like it.

How Much Broccoli Can A Guinea Pig Eat?

You might love broccoli and eat it often. Your guinea pig needs to take a moderate approach.

Here’s how much broccoli to feed your guinea pig:

AgeAmount
Baby guinea pigNone
Adult guinea pig1 tablespoon

Wow, that’s it? A tablespoon of broccoli might not sound like much to you, but to your guinea pig, that’s a pretty large amount.

Here’s the really interesting part: Your guinea pig needs a very gradual introduction to broccoli. Start by feeding a piece that’s perhaps the size of your fingertip, and watch for signs of gas, bloating, discomfort, or diarrhea.

So long as all’s well, you can offer a bit more the next day and repeat the watching / waiting process.

Very slowly – over the course of about five days – work up to a full dose of broccoli, while avoiding any other foods that have the potential to cause gas or any other kind of upset tummy. After that, your guinea pig should be ready to enjoy fresh broccoli on a fairly regular basis.

How Often Can A Guinea Pig Eat Broccoli?

You can give a guinea pig broccoli up to two times per week, but not on the same day you offer other gas-producing treats such as cauliflower or brussels sprouts.

The Correct Diet is Important

Guinea pigs need to follow a natural diet that’s based mainly on fresh hay and leafy green plants. Even healthy, low-sugar treats should be offered in moderation.

To keep your cavy healthy and feeling great, here’s what they should be eating each day:

  • Unlimited amount of fresh Timothy hay, enough to nibble and play in
  • Fresh, clean water; rinse and refill their drinking bottle at least once daily
  • Guinea pig pellets with vitamin C (Double-check the label for the exact serving size since different brands offer different recommendations)
  • Approximately one cup of fresh veggies divided into at least two smaller meals; be sure to provide plenty of variety and don’t feed the exact same things every day

What Are Other Healthy Alternatives To Broccoli In A Guinea Pig’s Diet?

Guinea pigs like to eat lots of different veggies, so it isn’t at all difficult to provide them with the variety they need.

Here’s a quick (but by no means complete!) list of veggies to feed your guinea pig:

  • carrots
  • carrot tops
  • butter lettuce
  • buttercrunch lettuce
  • mint
  • basil
  • parsley
  • cucumber
  • beets
  • beet tops
  • cabbage
  • bibb lettuce
  • green beans
  • arugula
  • summer squash
  • zucchini
  • parsnip
  • pumpkin
  • rocket
  • romaine
  • brussels sprouts
  • bell pepper
  • tomato
  • broccolini
  • bok choy
  • broccoli
  • cauliflower
  • sweet potato
  • artichoke
  • escarole
  • cilantro
  • watercress
  • spinach
  • swiss chard
  • endive
  • asparagus
  • yu choy

This list contains lots of natural treats for guinea pigs, but be sure that you research anything you opt to give your pet since you’ll want to offer the correct amount.

Giving your guinea pig broccoli and a variety of different treats each week helps enrich their life while supporting good health. You might even hear some happy squeaks of appreciation!

Frequently Asked Questions

Is broccoli safe for guinea pigs?

Yes! Broccoli is safe for your cavy so long as you introduce it gradually and offer only small amounts. Giving too much broccoli at one time can lead to severe discomfort for your pet.

Can my guinea pig eat broccoli leaves?

Yes! Broccoli leaves are great for guinea pigs and most cavies love them – perhaps even more than the broccoli themselves. You’ll want to offer only small amounts since the leaves contain some of the same gas-producing compounds as the florets and stems. Two or three broccoli leaves is plenty for the average guinea pig.

Can broccoli make my guinea pig sick?

Unfortunately, your guinea pig can only tolerate a certain amount of broccoli. Don’t try to give them more than the recommended amount, and make sure that you wash the broccoli well before giving it to them, just to ensure that there’s no residual pesticide, herbicide, or dirt.

Can I give my guinea pig cooked broccoli?

No. Guinea pigs can’t digest cooked broccoli; it can make your pet very sick.

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Anne is a wellness writer with a lifelong love of animals large and small. As a former veterinary technician, she has a passion for your pet’s well-being. Anne rescues and rehabilitates animals in need. She shares her farm with lots of critters including horses, sheep, dogs, cats, rabbits, and chickens.
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