Sometimes, taking care of a bunny especially with the limited food that it can eat can be stressful. Hay, no matter how essential it is in any pet rabbit’s diet, can be quite boring. You would wonder how much more your pet rabbit can take by only ingesting hay inside his or her tiny body. Of course, aside from hay, vegetables, particularly green leafy ones are best to feed your bunny. Examples of green leafy vegetables that you can give to your rabbit are clover sprouts, basil, beet greens, broccoli, collard greens, escarole, kale, mint and mustard spinach to name a few. If you want to feed your pet bunny some fruits, you have to limit your options to fruits that do not have seeds in them. If you have an abundance of blueberries in your chiller, it is important to ask your vet whether it is safe for your pet rabbit to enjoy these blueberries with you as you munch on it while watching TV.
Can I Give My Rabbit Blueberries?
Yes, but sparingly
Even with the cardinal rule about feeding fruits that have no seeds to your pet rabbit, blueberries do contain seeds, but it is too small to be noticed. Like strawberries that also have seeds literally worn on its sleeves, the seed of a blueberry can be eaten and your pet rabbit won’t even notice it. The seed of a blueberry is located at its center, and that is where blueberry bushes grow from it.
If you are doubtful about feeding your pet rabbit blueberries with its seed inside, you can take the seeds out, but it might be impossible to have the blueberry in one piece. All you might be left with are blueberry pulps that you might have a hard time feeding to your pet bunny. Nevertheless, blueberry seeds are too tiny to affect your rabbit’s digestive tract.
Having the decision to feed your rabbit blueberries is wise since blueberries have several health benefits. Aside from the abundance in antioxidants, blueberries are rich in minerals that promote brain health and cell repair. It is also one of the few fruit choices that have a relatively low glycemic index, thus if you feed your pet rabbit a piece of blueberry, you won’t send him or her in a hyperactive state.
As much as possible, feed your pet rabbit freshly-picked and freshly-washed blueberries instead of the frozen ones that you can buy from the frozen section of your local supermarket. Once blueberries are frozen, there is a high possibility that it will lose some of its nutritional value. Not that frozen blueberries are poisonous, but if you are giving your rabbit a piece of fruit for an afternoon treat, might as well ensure that the nutritional benefits he can get from it are all intact.
As with all treats that you can give to your pet rabbit, you have to make sure that the portions are small and that it is given as sparingly as possible. Like for us humans, we never should overindulge on snacks such as chips, chocolates and other fatty food that we, for some reason, just love to munch on. Overindulgence on snacks has significant repercussions to our bodies, and that effect is no different for our pet rabbits. You have to remember that even if blueberries have a low glycemic index, it still packs on fructose or natural sugar. Feeding your pet rabbit excess fructose can make them overweight, immobile and lethargic – 3 characteristics of rabbits that are definitely undesirable.
Limit the number of blueberries you give to your pet bunny with just one piece once or twice a week. Give his blueberry treat only after he has consumed his daily meal consisting of hay and green leafy vegetables.
Aside from blueberries, you can also give other berry varieties to your pet rabbit such as blackberries, raspberries and strawberries. Keep the portions small (ideally just one piece) and given only once or twice a week. If you grow blueberries or any kind of berries in your backyard, make sure that your pet rabbit will not eat everything it sees while he plays and hops around the area. Guard your blueberry patches in your garden well so you keep your produce intact and you don’t make your pet rabbit eat more than it is supposed to.
Keeping an interesting and varied diet plan for your pet rabbit should not be challenging for as long you know the limitations you need to follow especially when it comes to the fruits that you can give to them as treats or snacks. Should you have doubts as to the safety of a particular fruit to your pet rabbit’s digestive system, always consult the advice of your veterinarian.