In this brief article, we will answer the question, “can guinea pigs eat potatoes?” We will also discuss the best food to feed Guinea pigs and the food to avoid. We will also discuss what happens when Guinea pigs eat Potatoes.
Can guinea pigs eat potatoes?
No, the herbivore nutrition of Guinea pigs means that you should strictly feed them with grass and vegetables. They also enjoy some fruits added to their regular meal of pellets and hay.
The main reason why potatoes are not fed to Guinea pigs is because of their alkaloid nature. The digestive system of these pigs is not equipped to break down alkaloids which are toxic to their body and might lead to health complications and symptoms such as vomiting, nausea, and lethargy.
Moreover, Potatoes are loaded with high carbohydrates and starch content that is not good for guinea pigs. Feeding Guinea pigs with foods rich in starch can make them obese. The potatoes might also influence the blood pressure of your pet.
Instead of potatoes, you can feed Guinea pigs with other foods that serve the same purpose. Foods such as Raw corn and Rolled oats. You can also serve the weak or ill Guinea pigs with cooked potatoes but it has to be thoroughly cooked.
You can also serve Guinea pigs with yams and sweet potatoes because they don’t have toxins. For sweet potatoes, give Guinea pigs as a treat once a week not as part of their diet because of their high starch level.
What foods should be fed to Guinea pigs?
You should supply Guinea pigs with grass constantly such as Grass hay, Barley, Oaten, and Timothy. Some types of grass such as Clover Hay and LUcerne are not good for Guinea pigs because of their high calcium and protein content.
Hay fed to Guinea pigs should be a good quality type that has a sweet smell and is dry. The grass should be free from fungus, mildew, and mold. Dry grass is given to Guinea pigs to allow them more time to chew the grass for strong teeth.
It is best to store the Hay well to avoid any cross-contamination with their waste. The grass should also not be sprayed with chemicals that would otherwise be harmful to the pigs.
There are some good examples of leafy vegetables good for Guinea pigs such as Basil, Coriander, parsley, rosemary, nasturtium, marigold, borage, and marjoram.
Some are best to feed to Guinea pigs in small amounts such as silver beets, kales, sprouts, Carrot tops, endive, and broccoli.
Vitamin C-rich foods.
Foods rich in this Vitamin include Capsicum both in red, orange, and green and veggies are best for Guinea pigs in their daily diet. Other foods such as berries, Kiwi, and carrots are also rich in this vitamin.
Pellets are a daily meal for Guinea pigs due to their fiber and vitamin C content. You should feed Guinea pigs with fresh pellets. You can pair them with veggies and some fruits to ensure they have a balanced meal.
What to do if your Guinea pigs eat potatoes?
Guinea pigs do move around a lot and you cannot control what they eat at all times. They can pick potato peels on the kitchen floor or potato chips around. In case they eat potatoes, it is best to watch them for a while to ensure they do not develop symptoms.
Only a large amount of potatoes affects the Guinea pigs. You can also call a Vet to advise you more if you are not sure. To avoid this altogether, it is best to keep potatoes far from their reach.
Which other foods should not be fed to Guinea pigs?
You should avoid feeding Guinea pigs with any type of animal or animal products such as yogurt, cheese, or meat. Seeds and nuts are also not good for Guinea pigs because they can choke your pigs and can also fatten the pig.
Spices and herbs are also not recommended for Guinea pigs. Other unsafe foods include Rhubarb, coconut, avocado, iceberg lettuce, mushrooms, and leeks. Grass that has been contaminated with mold is also not good for Guinea pigs. You should regularly supervise what they eat.
Weeds around the yard and butter cups are also not safe for the Guinea pigs. For a Guinea pig to stay healthy, a balanced diet is key. Potatoes offer no benefits.
For more details on the different types of Guinea pigs. Click here
In this brief guide, we have answered the question, “can guinea pigs eat potatoes?” We have also discussed the best food for Guinea pigs and what you can do when Guinea pigs eat Potatoes.
Hope you find this article useful, in case of any questions, please let us know.