Can guinea pigs eat cherries?
Guinea pigs are herbivorous animals that digest dietary fiber and convert it to energy for growth and development.
Along with the normal pelleted foods and high-quality hay (or fresh grass), this animal feeds well on vegetables and fruits.
You may be already giving your guinea pigs some friendly fruits such as strawberries, kiwi, apples, and oranges, but how about cherries?
Do you think it is good to include some cherries in the normal diet of your guinea pigs?
In this article, there is more information on cherries and guinea pigs, which will help you decide whether you need to feed your pet with cherries.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Cherries?
Ever wondered whether it is right or wrong giving your guinea pigs some cherries?
You may be tempted to try out with a small piece, but you aren’t sure whether it is the right thing to experiment with your pet.
You can feed your guinea pigs with cherries to supply them with special nutrients, including vitamin C.
Both sour and sweet cherries are good food materials for your guinea pigs, provided you do not feed them with the twigs, pit, leaves, and stems of the cherry plant.
Those parts contain toxins called cyanide that can be poisonous to your pet.
Just like any other feed, you must limit the number of cherries you give to your pet.
Feed one to two cherries at a time and provide them once or twice per month.
Feeding your guinea pigs with too many cherries can bring about health complications such as excessive weight gain and diabetes.
Guinea pigs love cherries.
Like we had seen before, guinea pigs love cherries.
However, you must provide the right amount of fruit to avoid adverse health effects on your pet.
Ensure that you provide the right parts (fruits) and avoid giving other sections of the plant which contain poisonous compounds.
Cherry fruits have a lot of health benefits when you feed them correctly to your guinea pigs.
They provide the following health benefits to your pet:
Source of antioxidants
Cherries are a rich source of antioxidants, which help fight free radicals that can damage the cells.
The antioxidants in cherries also have anti-inflammatory effects.
The antioxidants in the cherries boost your guinea pig body activity and prevent the development of diseases such as arthritis, cancer, among other chronic heart diseases.
Source of vitamin C
Guinea pigs cannot synthesize and store vitamin C, a crucial nutrient in preventing diseases and maintaining health.
Cherries contain significant amounts of vitamin C, which is an important nutrient to your pet.
Consumption of cherries, therefore, supplies vitamin C and improves the health of your guinea pigs.
Cardiovascular health benefits
Cherries have cardiovascular health benefits to your pet.
They regulate glucose metabolisms and cholesterol levels in the body.
If you suspect your guinea pig is at risk of developing cardiovascular diseases, provide the cherries in the right amounts.
They enhance the guinea pig blood levels and contribute to the physical and mental wellbeing of the pet.
Dietary source of fiber
Cherries are rich sources of diary fibers.
They stimulate the digestion process and maintain the balance of the guinea pigs’ heaty microorganisms, hence promoting their local immunity.
Most feed provided to the guinea pigs is dry matter.
Feeds such as hay have very low moisture content in them.
Cherries have a lot of fluids in them.
Feeding cherries to your guinea pigs will supply water to their diet, supplementing daily fluid intake.
Other health benefits
Apart from providing vitamin C, antioxidants and promoting heart health, cherries have other additional health benefits to your guinea pigs.
Cherries contain some carbohydrates and fiber that provide energy for the growth and strength of your guinea pigs.
Both sweet and sour cherries are good sources of vitamins and minerals that are beneficial to your pet.
They contain vitamin C, B1, B2, K, B9, B5, B3, and choline.
They are also rich in important minerals such as magnesium, manganese, calcium, iron, potassium, and zinc.
Guinea pig is a good pet that brings happiness and joy to your family.
It would help if you made it happy by providing a delicious cherry slice.
Can you serve your guinea pigs with cherries?
To provide the best answer, let us look at the nutritional facts of cherries.
Cherries have some proteins, carbohydrates, sugars, vitamins, and minerals in different proportions.
For 100 grams of the sweet cherries fruits, your guinea pig can get the following amounts of nutrients:
- 63g of the carbohydrates
- 12.8 grams of sugar
- 2.1 g of dietary fiber
- 0.2 grams of fats
- 1.1 grams of proteins
Following are the vitamins present in cherries:
- Vitamins K – 3%
- Vitamins C – 12 %
- Choline – 6.1%
- Vitamin B6 – 2%
- Folic acid – 2%
- Niacin – 1%
- Pantothenic acid – 2%
- Riboflavin 2 %
- Thiamine – 2%
Cherries have a good mineral profile that is beneficial to your guinea pig.
It has the following mineral contents for every 100 grams of cherry fruit.
- Calcium – 13mg
- Iron – o.4 mg
- Magnesium – 11mg
- Phosphorus – 21 mg
- Zinc – 0.1 mg
If you wonder if sweet and sour cherries differ in their nutritional composition, the answer is yes.
Sour cherries contain 10 % of potassium and 10.8 g of vitamin C.
Both of them, however, provide enough nutrients to your guinea pig.
