We all know guinea pigs are greedy creatures, right? Whatever we throw at them, they will try to take a bite of it. But have you ever wondered, whether these cute little furry creatures would like to have a deep red tomato? Can guinea pigs eat tomatoes?
“Guinea pigs love to have a fresh tomato when served to them. Tomatoes are entirely safe for them, and your guinea pig can benefit from the health benefits of eating tomatoes. They can also eat both the seeds and leaves of tomatoes. Fun fact, they can eat every type of tomatoes.”
While your guinea pig can eat the seeds and leaves of tomatoes, but you still need to take an extra step.
Always try to remove the vines and leaves before feeding tomatoes to your furry little friend. The reason is that they are harmful to the health of your pet guinea pig.
One thing that you need to make sure of is to properly wash the tomatoes before feeding them to your furry little friend.
This will wash off any dirt or dangerous chemicals attached to them.
3 Types Of Tomatoes – Which Ones Can You To Feed Your Guinea Pig?
A few if not most of us, know that there are a variety of different tomatoes available.
A few of them are plum, cherry, and beef. Guinea pigs can eat all of them. While there is no harm when it comes to feeding tomatoes to your guinea pigs, but always feed them in small amounts.
In addition, make sure they are ripe ones and not overly soft.
You can also feed your pet piggy the whole cherry tomatoes. But if they are the big ones, then take a knife, cut it into small pieces and serve it to your cute little guinea pig. In this way, it will not spoil the digestion of your guinea pig.
Guinea pigs usually have a strange habit of taking a cherry and eating it in another part of the cage. They are aware that if they do not eat it secretly, their pig friends will be behind it!
Although the seeds of some fruits are not suitable for guinea pigs, tomato seeds are absolutely good to eat.
Is Feeding Tomatoes To Guinea Pigs Recommended? 7 Facts You Must Know
Tomatoes are a safe treat for your guinea pig. Is it recommended? Yes, it is. But, never give too much tomato (even ripe) to a guinea pig.
Always keep this in mind, everything must be in a limited amount!
Whenever you are going to serve your guinea pig some tomatoes, cut them into small pieces and serve them in moderation.
Some guinea pigs are known to have a negative reaction. They are allergic and dislike them. Feeding tomatoes to such guinea pigs can lead to stomach pain.
Here are some of the possible adverse reactions of tomatoes:
|Increased heart rate|
1) Why Do Guinea Pigs Like Tomatoes?
Most guinea pigs like tomatoes because they contain as much sugar as most fruits.
A fact about guinea pigs is that they are concentration selectors. This means that naturally, they will choose foods that appear to be more nutritious.
This also means that they can be highly selective eaters.
Considering the choice between some fiber hay and good sweet fruit, they are more likely to eat the fruit.
But this is not something you should appreciate as this can prevent them from getting the balance of nutrients which are a must for them.
Tomatoes are an excellent source of vitamin C for guinea pigs. But a high amount of these tomatoes can be harmful to these pigs.
2) Can Baby Guinea Pigs Eat Tomatoes?
Baby guinea pigs are not recommended to be fed tomatoes if they are a few weeks old. Instead, it would be best to feed the baby guinea pigs with alfalfa hay and just plain water.
The reason is that they are good for their growth and health.
After 3 or 4 weeks, you can introduce tomatoes and other vegetables and fruits to baby guinea pigs, but only in small quantities.
3) Are Tomatoes Poisonous for Guinea Pigs?
“Tomatoes are not poisonous for guinea pigs.”
Although we only need to feed them a certain amount, eating too many tomatoes can make your little pigs sick.
Tomatoes are acidic in nature as well. They possess some of those natural acids, which can be dangerous to your guinea pig’s health.
Tomatoes have just the perfect amount of sugar which is best for us. Although we do not know much about this, it can be harmful to our guinea pigs.
Guinea pigs should be given high sugar foods. These can be harmful, resulting in diseases like obesity and diabetes.
Another disease caused by the overeating of tomatoes is known as lip ulcer.
They are the reason behind diarrhea in guinea pigs because of the same reason, i.e., overeating
Avoid the green part of the tomato at any cost as it can be harmful to our guinea pigs. Always feed your pet piggy perfectly ripe tomatoes not the soft ones.
Also, avoid giving them unripe tomatoes as they will spoil their digestive system.
As mentioned earlier, guinea pigs have a delicate digestive system, and any abnormal changes can disrupt it and lead to real medical problems.
