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Can Guinea Pigs Eat Fennel? (Serving Size, Hazards & More)

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Tim Rhodes

Can guinea pigs eat fennel?

In this article, we will answer this question and provide guinea pig owners with other beneficial information that they should know when caring for their guinea pigs.

Rest assured that once you finish reading this article you will have all the answers to all your questions and there will be no doubts left about feeding fennel to your guinea pigs.

It’s important to keep in mind that the food we choose makes a difference as it contributes to your guinea pig’s health and overall wellbeing.

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Fennel?

Guinea pigs can eat fennel; this vegetable is beneficial for your guinea pig to eat.

If your guinea pigs show negative signs after you feed them fennel, you should reduce the serving size and feed them other vegetables.

Fennel is rich in calcium, iron, and magnesium.

Feeding your guinea pigs with fennel is one of the best choices you can make regarding your guinea pig’s healthy diet plan.

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Last update on 2021-06-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

What Plants and Vegetables Are Good for Guinea Pigs?

Despite being herbivores, not all plants are good for guinea pigs.

Instead, some plants can be very poisonous to them.

If you are lucky to have a backyard garden, don’t miss the opportunity to grow fennels.

Not only they are good and nutritious to you and your human family members, but they are also great for your guinea pigs.

Fennel is a self-seeding plant and can grow very easily; it requires little or no care at all.

Guinea pigs eat it and love it, especially the green fronds.

But first, it is important to know what is fennel and what qualities distinguish it from other vegetables, and in what ways is it useful for feeding your guinea pigs.

What Is Fennel?

The botanical name of fennel is Foeniculum vulgare and it comes from the carrot family.

Fennel also comes in the category of flowering plants that are used for their aroma and flavor.

The color of a fennel plant is green and white having yellow flowers and feathery leaves.

Native to Mediterranean Europe and Asia Minor, the fennel plant has now become very popular all over the world.

But in Italy, it is valued very highly and is part of most of the Italian cuisine and is the main ingredient of their well-known tasty salads.

It is highly nutritious as well and contains powerful plant compounds, having many medicinal properties and uses.

Fennel is rich in vitamins and also contains minerals such as selenium, calcium, magnesium, iron, and manganese.

After knowing what is fennel, it is high time to understand the qualities and properties of fennel that make it so valuable to your guinea pigs.

Now, getting back to the questions rolling in your head about the benefits of feeding funnels to your guinea pigs.

Why Feed Fennel To Your Guinea Pigs?

You must be thinking in what ways is fennel good for your guinea pigs?

It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that it is the powerhouse of nutrients, its benefits are numerous.

Guinea pigs love to eat fennel and are very fond of it.

But this is not just enough for a man of reason to feel content and satisfied.

All living organisms have an inbuilt radar that makes them capable of detecting whether something is good or bad for their well-being.

The same is the case with your guinea pigs.

When left in the wild guinea pigs will graze on different herbs and vegetables including fennel because they are strict vegetarians and domesticated guinea pigs should also be fed with the same composition of food for their best health.

But one must be very careful while introducing new foods to guinea pigs.

Excess to newly introduced food can cause different health issues such as gastric upset and diarrhea.

They love to eat the fronds as well as the bulbs of a fennel plant.

It is one of the best ingredients to have in their food intake because it contains lots of calories and proteins that are helpful for their good health and strong growth in many ways.

What Are the Benefits of Fennel in Your Guinea Pig’s Diet?

Besides having vitamins and minerals that are good for your guinea pigs, there are many other advantages of keeping fennel in the diet of your guinea pigs.

The following is not an exhaustive list but provides us with enough of an indication of the many advantages of giving fennels to your guinea pigs to eat.

Healthy Bone Growth

Lack of calcium can cause your guinea pigs to lose weight and develop bone abnormalities.

It will become very costly to compensate for the lack of calcium with milk or other costly food items containing calcium.

Fennels contain enough natural calcium to fulfill the requirements of your guinea pigs in a healthy and balanced way.

With a moderate intake of fennel, you can rest assured that your guinea pigs will develop healthy and strong bones.

It will cause their body to grow strong in a healthy way.

Helpful For Digestion

The fennel plant is very rich in dietary fiber.

Guinea pigs require a very high fiber diet.

Fiber is a requirement for your guinea pigs because of its property to maintain bacterial flora in the gut.

Hay is also a major source of fiber but fennel can be used as a substitute too.

Dietary fiber is useful for the stimulation of the gastrointestinal motility of your guinea pigs.

Dietary fiber is composed of carbohydrates, and its main role is to keep the digestive system healthy.

A healthy digestive system is a sure guarantee for the good health of your guinea pigs.

Feeding your guinea pigs with fennel will help them in their digestion process as well as having a good and healthy bowel movement.

Enhances Immunity

Guinea pigs lack the enzyme that synthesizes vitamins.

They cannot synthesize or store vitamins.

