Can Rabbits Eat Tomatoes?

Rabbits March 21, 2020
can rabbits eat tomatos
Anne

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Can Rabbits Eat Tomatoes?

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can rabbits eat tomatos

We love them in salad, and they’re essential for everything from pizza sauce to ketchup.

The question is, can rabbits have tomatoes? The short answer is yes. But there’s a whole lot more to the story.

While rabbits can eat tomatoes, there are limits – and only certain tomatoes are safe for your pet rabbit to have. Keep reading, because we’re about to give you the scoop! In just a few minutes, you’ll know all about tomatoes for rabbits.

Tomato Nutrition Stats

There are thousands of tomato varieties worldwide. Even though it’s technically a fruit, the tomato takes pride of place on lists outlining the planet’s most popular vegetables. Delicious flavor is just the beginning, though. A medium-sized ripe, raw tomato offers:

  • 22 calories
  • 8 g carbohydrates
  • 5 g fiber
  • 1 protein
  • .2 g fat

Tomato nutritional facts

Tomatoes are very high in antioxidants – in fact, when they’re cooked down into tomato sauce or tomato paste, they’re an outstanding source of lycopene.

You don’t have to eat cooked tomatoes to enjoy an abundance of vitamins and minerals, though. That same medium-sized raw, ripe tomato treats you to:

  • 1025 iu vitamin A
  • 292 mg potassium
  • 4 mcg folate
  • 6 mg vitamin C
  • .1 mg vitamin B6
  • .1 mg manganese

You get small amounts of vitamin E, magnesium, calcium, iron, phosphorus, copper, zinc, and other important nutrients from tomatoes, too. Enjoy!

Can rabbits have tomatoes?

Yes! Rabbits can have tomatoes as a treat. Here’s where it gets tricky. Only ripe tomatoes should be given to rabbits, and these must have their stems and leaves removed since tomato plants themselves are toxic to rabbits. Before you head out to the garden to grab a cherry tomato for your rabbit, there are a few more things you should keep in mind.

Is tomato good for rabbits?

The vitamins and minerals in tomatoes are great for your rabbit. Unfortunately though, tomatoes are relatively high in sugar, so you’ll have to be careful about how much tomato you give to your bunny, as well as how often you treat them to this yummy snack.

How much tomato can a rabbit eat?

We humans love tomatoes, and we’re capable of enjoying them in unlimited quantities. Bunnies aren’t quite so lucky. Here’s how much tomato to feed your rabbit:

AgeAmount
Baby rabbitsNone
Juvenile rabbitsNone
Adult rabbits1 tomato slice or 1 cherry tomato

 

Always take a slow, thoughtful approach when introducing new foods to a rabbit. Because a rabbit’s digestive system is highly specialized and very sensitive, upsetting the balance can lead to a painful bout of gas or dangerous diarrhea.

Start by feeding your bunny about a teaspoon of fresh, raw tomato and see how they like it. Watch carefully over the next 24 hours.

If your rabbit develops diarrhea or seems to be uncomfortable at all, then it’s likely that tomato shouldn’t be on their menu at all. If they’re fine with the small amount of tomato that you give them, then it’s OK to increase the amount and watch for signs of trouble again.  No problems? Great! Tomato can be part of your rabbit’s weekly treat rotation.

How often can a rabbit eat tomatoes?

Your rabbit can eat tomatoes once a week or so. Since tomatoes are relatively high in sugar, don’t offer them to your bunny on days when you’ve given other sweet treats such as strawberries, blueberries, or apple.

