Can Guinea Pigs Eat Grapes?

Grapes are one of the many readily available fruits in the grocery store, and they’re somewhat of an all-season fruit. However, you may look at them in stores and wonder can guinea pigs eat grapes too.

The Short Answer: Can Guinea Pigs Eat Grapes?

Guinea pigs can eat grapes, but it must be in moderation. Grapes are considered fairly high in sugar, so guinea pigs tend to love them, but it’s also not the best for them to have. Eating grapes in rotation with other fruits and vegetables is the best approach.

Considerations When Feeding Guinea Pigs Grapes

Grapes have a relatively high sugar content, as does most fruit. Their digestive tract did not evolve to handle significant amounts of sugar, so it can upset that delicate balance. Too much sugar can even cause your guinea pig pain.

Additionally, you may want to choose seedless grapes. Unfortunately, guinea pigs can choke on the small seeds in grapes, which may require emergency veterinary intervention. That may become expensive quickly.

You may also want to choose grapes that are darker in color. These grapes contain higher levels of desirable nutrients for guinea pigs. However, it’s not so significant a difference that you should never feed lighter-colored grapes.

Two guinea pigs under a chair

How to Serve Guinea Pigs Grapes

There are some places where grapes grow wild. Never feeding unknown or gifted grapes to your guinea pigs is important as it poses a health risk.

As with all fruits, the first step in preparing the grapes for guinea pigs to eat is washing them. Washing removes surface-level contaminants, such as soil, that could negatively affect your guinea pig. You also want to ensure you look the grape over. If you would eat it, your guinea pig will love it.

The proper serving size for a guinea pig is one to two grapes, though one is probably best. It would help if you cut the grapes into halves or quarters so that your guinea pigs have an easier time getting a grip with their teeth.

As with all guinea pig food, you should not feed grapes that have been canned, processed, or cooked to your piggles. Guinea pig digestive tracts did not evolve to handle processed food so it could harm them.

Close up of guinea pigs

Nutrients in Grapes

Vitamin C

Grapes contain a moderate amount of vitamin C, which is to say not nearly as much as an orange. However, guinea pigs need vitamin C since they cannot make their own, unlike many animals. That makes it worth mentioning.

Magnesium

Magnesium is important for biochemical reactions that keep the body going. Your guinea pig only needs small amounts compared to you, but without it, they could lose important muscle, nerve, and protein functions.

Phosphate

Phosphate helps with the formation of bones and teeth as well as serving a vital role in cellular function. Phosphate is what phosphorous is called in food, and typically, it’s the second most in-demand dietary mineral.

Guinea pig eating grass

Calcium

Calcium affects bones, muscles, and nerves, though advertising to humans focuses on the bones. Without proper calcium levels, your guinea pig’s muscles and nerves won’t function properly, which can lead to things like heart problems.

Antioxidants

Antioxidants neutralize free radicals, which are by-products of digesting food. Since free radicals can cause damage in various systems, antioxidants are key. Typically, darker-colored grapes contain more antioxidants.

Water

Grapes are about 82% water, which is great for guinea pigs. Some guinea pigs rely more heavily on food for daily water intake than others. Since water is critical for most body processes at one level or another, ensuring adequate hydration is crucial for your guinea pig’s health.

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