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If you’re a homo sapiens who wants to share the joy of eating mangoes with your Cavia porcellus companion but not sure if it’d prove fatal to your little friend or not.
Welcome to this humble article.
I shall discuss the very intricate relationship between guinea pigs and mangoes and if guinea pigs can eat mangoes or not.
Without further ado, let’s get started.
So, Can Guinea Pigs Eat Mango?
The thing is; guinea pigs are pretty tiny in size, and it’s a bit dangerous to just feed them whatever that pops up your mind.
What if the high fructose content in mangoes cause your little cavy’s liver to burst from too much fat accumulation?
While this is a bit figurative but it’s a scary way to witness the death of your beloved piggy, isn’t it?
Maybe your guinea pig did eat a slice of mango and lived through it, but that doesn’t equate to providing it to him in large amounts, right?
All of these speculations are pretty understandable, but let me primarily clear it up for you: Guinea pigs can consume mangoes BUT never as a basic part of their diet.
Let me elaborate on this for you.
What’s Up With Mangoes and Cavies?
Your guinea pig’s diet is strictly 80% hay, 10-15% veggies, and the remaining 5% would be fruits and other treats.
That’s the most ideal, well-balanced diet a guinea pig should be fed.
With this nice diet, your cavy would lead a perfectly healthy and normal life without any behavioral changes signifying physiological issues that lead to emergency trips to the vet.
So, only 5% of fruit? But no! Your train of thought mustn’t stop here!
Don’t just go throwing that remaining 5 % to the world of mangoes!
Overfeeding your piggy with the wrong foods will prove fatal to it. But how’s mango wrong; it’s so darn tasty!
Let me clear that up for you.
Take a look at the following table which illustrates the nutritional facts in 100 grams of mangoes:
|Vitamin A||1,082 IU|
|Vitamin K||4.2 ug|
|Calcium: Phosphorus||0.71: 1|
Now let’s dissect the benefits and the hazards of the different components of mangoes.
Mango Health Benefits for Guinea Pigs
Guinea pigs can’t synthesize their own vitamin C and A just like us, so it’s a must to supplement them with foods rich in it or through oral supplements.
But mother nature is always the best alternative.
That juicy goodness called mango is a perfect candidate as it does contain good amounts of Vitamins A and C as well as a small but adequate amount of Calcium.
Vitamin C in Mangoes for Guinea Pigs
Vitamin C is an extremely important component in your guinea pig’s diet. It’s an important factor in maintaining your piggy’s immune health. It also protects your cavy from:
- Scurvy, which is a disease caused due to Vitamin C deficiency
- Symptoms of lethargy, weight loss, difficulty moving, displaying a rough coat
- Gastrointestinal symptoms like diarrhea
- Wounds not healing properly, or bleeding excessively
Actually, if you notice any of these signs indicating Vitamin C deficiency, take your cavy to the vet immediately! These signs may cause death if left untreated!
Vitamin A in Mangoes for Guinea Pigs
Vitamin A is tremendously important for the growth and nutrition of guinea pigs, as well as their eye health.
It protects your cavy from conditions like:
- Xerophthalmia; which is an abnormal dryness of the conjunctiva and the cornea of your cavy’s eyes, as well as inflammation and ridge formation.
- Noticeable noise sensitivity
Did you know that Xerophthalmia due to vitamin A deficiency may lead to death within a few days? If you noticed such a sign in your guinea pig, hurry up and take it to the vet!
Calcium in Mangoes for Guinea Pigs
Calcium is an essential component in building strong bones, proper muscular coordination and movement, as well as providing proper nutrition for your guinea pig, especially if she’s a pregnant mama.
If your cavy doesn’t receive a sufficient calcium intake through its diet, this may lead to its body freaking out and overreacting by drawing calcium out of bones in large amounts.
This may backfire, causing bladder and kidney stones due to excess calcium deposits.
Not having enough calcium in the blood may also cause the following symptoms and conditions associated with calcium deficiency:
- Muscle spasms, lethargy, and loss of appetite
- Brittle bones and teeth
- Hind-leg paralysis
- Inability to absorb phosphorus
- More phosphorus than calcium may lead to a magnesium deficiency
Other Nutrients Found in Mangoes
Magnesium and potassium are abundant in mangoes; they aid in regulating your cavy’s cardiovascular health.
These minerals maintain ideal blood pressure and the proper pulsation and relaxation of blood vessels.
Mangoes also contain anti-oxidants as mangiferin, which reduces swelling and prevents inflammation in guinea pigs.
Also; vitamin A, zeaxanthin, and lutein found in mangoes are quite essential for good eyesight.
Finally, Amylases, water content, and dietary fibers are readily available in mangoes in rich amounts.
These contribute to good digestive health, inducing a feeling of satiated fullness, as well as preventing bouts of constipation and diarrhea.
Risks to Consider When Feeding Mangoes to Guinea Pigs
While mangoes are sweet, delicious, filled with a myriad of minerals and vitamins and your piggy loves the taste of them; too much isn’t beneficial for them.
You may get heartthrobs when you feed your piggy mangoes as they’ll seem happy and excited; this may result in you feeding them more when you shouldn’t.
Be sure to contain yourself, resist their happy squeals and remember that too much can prove fatal!
Mangoes Are Too High in Sugar
Mangoes are rich in fructose, with about 13.66gm/every 100 grams of mangoes.
