Guinea Pigs

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Corn Husks?

Aug 25, 2021
A corn field with corn husks in a wooden container.

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Corn Husks?

Across a variety of cultures, the biodegradable yet strong corn husks have a high intrinsic value. It’s a common sight in many kitchens due to its usefulness in numerous dishes. If you’re into tamales or wrappers, corn husks are something that you’ll be quite used to seeing.

However, here’s a question: can you give corn husks to guinea pigs? Will it be harmful if you were to feed corn husks to guinea pigs?

In minimal amounts, for sure, corn husks can be a go-to snack for guinea pigs to nibble on. Apart from being an efficient chew toy, corn husks contain nutrients essential for the well-being of your guinea pig.

Thus, if that’s crystal clear, let’s figure out what corn husks really mean to your guinea pig.

Can guinea pigs have corn husks?

Guinea pigs can definitely have corn husks, albeit in very minimal amounts. Corn husks are very rich in terms of flour and salt content. That’s why if not controlled, such abundant levels of flour and salt can really mess with the health of your guinea pig.

If you intend to feed your fluffy rodent corn husks, make sure to wash it properly to remove traces of pesticides. Also, ensure that you select the husk from the part of the cob that’s closest to it. After consuming the tasty nutritional snack, keep a thorough check for any physical side effects.

Are corn husks good for guinea pigs?

In terms of nutritional value, texture, and taste, corns husks are very much like grass or hay. It houses an abundant source of fiber for your guinea pig. Thus, corn husks are ideal and extremely good for guinea pigs. Consider feeding them other foods like pumpkin to increase the variety of their diet.

It’ll help in the healthy development of your fluffy friend unless given in excess.

With that in mind, let’s quickly look into the benefits of having corn husks in your guinea pig’s diet.

Proteins

It’s a known fact that corn, in general, is an efficient source of carbs. That also extends to the Corn Husks. Not only that, but it also fulfills the protein needs of your guinea pig as an alternate source.

Protein is essential for the creation of hemoglobin and growth in guinea pigs, just as it is for humans as well. Thus, it further translates to an efficient and oxygenated circulation of blood.

Minerals

Corn husks are rich in phosphorus, calcium, magnesium as well as potassium.

For healthy maintenance of bones, phosphorus and calcium are vital. On the other hand, magnesium assists in regulating nerve functions and sugar.

Fibers and Carbs

As stated earlier, corn husks offer an abundant source of fiber and carbs.

In order to maintain and provide high energy levels for your guinea pig, carbs are crucial. Fibers are necessary for the healthy sustenance of the gut and overall digestive system.

Antioxidants

Antioxidants are an essential component of your guinea pig’s diet. Vitamin C, selenium, manganese as well as Vitamin A are some of the antioxidants present in corn husks.

Vitamin C assists in facilitating wound healing, maintains vascular integrity, and builds immunity against various diseases.

The fact that guinea pigs can neither produce nor store Vitamin C makes the antioxidant even more crucial.

With regards to selenium, manganese, and Vitamin A, they protect the guinea pigs from free radical damages. These antioxidants achieve that through the removal of such radicals from their bodies.

Also, it slows down the aging process and helps attain a healthy and strong immune system.

Corn husks keep the blood healthy

Corn husks are efficient sources of two minerals that are essential for healthy blood. These minerals are copper and iron. They are vital for a strong and healthy immune system.

Copper is responsible for the synthesis of new RBCs (Red Blood Cells) that houses iron in the body. Furthermore, iron helps prevent anemia (loss of appetite, illness, weakness) by offering energy and ridding the body of fatigue.

In this way, iron and copper work in tandem to maintain the immune system as well as keeping the blood healthy.

Corn husks assist in achieving satiety

Since these are a great source for both carbs and proteins, the guinea pigs are sure to feel full after consuming corn husks. Not only do corn husks assist guinea pigs in feeling satiated, but it also ensures they stay full for longer durations.

But that doesn’t mean that you should binge feed your guinea pig Corn husks. Keep the intake to a minimum. Remember that corn husks also store salt and flour in abundance.

Uncontrolled intake can lead to massive variations in your guinea pig’s weight.

How much corn husk can guinea pigs eat?

Even though corn husks have beneficial features, maintain its intake to a minimum. At the same time, corn husks contain minimal calories and mainly constitutes fiber.

Thus, you can feed your guinea pigs corn husk every day but in limited quantities per serving.

Since a guinea pig’s diet mainly consists of hay, corn husks offer an efficient variety to it. But it’s vital that you don’t completely replace hay with corn husks.

Below are a few pointers to follow while feeding corn husks to guinea pigs.

  • Only provide corn husks as it is; fresh.
  • Select the husk that’s closest to the cob. In case you choose the outer layers, ensure to wash them carefully. Remove all traces of pesticides and fertilizers.
  • Do not provide too much at once.

Note: Excess feeding can result in a variety of health issues for your guinea pig.

As mentioned earlier, it can lead to great variations in their weight. Since corn husks also contain high amounts of starch and sugar, guinea pigs can develop diabetes.

Issues with the digestive system are also probable since such functions are minimal in guinea pigs. Thus, they cannot disintegrate high amounts of sugar efficiently.

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In Conclusion

Corn husks are indeed a complete nutritional package necessary for your guinea pig’s diet. Not only are the corn husks their favorite chew toy under a controlled diet regime, but these are also great sources of many essential minerals and nutrients.

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