It’s a great question. I had to find the answer for myself when my guinea pig was nibbling one. So I called my local pet store to ask this question. Thankfully, they were happy to share their knowledge with me. And since then my guinea pig has been eating apples, little by little (I don’t give him too much). I’m not sure if he likes it or not, but I definitely enjoy watching him eat while sipping on some delicious hot tea!
Can guinea pigs eat apples? Yes, guinea pigs are herbivores, and apples fall within their natural diet so feeding them apples is completely safe. However, when feeding them apples, make sure to remove the core and seeds, as these can be detrimental to their health. Also, avoid feeding them cooked apples as they struggle with digesting cooked foods.
Commercial guinea pig food is generally made up of mostly pellets, with the occasional addition of fresh fruits and veggies. They can eat both red and green apples in moderation. If you’re going to feed apples, be sure to remove the core and seeds, as these can cause intestinal blockages in them.
Below, we will discuss all aspects of feeding apples to guinea pigs, including their nutritional value, health benefits, moderation, and more.
Are apples healthy for guinea pigs?
All of you must have heard of the saying, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” If you’re curious about how apples can do that, take a look at the nutritional table of apples given below:
|Vitamin A||54 IU|
|Vitamin B1 (Thiamin)||0.017 mg|
|Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)||0.026 mg|
|Vitamin B3 (Niacin)||0.091 mg|
|Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine)||0.041 mg|
|Vitamin C||4.6 g|
|Vitamin E||0.18 g|
|Sodium, Na||1 mg|
|Potassium, K||107 mg|
|Calcium, Ca||6 mg|
|Iron, Fe||0.12 mg|
|Magnesium, Mg||5 mg|
|Phosphorous, P||11 mg|
|Zinc, Zn||0.04 mg|
|Dietary fibers||2.40 g|
|Total fat||0.2 g|
Serving size: 100 grams
While the table itself is evidence of the nutritiousness of apples, there are more reasons why your pets should eat them.
Apples are rich in antioxidants that can strengthen the immune health of the guinea pigs. They’re also high-fiber foods that can improve the digestive health of your pets. Lastly, the skin of apples is known to benefit their gut health.
All these qualities make these fruits an ideal treat for the guinea pigs.
The problem with overfeeding apples to guinea pigs
You might have heard the common proverb that says the excess of anything can be bad. The same is true for apples; too many apples are not good for your pet’s health. But what are the concerns of overfeeding apples to guinea pigs? There are two major concerns associated with it:
The first concern is apple’s high sugar content. If you go through the nutritional table given above carefully, you will realize that about 10% of 100 grams of apple is pure sugar. And while the sugar present in these fruits is natural, it can still create a problem for your pet rodents if eaten too much. Because rodents are not used to digesting such large amounts of sugar, it is best to keep their apple intake limited.
Another concern is the apple’s acidic nature. Some guinea pigs are more tolerant of acidic food than others, so its effect can vary in different individuals. Therefore, the consequences of eating too many apples can either be mild discomfort or painful mouth sores in your pets.
Can guinea pigs eat green apples?
Most people think that the only difference between red and green apples is their color, but that’s not true. These two have several other differences as well. From a nutritional standpoint, the value of red and green apples is more or less the same, with the former containing a slightly higher amount of protein, iron, and potassium.
Green apples are also somewhat sour in taste and have a much lower sugar content than red apples. While both differences indicate that green apples are healthier for your pet rodents, another difference remains.
Green apples have a much higher acidic content than red apples. And because too much acid can negatively affect your pets’ digestive tracts, you must feed them green apples in strict moderation; a couple of slices once or twice a month would be okay.
Can baby guinea pigs eat apples?
Is the guinea pig you’ve brought home still a baby? If it is, I wouldn’t recommend you feed them apples or any fruits at this point. The diet of a baby guinea pig should only contain their mother’s milk (or a replacement formula), pellets, and hay, as these help them grow.
Apples, or any other sugary treats, can be detrimental to their health, resulting in diarrhea or other digestive issues. Therefore, you should only start feeding apples to your pets when they are adults.
Is it safe to feed cooked apples to guinea pigs?
While I’m sure that many of you enjoy cooked apples just as much as the raw ones, if not more, feeding these apples to your pet rodents is not a good idea.
