Can guinea pigs eat tomatoes?

In this article we are going to answer: can guinea pigs eat tomatoes, what are guinea pigs, are guinea pigs good pets to have, what guinea pigs eat, and how to take care of a guinea pig. 

Can guinea pigs eat tomatoes?

Yes, guinea pigs can eat tomatoes. Tomatoes are the only edible part of the fruit that can be eaten by guinea pigs. Unripened tomatoes, tomato leaves or tomato steam is not healthy for guinea pigs. 

Green parts of tomatoes can be toxic for guinea pigs because they are high in glycoalkaloids which can be deadly for guinea pigs. 

Ripened tomatoes can give a huge amount of vitamins that guinea pigs need such as vitamin c, vitamin K and folate. One small cherry tomato is enough for guinea pigs because tomatoes contain oxalic acid and in high amounts, it can be dangerous for them. 

What are guinea pigs?

According to Brittanica, guinea pigs are a domesticated species of South American rodent that belongs to the Cavy Family. They weigh about 500 to 1500 grams and measure about 20 to 40 cm. Guinea pigs and be 

  • white
  • cream
  • tan 
  • reddish
  • chocolate brown
  • black 
  • combined pattern of the colors mentioned before. 

Guinea pigs do not exist in the wild, they are exclusively domesticated. They began to be domesticated 3,000 years ago in Peru.

 In Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia they are eaten as food by humans and they are also famous internationally because they are used as laboratory animals for studies of anatomy, nutrition, genetics, toxicology, and other subjects. 

There are five species of guinea pigs in the genus Cavia. The 5 species are

  • Brazilian Guinea Pig: it can be found in Colombia, Venezuela, and South to northern Argentina. 
  • Shiny Guinea Pig: it can be found in brazil
  • Montane Guinea Pig: it can be found from Peru to Northern Chile and northwest Argentina
  • Greater Guinea Pig: It can be found in southern Brazil and Uruguay 
  • Moleques do Sul Guinea Pig: it lives only on the island known as Moleques do Sul 

Are guinea pigs good pets to have?

Yes, guinea pigs are domesticated animals that are meant to be petted. They can not live in the wildlife. Guinea pigs can live for a few years if you take care of them correctly and each guinea pig has a unique personality. Also, guinea pigs need attention because they are social rodents. 

They are better kept as pets because they do not like to be alone and need special attention to their diet. 

What do guinea pigs eat?

Guinea pigs need a diet balanced with more attention to vitamins and minerals such as magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, vitamin A, vitamin D, and vitamin E. Food included in guinea pigs’ diet are

  • Commercial food fortified in vitamin C such as pellets with no seeds or added dried fruits. 
  • Timothy hay, guinea pigs thrive on timothy hay. 
  • Fruits and vegetables such as
  • Leafy greens: lettuce, red and green lettuce, cilantro, and parsley
  • Red pepper, green pepper, and broccoli can be given daily 
  • Carrots, zucchini, tomato, and sweet potato can be given twice a week 
  • Kiwis, bananas, strawberries, and citrus can be given two to three times per week 

Guinea pigs can develop bladder stones very easily so be careful with vegetables high in oxalates such as spinach, parsley, or strawberries. 

How to take care of a guinea pig? 

Guinea pigs are animals that do not need a lot of care except for their diet. Some essential cares guinea pigs need if you decide to take them as pets include

  • They do not need baths. Just once in a while, they need to be cleaned with a damp washcloth and unmedicated soap. 
  • They need to be brushed with a soft brush especially guinea pigs with long hair. 
  • Nails need to be clipped once a month.

Follow this link for 6 golden rules of guinea pig care.

Conclusion

This article answered: Can guinea pigs eat tomatoes, what are guinea pigs, are guinea pigs good pets to have, what guinea pigs eat, and how to take care of a guinea pig. 

Citation

https://www.britannica.com/animal/guinea-pig

https://shop.guineapigsaustralia.com.au/can_guinea_pigs_eat_tomatoes#:~:text=The%20ripened%20tomato%20fruit%20is,in%20nightshade%20species%20of%20plants.

https://www.petco.com/content/petco/PetcoStore/en_US/pet-services/resource-center/caresheets/guinea-pig.html

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