The lack of vitamin C makes guinea pigs more vulnerable to scurvy.

For that reason, the right amount of vitamin C is really important for the health of your pets.

Besides, together with other vitamins and minerals, the vitamin C in fennel boosts their immunity and keeps them away from diseases.

Weight Control Diet

Fennel is a good weight control diet for your guinea pigs.

Due to the presence of dietary fiber in fennels, which the guinea pig’s digestive system cannot completely break down or absorb, your guinea pigs will have less appetite for consuming extra food after eating fennel.

They will feel full and won’t eat much.

Controls Blood Pressure

The fennel plant contains minerals such as magnesium, potassium, and calcium that are good for keeping blood pressure under control.

High blood pressure can be very harmful to the health of guinea pigs and can be a major cause of their sudden death as well as other health-related issues.

Eating fennels will prevent guinea pigs from the suffering and consequences of running high blood pressure.

So treating your guinea pigs with fennel will guarantee good blood flow that will keep them healthy and fresh.

Boosts Metabolism

Fennels also contain vitamin B6.

Vitamin B6 helps in boosting the process of metabolism.

Your guinea pigs’ metabolism process will be boosted immensely with the intake of fennel.

Besides that, it also helps in improving the heart health of guinea pigs.

Sugar-free Food

One good quality of fennel is that it is sugar-free; therefore, it is a portion of very healthy food for your guinea pigs because sugars are harmful.

Although fennel seeds contain starch and sugar, feeding seeds to guinea pigs should be avoided.

Contains Antioxidants

Antioxidants are compounds that inhibit oxidation, thus preventing or slowing down the damage caused by free radicals that end up damaging the cells of the organism.

Fennels are very rich in antioxidants which help your guinea pigs in preventing infection development in the body as well as reduce the possible occurrence of many other diseases such as heart, liver, and kidney.

Healthy Source of Energy

Fennel can be the main source of energy for your guinea pigs two to three times a week.

Fennel is rich in protein and carbs, which gives your guinea pigs instant energy.

Are There Any Risks to Feeding Fennel to My Guinea Pigs?

There is no such thing as a wonder food for any living organism.

Moderation is the key excess of everything.

Some attendant risks have to be kept in mind while feeding fennels to your guinea pigs.

Despite the associated risks with feeding fennel to your guinea pigs, those risks are controllable if you regulate the amount of fennel guinea pigs eat.

When you feed your guinea pigs with too much fennel, it increases the risk of kidney stones because fennel contains calcium.

Accumulated calcium can create kidney stones in your guinea pigs.

If your guinea pig is under medication, you must avoid feeding fennel to your guinea pigs.

Fennel can interfere with the drugs and cause a reaction with negative consequences for the health of your guinea pigs, so it’s better to not let your guinea pigs eat fennel while they are on medication.

Some guinea pigs may be allergic to fennel.

In case you notice that your guinea pigs have shown some allergic reactions then immediately stop feeding your guinea pig’s fennel.

The instant remedy for such allergic reactions is to give your guinea pigs enough water as a first aid response.

But if the situation does not improve and keeps worsening then you must consult the veterinary doctor as soon as possible.

How Much Fennel Should I Give to My Guinea Pig?

For best results, it is suggested that you should feed your guinea pigs with 5-10 sprigs of fennel at a time.

Since they are herbivores so fennel is not only healthy for guinea pigs but they love to eat it.

Again remember that it must be served in suitable quantities without excesses.

How Often Should I Feed Fennel To My Guinea Pigs?

If you are introducing fennel to your guinea pig’s diet, start giving your guinea pigs fennel only once a week.

Once your guinea pigs get used to it and start liking it, you can start feeding guinea pigs with fennel 1-2 times a week without any problem.

Feeding guinea pigs with fennel more than 1-2 times a week may harm their health and cause problems.

If you are feeding your guinea pigs fennel for the first time, remember these points:

  1. In the beginning, give your guinea pigs very small amounts of fennel
  2. Observe your guinea pigs for a day
  3. Notice their reaction and behavior after they have finished eating their fennel
  4. In case you notice any abnormal behavior, immediately remove fennel from your guinea pig’s diet and consult a veterinary.

However, if your guinea pigs show no negative signs, most probably they will love eating it, then continue serving them fennel but in moderation.

At this point, you must be wondering whether your guinea pigs should be fed with fennel leaves or bulbs, or seeds?

What Part of Fennel Is Best for My Guinea Pigs?

Your guinea pigs eat all parts of the fennel, which consists of fronds, a bulb, and stalks/leaves.

This vegetable is also great for people, as it clears mucus, treats anemia, and is great for our eyes and indigestion.

Fennel contains vitamin C, B3, calcium, and magnesium, as well as potassium and iron.

However, not all that is good for people is good for guinea pigs as we all need different amounts of different types of nutrients.

One cup of fennel contains 10.4 mg of vitamin C.

You should know that your guinea pigs need around 30 mg/kg of vitamin C per day.