While some guinea pigs like to catch this little snack, others don’t.
You must keep this in your mind if you are introducing something new, it should be in a minimum amount. Check their response and see if they like it or not.
If everything goes normally and well, you can serve them a little more according to their needs.
This is because the taste preferences of each guinea pig vary from the others. Some guinea pigs like it, some do not.
4) How Many Tomatoes Can A Guinea Pig Eat?
As mentioned earlier, you should not feed your guinea pigs tomatoes every day. Also, don’t give them too much.
What you need to do is cut the tomatoes into tiny pieces so that he can have them without any issue and with ease.
The serving size should never go over half a cup or a few tomatoes.
To a large extent, tomatoes can harm the guinea pig’s stomach and cause diarrhea.
5) Where Are The Toxic Parts?
Some parts of the tomato plant are safe for guinea pigs, some are not.
You should not let your cute little guinea pig eat the following parts:
- Immature green tomatoes
The reason is that these parts contain a toxin known as tomatine. So, don’t let your guinea pig eat them.
6) Can Guinea Pigs Eat Tomato Leaves?
Despite many misconceptions, humans can also eat tomato leaves.
But the real question is whether tomato leaves are poisonous to guinea pigs or not? And can guinea pigs eat tomato plant leaves?
The answer is straightforward, guinea pigs cannot eat tomato leaves.
The reason is that they contain high levels of glycoalkaloids, which are toxic and harmful to the stomach and digestive system of guinea pigs.
In addition, tomato leaves contain calcium and phosphorus.
These are harmful and can cause kidney or bladder stones in guinea pigs if taken in large quantities.
7) Can Guinea Pigs Eat Tomato Seeds?
We know that guinea pigs should not eat certain types of seeds. Particularly the large ones. But are tomato seeds good for your furry friends?
Well, it’s totally fine for them. Guinea pigs have no issue enjoying tomato seeds. These seeds, unlike other seeds, do not cause choking to these little creatures.
Tomato seeds are rich in certain nutrients such as vitamin C, vitamin A, and dietary fiber. All of these bring a lot of benefits to guinea pigs.
Relax! There is no harm in giving your little pet seeds from the tomatoes.
4 Ways To Enhance The Benefits Of Tomatoes For Guinea Pigs
Whenever you treat your guinea pig with tomatoes, wash and serve them with ripe fruit only. Here are some suggestions on how you can make it special:
- Feed them thin slices of fresh tomatoes
- Mix the fruit pieces with small pieces of tomato
- Feed them a whole cherry tomato (skin included!)
- Cooked tomatoes have been shown to reduce vitamin C content. So, always serve your guinea pig fresh tomatoes.
Nutrition In Tomatoes – Health Benefits That Your Pet Will Love You For
It is scientifically proven that tomatoes are a wonderful snack full of nutrients. They are best for your cute little furry friend.
But they cannot be given to the guinea pig as a part of their daily diet just like all other veggies and fruits.
Let’s see what we have in these juicy red tomatoes:
|Vitamin C – 14 MG/100 GM||Vitamin A – 30%||Calcium – 10 mg/100 g|
|Phosphorous – 24 mg/100 g||Potassium – 212 mg/100 g||Fiber – 0.9 g/100 g|
|Sugar – 2.6 g /100 g||Water – 95 g /100 g||Protein – 1.16 g/ 100 g|
|Carbs – 3.2 g / 100 g||Calories – 16||Fat – 0.19 g/100 g|
Tomatoes have a good amount of vitamin C. Vitamin C is an essential part of the diet because it helps keep our immune system healthy.
It can also prevent heart diseases and maintains good dental health.
This is also important because vitamin C deficiency can lead to a disease known as “scurvy”. It is basically the bleeding of gums.
Tomatoes also contain trace amounts of vitamin K, vitamin A, and vitamin B-6.
These vitamins are a must and should be included in the daily diet.
These vitamins help in the overall development of the body. They also maintain a good bone health
Tomatoes also contain small amounts of calcium and phosphorus.
Calcium and phosphorus are essential components of the diet that are essential for proper bone growth, dental health and important for various nervous system requirements.
Tomatoes contain a decent amount of potassium in addition to the above-mentioned nutrients. Potassium must be included in the daily diet of animals as well as humans.
Because it prevents calcification and, accordingly, the risk of developing urinary stones can be minimized.
Tomatoes also have a small amount of fiber. Fiber is the most basic part of the diet because it helps maintain a healthy digestive system.
