Can guinea pigs eat Brussel sprouts?
Most guinea pig owners testify that guinea pigs are adorable pets and taking care of them is unchallenging and effortless.
However, anybody who likes to take care of guinea pigs must pay keen attention to their diet.
Someone who wants to own a guinea pig must learn more about the beneficial and safe foods guinea pigs need in their healthy daily diet.
Guinea pigs love vegetables and fruits, and, in this article, we will explain whether Brussel sprouts are good for guinea pigs.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Brussel Sprouts?
You want your guinea pigs to be happy and healthy, so you should know that guinea pigs can eat Brussel sprouts.
Brussel sprouts belong to the cabbage family, just like cauliflower and kale.
Consequently, guinea pigs can eat cabbages, cauliflower, and kale.
Some of the most delicious and beneficial fruits and vegetables you can offer to your guinea pigs (apart from cabbages, cauliflower, kale, and Brussels sprouts) include broccoli, carrot tops, silverbeet, mint, and fruits such as mango, papaya, apricots, bananas and apples (but without seeds; apple seeds are poisonous to guinea pigs).
To ensure variety in your guinea pigs’ healthy daily diet, feed them with a mixture of these fruits and vegetables.
However, never offer them the same type of fruits and vegetables every day.
Feeding your guinea pigs with a particular mixture two to three times a week.
Brussel sprouts house healthy nutrients that include Vitamin C, vitamin K, fiber, and protein.
Nonetheless, it is not a good idea to feed guinea pigs with Brussel sprouts every day.
By providing a mixture of various foods, you will ensure your guinea pigs’ well-balanced and nutritious diet.
What Are Brussel Sprouts?
Brussel sprouts flourish between September and February.
They are exceptionally nutritious and a great source of beneficial vitamins and minerals.
There are lots of amazing facts about Brussel sprouts and how they relate to guinea pigs.
However, here are a few facts that should be considered, and perhaps, exciting to be known about Brussel sprouts:
Cabbages and Brussel sprouts belong to the same family, the Gemmifera group of cabbages.
In the 16th century, Brussel sprouts emerged as a popular vegetable in Brussel, Belgium (hence the name).
They look like baby cabbage, but they are much healthier because Brussel sprouts contain a larger concentration of vitamin C and A, folic acid, potassium, magnesium, and phosphorus.
However, cabbage would win if you’d be looking for the number of calories these two vegetables contain.
With fewer calories compared to Brussels sprouts and with fewer nutrients, cabbage loses the battle!
For instance, if you’d compare broccoli to Brussel sprouts, you’d see that broccoli has more calories, but also more fat, carbs, sugar, fiber, and protein.
This is why we have to emphasize that mixing fruits and vegetables is important for your guinea pig’s wellbeing.
Otherwise, you’d be feeding your guinea pig with foods that lack certain nutrients but are rich in others, which could cause different health problems.
Therefore, provide your guinea pigs with raw and thoroughly washed Brussel sprouts two to three times a week, and always in a combination with other types of fruits and vegetables.
What Is the Nutritional Value of Brussel Sprouts?
Nutritional value of raw Brussel sprouts per 100 g (3.5 oz):
- Energy 179 kJ (43 kcal)
- Carbohydrates 8.95 g
- Sugars 2.2 g
- Dietary fiber 3.8 g
- Fat 0.3 g
- Protein 3.48 g
- Vitamin A (beta-Carotene lutein zeaxanthin) 38 μg
- Vitamin B1 0.139 mg
- Vitamin B2 0.09 mg
- Vitamin B3 0.745 mg
- Vitamin B5 0.309 mg
- Vitamin B6 0.219 mg
- Folate (Vitamin B9) 61 μg
- Vitamin C 85 mg
- Vitamin E 0.88 mg
- Vitamin K 177 μg
- Calcium 42 mg
- Iron 1.4 mg
- Magnesium 23 mg
- Manganese 10.337 mg
- Phosphorus 69 mg
- Potassium 389 mg
- Sodium 25 mg
- Zinc 0.42 mg
- Water 86 g
As you can see, all these vitamins and minerals are beneficial to your health as well as to the health of your guinea pigs.
However, guinea pigs can become sick if they eat too much food rich in calcium and oxalates.
As guinea pigs need vegetables every day, the best thing you can do for your pets is to feed them with a variety of veggies.
Are Brussel Sprouts Good for Guinea Pigs?
When feeding your guinea pigs Brussel sprouts, you will provide them with healthy food that’s a good source of vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber.
Therefore, raw Brussel sprouts are good for guinea pigs.
Never feed your guinea pigs with cooked or baked food as their stomach cannot digest dairy products, meat, and any type of processed food.
Let’s see why Brussel sprouts are great for guinea pigs.
Your guinea pigs need vitamin C as a vital nutrient to enhance their growth and healthy living.
Guinea pigs need much vitamin C to prevent scurvy, which is a common and potentially fatal disease among these small animals caused by vitamin C deficiency.
Foods rich in vitamin C are imperative to keep them healthy.
Besides, vitamin C helps faster healing and reparation of essential tissues in the body.
Brussel sprouts contain antioxidants that enhance your pet’s immune system.
Feeding guinea pigs with food that is rich in antioxidants prevents the possibility of inflammation.
Also, foods rich in antioxidants enhances their health and their immune system.
Brussels sprouts are popular for their dietary fiber richness that aids the digestion of food.
Foods rich in fiber are also very important for guinea pigs.
Apart from hay, feeding your guinea pigs with other beneficial food that’s low in sugar and calcium but rich in fiber and vitamin C (such as Brussel sprouts) enhances their digestion and digestive system.
