Can Rabbits & Bunnies Have Broccoli Stems and Stalks
All mother’s love to feed their children green vegetables. They are mostly fond of feeding broccoli because it is one of the tastiest & healthiest vegetables known. It is very rich in vitamins, dietary fiber and minerals. It also has antioxidants and many other protective phytochemicals. Broccoli contains vitamins such as A, B6, K and E. Many minerals such as magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and calcium are also found in broccoli. So, it is good for humans. However, the question arises if your rabbit can eat broccoli?
The answer can be answered only when you consider few factors. The vegetable Broccoli creates gastric problems and some rabbits don’t like the flower part of the vegetable and can’t tolerate it. However, some might like the flower part and don’t experience any stomach aches. Let’s get a closer look and understand if you can feed your rabbit, Broccoli.
Broccoli Nutrition Stats
If you know even a slightest thing about nutrition then you will know that broccoli is one of the healthy vegetables and is very low in calories and has a huge nutrient base and is amazingly delicious when eaten. It is one of the most recommended cruciferous vegetables which is recommended by the American Cancer Society when it comes to humans. So, even if it might not be beneficial for your rabbit you can surely consider increasing the intake of the vegetable as well as others such as kale.
Each serving of broccoli contains:
- 11 g carbohydrates.
- 55 calories.
- 0.3 g fat.
- 5 g fiber.
- 4 g protein.
Broccoli Nutritional Facts
There is obviously a very important reason which makes broccoli a very desirable vegetable. The reason is that it is filled with all essential nutrients which can keep you in good health as it lowers the oxidative stress and protects your cells. It has all the minerals which can keep your bones and promote good functioning of your muscles and is also very good for your heart.
Each cup of broccoli offers:
- 457 mg potassium.
- 168 mcg folate.
- 120 mg vitamin A.
- 105 mg phosphorus.
- 101 mg vitamin C.
- 100 mcg vitamin K.
- 62 mg calcium.
- 33 mg magnesium.
- 0.4 mg vitamin B6.
- 0.4 mg manganese.
Can Rabbits Have Broccoli?
Here Is the Technical Fact
There are some people who don’t agree on the fact that you can feed Broccoli to Rabbits, most of them love it and surely can consume broccoli in small amounts. So, in technicality, rabbits can ingest broccoli in a 2-story rabbit hutch.
Now Comes the Tricky Part
Most bunnies are alright when it comes to be treated with broccoli leaves or stems of small size. However, if the stalks and flower of the broccoli are observed, it creates gastric problems in the rabbit. It is mainly because many owners feed them too much at once. These parts should be fed slowly and not all at once.
As you can understand the sudden formation of gas leaves your rabbit in discomfort and then cannot pass gas and leads to excess formation of gas as they have been fed too much. This leads to a lot of discomfort and leads to increase in toxicity.
If you have a rabbit that has a digestive problem before, they might have a much more sensitive stomach problem, if fed with broccoli. Hence, it might not be a good idea to feed your bunny broccoli in this case.
If you want, you can consult your Vet and ask for an opinion and seek advice if your bunny can eat broccoli for professional advice, as your bunny has been facing digestive problems in the past. You can be rest assured the advice won’t change. However, it is always better to take a cautious stand point when it comes to feeding your pet. They would surely advise you against feeding your rabbit broccoli.
Is Broccoli Good for Rabbits?
The answer would be Yes & No. Broccoli has a lot of nutritional benefits and can benefit your bunny entirely. Some of them can even digest the tough stalks and flowers which can benefit them as it can be treated to promote dental care.
It is advisable to give them chew toys as food can never be enough to allow proper dental care.
How Much Broccoli Can A Rabbit Eat?
Many people are fond of broccoli and can consume a lot of them on a regular basis. However, it is not the same for rabbits. For rabbits, it is better if they consume broccoli in moderation when taken regularly, even if they can tolerate the vegetable.
Listed below is a quick guide to how much broccoli needs to be fed to a rabbit:
|Adult Rabbits||Maximum: 1 tablespoon of broccoli per 2 pounds of body weight each day.|
It is always advisable to give broccoli in a measured quantity slowly over time, mainly when it comes to feeding flowers and stalks. You can start with a leaf and see if it suits your bunny. Never push them into feeding it. Not all rabbits like the taste of broccoli.
If your rabbit starts to like broccoli check if they are showing stomach ache signs when you feed them with this vegetable for the next 24 hours. If there are noticeable symptoms such as diarrhea or if the rabbit is uncomfortable don’t offer them the broccoli any more.
Repeat the steps of watching and then waiting. If everything seems fine and nothing is wrong with the stool of your rabbit, you can try feeding some more of their favorite broccoli stalk and leaves. A tablespoon of it considering their weight.
If you are adding cruciferous vegetables such as sprouts or cabbage then it is better to feed them broccoli the next day.
How Often Can A Rabbit Eat Broccoli?
Once you have made sure that your rabbit can consume broccoli and is fond of it, you can give a maximum of one tablespoon of broccoli per two pounds of the weight of the rabbit each day. However, many owners always want to stay cautious and provide less than the usual amount. They feed them with either flowers or the leaves, a maximum of two, along with a very small stalk section.
It is advisable to mix these things up all together and not to use broccoli as a substitute to your rabbit’s regular diet.
Providing the Correct Diet is Important
Rabbits in the forest live their whole life eating native grass and other green plants in their surroundings. They might even roam into a garden and feast on the fresh tender broccoli plants. Your bunny will nibble on them happily, mainly focusing on the plants’ leaves and flowers.
Listed below is the guide which has the nutrition content which would suit your rabbit daily requirement.
- Hay (fresh) – You should make sure hay is always available for your rabbit. There is no limit.
- Water (fresh) – Refill your bunny’s water mug at least once every day. No amount specified.
- 1 serving of rabbit pellets (age-appropriate) at least once every day.
- Bunny salad – It should contain approx. 1 cup of mixed leafy greens for every two pounds of body weight. It should also contain crunchy vegetables.
- You should give them a few treats during the day, about a teaspoon of fruits which are safe for rabbits as per two pounds of body weight. Fruits such as apples, peaches, pears, berries and bananas.
- You can give them squash, pumpkin and sunflower seeds.
Alternatives to Broccoli
When you are trying to find treats for rabbits and want to get new ideas for your rabbit’s salad as you want to avoid feeding your rabbit, broccoli. You will be glad to know that there are many vegetables which are good alternatives of broccoli. You can try giving your rabbit the below:
- turnip greens
- okra leaves
- bell peppers
- radish tops
- beet greens
- carrot tops
- swiss chard
- romaine lettuce
- butter lettuce
- bibb lettuce
- brussels sprouts
- dandelion greens
- bok choy
- yu choy
These are wonderful treats for your cute bunny and would provide a perfect diet. Make sure to introduce food one by one in a very slow manner. All the food variants provide different vitamins and minerals which would help your bunny get a healthy life.
Is Broccoli Safe For Bunnies?
It is safe for rabbits. However, not all rabbits have the capability to digest it. You may see symptoms for diarrhea. Sometimes you may see the loose stool along with lethargy in your rabbit. Consult a vet if required and only then proceed with feeding broccoli only in small amounts if allowed by the vet. Make sure your rabbit is healthy and give him other natural teats as well.
What Are The Symptoms That Broccoli Caused Gastric Problems?
Rabbits do not have the capability to pass gas out. Thus, it builds up in the stomach and causes great discomfort. The symptoms may show as below.
- Swollen stomach.
- Your rabbit may lie in a curled-up position.
- Gurgling sounds from your rabbit’s belly.