Can rabbits eat broccoli? Yes, it can be included in your rabbit’s daily diet. You can add broccoli for your rabbits to eat in there diet but only in limited amounts. It is nutritious and safe but you need to be cautious if you are feeding broccoli to your rabbits for the first time.
Lets Dive in a little deeper on a few things you must know before feeding your rabbits broccoli to eat.
Many rabbits have sensitive digestive systems and feeding broccoli to them may form gas in their intestines. Since they cannot pass gas, they may suffer from discomfort or indigestion.
To know more about the nutritional facts of broccoli and whether it should be provided in your rabbit’s meal, go through the detail given below –
Broccoli and Bunnies
Rabbits are herbivorous which means they solely depend on plants and leaves for nutrients. The main part of your rabbit’s diet should be vegetables, broccoli being one of them.
Broccoli is rich in minerals, dietary fiber, and vitamins. It contains generous amounts of protective phytochemicals and antioxidants. It is stacked with Vit C, Vit A, Vit B6, Vit K, and Vit E.
Broccoli is also rich in phosphorous, potassium, calcium, and magnesium. Hence, these make broccoli a wholesome veggie and should be included in your rabbit’s diet. The digestive fiber present in broccoli makes it essential for your bunnies. And Vitamin K and C helps in promoting tissue and bone health.
On the contrary, while there are many health benefits if your rabbits eat broccoli, it may also lead to gas in your rabbits. If you are offering it for the first time, make sure that you keep an eye on them and check for any signs of irritation or discomfort.
Although gas is not a serious health issue, you do not want your rabbit to suffer from digestive discomfort. Moreover, rabbits have a sensitive digestive system. This is the main reason why you should add broccoli in small amounts only. For the 1st week, do not add more than 1 tablespoon a day. Check the stool for any changes. If it remains the same, you can eventually increase the quantity over time.
Broccoli and Its Nutrition Stats
If you have any nutrition knowledge, you would know the healthiness present in broccoli. It is extremely nutrient-dense, low in calories, and tasty! Moreover, the American Cancer Society has advised to include cruciferous veggies such as broccoli as an integral part of our regular diet.
If your rabbit does not enjoy having broccoli, you should consider including it in your pet’s diet in some other way… because one cup of broccoli includes the following –
|11 grams carbs|
|55 units calories|
|4 grams of protein|
|5 grams of fiber|
|0.3 grams of fat|
There are several reasons why broccoli is considered to be a desirable superfood. It is extremely rich with vital nutrients that protect our cells and reduces oxidative stress.
Broccoli is also a bag of minerals that looks after our bone structure, takes care of the heart, and promotes the proper functioning of muscles.
If you are providing broccoli to your pet rabbit, you should know that a cup of broccoli contains –
|1oo mcg Vit K|
|120 mg Vit A|
|101 mg Vit C|
|0.4 mg Vit B6|
|457 mg Potassium|
|168 mcg folate|
|0.4 mg manganese|
|33 mg magnesium|
|62 mg of calcium|
|105 mg phosphorus|
Can Rabbits Eat Broccoli?
The thing is that some may disagree that broccolis are healthy for rabbits. Most of them love to eat broccoli and can be given in small quantities. So, yes Rabbits can Eat Broccoli.
Coming to the tricky part, most of the bunnies do not react to broccoli stems and small leaves. The flower portions and thicker stalks may lead to gas, especially if you feed your rabbits too much broccoli at once or if you do not introduce broccoli gradually over time.
Rabbits with excessive gas can cause intense discomfort and toxicity.
If your rabbit suffers from digestive problems, then it is more likely to have a sensitive stomach compared to others and in that case, broccoli may not be the right treatment for your bunny.
The best person you can take your bunny to is the vet. They can give you knowledgeable advice. So, be cautious while giving your bunnies broccoli.
Is Broccoli Safe for Rabbits?
The answer is both Yes and No! While broccoli provides tons of nutritional benefits for the rabbit’s entire health and if they turn out to be the lucky ones, then they can process tougher florets and stalks too. Broccoli can be good for your bunny’s teeth since it promotes dental wear.
Here is a short reminder for you since we are on this topic – You must give your pets chew toys. Only food is not sufficient for them to work as dental wear.
How much broccoli should I feed my rabbit?
It is quite obvious that people who enjoy eating broccoli can have plenty regularly. But sadly, we can not apply the same for rabbits. You must feed your rabbits broccoli in moderation even if they can tolerate them well.
Just like other foods, you need to introduce the new food gradually over time, especially if you are offering florets and stalks. To start with, try feeding a small leaf and check if your bunny enjoys the taste. If you see that it is turning his nose up, do not push the feed. It is okay if they do not enjoy broccoli!
If your bunny enjoys the broccoli leaves, give them not more than 2 leaves and wait for any changes or signs of stomach trouble for the next 20 to 24 hours. If the rabbit shows any sign of discomfort or diarrhea, stop feeding broccoli right at once.
Do not take risks! They may have a sensitive digestive system so, do not take it lightly. On the contrary, if the stool is normal and the rabbit is energetic just like how it was before the feed, you can feed slightly more and start introducing leaves and short stalks but GRADUALLY! Not more than a teaspoon, the following day!