Vitamin K is a part of the nutrients in Brussel sprouts.
Some people think that vitamin K is essential for guinea pigs only when they are at a tender age because it is then when they grow their bones.
However, vitamin K and other vital vitamins are necessary throughout a guinea pig’s whole life.
Also, vitamin K helps in reducing blood pressure and plays an integral role in blood clotting.
Why Brussel Sprouts are Good for Guinea Pigs?
Apart from the health benefits and nutritional value of Brussel sprouts, there are many other reasons why including this vegetable in your guinea pig’s diet is a good idea.
Let’s check out the most important one.
Brussel Sprouts Are Easy to Incorporate into Your Guinea Pig’s Diet
Guinea pigs love Brussel sprouts!
They find this vegetable quite tasty, which is great because of the many health benefits of this vegetable.
However, despite the nutritional value of this vegetable, you should never give more than one to two small Brussel sprouts two to three times a week to your piggy.
All you need to do is wash them thoroughly before giving them to your pet.
Do Guinea Pigs Love Brussel Sprouts?
Yes, most guinea pigs love Brussel sprouts.
However, if your guinea pig is not thrilled with this vegetable, it’s okay.
Just like humans, every guinea pig has a personality of its own.
Therefore, not all guinea pigs love all types of food.
Generally, guinea pigs enjoy feeding on fresh, leafy, and green vegetables
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Brussel Sprout Stalks?
Yes, guinea pigs can also eat Brussel sprout stalks but also in moderation because Brussel sprout stems contain lots of fiber.
Although fiber is important, when consuming too much fiber found in vegetables, a guinea pig can suffer from digestion problems, diarrhea, and loose stool.
Brussel sprout stems are very good for your pet’s teeth.
If you decide to offer your pet Brussel sprout stalks, make sure to give them only fresh and green stems.
Also, wash them thoroughly before feeding your guinea pigs with this part of the vegetable.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Brussel Sprout Leaves?
Yes, guinea pigs can eat Brussel sprout leaves.
However, the leaves of Brussel sprouts are rich in calcium, which is not a good thing for your guinea pig.
Foods that are rich in calcium can cause kidney and bladder stones, which lead to urinary problems and pain.
While the leaves of Brussel sprouts are difficult to find in grocery stores, they are tasty to guinea pigs and they enjoy them.
The tip of the stalk of Brussel sprouts is also delicious for consumption.
So when challenged with the decision to feed your guinea pigs the tops of Brussel sprout, don’t hesitate!
While the tops of the stalk are delicious, they are also beneficial to them because of their nutritional value.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Cooked Brussel Sprouts?
No, your guinea pigs should never have the opportunity to eat any type of cooked, baked, fried, or in any other way processed food.
Guinea pigs can only eat fresh and raw fruits and vegetables!
The main source of their diet is hay.
Apart from that, you should offer them daily a small amount of guinea pig pellets, and about 1/3 of a cup of fresh and raw vegetables and fruits.
Are There Risks of Feeding Brussel Sprouts to Guinea Pigs?
Certain vegetables such as Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cabbage, asparagus, and cauliflower cause gas, bloating, and digestion issues that cause diarrhea or loose stool.
Apart from hay and guinea pig pellets, guinea pigs enjoy eating fresh green vegetables, but one must always be sure that those vegetables are safe for your pet.
The oxalate acid that is present in Brussel sprouts can damage the digestive tract of guinea pigs and also cause gastric bloat that can be lethal.
When you feed your guinea pigs Brussel sprouts, remove the uneaten ones after about one hour to prevent your pets from getting sick.
Let’s check out the negative sides of feeding your guinea pigs with too many Brussel sprouts.
Brussel sprouts contain calcium and sodium.
Feeding your guinea pigs with too much of this vegetable can cause bladder or kidney stones, which are dangerous to your pet.
By feeding guinea pigs Brussel sprouts in moderation, you will avoid urinary complications in your pet!
Brussel sprouts can cause bloating, diarrhea, and gases.
To avoid digestion problems in your pet, feed your pet Brussel sprouts only two to three times a week with not more than one to two small Brussel sprouts.
How Much Brussel Sprouts Can Guinea Pigs Eat?
How many Brussel sprouts guinea pigs can eat? Can guinea pigs eat Brussel sprouts every day?
Brussel sprouts are generally safe for guinea pigs.
However, daily consumption of this vegetable is not advisable.
You can feed your guinea pigs with one to two small Brussel sprouts twice or thrice per week.
However, include other fruits or vegetables into their daily diet.
Overfeeding your guinea pigs can create tremendous health complications.
Start introducing Brussel sprouts into your guinea pig diet by feeding them with only one small piece of this vegetable.
You can include two Brussel sprouts per serving if your guinea pig’s behavioral pattern hasn’t changed, nor has the food upset their stomach.
Overall, Brussel sprouts are very healthy for guinea pigs and humans alike.
However, while you will process Brussel sprouts to make delicacies for your human family members, remember that you cannot (should not) feed your guinea pigs in the same way.
Always provide your guinea pigs with fresh and raw fruits and vegetables.
Brussel sprouts are not an exception to the rule.
One to two small Brussel sprouts once or twice a week (never more than three times per week) is an ideal serving size for your pets.
One guinea pig should not eat more than two Brussel sprouts per serving.
Likewise, never exceed the recommended serving size.
Aside from Brussel sprouts, kale, turnip greens, parsley, oranges, and other food high in vitamin C can enhance the health of your guinea pigs.