As humans, we all do experience phases when we love to eat something sweet. Luckily, for us, there are no restrictions when it comes to eating sweets. So we can pick up from a variety of options like chocolates, ice creams, desserts, pastries, candies, fruits, and more. We can enjoy these in different flavors at any time of the day. Can the same be said about rabbits? Can we feed them candies and other sweet treats frequently? Keep reading to find out the answers to these questions and more.
Can rabbits eat candies regularly?
The answer to this question is “no.” Candies contain a lot of sugar and artificial flavors, which can be quite toxic for rabbits. Therefore, you cannot give them sweet treats like candies regularly. When you try to feed them sweets like ice creams or candies, they may get very excited. They may even look like they enjoy these sweet treats very much; however, you should understand that these can harm them in the long run. Candies and any other sweets that humans consume are not safe for rabbits, as the animals cannot digest these foods easily.
Sweet foods and rabbits
Rabbits are very cute, and they may try to attract you into feeding them their favorite ice creams. They show their interest by licking off the drops that fall from your spoon of ice cream. However, never get tempted to feed them anything sugary. Rabbits can eat only natural foods and snacks that contain sugar. They cannot have any candies that have artificial colors in them. Even if you make homemade candies or sweet treats for rabbits, you should ensure that it contains only those ingredients that have been certified “safe” for rabbits.
Here is a list of natural foods that can be given to rabbits occasionally to satisfy their sweet cravings. Please note that though these are natural foods, they shouldn’t be fed too often to rabbits, due to the high sugar content in them:
- Berries (black, blue, raspberries and strawberries)
- Pineapple (fresh and dried)
How many sweets can be given to rabbits?
Now, that you have understood that you cannot give candies to rabbits, you also have to understand how much of these naturally sweet treats you can give your pets. Please note that the quantity of sweet treats that can be fed to your pets is dependent on the age and size of rabbits. Rabbits cannot digest sugar and artificial colors very well, so you should be careful about giving them anything sweet.
- Rabbits shouldn’t be given any sugar (in the form of natural fruits or other foods) if they are less than seven months old.
- Rabbits aged between 7 and 12 months can be given about 2 to 4 tablespoons of sweet treats per six pounds of their weight daily. So if a rabbit weighs 6 pounds, it can be given 2 tablespoons of sweet treats, and if it weighs 12 pounds, it can be given 4 tablespoons of sweet treats and so on.
- Rabbits aged above one year should not be given more than 2 tablespoons of sweet treats per 6 pounds of their body weight, in a day.
Are these measurements important? Yes, you need to measure these sweet treats properly before feeding rabbits, because the animals will never refuse to eat something as yummy as these treats. They may show signs that they want more than the 2 or 4 tablespoons of natural sweets you give them, but you should not budge at all. This is because too much sugar in natural foods can also damage the rabbit’s health to a great extent.
Can rabbits eat candy canes and lollipops?
When you have rabbits at home, you might be tempted to feed them something sweet because they seem to beg for these treats. Candy canes are one of the most common threats you might have at home during the Christmas season. These simple white & red candies are designed in the shape of a can, and they come in different flavors, the most common of them being peppermint.
When you or your kids eat these candy canes, do you notice your rabbits eagerly looking at the candies? Do they lick from the candy canes and seem to enjoy the taste so much that they don’t want to let go of it? As an owner who doesn’t want to disappoint her rabbit, you may be tempted to give it a sweet treat right then. However, please understand that candy canes contain a lot of sugar, artificial colors, and flavors. Therefore, they are not safe for rabbits. The same applies to lollipops as well.
What happens when rabbits consume a lot of sugar
Human beings may be prone to diabetes when they consume a lot of sugary foods. However, diabetes mellitus is not very common in rabbits. When they consume foods with a lot of sugar and artificial colors, they become obese and lazy. Though diabetes mellitus is very rare in rabbis, most obese animals exhibit all symptoms of this disease. These symptoms include frequent urination, a phenomenal increase in appetite, and an increase in thirst.
No, you cannot feed candies to rabbits, because foods with a lot of sugar cause these animals to put on a lot of weight and become lethargic. If you want to strike the right balance of nutrients in your rabbit’s diet, please consult your veterinarian immediately, and include more vegetables. Treats, even those that include natural fruits, should be given occasionally only.
Rabbits must be trained to enjoy treats after some exercise or after a routine so that they don’t always look excited to enjoy the treats. Keep the sweet treats as far away from rabbits as possible. When giving treats, always follow the desired measurements, and keep your rabbit’s age and size in mind. This can ensure that rabbits don’t become obese and lethargic.