If you’re looking for a healthy and tasty snack for your pet rabbits, pumpkin seeds may be just the thing! In this article, we’ll discuss everything you need to know about feeding pumpkin seeds to rabbits, including what they are, how many to give them, and some substitutes if you can’t find pumpkin seeds. We’ll also cover what to do if your rabbits get sick after eating pumpkin seeds. So keep reading to learn more!
What are pumpkin seeds?
Pumpkin seeds are the edible seeds from a pumpkin. These seeds usually have a flat, grayish-white shell. They may be sold raw or roasted and salted, either plain or in a variety of flavors such as barbecue or chili lime. Pumpkin seeds are rich in nutrients including essential amino acids and Omega-3 fatty acids. Pumpkin seeds are also high in the antioxidant mineral selenium, which was found to be beneficial for reducing oxidative stress in rabbits.
How often should I give my rabbits pumpkin seeds?
You can feed your rabbit pumpkin seeds as often as they like them until the shell starts to cause digestive problems. Generally, this will take about six seeds a day before you notice any issues, although the number of seeds that’s too many for your pet rabbit depends on their size and other factors.
How many pumpkin seeds do rabbits eat a day?
Smaller bunnies might just have one or two per day as a treat, while larger bunnies will need more. The general guideline is that bunnies should eat between 1/8 of a cup and 1/4 of a cup per day of pumpkin seeds, depending on their size and activity level.
What pumpkin seeds are safe for rabbits?
Whether you find your own or buy a bag, look for seeds that are meant for human consumption. This ensures a high quality, all natural product without the risk of chemicals or anything else that could be dangerous to your rabbit.
What is your experience feeding pumpkin seeds to rabbits?
I’ve fed our rabbits pumpkin seeds by breaking them into smaller pieces and feeding them to the rabbits as treats. They love it, and I can tell that they’re good for them because of how excited the bunnies get when we break out the pumpkin seeds.
Are pumpkin seeds bad for rabbits?
While pumpkin seeds are generally safe for rabbits, the shells of some varieties can be abrasive. If you’re not sure about a particular variety or type of pumpkin seed, it’s best to avoid feeding them to your rabbit until you’ve had them checked by your veterinarian.
Is it safe to feed pumpkin seeds to your pet rabbits?
Pumpkin seeds are generally safe for rabbits to eat. However, they’re not recommended for young or pregnant bunnies, or older rabbits with dental problems. Many types of pumpkin seeds also have shells that are hard to digest, so it’s important to consider the health of your pet rabbit before adding them as a treat.
Where can I get pumpkin seeds for my rabbits?
If you’re looking for these tasty treats for your rabbits, you can find them at most pet stores. If the store doesn’t carry pumpkin seeds for rabbits, or if they’re too expensive where you live, there are alternatives that cost less. Here are some of our recommendations for where to find pumpkin seeds for your bunnies:
What to do if your pet rabbits are sick from eating pumpkin seeds?
If you give your rabbit too many pumpkin seeds, or feed them a type that’s not meant for rabbits, they might get sick. If this happens, don’t panic! Your bunny will usually recover within a day or two of the incident. This is because pumpkin seeds are mostly fiber, which helps promote good digestion. The only cause of long-term illness is if your rabbit has an allergy to pumpkins or other gourds, in which case they may need to be taken off the treat altogether.
Do rabbits like pumpkin seeds?
Rabbits generally enjoy eating pumpkin seeds, and many will get quite excited at the sight of them. Pumpkin seeds are easy for your rabbit to eat, making them a good choice if you’re looking for a treat that won’t cause any digestive problems or other issues in your pet.
Can pet rabbits eat pumpkin seeds?
Yes, rabbits can eat pumpkin seeds as a treat. They might seem similar to the kind of treats you buy from the pet store, but they have special advantages that make them better for your rabbit. One advantage of feeding your rabbit pumpkin seeds is that they’re almost impossible for a rabbit to crack open on its own, unlike dog biscuits or hard pellets. This means that you can feel safe about leaving them out for snacks while your rabbit is out of its cage, since there’s almost no chance of the seeds causing any damage if they get spilled. Another advantage of feeding pumpkin seeds to rabbits is that they’re small enough for most rabbits to handle easily, whether you feed the seeds whole or grind them into a powder first.
Food family of pumpkin seeds
While pumpkin seeds are generally considered safe for adult rabbits, young or pregnant rabbits should not be given them. An excess of fatty acids in the diet can result in loose stool, diarrhea, and even obesity. It’s best to consult your rabbit-savvy veterinarian before adding any new food to your rabbit’s diet.
