There truly is a huge difference between the two questions ‘Can I feed my rabbit Cheerios?’ and ‘Can my rabbit eat Cheerios?’ Rabbits can eat Cheerios as much as they can since they have a natural tendency to chew on absolutely anything that is laid down in front of them. Especially when you have kids who always like to give whatever it is that they are having for breakfast to their pet bunnies, allowing your rabbits to eat Cheerios should not be a cause for panic. However, feeding rabbits Cheerios deliberately should always be an area of concern, and the frequency should be, as much as possible, within the pet owner's control.
Can I Give My Rabbit Cheerios?
Yes, but do it sparingly and in small portions as much as possible.
The occasional five pieces of Cheerios is fine, but serving your pet rabbit a bowlful of Cheerios can have unpleasant effects. When taking care of pet rabbits, it is important to remember that their diet should always consist of hay, green leafy vegetables and rabbit pellets. You can either serve your pet rabbit straw instead of hay, but straw contains significantly less nutrients than hay. You can reserve straw for your pet rabbit's bedding and consider grass hay or legume hay as your pet rabbit's diet core component. Make sure to avoid molds and spot any yellowish stalks in the hay you will buy since all these can cause sclerosis on your pet rabbit's liver. When molds and yellowish stalks go undetected in your large stash of hay, it can cause your pet's death. Fruits, along with Cheerios, should only be given in small amounts and as a treat.
Your pet rabbit may show no signs of indigestion when you feed them Cheerios, but since Cheerios are manufactured using processed grain products; it might not be a sound idea to have Cheerios as the staple treat you give to your pet rabbit. Rabbits do eat grains, but once grains are processed (especially when manufacturing Cheerios), there is the inevitability for grains to lose its natural nutritional value. What is the point in feeding your pet rabbit a kind of food that has no nutritional value in the first place? Further, Cheerios are not just made with processed grains. In fact, it is widely composed of sugar, complex starches and artificial colorings and food enhancers. Sugar, complex starches and artificial fortifiers, when fed to rabbits in excessive amounts, can be a cause for runny stools, indigestion, diarrhea, bloating and gas build-up. All these probable causes are not comfortable for both the pet rabbit and its owner.
Aside from feeding Cheerios as sparingly as possible as treats, you can also serve your pet rabbit other grain-based snacks such as wheat berries, oats and wheat crackers. If there is an alternative to treats that are packed with natural grains, you can opt to give your pet rabbit some pellets. Pellets can be bought from pet specialty stores, and you can be sure that your pet rabbit will love chewing on it. However, an even better alternative to treats that you can give to your pet rabbit aside from Cheerios and pellets are fruits. Fruits have fresh vitamins and minerals that your pet rabbit can enjoy the benefits from. If you have a garden in your yard where you grow different kinds of fruits in, your pet rabbit can help himself to fruit servings as he roams around the area. Examples of fruits that you can serve to your pet bunny as treats can include apples, blueberries, bananas, strawberries, tomatoes, peaches and plums to name a few. A carrot top, a few pieces of raisin or a small portion of a banana peel can be excellent treats to give your pet rabbit.
Another rule when it comes to feeding treats as sparingly as possible to pet rabbits is that the amount should be portioned as well. Just as we should keep our portions small when it comes to our desserts such as cake, ice cream and potato chips, snack treats for pet rabbits should also be in the smallest portion or size possible. After all, when giving treats with no significant nutritional value such as Cheerios, you are missing out on the opportunity to feed your pet bunny something healthy that his or her tiny body can utilize. At the end of the day, what matters is that the general diet you strictly follow for your rabbit is a balanced distribution of hay, green leafy vegetables and clean water where treats form a very small percentage of the whole.