Human’s love for their pets is one of the most adorable phenomena of this world. Some of us think dogs are the best mates; some are willing to mother cats while some are content with a furball. Yes, you guessed it right. We are talking about guinea pigs of course. The extent to which people love these furry rodents can surprise you. However, nothing beats the act of sharing your food, with your pet. This affection cannot be described by mere words. Nevertheless, lovable as the gesture might be, it still has some repercussions, the most important ones being related to safety of course. Should you share everything you eat with your furry friend? There are so many food items that you must think about twice before you share them with a guinea pig. One such veggie is green beans. In today’s discussion, we see if guinea pigs can eat green beans or not.
Green beans, a recap
Although they are quite a popular vegetable, their name still confuses a few people. To clear matters, green beans are unripe fruit that is found within a pod. Their leaves do not necessarily have to be green; they can be purple as well. The pods within which the green beans are encapsulated edible as well. There are many varieties of green beans, some project a number somewhere around 125-130. It is impossible to discuss, or even mention, these varieties in this concise discussion that is more focused on guinea pigs. However, some of the varieties common beans, runner beans, string beans, and French beans. You might already be familiar with some of these, especially the runner beans!
Can guinea pigs eat green beans?
Well, if you are looking for a short answer, then yes, guinea pigs can eat green beans. However, the finer details are more important than the one-word answer. We are afraid you will have to read a bit more about the nutritional value and the frequency of green beans before you start tossing them to your furry pet.
What do green beans offer to guinea pigs?
The first question that you must ask is about the health benefits of any vegetable. It is just not the green beans; you should follow this approach in case of any food item that you are thinking of offering to your guinea pig. What are the health benefits associated with green beans, for guinea pigs? Firstly, weight. We think you will be immensely grateful to know that eating green beans does not mean that your rodent friend is going to get fat or obese. We will give you a nutritional breakdown of the green beans at a later stage in this article. However, for now, it is sufficient to say that the beans are quite low on calories and fats.
However they are quite rich in fiber, this has an immensely healthy impact on the digestive system of your rodent friend. Your guinea pig can say goodbye to the problem of constipation as well. The antioxidant properties of green beans benefit, not only humans but the guinea pigs as well. Free radicals can be very damaging for any organism’s body; green beans are one good way of fighting them. Apart from these benefits, green beans have a marvelous effect on blood cell production and minimize the risk of diseases like scurvy.
Green beans, a nutritional overview
We have seen that green beans have a lot to offer to your guinea pig. However, what are the key nutrients that endow the beans with such health benefits? It is important to identify, the nutritional value associated with green beans. The first thing that you must ask yourself about any vegetable is the calorie count associated with it. Green beans have a very low-calorie count. Calories are not the only thing they are low on, the carbohydrate, protein, and fat content of the green beans is minimal as well. The same goes for sugar levels; you can see why eating green beans does not contribute to obesity. The majority of health benefits that we have discussed in the aforementioned lines are courtesy of different vitamins that the beans have. These include vitamins A, C, E, and K. Vitamin C has a crucial role in fighting nutritional deficiency and diseases like scurvy. Elements like calcium, iron, phosphorus, zinc, and copper are also found abundantly in green beans.
How much green beans are ok for your guinea pig?
By the looks of things, green beans are just the perfect diet for your guinea pig. You might wonder why we sound hesitant then. Well, you must be careful about how much green beans are your guinea pigs eating. There are certain risk factors associated with overconsumption, something that we will discuss in a while. For now, let us talk about how much of the beans are good for your pet. Well, in terms of weekly feed, you should not feed green beans to your pet, not more than a couple of times a week. Oh, and the quantity? Well, a few are fine, nothing more than that. The other question is of course how you are going to serve the beans to your furry pet. Well, there are no major preparations involved. Just simply wash them with water and serve them. Oh, and do not serve them if they are frozen. It is better to defrost them first.
Risks associated with green bean consumption
We mentioned the risks associated with green bean consumption earlier; let us have a look at them in detail now. The major complications associated with too many green beans are related to the urinary system of your guinea pigs. The green beans are high in calcium and phosphorus. It is common knowledge that these elements are a major contributor to the formation of kidney stones. These stones can then lead to urinary obstruction, as well as certain urinary tract infections. The end-stage disease is the most complicated one, known as renal failure.
Apart from urinary complications, these beans are also reported to harm the digestive process as well. Too many green beans mean too much sugar. Too much sugar can then lead to indigestion or an upset stomach. This can lead to conditions like diarrhea. Green beans can also lead to minor digestive problems like gas or bloating. Sometimes, for the sake of convenience, people use canned beans. These are bound to have some additives in them, which are hardly any good for your pet. Hence, avoiding this version of green beans is better.
We wish we could go on, but the limitations of time and space force us to conclude this debate here. Nevertheless, we feel that the effort was a successful one. Now, you know the answer to some of the most basic questions related to guinea pigs and green beans. If you adopt the course of moderation, there is no reason why your friend cannot have some of the green beans that you and your family enjoy. As we said, no more than two times a week is the way to go. Oh, and the fresh green beans are always most preferred over the frosted ones!