One of the key components of a rabbit’s diet is fruits. It’s what keeps your rabbit strong, healthy, and alive. But you’re probably wondering if fruits are good for rabbits, then fruit juice must be too, right?
In this article, I want to tackle the question of whether it is ok to feed your rabbit fruit juice.
It’s ok to give your rabbit fruit juice, however you’ll need to dilute the juice with water. Never give them fruit juice that is artificially flavored. These drinks are high in sugar and that makes them very bad for rabbits. If possible, only give them hand squeezed or at least 100% juice in diluted form.
In any case, rabbits love fruits, they love treats, and they love anything sweet. But giving rabbits all the fruit juice they could ever want can harm your rabbit more than benefit it. Foods that are high in sugar can cause rabbit GI aches and pains.
In this article, I want to go every everything you need to know about rabbits and fruit juices.
The safety guide for rabbits and fruit juice
The standard diet for a rabbit to leave long and healthy is a majority of hay, followed by fruits, vegetables, pellets, and the occasional treats. What you’ll notice is from these categories of food is that some of them have either natural sugars or no artificial sugars at all.
You can feed rabbits a very limited amount of fruit juice. But just keep in mind, juices have a ton of sugars in them. Also, compared to whole fruits, rabbits won’t get the added benefits of fibers and nutrients that come with it. In fact, fruit juices are also known to be more acidic in essence and this can really cause bad side effects for rabbits.
If you plan to give your rabbit fruit juice, there are a few rules you MUST consider before doing so:
- Dilute the fruit juice with lots of water. Make it way more water than juice. A ratio of 6:1 water to juice is recommended.
- Wait until your rabbit is at least 3 months old.
- Make sure to limit how much fruit juice a rabbit gets.
- If possible, always use fresh-squeezed juice or 100% juice that’s not from Concentrate.
- Instead of fruit juice, I recommend just slices of fruit.
Fruit juice for rabbits: The pros and cons
Something you must take into consideration when offering your rabbit fruit juice is whether or not this will be good or bad for your rabbit. Sure, rabbits will more often jump at the chance and immediately drink lots of juice if you provide it. And yes, fruit juice do come with health benefits as well as contain ingredients that could ultimately harm your rabbit.
- Fruit juice can provide a lot of rich vitamins and nutrients
- It can be used to help entice your rabbit to drink liquids when it’s not feeling well.
- Your rabbit loves it as a treat.
- Fruit juice has lots of sugar in it.
- It’s also very acid which may cause some upset stomachs if ingested in large quantities.
- It doesn’t have the fiber necessary for good health compared to feeding whole fruits.
The risks and benefits of fruit juice for rabbits
While there could be a lot of benefits from drinking fruit juice for rabbits, there are also some really bad effects that could happen.
You have to keep in mind that rabbits have very vulnerable digestive systems. In fact, GI issues are one of the most frequent reasons why rabbits are taken to the veterinarian. Giving them a lot of sugar-rich foods can really cause upset stomach, aches, and pains.
Loads of sugar and reactive acids found in fruit juice are just not good for rabbits, especially in high amounts.
Another possible occurrence is that your rabbit may grow a habit of preferring sweet juices as well. They may even neglect and even refuse water altogether. And water is incredibly important to the well-being of rabbits.
The best thing to do, whether your rabbit is not drinking properly or you just want to reward it with a treat, is to dilute that fruit juice with a lot of water. Again, rabbits can become addicted or dependent on a sugary drink so tread carefully.
Pineapple juice was once reported to save a rabbit’s life. Pineapple juice was actually used to remove a large furball from a rabbit’s stomach. Using the enzymes found in pineapple juice, veterinarians decided to try using it to dissolve some of the material that held the fur together plus provide the dying rabbit with rehydration and nutrients. By some miracle, it worked and the rabbit survived.
Fruits that are safe for rabbits
|Fruits (Chopped)||Sugar in Grams/Cup||pH Levels|
The chart above is a list of a few of the fruits rabbits are allowed to eat. The first column is the estimated measurement of the associated fruit in grams found in a standard cup. The right column is an estimation of the pH scale these fruits range in.
Drinks that rabbits should NEVER have
There are a few things that you should never give your rabbit. These are drinks that can immediately harm or harm your rabbit down the line. This list includes:
Toxic to rabbits
Caffeine can cause diarrhea, thirst, and abnormal heart rate in rabbits.
Also contains caffeine.
Adult rabbits are lactose intolerant
Rabbits have been found to be sensitive to this artificial sweetener
These substances are ok for humans but they have been found on rabbits (as well as other animals) to be detrimental to their health. There have been studies with these foods that found rabbits either allergic or intolerant to.
I would recommend that you not allow your rabbits to have any of these.
Don’t give your rabbits avocados
One thing, I wanted to mention is that you should never give your rabbit avocados.
Avocados contain a substance known as persin. It is highly toxic to rabbits and if ingested in sufficient quantity, rabbits can experience breathing troubles, congestive heart failure, and even death.
Persin is not harmful to humans.
Research has shown that persin can cause apoptosis or programmed cell death and is a treatment method used in people with breast cancer.
What’s the BEST drink out there for rabbits?
It’s none other than plain water. Surprisingly enough, rabbits are made up of about 73% water and that makes them consume water proportionally more than the next species. A small rabbit consumes as much water as a medium-sized dog.
That bottle of 100% apple juice from the grocery store actually contains 88% water.
For example, adult mini lops weigh approximately 3.3lbs (1.5kg). That would make 2.4lbs (1.1kg) of that rabbit made completely out of water! That’s incredible!
Water is also the perfect source for helping them get rid of waste, regulating body temperature, and sustaining cells and organs, and joints.
You can find water in the food you eat as well. Even juice is made up of a significant amount of water; minus the high concentration in sugars.
The bottom line
Rabbits can drink fruit juice, but you should keep in mind that you’ll want to limit the amount of sugar your rabbit takes in.
Rabbits often go to the vet, for stomach issues, and eating or drinking something with too much sugar in it can exacerbate the issue.
Fruit juice is ok to give as occasional treats, and if your vet recommends it. Most likely, they will suggest you dilute the juice so that your rabbit won’t take in too much sugar.
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