Whenever you hear the word pumpkin, the first thing that pops up in your head is Casper The Friendly Ghost and spooky season. With the season changing, people start including pumpkins in their lives.
Some add it as a carved decoration item, others drink pumpkin spice lattes, and many like to cook it. As the pumpkin fruit becomes available in the market and neighborhoods, many rabbit owners start worrying about their pet’s safety. Only one question engulfs a rabbit’s owner’s mind, can rabbits eat pumpkins?
Rabbits can and would love to stuff their tiny faces full of pumpkins. This famous fruit of the squash family is rich in minerals and vitamins that will keep your bunny healthy and happy. However, due to high sugar content, feed your rabbit only a minute quantity to a rabbit.
Pumpkins are a sweet treat for people. Adults love to eat it, and children love to carve it. It has become a symbol of something festive and joyful. Your bunny feels the same way when it smells and sees a delicious-looking pumpkin. Keep reading to become a pumpkin master for your precious pet rabbit.
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How Much Pumpkin Can Your Bunny Eat?
Rabbits need a balanced diet for a healthy life. It is crucial to provide them with all the nutrients that are good for your bunny’s smooth internal functioning.
Rabbits are simple creatures of the wild. Your bunny quickly digests simple and noncomplex diets than carbs, high sugar, etc. As grazing animals, bunnies love to eat fresh food. Your rabbit will appreciate a fresh chopped pumpkin in its mouth once in a while.
Pumpkins have a high carbs value and high sugar, so it is of utmost importance to feed a minimal amount of it to your rabbit. Feed only 1 or 2 tbsp of pumpkin to your rabbit against 5lbs of its weight. Feed fresh pumpkin as a treat once or twice a week only.
What Parts of Pumpkin Can Your Precious Bunny Eat?
Usually, when talking about grazing animals, it is believed that they can eat every part of all plants. That might be true for many animals, but not your fragile pet rabbit.
Rabbits have a sensitive digestive system that requires extra caution. Your bunny will eat anything you put in front of it as long as it is fresh and tasty. It is your responsibility to know what is best for your cute pet. Rabbits cannot eat all forms and parts of a pumpkin. Let’s discuss them one by one.
The fruit of pumpkins is the safest for your pet rabbit. The fruit is the central part of the plant and contains the most nutrients that can benefit your bunny. You can give it chopped and in a low quantity once or twice a week.
Never feed your rabbit seeds, whether they be of a pumpkin or anything else. Many people believe seeds are healthy, yes, for humans. Rabbits are like babies. Seeds are a choking hazard for your precious pet. No matter how attentive you are when your bunny is trying out seeds, it will be a matter of seconds till your bunny chokes. Do not take the risk.
Bunnies love fresh and raw food. Your precious rabbit will act like a snobbish child if you feed it canned food. Furthermore, its sensitive stomach will not be able to handle the processed food, resulting in a sick bunny.
Any cooked food is a big no for feeding your bunny rabbit. Bunnies only eat fresh and raw hay, vegetables, fruits, and flowers. Cooked food upsets their stomachs.
Your bunny can eat the leaves, but they should not. The leaves of a pumpkin contain a large amount of calcium that is harmful to your bunny.
The flowers are also edible for your bunny rabbit but in small portions due to their high calcium content.
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How to Feed Pumpkin to Your Pet Bunny Rabbit?
When you decide to feed your precious rabbit some pumpkin, do the following:
- Wash off all the pesticides or insect repellants from the pumpkin.
- Try to buy it from a trustworthy farm, so it is organic.
- Inspect it for bugs, molt, or wilting.
- Remove any yellowing or rotten pieces.
- Remove the pumpkin seeds and only serve the fruit to your bunny.
- Cut the pumpkin into small chewable pieces to avoid choking.
When introducing the pumpkin to your rabbit, observe your pet for 24 hours for any behavioral changes. If your bunny exhibits any signs of discomfort, it means it is reacting to the pumpkin. Please do not give it anymore, and contact your vet immediately.
How Does Pumpkin Benefit Your Pet Rabbit?
It would be best if you always weighed the benefits of food before feeding it to your precious furry friend. Rabbits are like children and require a lot of attention and care.
When choosing what to feed your pet, you must keep your bunny’s fragility, health, organs, dislikes, and ever-growing teeth in mind.
Pumpkins are full of nutrients, minerals, and vitamins that would help you maintain your precious rabbit’s health. A healthy bunny means a heavier wallet and a happier you. Here are a few good things that a pumpkin will bring to your rabbit’s life:
- The pumpkin has vitamin A, which is excellent for keeping your bunny’s eyesight sharp and immune system strong.
- This fruit also contains vitamin C, which benefits your rabbit’s health.
- Pumpkins are rich in antioxidants. These help your bunny fight free radicals and prevent degenerative diseases.
- Pumpkins help your bunny keep healthy eyes, skin, and heart because this fruit has carotenoids.
- There is an adequate of fiber present in pumpkins. It helps your bunny with digestion and controls its sugar level.
How is Overfeeding Pumpkin Bad for Your Pet Rabbit?
Every food you give your pet rabbit will have some cons. Pumpkins are no different. As this fruit is high in nutrition, it has some cautions. Keep the following in mind while feeding pumpkin to your pet, and all should go well:
- Pumpkins have a high starch and sugar content. Due to this, it is hard for your bunny to digest this fruit in larger quantities. Your bunny can have an upset stomach if overfed, as it disrupts your rabbit’s gut flora.
- Pumpkin seeds are a significant risk. They are small, slippery, and pointy. The pointiness of these seeds can be harmful as they can damage your pet’s insides and choke.
- Too much pumpkin cause diarrhea in your bunny. Pumpkins have high water content. Excessive intake of watery foods causes your bunny to have runny stool and pain in the stomach.
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What to Do If Your Bunny Reacts to Pumpkins?
If you notice your rabbit exhibiting any reactive signs mentioned above, stop giving it a pumpkin. No matter how much your bunny loves it, do not cave. Call your vet and book an appointment.
Keep your pet calm and stress-free as much as possible. When a bunny gets physically sick, it gets emotionally disturbed as well. Stroke its head or pet its back till the vet sees your precious pet rabbit.
Pumpkins are an excellent treat for your pet rabbit. However, only if given in a moderate amount. An excessive amount of food can harm your rabbit unless it is hay. Hay is the only food that a bunny can eat in an unlimited amount.
Mix every other fresh food in its diet, only 10-15%. If you follow these ratios, you will have a healthy bunny. Giving your rabbit too many treats will result in rotten teeth, unhealthy digestion, obesity, and fatality.
As a pet parent, you are responsible for making wise decisions on behalf of your voiceless furry friend. Choose good foods for your pet and enjoy watching it hop, run, and zoom daily!