Eating a regular diet rich in fiber will make your overall body stronger.
Nutritional Facts of Tomatoes for Guinea Pigs:
Remember, these facts are based on 100g of tomatoes.
|Energy – 18 kcal||Protein – 0.88 g||Total lipid (fat) – 0.2 g||Carbs – 3.89 g|
|Fiber – 1.2 g||Sugars – 2.63 g||Calcium – 10 mg||Iron – 0.27 mg|
|Magnesium – 11 mg||Phosphorus – 24 mg||Potassium – 237 mg||Sodium – 5 mg|
|Zinc – 0.17 mg||Vitamin C – 13.7 mg||Vitamin B-6 – 0.08 mg||Copper – 0.059 mg|
|Vitamin E – 0.54 mg||Thiamin – 0.037 mg||Vitamin K – 7.9 µg||Vitamin A – 42 µg|
|Riboflavin – 0.019 mg||Niacin – 0.594 mg||Folate – 15 µg||Carotene, beta – 449 µg|
|Carotene, alpha – 101 µg||Lycopene – 2573 µg||Lutein + zeaxanthin – 123 µg|
7 Best Alternatives Of Tomatoes For Guinea Pigs
As we know, guinea pigs are picky creatures, some like tomatoes and some don’t.
Yes, you read it. If you do not like to treat your guinea pig tomatoes, there are numerous other great treats you can offer.
Can’t decide what your guinea pig’s next treat should be? If yes, you can go ahead and feed your guinea pigs with watermelons. They absolutely love eating watermelons and it is beneficial for their health.
Since every guinea pig has different likes and dislikes, there’s nothing to be worried about if your pet refuses to eat watermelons. You can try feeding him or her blueberries since they are absolutely safe for your pet guinea pig.
Frequently Asked Questions
1) Can Guinea Pigs Eat Tomato Sauce?
Like canned tomatoes, guinea pigs cannot eat tomato sauce or other processed or cooked foods.
Guinea pigs are plant species, and they only enjoy fresh hay, fruits, and veggies.
Their digestive system is highly sensitive, as mentioned earlier. Therefore, processed foods are not easily digested by your little pet’s digestive system.
2) What If My Guinea Pig Eats Pieces (Vines) Of Tomato Plant?
He will suffer from tomatine poisoning. Symptoms of tomatine poisoning include diarrhea and an upset stomach, loss of coordination, and muscle weakness.
3) Is Tomato Safe For Guinea Pigs?
The answer is YES! It is safe for them to eat it. But you only have to serve one ripe, red one. Also, remember to feed your guinea pig in moderation.
4) Are Green Tomatoes Safe For My Guinea Pig?
No, green tomatoes should not be fed to your guinea pig. A red tomato is the best. At least, for guinea pigs. Always serve fully ripe tomatoes to your little furry friend.
However, fully ripe tomatoes can cause digestive discomfort if given more than the required amount.
Look at the green tomatoes. They contain solanine, which is dangerous if ingested, especially for a small creature like a guinea pig.
Tomatoes are a treasure trove of vitamins, minerals, and organic compounds that contribute to the health of our guinea pigs.
But like the double-edged sword, the tomato has its pros and cons.
The long and short thing about this is that tomatoes are good for our guinea pig’s health, as long as we serve real fruit and proper quantity.
- Never give your guinea pig unripe green tomatoes because they contain toxic ingredients. Excessive consumption of tomatoes can lead to diarrhea, lip ulcers, and other diseases.
- Remove any green part from your tomato and avoid its stem or leaves as they are harmful and toxic. Serve only with a small cherry tomato or a large slice. Do not be tempted to overfeed them.
- Always remember that the main food of the guinea pig is only hay. Vegetables are only a supplement in their diet.
- If you serve more vegetables than hay, your guinea pig may suffer from digestive and dental problems.
Guinea pigs need to be introduced to a variety of healthy foods from an early age so that they do not have any issue accepting the new foods later on.
It is up to you whether or not you want to feed your guinea pigs tomatoes. But it is your responsibility to take care of their health. Fresh tomatoes are a good choice for a snack for guinea pigs.
Tomatoes are not a staple in the guinea pig diet and can be replaced with other fresh vegetables.
Tomatoes of any color are safe for guinea pigs as long as the tomatoes are ripe and have no leaves or stems.
Besides, guinea pigs are safe to eat tomatoes every day, but only a few pieces depending on the size of the guinea pig.