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Can Guinea Pigs Eat Asparagus?10 min read

Aug 1, 2021 4 min
asparagus

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Asparagus?10 min read

Asparagus is an excellent source of minerals and vitamins such as calcium, vitamin C, vitamin K, fiber, phosphorous, and potassium. Adding asparagus to your guinea pig’s diet can play a vital role in the proper functioning of their digestive system. The simple answer is yes; guinea pigs can eat asparagus.

Let’s dive into more details about feeding asparagus to guinea pigs and all the precautions you should take.

Can guinea pigs have asparagus?

There are various health benefits of asparagus for guinea pigs. Nonetheless, it would be best if you always fed it in moderation to your guinea pigs, as too much asparagus can cause a surge in calcium content, which may be harmful to the overall health of the guinea pigs. You should feed them other things like mint to diversify their diet.

It is not safe for baby guinea pigs to consume asparagus. Baby guinea pigs have to be on a strict diet of just water, hay, and mother’s milk. This will help them grow into healthy guinea pig adults.

Is asparagus good for guinea pigs?

There are numerous Health Benefits of Asparagus for Guinea Pigs:

Antioxidants

Asparagus is an excellent source of vitamins for guinea pigs. They contain Vitamin C and Vitamin E, which are both antioxidants. These antioxidants help improve eyesight and even reduce cholesterol levels.

Bones

The magnesium and Vitamin K in asparagus aids in the growth of strong bones in guinea pigs. Older guinea pigs need vitamins to help with solid bone and teeth development.

Immune System

Asparagus can regulate and monitor the immune system well. It also helps support the overall well-being of your guinea pigs, but only if the proper diet is given. The nutrients, vitamins, and minerals in the asparagus plant make guinea pigs stronger and improve the immune system.

Prevention of scurvy

Since guinea pigs cannot produce their own Vitamin C, it is essential to include Vitamin C-rich foods in their diet plan. The deficiency of Vitamin C can cause scurvy in guinea pigs. However, you may still need to provide your guinea pigs with extra Vitamin C supplements as per their need. 

Fiber content

Asparagus has a very high fiber content which helps with the digestive system. Dietary fiber reduces blood pressure as well, which protects the heart from diseases. Fibrous foods help in losing weight as well, so it prevents obesity in guinea pigs.

Blood Pressure control

The potassium in asparagus is effective in lowering and maintaining high blood pressure. It keeps the cardiovascular system of your guinea pigs healthy. Potassium is a combination of copper and iron, which is suitable for blood vessels. The deficiency of iron in the body can result in anemia and a weakened immune system. Thus, it is a valuable property in asparagus that aids in the overall well-being of the guinea pigs.

Inflammatory properties

Asparagus is rich in anti-inflammatory properties, which helps in blood circulation abilities and improves the guinea pig’s heart health.

How to feed asparagus to guinea pigs?

First, you have to thoroughly wash the asparagus plant to eliminate any toxins that may harm the guinea pigs. You can chop them up into small pieces or serve them as is but make sure that it is raw and not dried, fried or cooked. Guinea pig babies cannot consume asparagus as part of their diet because they need to be on a special and strict diet that includes water, hay, and mother’s milk.

You can either serve the asparagus as it is on its own or mix it with other plants and vegetables. It is also possible for guinea pigs to eat the asparagus ends and tips, which have a fibrous texture. However, since not all guinea pigs are the same, some may not enjoy the taste of asparagus ends as others.

How much asparagus should you feed guinea pigs?

Ensure that the asparagus is well washed to remove any residue from pesticides and other chemicals used when harvesting the asparagus. It is also advisable to buy organic asparagus to feed your guinea pigs as there is less chance of harmful chemicals being present on the surface of the plants.  The correct amount of asparagus to feed a guinea pig is ¼ cup of the whole plant.

They should also not be fed more asparagus once or twice a week. The most critical feeding factor for asparagus is that you need to keep the quantity under check. If you provide them too much, it can cause your guinea pigs to suffer from constipation.

Risks to Consider when feeding asparagus to guinea pigs:

Allergies

Some Guinea pigs may be allergic to asparagus, so you should begin gradually with smaller amounts when you start feeding them asparagus. Slowly work your way up to adding it to their diet after carefully observing any symptoms and side effects such as vomiting, runny nose, and diarrhea.

Stomach Problems

Feeding your guinea pigs with a large quantity of asparagus can cause stomach bloating and sometimes even diarrhea.

Pesticides

Every time you feed asparagus to your guinea pigs, make sure that you wash them properly to remove all residue of pesticides and other harmful chemicals. Another way you can prevent this from happening is to buy only organic asparagus as they do not contain pesticides.

Urinary problem

Since asparagus contains a lot of calcium, adult guinea pigs should not consume a lot of asparagus. It can cause the formation of kidney stones and cause urinary problems. However, calcium is suitable for younger guinea pigs as it helps in strong bone formation.

Final thoughts

If you are thinking about introducing asparagus to your guinea pig’s diet, do it slowly and gradually. Always check for signs of allergies or a bad reaction in the form of bloating, diarrhea, or vomiting after feeding them the asparagus. If you see any adverse symptoms, stop the food immediately.

Conversely, if there are no bad reactions, you can continue to feed them the asparagus, but in small amounts. The best way to add this to your guinea pig’s diet is to serve it as a snack and not a part of their daily meal plan.

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