The main reason behind it is that the digestive system of guinea pigs is not designed to digest cooked food of any kind. This means that they would have trouble digesting cooked apples that might even lead to diarrhea.
Now, let’s assume that these little guys could digest cooked apples; it would still not be healthy for them. In the process of cooking, apples lose a large portion of their water-soluble nutrients. Therefore, like most fruits and veggies, apples are the healthiest for your guinea pigs in their rawest form.
Can guinea pigs have apple cider vinegar?
Made from fermented apple juice, apple cider vinegar is vinegar with many culinary and medicinal uses. But can this vinegar be fed to your pets as well? Because it is highly acidic in nature, it would be best not to feed it to your rodents.
Many guinea pig owners have claimed that adding apple cider vinegar to their pet’s water has helped them with urinary diseases and infections. However, since there is little scientific proof to back it up, I’d still suggest you consult with your veterinarian before doing it.
Other uses of apple cider vinegar for your pet rodents
While apple cider vinegar cannot be fed to your guinea pigs, it might come in handy while you’re cleaning their cage.
It is certainly less harmful to your pets than the chemical cleaners available in the pet stores, making it both a safer and inexpensive cage cleaner. All you need to do is add a few drops of it into the hot water that you’re going to use in cleaning their cage.
Some pet parents state that using a few drops of this vinegar in their pet’s bathing water helps get rid of the mites. However, since guinea pigs have susceptible skin, it would be best to go for shampoos designed specifically for them instead of using these homemade remedies.
Are the leaves of the apple tree safe for guinea pigs to consume?
Since guinea pigs are herbivores like most rodents, leaves are an important part of their diet in the wild. However, not all the leaves of every tree are safe for them to eat. What about apple tree leaves? Are these safe for your pets? Yes, they are.
Appletree leaves are not only safe for your pet rodents but also extremely healthy for them, as they’re rich in antioxidants, calcium, and other nutrients. However, you might not want to feed them these leaves too frequently or in bulk since they contain calcium in abundance. And too much calcium can be bad for the health of your pet.
When plucking apple leaves for your pets, always go for the smaller ones. Wash them thoroughly in lukewarm water before serving them to your pets.
Lastly, only feed 2-3 apple leaves to your pets once a week. Also, if you’re already feeding them calcium supplements, apple leaves are not a great idea.
Can guinea pigs chew on the wood of the apple tree?
Do you know how guinea pigs, being rodents, have an incessant need of chewing on things to wear their teeth down? I’m sure that as a concerned pet parent, you must have provided them with plenty of chew toys. But guinea pigs are known to find other objects to curb their needs now and then.
What if the object of your pet’s interest happens to be the wood of the apple tree growing in your backyard? Woods are, after all, one of their significant chew objects in the wild.
But is the wood of the apple tree safe for them to chew on? Yes, it is perfectly safe for them. In fact, if you visit a pet store that sells chew toys for guinea pigs, you can find apple sticks in many of them.
However, if you want to avoid the expense and use the wood from the tree of your own garden, that can also work. All you need to do is wash the wood thoroughly beforehand; you can use boiling water to clean it more effectively.
Frequently asked questions
Apart from apple leaves, which other leaves are safe for guinea pigs to eat?
Leaves that are safe for guinea pigs to consume are as follows:
- Outer leaves of corn
- Banana leaves
- Mango leaves
- Grape leaves
- Willow leaves
- Citrus tree leaves
- Pear leaves
- Mulberry leaves
- Cauliflower leaves
Can I feed papaya to my guinea pigs? Yes, you can. Papayas are one of the most nutritious fruits that your guinea pigs can eat. They also have a moderate sugar content, which means that you can safely feed these fruits to your pets twice or thrice a week.
Conclusion: Can Guinea Pigs Eat Apples?
Ah, little apples, how I love thee. These are some of the quirkiest fruits I’ve ever had in my life. When I first heard that guinea pigs could eat apples, it resonated with me so deeply.
So there you have it — the answer to the question of whether guinea pigs eat apples is resounding yes. So, for all of you guinea pig owners, go out and feed your piggies apples as a delicious treat!
Thank you so much for reading! I hope you found this post helpful, helping both guinea pig owners and non-owners. If you liked it, don’t forget to share it!