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

Tim Rhodes
Written by Tim Rhodes Last Updated: Aug 5, 2022

Have you ever wondered guinea pigs can eat oranges?

Orange is the most special and juicy fruit for winters.

It is a great source of vitamin C that contains fibers, calcium, potassium, and vitamin A, all of which are very important for a healthy diet.

Unlike humans and birds, guinea pigs are not able to make their vitamin C in their bodies.

They must consume it by adding it to their food so that they get all the nutrients and make their system function properly, without any issue.

So, can guinea pigs eat oranges daily or is it more beneficial to feed oranges to guinea pigs occasionally?

This depends on the benefits and risks that oranges have for guinea pigs.

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Oranges?

Guinea pigs can eat oranges but in limited quantities.

Oranges have a large quantity of vitamin C that needs to be included in the diet of guinea pigs since it provides the vitamin C that their bodies can’t produce on their own. Do not feed your guinea pig oranges in excess.

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What Are the Benefits of Oranges?

There are many benefits of oranges for pigs that make them important.

This includes completing their needs, nutrition, diet, and cravings.

If you find your pig enjoying the oranges, let it be.

There is a huge deal of advantages that are associated with giving oranges to your piggies.

Therefore, it’s advised to not worry about it, but add this citrus fruit to the list of snacks that you have for your pet.

However, these pets have their own choices for food and not all pigs need to wish to have oranges or even like them.

Every guinea pig has a distinct personality and taste.

One pig might eat oranges with full happiness and enjoyment, while the other one just doesn’t like its strong citrus smell and runs away.

This means that while adding oranges to their diets, first give a small portion and let them try.

If they eat and enjoy, add them to their snacks.

Here are the benefits that oranges might have for your pet guinea pigs.

The high amount of vitamin C

Out of all the benefits, the presence of vitamin C in this citrus fruit is the most important one for a healthy diet for pigs.

As mentioned above, pigs are unable to form their vitamin and they need fruits and vegetables for this purpose.

It’s essential to include fruits or vegetables in their diet that complete their nutritional needs, and oranges are the best for this matter.

For this reason, pig owners are advised to feed oranges to their pets.

Vitamin C is a highly essential nutrient for all humans and animals.

It makes the immune system of these animals better.

It prevents a huge number of bacterial diseases that are otherwise common for animals like pigs.

Due to a stronger immune system that vitamin C forms, pigs can be stronger and healthier.

In this way, the lives of both animals and their owners become easier.

Vitamin C prevents flu-like diseases among pigs that are very common for them.

Pigs usually get these supplements of vitamin C from green and leafy vegetables and fruits or grass, or in the form of supplements added to their daily water intakes.

However, to make them have a greater and healthy amount of vitamin C, oranges are a great source, and most pigs also like them to eat.

The main and common disease that deficiency of vitamin C can cause is scurvy.

It is known to be most effective on pigs that have lack vitamins and its supplements.

This shows that oranges and Vitamin C is the most important supplement for pigs for them to live healthily.

What Are Other Beneficial Components in Oranges?

Oranges also have vitamin A and vitamin B which are essential for the proper development and growth of pigs.

It also creates a healthy and strong metabolic system that helps in improving the immune system of pigs.

This can lead to their better health, preventing diseases, and living a strong and healthy life.

Calcium is also an important element of oranges, which is needed in a healthy diet for pigs.

This is essential for making the bones stronger, enhancing the proper development of teeth, and various other needs of the body systems.

Pigs can get this supplement too by eating oranges.

Other than these, large amounts of fibers are also present in the oranges which are important for controlling the levels of sugar and cholesterol in guinea pigs.

Why is a Varied Diet Important for Guinea Pigs?

A guinea pig’s diet should be varied. Lack of variety in the diet has been linked to tooth problems, digestive issues, and dermatological issues like Cushing’s Disease (Hyperadrenocorticism)

Affected guinea pigs experience hair loss, have thin skin, and exhibit polydipsia (excessive thirst), weight loss, and decreased activity.

What does a varied diet look like for my guinea pig?

The best way to ensure a varied diet is to ensure your guinea pig has a place to forage.

