Is is Safe for a Guinea Pig to Have Watermelon Rind?
Perhaps you keep Guinea pigs as your pocket pet, and you are wondering the kind of food they eat. Well, Guinea pig’s primary food is hay, but they can eat some other food as well. One such other food is watermelon.
Read along with this article to shed more light on whether Guinea pigs can eat watermelon or not and some other interesting related topics.
First, let us answer the famous question of whether Guinea pigs eat watermelon or not. Yes, they can. Watermelon is a juicy sweet treat no one can resist. Guinea pigs love it.
What is a Guinea Pig?
It is a pocket pet that belongs to the animal’s Cavie family. Guinea pigs are small animals. The adults can only weigh about 2.5 pounds and mature to a maximum of 10 to 11 inches long.
If given proper care and not allowed to roam about, their lifespan is usually around 8 to 9 years. One of their primary anatomical quirks is that Guinea pigs always need to chew to smooth their teeth down because their teeth are continually growing longer.
Guinea pigs are reasonably playful animals. They love to mingle with people and other animals that they love and know. They are lovely pets for reliable pet owners.
Guinea pigs usually come in handy for people who live in small dwellings because they are small. People who live in small houses might not have enough room for themselves, not to talk of a big pet, so they opt for Guinea pigs because they are pocket pets.
What Do Guinea Pigs Eat?
There are a variety of diet options available for Guinea pigs to keep them happy and healthy. Some of these diets are supplements, while others are primary meals. However, you can mix an assortment of both and serve it to your Guinea pig.
- Like earlier mentioned, their primary food is Timothy hay and also guinea pig food of high quality.
- Foods with low sugar and fats are right for them.
- About thirty to fifty milligrams of Vitamin C should be added to their daily diet. It could be a supplement or part of their guinea pig food or vegetables and fruits with high Vitamin C content.
- An assortment of fruits and vegetables can form up to ten percent of their diet. However, it would be best if you did not serve them with vegetables and fruits over twelve – twenty-four hours old.
- Freshwater is another essential part of their diet. Everyone needs water to stay hydrated and help food digestion. You must change the water daily to ensure that it remains clean.
Watermelon and its Nutrition
Watermelon is a popular type of melon. It is a big fruit with a green exterior and a red, juicy, and watery fruit. It has varieties such as those that have seeds and those that do not.
Watermelon is in the same family as squashes and cucumber, so they all trail along the ground. Its seasons are usually in warmer months (summer) in the U.S.
Watermelon has quite several nutritional values. They include:
- Vitamin C: it helps to prevent scurvy. Scurvy can lead to death if left untreated. Its symptoms include swollen joints and ribs, poor appetite, etc.
- Sugar Content: the sugar content in watermelons is relatively high, so you must feed your guinea pigs in portions.
- Water: watermelon contains a high-water percentage, which prevents dehydration.
- Fiber: the fiber present in watermelon helps your guinea pig overcome constipation and enhances gut motility. However, too much of it can cause gut motility.
- Other minerals and vitamins: include phosphorus, calcium, potassium, and vitamin A which all help the body to function well.
Can Guinea Pigs Feed on Watermelon?
Yes, they can, but it must be in moderation. You have to feed your guinea pigs only a small portion (a couple of little cubes) as an occasional treat.
It is recommended that you feed your guinea pig with a maximum of ½ – ¼ cup of fresh vegetables and fruits combined every day.
Any fruit and vegetable they do not eat within twelve to twenty-four hours must be disposed of because they may not even eat it.
Hay and guinea pig food should make the other ninety percent of your pet’s diet. You can only feed them watermelon about two to three times per week. Please do not feed them watermelon in two consecutive days.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Watermelon Seeds?
Watermelon seeds can cause your guinea pig to choke, so you must remove the seeds before giving watermelon to your pet. This is because watermelon seeds are slimy, hard, and slippery and can quickly get stuck in your pet’s throat.
How to Prepare Watermelon for your Guinea Pigs
First, you need to get room temperature watermelon that is fresh. You can go for seedless watermelon. Then you get your tools ready; kitchen knife and cutting board.
- Get a fresh room temperature watermelon
- Cut the melon to remove the seeds.
- Cut off the rind
- Cut up the melon into small bits.
- Serve the melon to your guinea pig.
Is Watermelon Safe for Guinea Pigs?
Yes, melon is safe for your guinea pig to consume, but it must be in a moderate proportion. This is because too much watermelon can cause side effects like bloating, gas, and diarrhea.
Can Your Guinea Pig Feed on Watermelon Rind?
You must cut off the thick rind. If you choose to feed rind to your pet, you must serve it in small pieces to avoid digestive issues.
Guinea pigs find it easier to ingest and chew the whiter flesh of watermelon rind than to eat the outer tough and thick rind. Generally, you must serve rind to your guinea pig in moderation because of the high fiber content, causing diarrhea.
How About Watermelon Juice?
Avoid serving guinea pigs watermelon juice because it contains excess sugar, which can cause obesity.
Other Fruits Guinea Pigs Can Eat
Below is a list of other fruits you can feed your guinea pigs
- Butternut Squash
By now, you know all that is involved in serving your guinea pigs watermelon. Always remember to give them in moderation as an occasional treat.