Greens and vegetables are an important part of your guinea pig’s diet. They provide valuable vitamins and minerals, contributing to the overall health and well-being of your pet. Next time you’re looking for a healthy treat option, why not make these DIY frozen vegetable treats for guinea pigs? They will thank you!
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While you can purchase guinea pig pellet that are fortified with vitamins and other supplements, the best way to meet your pet’s nutritional needs is through feeding fresh vegetables.
However, not all vegetables are created equal!
While some vegetables (like red bell peppers) offer great nutritional value, others (like iceberg lettuce) fall short.
For this reason, it’s important to offer a variety of vegetables and greens to your guinea pig.
Which Vegetables Are Safe for My Guinea Pig?
The majority of vegetables that you should be providing to your guinea pig should fall into the category of ‘leafy greens’.
Greens are preferred due to the fact that they provide such high nutritional value without the starches and sugars found in many of the other options.
Examples of recommended leafy greens for guinea pigs include:
- Romaine Lettuce
- Dandelion Greens
- Turnip Greens
- Bok Choy
- Dill Leaves
- Raspberry Leaves
You will notice that the list does NOT include iceberg lettuce. Why?
Unlike the other leafy greens listed, iceberg lettuce is largely water. This means that it holds little to no nutritional value.
Furthermore, its fibrous nature has been known to cause digestive problems, leading to diarrhea.
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In addition to leafy greens, you can include a small selection of other vegetables to add additional nutritional value.
These vegetables should only account for approximately 10-15% of the vegetable mix.
Examples of guinea pig safe vegetables include:
- Bell Peppers (Seeds Removed)
- Broccoli (Leaves and Stems)
- Brussel Sprouts
- Zucchini Squash
- Carrots (With Leaves/Greens)
- Cucumber (With Leaves)
In addition to fresh vegetables, guinea pigs can enjoy the nutritional benefits by snacking on commercial vegetable treats.
These are readily available at your local pet store, or for purchase online.
Benefits of Bell Peppers for Guinea Pigs
One vegetable that deserves its own special shout out is the bell pepper.
Guinea pigs can eat all colours of bell peppers, as long as you take the time to first remove the seeds.
Unlike many other animals, guinea pigs are unable to produce their own vitamin C.
This means that their diet needs to account for their daily vitamin C intake, which is approximately 25-30mg.
Regardless of the colour of bell pepper (red, orange, yellow or green), they have been found to contain a higher vitamin C level than most other vegetables.
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Interestingly enough, bell peppers have been found to have additional benefits for your guinea pig, decreasing the risk of developing bladder stones and urinary tract infections.
Although the exact reason for why this works remains unknown, studies have found a correlation.
Unfortunately, not every guinea pig will jump at the chance to dig into a serving of fresh bell peppers. Just like us, our pets have their own unique tastes and preferences.
Additionally, your pet’s tastes may change and evolve as they get older.
However, you may be able to entice your guinea pig to enjoy the benefits of a bell pepper by mixing it with other flavours in a DIY treat.
DIY Frozen Vegetable Treats for Guinea Pigs
- 2 Bell Peppers (Any Colour, Seeds Removed)
- 2 Large Kale Leaves
- 1 Slice of Apple
- 1 Cup of Water
#1 – Place all of your ingredients in a blender and blend until the mixture is smooth.
#2 – Pour your ingredients into an ice cube tray. Note: Silicone ice cube trays are generally easier to release the treat from after it has frozen. Cover the tray using either a lid (if your tray has one) or a plastic wrap.
#3 – Place your ice cube tray in the freeze and freeze until solid.
#4 – Before service, thaw your treats to soften them slightly. A treat directly out of the freezer could cause damage to your guinea pig’s teeth!
Does your guinea pig have a favourite vegetable(s)?
Did you try this recipe for ‘DIY Frozen Vegetable Treats for Guinea Pigs’? If so, I would LOVE to hear your guinea pig’s reaction!