Why are pumpkin seeds good for rabbits?
Pumpkin seeds are considered to be a healthy treat for pet rabbits. They contain several nutrients that can help promote your furry friends’ health, including zinc, iron, protein, and magnesium. They’re also high in fiber and low in carbohydrates, making them perfect if you’re looking for a snack for your rabbits that will keep their digestive systems moving.
4 good substitutes for pumpkin seeds
If you can’t get pumpkin seeds for your rabbits or if they’re just not what you’re looking for, there are a number of other options that work just as well. Here are four of our favorite replacements:
1. Apple seeds
2. Banana peels
3. Basil seeds
4. Chia seeds
7 steps to prepare pumpkin seeds for rabbits
If you’re going to add pumpkin seeds as a treat for your rabbits, it’s important that you take the time to prepare them. This is because most pumpkin seeds have hard shells that are difficult to digest, so you need to remove the shell before offering them to your pet rabbit. Here are seven steps you can follow when preparing your pumpkin seeds.
- Find an empty bowl or plate your rabbit can’t knock over easily.
- Put a generous portion of pumpkin seeds in the bowl with enough room left over for them to move around freely without spilling the contents everywhere.
- Fill a small bowl with enough water to cover the seeds and pour it over the pumpkin seeds.
- Let the pumpkin seeds soak for at least 30 minutes so their shells soften up and become easier to digest.
- Drain out the excess water from your pumpkin seed bowl and use tongs to move the seeds into a separate bowl.
- Use your fingers to break open each pumpkin seed shell and discard the shells.
- Feed the seeds directly to your pet rabbit or store them in an airtight container for future use, such as sprinkling over their favorite vegetables or fruit!
5 health benefits of pumpkin seeds for rabbits
Pumpkin seeds are packed full of nutrients that are good for you and your pet rabbit. Here are five benefits that come with feeding pumpkin seeds to your rabbits!
1. Healthy fats
As well as being rich in protein, pumpkin seeds are full of healthy fats that can help reduce cholesterol levels and heart disease. While they have a number of different uses, pumpkin seed oils are often added to commercial dog foods to help boost the flavor.
2. High in fiber, low in sugar
Thanks to their high fiber content, pumpkin seeds are invaluable for your rabbit’s digestive system. Not only do they help improve bowel function but they also help keep their teeth clean by preventing plaque build-up over time. There’s no sugar in pumpkin seeds, either, so you can offer these treats with peace of mind that your rabbit isn’t developing any sweet tooth!
3. Loaded with nutrients
There are many different vitamins and minerals found in pumpkin seeds. Some of the more common ones include magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, zinc, copper and iron. The combination of nutrients found in pumpkin seeds is vital for your rabbit’s health and development!
4. Fights cancer
Pumpkin seeds contain a compound called cucurbitin, which has been shown to slow or stop the growth of tumor cells and cancerous tissue. It hasn’t been tested on humans yet but researchers are hopeful that this compound might one day be used successfully in chemotherapy treatments to help prevent the spread of cancerous cells.
5. May improve your rabbit’s coat
Rabbit’s that eat pumpkin seeds end up with healthier coats than those that don’t, likely because of all the nutrients they contain. A healthy coat not only makes your pet look their best but it can also help prevent hairballs as well.
5 Possible concerns when feeding pumpkin seeds to rabbits
While pumpkin seeds are good for your rabbit, there’s a chance they could be harmful to them too. Here are five reasons why you shouldn’t feed your pet these treats:
1. Too much phosphorus and calcium at once
Although pumpkin seeds contain high amounts of calcium and phosphorus, it’s important not to feed them at the same time. If you do give your rabbit too much calcium and phosphorus in one sitting, their body can’t handle it all at once. They end up with a deficiency or an excess of either nutrient which is bad for their overall health.
2. Too much fat can throw off your rabbit’s digestive system
Although pumpkin seeds are full of dietary fiber, fat and protein, too much can upset your rabbits digestive system. This is because it becomes almost impossible for them to absorb all the nutrients from their food when there’s too much fat present!
3. Seeds are difficult to digest
Pumpkin seed shells are hard and difficult for your rabbit to digest. If they eat too many of them, this could lead to digestive issues such as diarrhea and bloating.
4. Seeds may cause throat or stomach blockages
Even if you feed them the right amount of pumpkin seeds, there’s still a chance that large chunks can get caught in your rabbits throat or their stomach. This could lead to a blockage that needs to be surgically removed.
