Breakfast cereals are one of the tastiest treats you can give yourself early in the morning. Whether you like a sweet crunch or a salty bang, there is always a cereal that can fulfill your craving.
When you have a kid, you want to share your experiences with it. It is the same when you have a pet. Most pet parents love to share their food with their pets. However, not all human food is good for animals, especially rabbits, due to their sensitive nature. So, can rabbits eat cheerios?
Rabbits can eat plain cheerios without you having to worry about their health. Cheerios contain sugar, fat, sodium, and fiber. Due to the components of cheerios, you should give them to your bunny in fewer amounts as a treat.
Giving cheerios to your pet rabbit can be a fun experience for you both. Your rabbit would love the crunch and taste of the ever-loved cereal. However, like everything you feed your rabbit, cheerios need to be served in moderation. Too much of anything is bad for your pet rabbit. Keep reading to know more on how to give your bunny a cheerio-tastic experience!
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You Should Only Give Plain Cheerios to Your Bunny
Cereals come in all flavors and sizes. Cheerios have many flavors that humans can choose from. However, sadly, only plain cheerios are healthy for your furry friend as a treat.
As much as flavored cheerios sound tasty, they are off-limits for your little guy. Honey and nut cheerios contain a higher amount of sugar, fat, calcium, phosphorus, and sodium. Too many of these components can cause health issues for your bunny.
Luckily, plain cheerios only have a whiff of sugar, sodium, fat, and fiber. It makes them digestible by your furry pet bunny. Even though plain cheerios have low harmful components, you should still feed your bunny these as a treat once in a while to maintain a balanced diet.
Benefits of Plain Cheerios for Your Little Rabbit
Before feeding your fragile pet rabbit anything, you should always research the pros and cons of that food. Even the slightest hiccup in the ingredients can cause severe health difficulties for your precious pet.
Knowing what benefits a food will provide your baby rabbit should be the top priority before buying anything. Here is a list of things that cheerios offer your pet rabbit:
Cheerios Are Made Of Oats
Oats are one of the healthiest options for your pet rabbit as they are a good source of fiber. Fiber is beneficial for your precious pet bunny as it helps maintain a healthy bowel movement and metabolism.
Good Source Of Vitamins
Cheerios have a punch of vitamins packed in them. Plain cheerios contain minerals and vitamins like thiamine, iron, and magnesium.
Great For Picky Eaters
Bunnies can be quite the picky eaters when it comes to accepting food. If your rabbit loves to wiggle its tail in disapproval of most food you put out in front of it, cheerios might be the answer. This cereal has all the necessary nutrients for your bunny and has a crunchy texture, which your bunny would love.
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How Many Cheerios Should You Feed Your Rabbit?
If it was for rabbits to decide, they would eat the whole pack of food in one go. Bunnies are grazing animals, and they love to munch constantly. Your furry friends prefer fresh food like hay, vegetables, and occasional fruit. However, they would never say no to good-tasting processed food.
As a pet owner, it is your responsibility to know how much of what can be good or harmful for your furry pet rabbit. When it comes to treats, it is always advised to give a minute amount of it in a week. It should be given once or twice a week in one meal to your bunny and not more.
When serving plain cheerios to your bunny as a treat, give 5 pieces per serving. By 5 pieces, it means 5 cheerios, not 5 bowls or packs of cheerios. This cereal has a high sugar and fat content, which is harmful to your little furry friend if given in large quantities. To balance that, only give the amount mentioned above once or twice a week in a meal.
Disadvantages of Overfeeding Plain Cheerios to Your Rabbit
Humans get sick when they overeat or overdo something. Depending on the substance, we can get food poisoning, acidity issues, upset stomachs, or vomiting. With our thick skin, we are still susceptible to many food-related diseases.
The life of a fragile bunny rabbit is ten times harder. The littlest of changes in the wind can make your bunny anxious, stressed, and sick. Bunny rabbits have sensitive digestive tracts. Once upset, they can cause turmoil in your rabbit’s health and weaken its immune system. As a result, your bunny will get exposed to various diseases.
Plain cheerios contain essential nutrients for your bunny, but due to their high sugar content, they can be a tricky treat to manage. Excessive sugar intake can cause your bunny plenty of trouble. Here are a few health issues overfeeding cheerios can cause your precious bunny rabbit:
Plain cheerios are made of cornstarch. An excessive amount of which can cause your bunny to have loose stools. If you observe your little pet’s fecal matter being runny, you fed the poor guy a bit too much plain cheerios.
Cheerios are low-fiber food. They are high in carbs. This lack of fiber can cause your precious baby bunny to lose its healthy gut mechanism. Due to the high carb content in cheerios, the rabbit’s gut flora can start having a lack of healthy bacteria. This imbalance can result in serious digestive issues that can be fatal for your little rabbit.
There are signs that you can look out for before it is too late:
- Depression in your bunny
- Hunched posture
- Loss of appetite
Starchy foods like cheerios can cause your bunny to gain weight. In addition to the starch, plain cheerios also have sugar in them. The combination of these two can make your bunny obese.
Obesity brings many complications with it. An overweight bunny has trouble hopping and loses interest in physical activity, resulting in further weight gain. Furthermore, your precious pet rabbit will not be able to reach all parts of its body to groom. It will also be unable to eat its cecotropes, which carry essential nutrients for a bunny’s longer lifespan.
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What to Do If Your Bunny Gets Sick Due to Cheerios
If your precious pet exhibits any of the disorders mentioned above, stop giving it cheerios. Book an appointment with your vet right away.
While you wait for the doctor, you should do everything possible to make your bunny comfortable. When rabbits get physically sick, their stress levels skyrocket. A high level of anxiety is hard for your bunny’s fragile heart. You should try to calm your bunny by giving it extra attention and love by stroking its fur or rubbing its head.
Fresh Alternatives to Cheerios
If plain cheerios do not agree with your bunny as a treat, do not frown. There are plenty of fresh vegetables, fruits, and flowers that your bunny will prefer over cheerios. As herbivores that like to munch all the time, rabbits are designed to eat fresh foods.
Here is a list of fresh foods that will be perfect for your bunny as a treat once or twice a week:
Make sure to peel and seed the fruits before giving them to your precious pet. The fruit of the above-mentioned foods is the safest for your precious pet rabbit as a treat.
Your bunny will appreciate these fresh fruits as an alternative to plain cheerios. Plus, you will not have to worry too much about the side effects of these, as long as you feed them 1 tsp per 2lbs of your bunny’s weight one or twice per week per meal.
Raising a pet rabbit is a tough job. They have fragile bodies and even more sensitive immune systems. Everything is linked to your pet rabbit’s body. If it faces a physical disease, it will get emotionally affected too.
As a pet parent, it is on your shoulders to provide your voiceless baby pet with the best life there is. When it comes to treats, remember to measure the quantity against your baby rabbit’s weight as mentioned above. Stick to the lesser amount no matter how much your pet rabbit asks for.
Prefer fresh treats over boxed treats as they have fewer chances of preservatives and other harmful artificial substances. Taking care of your little guy is easy if you are ready for the responsibility.