Getting a new pet entails many things such as setting up a new place, and fixing their daily diet needs. If you just got your family a guinea pig, the first welcome note has to be a cozy little home and a plate full of its favorite foods. Can guinea pigs eat bananas? Let’s find out so you know what kind of foods are most suitable and whether this common fruit is a good idea or not.
Guinea pigs are furry rodents that have an amicable nature and some cute antics that will make you want to keep playing with them. For this, these little creatures must get all kinds of nutrients from their diet. For any living thing, physical health is dependent on food, and if that is not provided, their mental health deteriorates as well. As pet parents, you must know if a particular fruit or vegetable is good for guinea pigs or not.
CAN GUINEA PIGS EAT BANANAS – A COMPLETE GUIDE FOR NEW PET PARENTS
You can feed bananas to your guinea pig pets but this can only be an occasional food. This fruit is nutritious as it is rich in potassium and Vitamin C, which are great for guinea pigs. However, there are many other nutrients in this fruit that are not too good for guinea pigs.
Guinea pigs are small in physique and they do not consume large quantities of food like dogs, or cattle. You must ensure that you feed them foods that provide them with the daily nutrition which is essential for them. We realize that all pet owners do not understand the basic needs of pets, so here is a short reminder for all of you so that you know what these furry animals require daily.
THE DAILY REQUIREMENT FOR GUINEA PIGS
Guinea pigs need a lot of Vitamin C and roughage in their diet. This is why food items like Timothy Hay and Vitamin C supplements for added quantities are considered essential for these rodents. The roughage in food is going to help the digestion in these small creatures while intake of Vitamin C is essential because these animals do not make their Vitamin C.
Bananas are indeed rich in fiber, but that is different from roughage, which refers to the hardness of the food, making it more caloric to burn. Bananas are a soft fruit and although it has fiber, they can be a peril if given every day. This fruit also has Vitamin C, which is an integral part of the guinea pig’s diet, but is it enough? For this, you have to see what’s in bananas.
WHAT DO BANANAS OFFER?
The nutritional value of 100 grams of bananas is as follows:
- Carbohydrates: 22.8 grams
- Sugars: 12.2 grams
- Dietary Fiber: 2.6 grams
- Fat: 0.3 grams
- Protein: 1.1 grams
- Vit C: 8.7 mg
- Vit B6: 0.4 mg
- Potassium: 358 mg
- Manganese: 0.3 mg
Bananas are a great food for all of us. They are an energy booster due to the high amount of potassium. Vitamin C is also found in this fruit but it comes with a lot of sugar. However, before discussing this in detail, let’s see what kind of benefits bananas can give bearded dragons.
Potassium For Health: The foremost advantage is that potassium helps with heart health, lungs, kidney functions, blood flow, and muscle development.
Vitamin C: This vitamin is an essential nutrient for guinea pigs as it improves immunity, skin, and bone health, and regulates weight.
Manganese: This minor nutrient helps the nervous system and other organ systems and a regular dose can be good for all living creatures.
Fiber: This is a great daily nutrient in a way because it cleanses the colon and helps digestion. This component of any fruit or vegetable can be an excellent way to keep bowel movements regular.
WHY IS A BANANA NOT A DAILY FOOD ITEM FOR GUINEA PIGS
Bananas cannot be fed daily to your guinea pig because of the high sugar levels. The amount of sugar in 100 grams of bananas is 12.2 grams, which is more than what a guinea pig can eat in a day. High sugars can give them an upset stomach and also promotes obesity and diabetes.
A very serious issue related to overdosing on your guinea pig with bananas is kidney function. Guinea pigs have weak kidneys when compared to mammals. While potassium is good for kidneys, feeding too much of it to guinea pigs and other rodents will put a burden on their kidneys and they can suffer immensely. This is because these animals will not be able to process bananas and their kidney will burn out while trying to filter the excess potassium. Due to these two factors, bananas are not an ideal daily item for guinea pigs. Also, read Can Guinea Pigs Eat Pumpkin?
CAN GUINEA PIGS EAT BANANA PEELS
Banana peels might sound like a good idea to feed your guinea pig, especially since they need to get roughage. However, we cannot recommend that you feed banana peels to your guinea pig. These peels are bulky and may cause impaction in the intestines, which causes constipation.
Peels are a good alternative to sugary fruit, but they will not give any nutrition to the guinea pig so why not replace it with another food that offers more Vitamin C and roughage that guinea pigs can enjoy more and benefit from at the same time?
FEEDING SIZE AND PREPARATION
Start any new food item for your guinea pig in a small amount. The introductory dose should be a tiny portion so that the guinea pig’s reactions can be measured. If your guinea pig pet likes the taste of it, you can keep bananas on the list of occasional foods for them. If your pet pig does not have any obesity issues or diabetes, a single slice of banana every two weeks can be a good snack. Since these little animals like to nibble on food all day, they can enjoy an occasional feed, but if they are overweight or have kidney issues, then do not feed this fruit to them at all.
The health of your guinea pig pet will determine how much of this fruit is acceptable. If they have developed a kidney disorder, which is common in these creatures, it is best to stay away from bananas. However, if they do not have any such issues, then a slice of banana twice a month is acceptable for them. Also, read How To Feed Apples To Guinea Pigs.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Is feeding banana peels and banana pulp together a good idea?
Mixing banana peels with the pulp is only going to increase the volume of the portion. The net sugar intake is going to remain the same. It is better to replace this fruit with any other fruit that is more beneficial for your guinea pig pet.
Will banana kill my guinea pig pet?
Bananas might not kill your pet but if you serve it in excess to a guinea pig that has kidney issues, they might contribute to worsening the kidney disorder, which can lead to death.
Is it acceptable to mix a banana with another fruit and give it to my guinea pig?
Yes, you can serve bananas with other fruits, but make sure that those fruits are more suitable for these creatures. Acceptable fruits for guinea pigs can be blueberries and kiwi.
Can guinea pigs eat bananas? The answer to this question lies in knowing what is right for your guinea pig and what will be unacceptable for them. These small rodents have a decent appetite, but since that is not as large as mammalian pets, you cannot feed them a fruit or vegetable that does not give them their daily nutritional needs. It is always better to replace such foods with more nutritional ones.
I hope that you all find my work as invigorating as it is for me. I combined my passion to write, with my love for breedium and that makes it possible to share all kinds of knowledgeable things based on experiences with new bearded dragon owners!