Nonetheless, you should give your guinea pigs about 3/4 of a cup filled with a mixture of various fresh fruits and vegetables.

Now, let’s see which parts of the fennel are best for your guinea pigs.

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Fennel Leaves?

Few stems contain more nutritional value than the leaves of the fennel plant.

Guinea pigs eat fennel leaves and are very fond of them.

You can serve fennel leaves chopped or whole, it works both ways.

When guinea pigs eat fennel leaves, it not only improves their health but also their dental hygiene because guinea pigs’ teeth grow continuously.

Consistent chewing of leaves will help in reducing the growth of your guinea pig’s teeth.

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Fennel Bulb?

Yes, your guinea pigs eat fennel bulb.

However, the fennel bulb doesn’t contain any significant nutritional value for your guinea pig.

Nonetheless, you can give your pets pieces of the fennel bulb, and they will love munching on it.

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Fennel Seeds?

No, guinea pigs cannot eat any types of seeds!

Never give your pets seeds in any form.

Guinea pigs cannot eat and digest seeds of any kind.

Besides, some seeds, such as apple seeds are also poisonous for them.

Likewise, seeds also present a choking hazard for these small animals.

Considering the nutrients in fennel seeds, they have an ample amount of starch and sugars, which are not good for the health of your guinea pigs.

Since they are herbivores, seeds are quite hard for them to digest.

The digestive system of guinea pigs is more suitable for herbs and leaves and other soft foods.

As seeds are rich in starch and sugar so they can also cause ingestion in your guinea pigs, so avoid seeds at all costs to minimize health risks to your guinea pigs.

For high efficiency and best results, one should feed guinea pigs the fronds rather than the fennel bulb.

Fennel without the seeds improves heart health and is easy to digest, so keep feeding fennel to your guinea pigs.

Can Baby Guinea Pigs Eat Fennel?

Yes, baby guinea pigs can eat fennel and you can serve them, but not regularly.

In the beginning, it’s more appropriate to provide baby guinea pigs with more variety of food but the process of intruding them to new foods must be slow.

Start with the fronds and serve them tiny amounts, maybe 2-3 leaves once or twice a week.

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Fresh Fennel?

Fresh fruits and vegetables are the best sources of vitamins and minerals for your guinea pigs.

Guinea pigs love eating herbs and serving fresh fennel is the icing on the cake for them.

Also, you should know that guinea pigs cannot digest processed food.

In other words, don’t feed your guinea pigs with cooked, baked, fried, frozen, or dried food.

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Dried Fennel?

Feeding your guinea pigs will dried fennel will have no health benefits for your guinea pigs and will deprive them of the essential nutrients that they require for their growth and good health.

Therefore, don’t feed your guinea pigs with dried fennel.

What Is the Nutritional Value of Fennel?

According to the United States Department of Agriculture(USDA), 100 gr of fennel bulb contains:

  • Calories: 27
  • Protein: 1 gram (g) (2 percent daily value)
  • Fat: 0.2 g
  • Carbohydrates: 6 g
  • Fiber: 2.7 g (11 percent DV)
  • Natural Sugars: 3 g
  • Calcium: 43 milligrams (mg) (4 percent DV)
  • Iron: 0.64 mg (3 percent DV)
  • Magnesium: 15 mg (3 percent DV)
  • Potassium: 360 mg (7 percent DV)
  • Vitamin A: 838 international units (IU) (17 percent DV)
  • Vitamin C: 12 mg (17 percent DV)

Some General Facts About The Fennel Plant:

  • India is the top producer of fennel all over the world
  • It is a perennial plant and will transform your garden because it can last for more than two years
  • The seeds of fennel are sugar-coated; they remove bad breath and help in digestion as well
  • Fennel propagates through the seeds
  • It is sweet with a very strong flavor and aroma

Here is the link to an excellent mobile app, “My Guinea Pigs: Reliable Pet Health Care Advice.”

This app will help you in understanding what kind of food your guinea pigs should or should not eat and how frequently.

Will also help you in understanding the meaning of the noise your guinea pigs make.

Giving you a menu based on the food items available to you.

It will allow you to keep a track record of your guinea pigs’ food intake, weight, vet visits, and other details.

It will also connect you with a strong community of guinea pig lovers from whom one can get tips and advice regarding their guinea pigs.

Here are the top trending guinea pig products right now:

Last update on 2021-06-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Final Thoughts

Can guinea pigs eat fennel is a question that many guinea pig owners want to know.

Yes, guinea pigs can eat fennel, and this plant is good for guinea pigs.

Guinea pigs eat all parts of the fennel plant, including fennel bulbs, stems/leaves, and fronds.

It provides guinea pigs with essential nutrients, especially vitamin C, which is an important part of their daily healthy diet.

Guinea pigs may develop scurvy without vitamin C, so the amount of vitamin C in fennel is beneficial for their health and fulfills a part of their daily needs.

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