Can Guinea Pigs Eat Watermelon?
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Refreshing and sweet, watermelon is a favorite with people everywhere. But what about watermelon for guinea pigs? Is it OK to offer your cavy a watermelon treat?
Good news for guinea pigs everywhere: This yummy fruit is fine to enjoy every now and then, in limited quantities.
Before you run for the fridge, take a few minutes to get all the answers to your questions with our quick guide to watermelon for guinea pigs.
Your furry friend will thank you!
Watermelon Nutrition Stats
Rich in antioxidants and so sweet that it’s hard to believe just how good for you it really is, watermelon is a scrumptious treat that’s almost impossible to beat. High water content means loads of satisfaction for a surprisingly small number of calories!
That’s great news for you – and your guinea pig. In a one-cup serving of ripe, cut-up watermelon, you’ll get about:
- 47 calories
- 5 g carbohydrates
- .6 g fiber
- 1 g protein
- .2 g fat
Watermelon Nutritional Facts
Don’t let the low calorie count fool you. Watermelon is an awesome source of the vitamin C you and your guinea pig need!
That same one-cup serving gives you approximately:
- 865 iu vitamin A
- 170 mg potassium
- 3 mg vitamin C
- .1 mg vitamin B6
- .1 mg manganese
- 2 mg magnesium
- .1 mg thiamine
- .3 mg pantothenic acid
- .1 mg copper
Can Guinea Pigs Have Watermelon?
Absolutely! Watermelon is a wonderful all-natural guinea pig treat that provides some much-needed nutrition minus the additives and high fructose corn syrup that’s often found in commercial treats.
Is Watermelon Good For Guinea Pigs?
If you’re a guinea pig’s caretaker, then you probably know that guinea pigs can’t make their own vitamin C. They need foods that are rich in vitamin C to stay healthy, just like we humans do!
High vitamin C content is just one reason why watermelon is good for cavies. Vitamin A promotes healthy eyes, while other vitamins and minerals help with overall well-being.
There’s more: In hot weather, you might be looking for ways to ensure that your little friend stays properly hydrated – watermelon to the rescue!
Do guinea pigs like watermelon?
Almost all guinea pigs love watermelon! Once they’ve had their first nibble, they eagerly finish up their treat – and they might ask for more. Don’t give in though, because too much watermelon can throw your cavy’s delicate system out of balance.
How Much Watermelon Can A Guinea Pig Eat?
That’s a great question! Here’s how much watermelon a to feed your guinea pig:
|Baby guinea pig
|Adult guinea pig
|2 1×1 inch squares
This might not sound like a lot, but consider the size of the snack compared to the size of your guinea pig, and you’ll realize that those two watermelon cubes offer plenty of satisfaction.
How Often Can A Guinea Pig Eat Watermelon?
Watermelon is relatively high in sugar, plus it contains lots of water. If you offer it too frequently, your guinea pig is at risk of developing diarrhea. Too many sweet snacks can lead to obesity and diabetes, too, so you’ll want to be careful.
After you’ve introduced watermelon to your guinea pig by offering about a ½ inch square and watched for signs of diarrhea, you can gradually increase the serving size until your cavy is enjoying the full amount. You can give watermelon to your guinea pig up to three times per week so long as you aren’t offering it on the same day as other sweet treats.
The Correct Diet Is Important
A guinea pig’s natural diet consists of low-lying leafy plants and grasses. You want to offer mostly fresh hay such as Timothy – enough to eat plus more for tunneling, napping, nesting, and just general nibbling – and you’ll want to ensure that you rinse and refill your guinea pig’s water bottle at least once per day.
Besides hay and fresh water, guinea pigs need:
- A daily serving of Guinea pig pellets fortified with vitamin C (Check the label for serving amount)
- About one cup of fresh vegetables each day, divided into at least two smaller meals if possible; rotate different leafy greens and crunchy veggies each day to prevent oxalic acid buildup and reduce the risk of kidney stones
What Are Other Healthy Alternatives To Watermelon In A Guinea Pig’s Diet?
Guinea pigs have a reputation for enjoying a wide array of vegetables and fruits, so your options are pretty much endless!
Here’s a quick list of veggies guinea pigs usually like:
- green beans
- beet tops
- carrot tops
- swiss chard
- sweet potato
- butter lettuce
- buttercrunch lettuce
- bibb lettuce
- bell pepper
- summer squash
- bok choy
- yu choy
- brussels sprouts
There’s a pretty good chance that your guinea pig likes many of the same veggies you do!
Be sure to research new foods that you plan to offer your guinea pig so that you can offer the correct amount and prepare it the right way.
Giving your guinea pig watermelon and other natural treats is a way to keep life fun and interesting while offering some essential nutrients!
Frequently Asked Questions
Is watermelon safe for guinea pigs?
Yes, so long as you stick with the recommended serving size.
Can watermelon make my guinea pig sick?
Yes – unfortunately sweet foods including watermelon can cause diarrhea in guinea pigs. Feeding too much too often can also put your cavy at risk of obesity and diabetes, leading to discomfort and a shortened life span.
Can guinea pigs eat watermelon rind?
Yes, so long as you wash the watermelon rind very well before offering it to your guinea pig! Even though watermelon rind isn’t sweet, it contains lots of vitamins and minerals. Since it’s very “watery” though, you’ll want to offer it in small amounts, only occasionally.
Be sure to start with a tiny piece – maybe a ½ inch square – and watch to see how your guinea pig responds. If you notice signs of diarrhea, it’s possible that your guinea pig isn’t tolerating the watermelon rind well. If, on the other hand, there are no problems, go ahead and let your cavy enjoy watermelon rind every now and then.