Last updated on January 22nd, 2023 at 07:11 pm
We can feed the guinea pigs with a variety of food, starting with hay, vegetables, and fruits, which allows them to have an intake of nutrients needed to be healthy and have a longer life.
You must be wondering what about dates. Should you give some dates to the guinea pigs?
Can guinea pigs eat dates?
The answer is NO; guinea pigs cannot eat dates because they contain a massive amount of sugar, which is dangerous for the health of guinea pigs. Guinea pigs can choke on dates, and their stickiness can cause kidney stones and other health problems.
In today’s article, we will learn the risks of eating dates in guinea pigs.
What are dates?
Dates are lovely fruit with nutrients, vitamins, and antioxidants. Dates are trendy and present in North Africa and the Near East with a tradition of 7000 years.
Also, Date fossils show that they are over 50 million years old; they are one of the first fruits to be cultivated by humans.
Dates can be found in different broad types; in the world, there are more than 200 variations of dates.
This sweet fruit is used in salads, appetizers, main dishes, desserts, and sauces. They have a caramel-honey flavor, and the taste is similar to raisins.
Dates are good for human health, but the situation is entirely opposite when it comes to guinea pigs.
Can guinea pigs eat dates?
No, guinea pigs cannot eat dates; they contain too much sugar and harm their health.
Guinea pigs cannot eat dates because they are too sticky and can cause suffocation of our pets.
We recommend that you do not try to give dates to guinea pigs at all; there is a massive selection of other foods and fruits that are much better than dates for their health.
Will guinea pigs like to eat dates?
Yes, guinea pigs will love to eat dates; they will like their taste and smell.
If the guinea pigs get the chance, be sure they will eat as much of this delicious fruit as possible.
But that’s why we, as owners, should be careful that such an unpleasant situation does not occur, keep the dates away so that they cannot be within reach of the guinea pigs.
What will happen if guinea pigs eat dates?
If your pet accidentally eats dates, nothing terrible will happen to him; of course, this does not mean that the same thing should be repeated in the future.
If guinea pigs eat dates, the best solution you can do yourself is to give them more water.
The water will help to process a large amount of sugar from the dates much easier and faster.
The following symptoms may occur:
- stomach ache
But all these inconveniences should pass in 24-48 hours, and your pet will be happy and cheerful again.
If these side effects do not go away in two days, you should not wait; take your pet to a veterinarian to examine him and give him the appropriate therapy.
Side effects of dates for guinea pigs
If guinea pigs eat dates, their health may have side effects.
Here are some of them:
- Lack of vitamin C – this vitamin is one of the most important for the health of guinea pigs, which cannot produce it on their own and must take it daily through food. There is not enough vitamin C in dates, and guinea pigs can get scurvy, a dangerous disease that causes bleeding, lethargy, lack of appetite, and other problems.
- Choking Hazard – Because dates are very sticky, they can cause guinea pigs to choke.
- Tooth decay – the sugar in dates can also cause the teeth of guinea pigs to decay, and they are essential for our pets to bite their food and break it into small pieces properly.
- Kidney and Bladder Stones – Because of ingesting too much calcium from eating dates, guinea pigs will develop stones and urinary problems.
- Diarrhea – eating dates will cause stomach problems in guinea pigs and the occurrence of diarrhea, as well as stomach pains.
- Diabetes – too much sugar can only cause diabetes, obesity, and other related diseases from overeating sugary food.
Nutrition facts about dates
There are the following ingredients in 100 grams of dates:
- energy 282 kcal
- fiber 8 g
- proteins 2.5 g
- sugar 63 g
- carbohydrates 75 g
- calcium 39 mg
- magnesium 43 mg
- phosphorus 62 mg
- potassium 650 mg
- vitamin C 0.4 mg
As can be seen from the composition of dates, sugar, calcium, and fiber are present in large quantities, and they can cause problems with the health of guinea pigs.
Are dates suitable for guinea pigs?
The composition of dates contains vitamins and minerals, fibers, and other ingredients that are good for guinea pigs; although dates should not be part of their diet because of the sugar, it is not bad to know them:
- Calcium: is excellent for bone and teeth health.
- Protein: They have more energy and can run and play all day long.
- Fibers: to improve digestion and overall for better work of the entire digestive system in guinea pigs.
- Carbohydrates: together with proteins, are suitable for more straightforward energy utilization and giving more strength to guinea pigs.
- Potassium: is an excellent mineral for improving heart, kidney, and lung health in guinea pigs.
All these ingredients are suitable for the health of the guinea pigs, but sugar is the biggest problem that does not allow them to use these healthy ingredients to improve their health.
An alternative to dates for guinea pigs
Guinea pigs cannot eat dates because of the sugar, but therefore they can eat other foods; there is a massive selection of healthy foods that are not dangerous for them and will improve their health.
You can give them vegetables and fruits in the guinea pigs’ diet and hay, grass, and pellets.
Here is our selection of vegetable guinea pig food:
- sweet potato
Fruit for guinea pigs:
Guinea pigs cannot eat dates; they are too dangerous for their health, mainly because of the large amount of sugar.
Diabetes, obesity, kidney and bladder stones, high blood sugar, and other side effects can occur.
The stickiness of dates can cause choking and tooth decay in guinea pigs.
Finally, dates are sweet and delicious, and they offer benefits for us humans, but not for guinea pigs; they should eat food with small amounts of sugar, which will protect their health and have a longer life span.
Read more: Can Guinea Pigs Eat Honeydew Melon?