This can be done in several ways, by providing a guinea pig friendly environment:

  • Bedding (Keeping bedding and hay separate is important as the long strands of hay can wrap around a guinea pig’s feet or legs. Avoid cedar and pine shavings as these may be toxic for your pet.)
  • Mimic the living environment of guinea pigs in the wild by providing a cardboard box.
  • Provide unlimited access to hay and grass.
  • Feed them a variety of fresh vegetables and fruits
  • Provide them with limited access to commercial guinea pig food (pellets: 1 cup of pellets per guinea pig, split into two feedings a day)

Access to hay and grass is an important part of a guinea pig’s diet.

Guinea pigs have a special digestive system to process food, and hay is an important part of that.

Without constant access to hay, the chances of your pet developing gastrointestinal (GI) issues increase.

What Are the Risks of Feeding Guinea Pigs Oranges?

While there are many benefits of oranges for pigs as mentioned above, owners must provide them with great responsibility and care.

This is due to the risks associated with giving high amounts or excess numbers of oranges to guinea pigs.

As it’s said that excess of everything is bad, the same is the case with feeding oranges to guinea pigs.

They contain risks along with them; therefore, it is very important for the guinea pig owners to carefully measure the amount and give just a moderate amount of oranges to their guinea pig.

We will investigate these amounts and gaps of days to feed your guinea pig with oranges later.

Let’s first look at the risks and the health hazards associated with the excess number of oranges.

Why Too Much Oranges Is Harmful to Guinea Pigs?

Oranges can be very harmful if fed in large quantities to guinea pigs.

Firstly, guinea pigs are small in size.

They just weigh up to a maximum of 2.5 pounds when they become an adult.

On the other hand, oranges have high sugar levels.

When guinea pigs have an excess number of oranges, this can cause them to be obese due to large sugar levels in them.

This obesity in turn can lead to many health problems, most importantly, diabetes, which is very harmful to guinea pigs.

Hence, the number of oranges should be decided based on the sugar that a guinea pig can tolerate.

Secondly, another important reason is the level of acids in the oranges.

This fruit can have a great level of citric acids that can cause acidity problems for your pets.

The major problems due to these acidic levels may start from mouth sores, different acidity problems for the stomach, and many issues related to the teeth of guinea pigs.

As pigs depend on their teeth for digestion, it can be a great issue for pig owners.

High potassium content

Thirdly, oranges have a potassium component in them, a higher amount of which can be harmful to guinea pigs’ heath if they already face some issues with their kidney.

This does not apply to all guinea pigs out there, but make sure your pet doesn’t have any kidney problems before feeding it oranges.

What Is the Recommended Serving Size of Oranges?

Serving size

When you start feeding oranges to your guinea pigs, you must give a small piece of a slice of it to see if they like it and can have it.

Then keep them under your observation and see if they digest the orange perfectly, which most guinea pigs usually do.

However, if your pigs can’t have orange, it will be known to you at this time.

The ideal serving size for the oranges is 1-2 small pieces.

This should be served only once a week and avoid feeding them more than that.

This is an ideal quantity that is mostly advised and adopted by many pet owners.

You should also do that to make sure that your pig is having a well-balanced and appropriate diet with all the supplements of vitamins and fibers needed to lead a healthy life.

If you serve more than this amount, it can be hazardous and can lead to the risks mentioned above.

How Often Can Guinea Pigs Eat Oranges?

You can serve oranges once a week for your guinea pig.

Never serve your pigs with oranges two days in a row as it is extremely harmful due to high acidic levels that affect the digestive system of your guinea pigs.

This amount and gap of serving oranges surely provide complete nourishment and supplements that guinea pigs need in a week.

If you make the maximum benefit out of the oranges for your pig, stick to this plan.

Do not make it a daily snack for your guinea pig.

Try to be very careful to just follow this advice and extract the maximum amount of benefits for your pets, rather than allowing negative impacts to be greater.

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Orange Peels?

After deciding about the amount and quantity and the gaps after which you can serve oranges to your pigs, this is a highly debatable topic whether you can serve your pigs with oranges along with the peels or without the orange peel.

However, it is completely safe to say that guinea pigs can eat and digest the orange peels.

But it is advisable to serve these orange peels with great care as you should not want to add excess amounts to their diet.

The preparation of these peels is highly important and needs great care.

You can serve only a few little pieces of orange peels once a week.

Orange peels contain large amounts of Vitamin C and, therefore, guinea pig owners must be cautious when serving orange peels to their guinea pigs.

