Whether you are a brand new or experienced proud owner of a rabbit pet, you have probably done your basic research on the various feeding possibilities.
You certainly know that offering hay and commercial pellets to your pet is totally safe, but reading that vegetables make a great treat is often too general and many of us can be confused.
To avoid any further uncertainties, we are sharing with you a list of the 10 toxic food for lionhead rabbits.
Lionheads feed primarily on fibers, so hay is essential and this should make the largest part of their meals, 75%. The next 20% should consist of commercial pellets, so please make sure to choose those which are adequate for rabbits.
Finally, the last 5% of their meals should contain healthy greens and treats. And this part is the one which brings most doubts to many owners.
Food Lionhead Rabbits Should Not Eat
To ease the selection up, here is a detailed list of the 10 food which are toxic and should be avoided at all times.
Chocolate makes a great treat for people when consumed in small amounts, as it contains lots of sugars with the addition of caffeine.
Can you even imagine what kind of damage this could do when offered to small pets like rabbits? Well, here is a spoiler alert: it can easily make them suffer a heart attack.
Fruits like avocado should never ever be offered to rabbits. They contain persin, which is highly toxic for rabbits. Eating avocado, even in extremely small doses, can almost certainly bring to respiratory complications, behavior changes, and deadly heart failure.
Pasta is rich in carbs but lacks nutrients like fibers, so offering it to your rabbit pet can be really dangerous. Even if your bunny looks at you with begging eyes while you are enjoying your favorite pasta dish, sneaking a tiny piece under the table is a bad idea.
Bread has similar nutrients as pasta does, so the same rule should be applied: please never offer it to your pet, even in small amounts. Bread can often shutdown their digestive system. Same goes for crackers, tortillas or any other processed foods which contain flour.
5. Dog or Cat Food
Rabbits are herbivores, while dogs and cats feed primarily on meat. That is why digesting protein-based food, even in really small amounts, can often lead to kidney failures in rabbits.
Also, dog and cat food are highly salted, which is also unsuitable. If you own a dog or a cat, please always make sure to keep their food out of the rabbit’s reach. If they come across it, they will mostly likely eat it. Bird food should also be avoided.
Potatoes are probably one of the most common mistakes in a rabbit diet. Yes, they are a vegetable but no, they should not be part of any rabbit meal. Potatoes are rich both in starch and carbs, which can seriously damage their delicate digestive systems. Same goes for sweet potatoes, too.
7. Onions & Garlic
Both onion and garlic are extremely toxic to these furry creatures. Most wild rabbits will probably know they need to stay away, but pet rabbits do not know any better most of the time.
So, even if you do not offer these yourself to your rabbit, please make sure to also prevent rabbits having access to your planted onions and garlic. Ingesting food like this can bring to anaphylactic shocks. Chives also needs to be avoided.
8. Fruity Seeds
Although some fruits make an amazingly tasty treat for your rabbit pet, their seeds can be lethal. Apples, for instance, are the most commonly mistaken treats. Do not get us wrong, offering apple parts to your bunny is a wonderful idea, but do make sure to remove absolutely all seeds from the inside first.
Such seeds contain arsenic, an organic toxin which can harm humans if taken in larger doses. However, seeds contain just the right amount of arsenic to potentially kill a rabbit. Seeds from fruits like apricots, plums, and peaches are also best to be avoided.
9. Sugary Food
Rabbit’s digestive systems are not designed to process artificial sugar, so feeding any sugary food to your pet is highly dangerous and unsuitable. Please avoid candy, chocolate, juice, and other similar products at all times. Same as you would for your dog or cat, too.
Either raw or cooked mushrooms can severely damage your rabbit’s health. Even if they are a healthy vegetable for humans, mushrooms can lead to both neurological and organ damages to rabbits.
Safe Treats for Lionhead Rabbits
As already mentioned at the beginning, healthy treats should only make 5% of a rabbit’s feeding plan. Their bodies are designed to digest huge amounts of fibers, but everything else should be offered in tiny amounts in order for them to digest these properly and stay healthy.
Here is a list of some yummy but safe treats which you can handle to your pet without worrying:
- Fresh Fruits like apples (remember to remove the seeds first), banana, blueberries, cherries, cranberries, kiwi, mango.
- Fresh Vegetables can include carrots, asparagus, broccoli, brussel sprouts, celery, cucumber, eggplant.
- Leafy Greens such as basil, broccoli leaves, carrot tops, dandelion greens, lemongrass, mint, parsley, butter lettuce.
- Baked Hay Treats
- Dried Fruits & Vegetables without added sugars
- Some Commercial Rabbit Treats (the accent is on “some”, as not all commercial treats make a healthy choice. Always check ingredients first and make sure they contain no corn or seeds).
Lionhead rabbits have a sweet tooth, and they really enjoy all kind of treats. However, it is up to the owners to separate the toxic treats from the healthy ones. And to offer them in moderation, of course.
Domesticated rabbits especially have no developed sense to recognize which meals are dangerous and which are safe. Unlike wild rabbits, they rely entirely on their human owners. So, please always try to make the healthiest choices possible. Your pet will be eternally grateful.