Repeat the process of feeding, observing, and waiting for the next feeds. If everything goes well, you can consider offering broccoli florets, not more than a teaspoon. See if the rabbit likes it! Once feeding floret becomes successful, start adding broccoli in small amounts, not more than one tablespoon for every 2 pounds of your rabbit’s body weight every day. Add the broccoli to its daily salad.
Worth mentioning, if you are offering cruciferous veggies like brussels sprouts or cabbage, then you must skip broccoli for the day.Don’t overfeed
How many times can my rabbit eat broccoli?
Once you know that your rabbit loves to eat and can digest it well enough, you can feed him up to 1 tablespoon of broccoli per day for every 2 pounds of body weight.
Many people do not know this calculation and often over feed or under feed their rabbits. The most ideal quantity is to feed them small leaves, a small floret or even 2, and a short but crunchy stalk.
Do mix these up and remember not to replace broccoli with the rabbit’s daily hay diet. Broccoli is an addition and not a substitute.
Proper and Sufficient Diet is Crucial
You know, the wild rabbits love to spend their time nibbling and pecking on natural grasses, green plants, and clover. If they are left in the garden with broccoli, they are most likely to nibble on the tender broccoli leaves. And they do it so happily! What is more interesting is that the rabbits will tend to eat the leaves and not the florets.
A nutritional guide for my rabbit’s diet
If you are planning to pet a rabbit, you must be aware of the nutritional habits to let your bunnies live a healthy life. You need to ensure that your bunny eats the following regularly-
- Freshwater – Provide unlimited quantities of water. They drink loads of water and make sure that you change or refill the waterer more than once every day.
- Fresh hay – Just like water, there is no limit for fresh hay. Ensure that fresh hay is always provided to your bunnies. They love nibbling on something all the time and what is better than feeding hay.
- Rabbit pellets – Serve rabbit pellets according to their age at least once every day. The serving size will be written on the label and that should be the sole guide.
- Salad – Do not forget to provide nutritious salad including approx. one cup of a mixture of green leaves for every 2 pounds of the rabbit’s body weight, added with some crunchy vegetables.
- Other Treats – You can also experiment with different treats every day but certainly not more than a teaspoon. Treats include fruits like pears, peaches, apples, berries, bananas, and any other rabbit-safe treats.
- Large seeds – Add about 1 tablespoon of seeds such as squash, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds. Do not add these if they are already mixed into your bunny’s food.
What can I feed as a substitute for broccoli?
For experimenting, if you are looking for natural treats for your rabbits, other than broccoli, to include in your rabbit’s daily salad, go through the options given below –
- Carrot tops
- Radish tops
- Swiss chard
- Beet greens
- Romaine lettuce
- Butter lettuce
- Bibb lettuce
- Brussels sprouts
- Dandelion greens
- Bok choy
- Yu Choy
- Turnip greens
- Okra leaves
- Bell peppers
Noteworthy, it is important to provide a varied diet to your rabbit. Introduce new treats slowly, one at a time. A variety of food offers several vital minerals and vitamins. This allows your rabbit to enjoy a happy and healthy life!
How to detect gas in my rabbit’s tummy?
If there is gas trapped in their intestines and this can cause discomfort. Sometimes, it is hard to tell if they are suffering from indigestion, so look for the signs provided here –
- Swollen but hard stomach
- Lying in curled-up posture
- Pressing their stomach flat against your floor
- Gurgling sound from their belly
If you are still worried about your rabbits, you must immediately contact the vet. If there is any change in the stool, avoid providing broccoli since the effects of feeding broccoli are clearly gas and it is something your bunny can not tolerate.
Should rabbits be given raw or cooked broccoli?
Rabbits can eat both raw and cooked broccoli. Raw food certainly is more nutritious than cooked ones. And the same logic applies to broccoli. According to USDA, 100 grams of raw broccoli includes 2.6 grams fiber and cooked broccoli of the same amount contains about 3.3 grams fiber.
The results may seem to be a little surprising. This discrepancy does not rule out the fact that fresh raw veggies have more nutrients than cooked ones. However, do not forget to wash them well, especially if you are using the organic ones that grow in your garden.
To sum up, if anyone asks you “Can rabbits eat broccoli?”, you know the answer can be both yes and no! Share knowledge with your friends and family about the do’s and don’ts so that bunnies do not suffer from discomfort.
Remember you want to avoid causing high amounts of gas So, if any food, be it broccoli or any other treat, gives them gas, it should be immediately stopped. To start feeding broccoli, do not give the entire veggie all at once. Begin the feed by offering the leaves and then slowly move on to the crunchy stalks and florets.
Rabbits can be fed many things including a variety of fruits and vegetables along with seeds. Broccoli is one healthy food that should be included in your bunny’s diet since it is wholesome and rich in nutrients.
Make sure you have read about broccoli and its healthy nutrition facts before you start feeding your bunnies. Bunnies have a sensitive digestive system, so do not experiment too much at the same time. Change the diet very slowly and slightly. Major changes in their diet can lead to discomfort.