How Often Can Guinea Pigs Eat Cherries?
You may be thinking of how often to feed your guinea pigs with cherries with the above nutritional composition!
The recommendation is thrice a week.
For adult guinea pigs, provide one cherry fruit for a day.
For a baby guide pig, consider providing only a half-cut for a day.
Cherries are good food materials for feeding your guinea pigs when you provide them in the right amounts.
Overfeeding cherries will have adverse health effects on your guinea pigs.
Cherries are among the favorite foods of your guinea pigs.
If you don’t control the number of fruits you give to your pet, they will likely eat in excess amounts.
The following are some of the risks to consider due to overfeeding of your guinea pigs:
Burned mouth due to excess acidity
Similar to other fruits, cherries contain a lot of acids.
Feeding excess amounts of the fruits to your pet will make them burn their mouth and face difficulty eating other foods.
You will notice your guinea pigs develop difficulty in eating even though they may be hungry.
The most dangerous part is when they develop Cheilitis, which is more deadly.
Alternatively, it is advisable to go for organic cherries that have less exposure to harmful chemicals.
High amounts of dietary fiber contents
Cherries contain a significant amount of dietary fiber, and fiber is good for your pet; however, providing the cherries’ in excess amount will result in high fiber consumption that can cause constipation in your guinea pigs.
A cup of cherries can contain up to 2.5 g of fiber.
If you don’t control its consumption, constipation can occur.
Change in the type of feeds or overfeeding can lead to diarrhea in your guinea pigs.
If you need to change your feeds, ensure you introduce a new feed gradually.
It would help if you started by proving small amounts slowly as your pet adapts to the new feed for cherries.
Feeding your Guinea pig with excess cherries above the recommended amount can be lethal and can even lead to death.
Excess weight gain
Excess weight gain is among the common problem with guinea pigs due to the high intake of calories.
Cherries contain many sugar cats that can contribute to obesity in the guinea pigs if you don’t regulate their consumption.
Consider feeding cherries to your pet as a treat and not as a meal.
They have high sugar levels.
The main diet of the guinea pigs should have fruits, hay, and vegetables.
Consider supplementing them with cherries occasionally as a treat to control the intake of sugars and obesity.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Cherry Leaves?
It is not recommendable to give your guinea pigs any other part of the cherry plant.
Only feed them with the cherry fruits.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Cherry Branches?
The leaves and branches of the cherry plants are not edible.
They contain toxic compounds that may be lethal to your cavies.
The cherry blossoms and the seeds contain traces of the toxic cyanide compound that could adversely affect your guinea pigs’ health.
Consider purchasing the seedless cherries for your guinea pigs instead of those with seeds.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Canned Cherries?
You cannot feed your guinea pigs with canned cherries.
Always feed your guinea pigs with fresh, organic, and seedless cherries.
Canned cherries have artificial additives such as flavoring agents, sweeteners, coloring agents, and preservatives that may be harmful to your pets.
Such additives can interfere with the guinea pig’s immunity and the digestive system resulting in poor health.
Quick facts about cherries as food for the guinea pigs
Cherries are stone fruits in two major varieties—the sweet cherries, which are also called the wild cherries, and the sour cherries.
Another incredible fact about the cherries is that they belong to the same family as the roses.
- Africa has another variety of cherries that are called African cherries.
- They grow in Africa and are common in the rainy seasons.
- Cherries are said to have a long history of existence dating from 300BC.
- Cherries have a history of being diuretic herbs.
- The word cherry has a Latin origin.
- The Latin word ‘Cerasum’ is a locality in ancient Greece, formally ‘Karasous’ and Giresun, currently in Turkey.
- In history, the place is believed to be the first European locality to receive the cherry plant.
- The word cherry is also a synonym for the cherry tree, which has multiple uses in carpentry.
- The tree is used to produce furniture items such as cuttings, tables, office desks, boards, and chairs.
- The tree furniture product has a great value due to its golden brown color.
- The country with the highest production of sweet cherries is Turkey, which produces 445,556 tons per year.
- Russia is the highest producer of sour cherries, with an annual production of approximately 19800 tons.
- Other countries that produce both sweet and sour cherries include the united states, Spain, Iran, Chile, Italy, Uzbekistan, Romania, Greece, Russia, Portland, Serbia, Azerbaijan, and Hungary.
- In the USA, Washington is the highest producer of sweet cherries and contributes to 62% of the courtier’s total production.
- Michigan’s Eau Claire town is the Cherry pit spitting capital of the world is due to its popular farm that hosts the international cherry pit spit contest as an annual event.
Do Guinea Pigs Love Eating Cherries?
If you have some organic cherries and wondering whether your pet will enjoy eating them or not, understand that the guinea pigs love the fruits very much.
You give your guinea pigs some cherries and observe them nibble with joy to realize that the cuts are already over.
However, serve the right portion size to avoid the adverse effect resulting from excessive consumption.
What Can Guinea Pigs Eat?
