Question: Can rabbits eat grapes?
Answer: Yes, but only occasionally as a treat.
What’s a Rabbit’s Natural Diet?
Rabbits are herbivores, which means their diet includes grasses, plants, grains, vegetables, and fruits. Since a rabbit’s energy requirement is usually determined by temperature, the amount of food it will take will depend on its surroundings. Another thing that determines how much a rabbit can eat is its size. So bigger rabbits need more food than smaller ones, and so do pregnant females.
Wild rabbits and domestic rabbits have different dietary needs. A wild rabbit will eat any grass to basically satisfy its urge to chew, and also for nutrient and maintenance of dental health. Meanwhile, a domestic rabbit gets most of its nutrients from hay.
Whether wild or domestic, rabbits need food rich in fiber, protein, and amino acids; they also need vitamins like A, D, C, E, etc., and minerals like calcium and sodium.
Where Can Rabbits Get Their Nutrients?
Rabbits can get all their nutrients from hay and food pellets, with vegetables and fruits serving as complements. Experts recommend that hay should make up about 80% of the rabbit’s meal, as it contains most of the nutrients it needs. Then 5%-15% green vegetable and fruits, in variety, could make up a portion.
Grapes and Rabbits
Without a doubt, grapes are like plant-based foods, and rabbits will always eat this kind of food. These fruits have some nutrients beneficial to the rabbit, such as fiber, B, and K Vitamins. Rabbits can eat grape leaves, seeds, and stems.
However, as nutritious as these fruits are, grapes also contain lots of water and sugar that may be harmful to the rabbit if taken in excess. As a result, you have to limit how often you feed your rabbit with grapes.
How Safe are Grapes for Rabbits?
Grapes contain plenty of sugar, and once a rabbit gets an unrestricted taste of this sweetness, it might ignore all other foods and concentrate only on grapes. This is dangerous for your animal. Too much intake of sugar and carbohydrate in grapes can cause obesity in the rabbit.
Other health issues may occur, such as bloating, intestinal distress, and diarrhea. It can also affect your animal’s natural digestion process. When this happens, dehydration or liver failure may occur. The worst that could happen to a rabbit that overeats grapes is gastrointestinal tract stasis which can be deadly if it isn’t treated on time.
Another type of grape you should avoid giving your pet is an unwashed one. Unwashed grapes can harbor pesticides and other chemicals that can be very dangerous to your rabbit’s health. If you don’t want to worry about the chemicals on the grape, it would be best if you purchased organic fruits instead.
How Safe are Rabbits for Baby Rabbits?
We also have to focus on the baby bunnies since their diet is just as important as an adult’s. Do not be deceived by the grape’s sweetness – baby rabbits can’t eat them until they’re about a year. As a matter of fact, baby rabbits can’t eat any fruit or leafy greens until they’re older.
Due to their sensitive digestive system, babies should be allowed to stick with hay and pellets until they’ve adjusted to the diet.
What Quantity of Grape Can a Rabbit Eat?
While baby rabbits can’t have any, adult rabbits should be given just one large grape or two small grapes at a single serving. Yes, this quantity might not be enough for the rabbit, but we’re trying to protect them from the harmful effects of overeating fruits, especially grapes.
If this is your first time feeding your rabbits grapes, you should take things slowly and not try to get them to eat a large quantity at first. Instead of giving your rabbit one grape, you can give him half that size.
After the rabbit eats the fruit, watch out for reactions. Any sign of discomfort is simply proof that your animal’s digestive system is not a fan of grapes. That would mean that you stop feeding him the grape. Heartbreaking, yes, but we have to do what’s best for the rabbit.
If the rabbit shows no signs of discomfort or diarrhea within 24 hours, that might be a sign that you can go ahead feeding the grapes to your rabbit. Still, limit it to half the normal size. After days of monitoring, and it looks like all is well, you can then increase the quantity of the fruit to one large size or two small sizes.
Since rabbits shouldn’t have too much of this, you need to give them grapes only once or twice a week. Your rabbit might not agree to this arrangement, but you have to be strict about it. They may not know harmful too many grapes can be, but you do. Do not fall for their googly eyes.
What Other Fruits Can I Feed my Rabbit?
Since the plan is not to get these animals addicted to grapes, you might want to introduce them to other fruits. These fruits should also be given to the rabbit in small quantities. Some other fruits that rabbits can eat in moderate amounts are:
- Apples (without the seeds)
- Oranges (without the peel)
- Apricots (just the fruits), etc.
Some fruits and vegetables are unsafe for rabbits and should be avoided altogether. Some of these are:
- Rhubarb, and so on.
Who doesn’t love grapes, right? They are sweet and juicy, with some of the best nutrients you can ever hope to find in fruit. Still, we all know how bad too much sugar can be for humans, not talk of animals.
Grapes contain too much sugar than your rabbit can handle, and this is why you should only feed your rabbit grapes in small quantities. Your bunnies may not know it, but you’re doing them a whole lot of good by providing this fruit in moderate amounts.