5. Seeds may contain pesticides
Since pumpkin seeds are often grown in gardens, they’re at risk of becoming contaminated with all sorts of nasty chemicals and pesticides. If your rabbit is eating treated seeds on a regular basis, this could end up making them sick over time.
7 Signs pet rabbits are sick from feeding pumpkin seeds
If your rabbit is eating a lot of pumpkin seeds, they may become ill as a result. Here’s seven signs that indicate your pet might be sick from those treats:
1. Abdominal bloating and pain after eating pumpkin seeds
When their stomach fills up with gas rapidly, your rabbit may feel nauseous for a few hours. They’ll be weak and their stomach will ache, sometimes to the point of vomiting.
2. Digestive issues with gas, bloating and loose stool
If you notice that your pet has diarrhea or is having multiple bowel movements throughout the day, it could be due to pumpkin seeds. It’s not uncommon for rabbits who overindulge on these treats to get an upset stomach and their waste will become looser than usual. Some may even have blood in their stool.
3. Weakness and napping more frequently
If your rabbit is lethargic and lacking energy, it could be because they’re sick from eating too many of their favorite treat. Pumpkin seeds are high in fat, which is difficult for rabbits to digest properly. This causes them to feel weak and sleepy during the day.
4. Dehydration due to diarrhea
If your pet is dehydrated, it’s likely because they’ve been suffering from diarrhea or another digestive issue that saps their body of all its fluids.
5. Loss of appetite from abdominal pain
If your rabbit is suffering from stomach pain, they won’t feel hungry and may stop eating altogether. This is a serious issue that will only get worse if it’s not treated immediately. You should also know that pets that have gone a few days without food could be at risk of developing hepatic lipidosis. This is a deadly liver disease that can lead to organ failure and eventual death if not treated in time.
6. Vomiting from eating too many pumpkin seeds
As mentioned above, too much fat will upset your rabbit’s digestive system and could even make them vomit out their food. If you notice that your pet has been throwing up, this could be the reason why.
7. Dental pain and tooth decay
One of the most serious symptoms of pumpkin seeds is dental pain and tooth decay. If your rabbit doesn’t chew them enough, they’ll swallow whole and that will push their teeth out of place or even damage their pearly whites!
7 Tips before giving pumpkin seeds to rabbits
As you can tell, feeding your rabbit pumpkin seeds isn’t always a good idea. Here are seven tips that will help you avoid any potential issues when giving them these treats:
1. Give them in small amounts
Make sure to only feed your pet a few pumpkin seeds at a time. If you give them more than this, they might get a stomach ache or develop other health complications.
2. Don’t let them eat the entire seed
It’s important to remove the shell from the pumpkin before giving it to your rabbit so they don’t consume too much of it. Without its thick covering, your pet should be able to digest the seeds 10 times faster than if they were eating the entire pumpkin.
3. Only feed them seeds from your garden
Pumpkin seeds make great treats because they’re healthy and don’t contain any sugars or preservatives that could harm your rabbit in the long run. That being said, make sure to only give them organic seeds from a plant in your garden. This means you can ensure they haven’t been treated with any chemicals and they’ll be much healthier for your rabbit.
4. Store pumpkin seeds in the fridge
If you’re going to use these treats as training rewards, make sure to keep them in the refrigerator so they don’t spoil. If left out too long, pumpkin seeds could become covered with harmful bacteria that will make your rabbit sick.
5. Feed your pet the whole seed
It’s best to give you kids the entire pumpkin seed when they’re still in their shell. Some experts even recommend feeding them the whole fruit because its hard outer shell is perfect for scrubbing their teeth clean! Just make sure not to feed them any gourds from a store-bought pumpkin because they could contain harmful chemicals.
6. Add pumpkin seeds to water or oatmeal
Another thing you can do is mix the seeds into your rabbit’s food. This way, they’ll still receive all of its benefits without having to worry about their digestive system being upset by too much fat at once. Some people even recommend adding them to water or oatmeal!
7. Avoid pumpkin seed oil and seeds from the supermarket
Pumpkin seed oil is used as a dietary supplement for pets, but it’s not the same thing as feeding your rabbit actual pumpkin seeds. You’ll save yourself some grief if you just feed them the real fruit instead of some sort of impostor. Seeds from the supermarket may also be treated with harmful chemicals and it’s best to avoid them all together.
As You Can See
We hope this article has been helpful for you and that it helps your bunnies enjoy a healthy, happy life. Comment below to share what tricks you’ve tried with your rabbits!