Guinea pigs would be totally fine and healthy with small amounts of mango, but with this high sugar content, big portions may cause conditions like diabetes, obesity, and diarrhea.
Too much may cause your pet to vomit, as your cavy may get too overwhelmed by the sugary taste.
Some Parts May Cause Allergic Reactions
Parts like skin, leaves, stems and the sap of mangoes contain oils that may trigger allergic reactions in your piggy.
How Often Can I Feed My Guinea Pig Mangoes?
You’re only allowed to feed your guinea pig a small slice or two once a week.
This serving is only to provide the required vitamin and mineral intake to prevent health complications resulting from mineral and vitamin deficiencies.
It’s also a nice treat. Your cavies will love the taste of mangoes, but keep in mind not to exceed the suggested serving.
You don’t want to indulge your piggy and in turn, harm it.
Hay should be readily available in a hayrack or a basket inside your piggy’s cage as this is the main source of nutrition for your guinea pig.
The provided hay should be of good quality, in which it’s dry, sweet-smelling, and devoid of mold, mildew or fungus.
How Much Mangoes Can We Feed Our Guinea Pigs?
A tiny portion of a whole mango will suffice for the entire week.
So don’t cut your guinea pig a kilogram’s worth of mangoes as that’d literally be his final meal.
How to Prepare Mangoes For Guinea Pigs?
That’s a quite sophisticated procedure starting from choosing the proper type of mangoes to how you cut them because you don’t just throw one into their cage and stare at the poor babies trying to gnaw on the skin.
Choosing The Perfect Mango
Sour mangoes are a big no-no as they may cause health issues.
The proper mango must be fully ripe and sweet.
Properly Wash It Up
Give the chosen mango a nice wash up to rid it of any traces of pesticides or chemicals present on its surface.
Beware that these chemicals may cause adverse health effects on your cavy if your cavy’s consumed them.
Peel-off The Skin
You must completely peel off the skin.
Not even a small part should be fed to your tiny pig.
Cut The Mango
Be sure to cut the mango in small sizes that are not too big that your pet may choke on it or have a hard time chewing it.
Small slice-shaped servings smaller than the size of your cavy’s mouth are good.
Serve your pet the final product by placing it in a small container or a fruit bowl.
If left uneaten, remove and dispose of it as it may have accumulated nasty bacteria.
Here are some of the most commonly asked questions about the interesting relationship between mangoes and guinea pigs:
- Can Guinea Pigs Eat Cooked/Frozen Mango?
No. Frozen and cooked mangoes lose their nutritional content of vitamins and minerals.
Delivering these nutritional components is the main purpose behind feeding your cavy mangoes.
Freezing and cooking mangoes also increase the number of carbohydrates and sugars in them, so their nutritional value is even more debunked.
- Can I Give Mango Seeds To My Guinea Pig?
Don’t do that! Your pet cavy may get injured or even choke on them as they’re too harsh! It could be fatal for your pet to consume them so don’t get them near your guinea pig.
- Can Guinea Pigs Eat Mango Skin?
No, they can’t. The skin, stem, and mango leaves are hazardous for your guinea pig.
They may suffer from health effects due to present pesticides and chemicals on their surfaces.
Aside from the fact that your cavy may choke on the skin, feeding it mango skin is pointless anyway because there’s no nutritional value in it.
Of course, don’t feed it the pit too. It’s the literal manifestation of a choking hazard.
- Can Guinea Pigs Eat Dried Mango?
This could be your guinea pig’s final meal if you’ve ever done that.
Avoid feeding your cavy dried mango at all costs.
Its sugar content is insanely high, and there’s a probability of existing additives and preservatives that may trigger health issues in your cavy.
- Can I Give My Guinea Pig Mango Juice?
No, you can’t. The only safe liquid your guinea pig can drink is water, literally.
Juices and any other liquid may pose a hazard for your delicate pet.
Mango juice is extremely sweet for your pet to handle, which may trigger a vomiting spell or diarrhea
Guinea pigs are delicate creatures with equally delicate diets, so always keep this in mind, and do thorough research on whatever food you’d like to feed your cavy.
Mangoes like most other foods in a cavy’s restricted diet aren’t to be binged on by your guinea pig.
They’re quite fierce in the fructose amount aspect, so the may prove hazardous on your tiny pet’s body if consumed in monstrous amounts.
However, they’re also extremely nutritious and are more than capable of supplementing your cavy with the much-needed vitamins and minerals necessary for a long, healthy life filled with heart throbbing cuteness.
Mangoes should be fed to your guinea pig once a week as a nice treat.
Be sure to resist your cavy’s desire to binge at all costs as mangoes taste like heaven to both us humans and guinea pigs alike.
Thoroughly prep your mango before feeding it to your pet, making sure it’s perfectly ripe and sweet.
Don’t feed your tiny guy anything other than the actual fruit itself. So a mango’s pit, skin, stems, leaves, seeds are a big no-no for your guinea pig.
It’s only fresh pieces of mangoes. Don’t feed your cavy neither frozen, or cooked, or dried, or processed, nor canned mangoes.
Mango juice is also, not on the recommended list of foods to feed your small pet.
Finally, take good care of your small companion and watch out for vitamin and mineral deficiency signs.
If you suspect any of them, do take your guinea pig to the vet immediately, as they may prove unbearable and fatal for your guinea pig’s small body.