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Often confused as a vegetable, avocados are an extremely popular fruit, and not just for millennials!
From guacamole to avocado toast, Americans import 1.73 billion pounds of avocados from Mexico (the primary exporter of avocados) each year.
With 20 vitamins and minerals, low sugar content and high levels of monounsaturated fat, it’s no wonder that avocados are so popular.
Essentially, avocados are delicious and healthy for humans but what about for our cavy companions?
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Avocado as well?
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Avocado?
So, avocados are healthy–no doubt about it.
They taste good and they’re easy to eat alone, on top of a salad, in a smoothie, or as a simple side.
There are even recipes out there that show you how to mix avocados into a dessert!
But…what about your cavy?
Yes, the fruit in avocados is safe for guinea pigs. But a few watch-outs.
Be sure to remove the peel and pit before serving.
The peel contains the highest concentration of persin (a toxin that can cause gastrointestinal irritation and vomiting).
Even though avocado is full of the good kind of fat, it’s still fat—and fed frequently, can lead to unhealthy weight gain and even trigger pancreatitis.
Avocado happens to be packed with over 20 vitamins and minerals.
With just a 3.5-ounce, 160-calorie serving, you get 2 grams of protein and 15 grams of fats (the healthy kind).
As well, it boasts sources of vitamin K, vitamin C, vitamin E, folate, and B vitamins.
And don’t forget fiber—it counteracts the carbohydrate content to give you 2 grams net carbs per serving.
But I Heard That Avocados Are Bad For Guinea Pigs. Is This True?
While the meat of the avocado fruit is safe to consume, other parts of the avocado can actually be potentially harmful to your guinea pig companion.
The source of all the confusion is persin.
Persin is an organic compound found naturally within the stem, peel, leaves, and pit of an avocado.
Persin is especially potent in Guatemalan avocados.
To guinea pigs, persin is actually considered a toxin (but not so for humans).
Fortunately, persin is not found in extracts of avocado, which explains why cavy food brands that contain avocado oil are generally safe.
Even a little bit of fresh avocado fruit is usually okay, provided that not too much is given and careful attention is paid to how your cavy reacts to the supplementary food.
IS Avocado Healthy for Guinea Pigs?
It is, in the right quantities. Avocado contains lots of good vitamins, such as A, C, and E.
It is full of protein and high in potassium. It’s also packed full of essential omega fatty acids, is rich in antioxidants and can be great for healthy skin and a shiny coat.
So to answer the question “is avocado healthy for guinea pigs” simply, yes.
There are lots of health benefits, but avoid the stone and consider it a treat.
Remember, not every food type will sit well with every guinea pig’s digestive system so start gently if your cavy has a sensitive stomach.
If you have any concerns at all and your cavy begins to be sick or has an upset stomach after eating avocado, speak with your veterinarian.
How to Give Your Guinea Pig Avocado
If you want to give your dog avocado, make sure you’re doing so without presenting any risk to your pup.
Here are three rules of thumb to follow:
- Keep the portion size small. Giving your dog avocado in large amounts raises the risk of poisoning thanks to persin, and the high-fat content can prove dangerous for your pup as well.
- Only give your dog the fruit itself. Never allow your pooch to eat the avocado plant’s stem, leaves, or bark. Completely remove the skin of each avocado and discard it, and remove the pit to make sure your dog can’t choke on it.
- Only give your dog plain avocado. Never let your dog indulge in guacamole, as it contains other harmful ingredients like onions, garlic, and salt.
- Keep a close eye on your pet while they’re eating avocado to make sure they don’t experience any adverse side effects.
Bottom line? Safe in small amounts, feed your dog this fruit sparingly.
- Can Guinea Pigs Eat Avocado Every Day?
it’s not a good idea to feed them excessive amounts of avocado.
Too much may cause your guinea pig to develop a mild case of toxicosis, which could be seen as diarrhea and vomiting.
And it’s best to stick to feeding fresh avocado as an occasional treat only.
The addition of avocado to a guinea pig’s diet is beneficial in boosting the well-being of the cavy as they are loaded with nutrients when given in the right amount.
Too much fat in guinea pigs can lead to pancreatitis resulting in inadequate food digestion and loose stool.
Therefore before giving the guinea pig avocado ensure that the right amount of it is provided to avoid the complication that comes with too much consumption.
Guinea pigs are different, with this variation one can consult the animal nutritionists to assist in moderating the avocado intake.