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Orange Seeds?

Should you remove orange seeds before serving them?

Absolutely yes.

You can provide oranges to your guinea pigs but always remove the seeds before doing that.

This is due to the reason that guinea pigs are very small in size and orange seeds can sometimes be large and slippery.

There is a possible risk for guinea pigs to choke while enjoying this fruit.

It is always advisable to take the seeds out, and then serve the small pieces of oranges to your guinea pigs so that they eat easily without any problem.

Do not even keep the seeds if you think they are small enough for pigs to eat without any issues.

Remove the seeds from the slices to make sure they don’t choke while eating and properly digest this pulpy and juicy citrus fruit.

Tip for reducing the acid impact

Oranges are highly acidic, which can negatively impact guinea pigs.

You can serve oranges to guinea pigs with other fruits or vegetables as a side snack, not more than once a week and only in a small quantity.

Serving it with other items can help reduce and control the impact of acids contained in the oranges and their peels.

All these items served together can reduce the acid intake of the pigs in one meal.

These items can include cucumber.

As a result of this, it becomes healthier and safer for pigs to have oranges without any worry for pig owners.

But also, in this situation, don’t overfeed your pig with oranges.

Keep the ideal number and the time gap in your mind.

Keep trying to make this as advantageous as possible.

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Preserved Oranges?

Preserved oranges contain all the acids, potassium, fibers, and sugar levels in huge quantities that are extremely harmful to pigs.

Moreover, these contain preservatives added to them to store them and make them edible for a long time.

Also, there is thick watery syrup in these tinned products that are high in sugar content.

It is extremely harmful to guinea pigs, so never serve canned products to your pet, otherwise, you will face negative consequences.

Preserved oranges can also exceed the fiber intake and can impact the development of guinea pigs.

Canned items are never good to serve to your guinea pigs.

Their harmful impacts eliminate the positive impacts that simple orange slices in a small quantity can have.

Can Guinea Pigs Drink Orange juice?

Orange juice is acidic and has a huge amount of sugar in it.

Both are extremely harmful to the pigs.

Juices can also contain other sugary ingredients.

Therefore, never serve orange juice to your guinea pigs as it is very harmful to them.

How to Serve Oranges to Guinea Pigs?

There is a process that is ideal for serving oranges to your guinea pigs.

This process for serving oranges is very simple but quite important and pig owners must carefully monitor the serving process themselves.

Choose good and fresh oranges for your guinea pigs.

Oranges must be fresh to avoid any problems in the digestive system of guinea pigs.

Then carefully clean and wash it with water to remove all the extra dirt from the peels and remove the orange from the peels.

Select the orange slice which is the smallest and meets the ideal serving size of the oranges.

Remove the seeds from the slice that you have selected, because seeds can make guinea pigs choke while eating.

After you have removed the seeds, you can serve the orange slice for the pigs to enjoy.

Orange peels are not harmful to guinea pigs but pig owners can only serve a small amount of it.

As for the orange peels, you can cut them into small pieces and serve them in small amounts with other items.

This serving process incorporates all the dos and don’ts of feeding oranges to guinea pigs.

Pig owners must follow this process to gain all the benefits for their guinea pigs and eliminate the negative impacts on them.

It is also advised to take the food out that guinea pigs have not eaten.

If you don’t take it out, bacteria grow on it which can cause many diseases if the pigs eat them after that.

Always remember to take the untouched or uneaten food out and do not let guinea pigs eat them after they get affected by bacteria.

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Final Thoughts

Oranges are safe for guinea pigs if fed in limited amounts.

Oranges are rich in fibers, potassium, calcium, vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin B, and many others, all of which are very important for a guinea pig’s healthy diet.

However, to maintain a guinea pig’s healthy diet, serve oranges to your pet guinea pig only once a week in small quantities.

You should not exceed this limit.

Otherwise, oranges can cause acidity problems, mouth sores, digestion issues, and many other health hazards.

Author

Tim Rhodes
Tim Rhodes

Hi there! My name is Tim Rhodes and I'm a guinea pig enthusiast through thick and thin. My mission is to teach others useful tips and tricks about these cute creatures. When I'm not writing, I enjoy kickboxing and work as an animal trainer.

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Last update on 2022-08-14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API