Guinea pig’s diet is mostly consisting of the vegetation that grows close to the ground.
The pet may not get the cherries from the natural habitat.
Even if they did, they could face competition from other animals and birds.
Cherries are not meant for substituting the entire diet of guinea pigs.
There are a lot of other feeds for feeding your pet.
Here are some of the feeds to give your pet daily.
Provide enough fresh hay such as the oat, orchard, or timothy.
Provide pellets of guinea pig foods rich in vitamin C.
You can confirm the packaging material’s recommended packing size.
Provide enough clean and safe water.
Cleaning and refilling of the guinea pig water bottle should be done daily.
Serve about a cup of veggies.
Provide green leafy vegetables and alternate with the crunchy varieties.
Rotate the variety of vegetables you serve your guinea pigs so that you can have many types served within a month.
It is recommendable to break your guinea pig salad into two or three servings so that you can offer them at a different time of the day.
Other fruits and vegetables
Here is another interesting part of the guinea pig diet.
That even though they can consume unlimited amounts of the cherries, there are other options you can substitute the cherries and serve in without limiting the portion size.
When you are looking for the best and healthy substitute for cherries to feed your guinea pig, consider the following foods:
- Summer squash
- Winter squash
- Green beans
- Brussel sprout
- Beet top
- Carrot tops
- Sweet potatoes
- Swiss chard
- Sweet potatoes
- butter lettuce
- Bibb lettuce
- Bell paper
Spend some time reaching on a portion of food to determine if it is safe for your guinea pig, after learning whether it is safe to find out the amount or the serving size recommended for your pet at any age.
Guinea pigs’ diet
Cherries are not the main food to serve in the guinea pigs’ diet.
Other foods to include in the diet as the main feed, then top up the cherries as a treat.
The following are foods to serve as the major meal of the guinea pigs;
Hay is an important component of the guinea pigs’ diet.
It provides fiber that aids digestion and, therefore, should be there for your pet all the time.
Chewing hey enables the wearing down of the guinea pig’s teeth, which grows continuously.
Ensure you are purchasing high-quality hey that are sweet-smelling and free from molds.
You can consider serving timothy hay.
Pellets are commercial feeds for guinea pigs that have a good formulation to balance nutrients, vitamins, and essential nutrients.
Choose the best-pelleted foods with veterinarian approval and follow the packaging material’s guidelines when serving them to your guinea pigs.
You can serve a cup of vegetables a day to your guinea pigs.
Introduce new vegetables gradually and start with one green at a time.
Choose fresh and organically farmed vegetables.
Vegetables and other leafy materials provide rich sources of vitamins and minerals essential for proper growth and promoting good health to your pigs.
Wash all your vegetables to remove any traces of pesticides and other harmful chemicals before serving.
Also, avoid giving cold vegetables.
You can provide the following vegetables to your guinea pig:
- romaine lettuce
- red and green bell pepper
- carrots and carrot tops
- broccoli spears
- other dark green vegetables
Try serving fewer fruits than vegetables due to their high sugar contents.
Daily serving your guinea pigs with small portions of fruits will delight your guinea pig and supply the vitamins C, which the pet is mostly in for it.
Wash all the fruits thoroughly before serving them to your animals.
You may try the following fruits in the guinea diet:
Chews and treats
When serving fruits as treats, your guineas pig should ensure that they do not exceed 10% of the total food intake.
Some commercial treats may contain artificial sweeteners, salts, and sugars.
Read through all the food labels and ensure you select healthy options for your pet all the time.
Provide varieties of fun chews to your pets.
Guinea pigs grow continuously, so it would be appropriate to include some toys, sticks, blocks, and balls, among other chews, to maintain teeth and relieve boredom.
Giving some small animal salt lick could also help as a source of the essential minerals to your guinea pigs.
Are Cherries important in the Management of Scurvy in Guinea Pigs?
Guinea pigs are at a high risk of developing scurvy (vitamin C deficiency) due to their inability to synthesize this type of vitamin in their body.
You need to provide at least 30- 50 mg of vitamin C daily to your guinea pigs to prevent scurvy.
Pellets and treats fortified with vitamin C can help in preventing the deficiency.
Consider serving a diversified and balanced diet to your guinea pig to prevent your pets from scurvy.
Include some cherries as a treat in the diet to provide vitamin C in your pet diet.
Cherries have reasonable amounts of vitamin C that will ensure your pet is free from scurvy.
Are you still in a dilemma about whether or not to feed your guinea pigs with cherries?
Cherries are good for your guinea pigs.
They provide crucial nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, fiber, and water to your pet.
It would help if you were keen on the amount of the cherries you are serving to your Guinea pigs to prevent the development of the adverse effects resulting from the excessive intake.
Only serve the fruits and avoid another cherry plant.
It will save your pet from the harmful campouts present in the plant’s leaves, seeds, and branches.
Seedless organically grown cherries are the best for feeding your guinea pets.
Choose such types of cherries when providing treats to your pet.