The Correct Diet is Important

A wild rabbit’s days are spent munching on grasses and greens – usually without a tomato anywhere in sight! While it’s OK to treat your bunny to tomatoes and other yummy snacks periodically, it’s very important to ensure that most of your rabbit’s diet mimics that enjoyed by their wild cousins. Here’s what to feed a rabbit every day:

  • Fresh hay – as much as your rabbit can nibble, all day and all night
  • Fresh, clean water – never let your bunny run out of water, and change their water at least once each day
  • A serving of age-appropriate rabbit pellets (since different rabbit food brands recommend different serving sizes, check the label to determine the right amount)
  • Bunny salad made with about 1 cup of leafy greens per 2 pounds of your rabbit’s body weight, once per day
  • Treats on occasion; in general, a teaspoon of rabbit-safe fruit per two pounds of body weight is OK, but always check serving sizes to make sure
  • Unless they’re already mixed into your rabbit’s food, offer about a tablespoon of pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds

What are other healthy alternatives to tomatoes in a rabbit’s diet?

Curious about other ways to treat your rabbit, or wondering exactly what ingredients to add to their daily salad? As it turns out, there are quite a few delicious vegetables rabbits like. Be sure to look for proper serving sizes since certain items including carrots, beets, broccoli, and cauliflower can cause trouble if overfed.

Ready for your bunny to love you even more? Try some of these all natural rabbit treats:

  • carrots
  • carrot tops
  • basil
  • cilantro
  • mustard greens
  • beets
  • beet greens
  • swiss chard
  • radish tops
  • romaine lettuce
  • arugula
  • buttercrunch / butter lettuce
  • bibb lettuce
  • cabbage
  • red cabbage
  • cauliflower
  • broccoli
  • dandelion greens
  • escarole
  • endive
  • fennel
  • bok choy
  • yu choy
  • sweet bell peppers
  • turnip greens
  • celery
  • cucumber
  • kale

Wild rabbits don’t normally eat large amounts of the same exact vegetables each day, and neither should your bunny. Be sure to switch things up. Treating your bunny to a variety of different greens and treats each day can help prevent a compound called oxalate from building up in the kidneys and causing damage. Giving your rabbit tomatoes is a great way to keep life interesting and increase variety in your bunny’s diet. Happy nibbling!

FAQ

Is tomato safe for rabbits?

Yes, ripe tomatoes (all varieties) are safe for rabbits. Don’t give your rabbit unripe tomatoes under any circumstance.

Can I give tomato to a baby rabbit?

No, baby rabbits can’t have tomatoes. In fact, baby bunnies really need to stick to a diet consisting of hay and age-appropriate rabbit food! You can offer small amounts of romaine lettuce as a treat, but don’t offer other items until your bunny finishes growing up.

Can tomatoes make my rabbit sick?

Yes, too many tomatoes can give your rabbit a dangerous case of diarrhea. Green tomatoes are toxic to rabbits and shouldn’t be offered at all.

Can rabbits eat tomato plants?

Tomatoes are interesting – even though they’re deadly nightshades, the fruit is safe and edible for us and for our bunnies. Tomato plants, leaves, and stems are a different story, though: Don’t ever feed your rabbit tomato plants – not even the upper leaf portion or “cap” on top of a tomato. These plant parts are highly toxic, and can make your rabbit very sick.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is tomato safe for rabbits?

Yes, ripe tomatoes (all varieties) are safe for rabbits. Don’t give your rabbit unripe tomatoes under any circumstance.

Can I give tomato to a baby rabbit?

No, baby rabbits can’t have tomatoes. In fact, baby bunnies really need to stick to a diet consisting of hay and age-appropriate rabbit food! You can offer small amounts of romaine lettuce as a treat, but don’t offer other items until your bunny finishes growing up.

Can tomatoes make my rabbit sick?

Yes, too many tomatoes can give your rabbit a dangerous case of diarrhea. Green tomatoes are toxic to rabbits and shouldn’t be offered at all.

Can rabbits eat tomato plants?

Tomatoes are interesting – even though they’re deadly nightshades, the fruit is safe and edible for us and for our bunnies. Tomato plants, leaves, and stems are a different story, though: Don’t ever feed your rabbit tomato plants – not even the upper leaf portion or “cap” on top of a tomato. These plant parts are highly toxic, and can make your rabbit very sick.

Anne

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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