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Can Guinea Pigs Eat Pears? (Know The Benefits & Risks)


Can guinea pigs eat pears?

Yes, guinea pigs can eat pears, including their skin. Pears are rich in essential vitamins and nutrients, which guinea pigs can benefit from. Keep in mind to only feed guinea pigs ripe pears and in moderation.

Below I’ll tell you everything you need to know before feeding pears to your guinea pig!

CHECK: The Best Guinea Pig Food List

Key Takeaways:

  • Pears can safely feed guinea pigs in moderation or up to two times a week.
  • Pears contain fiber, vitamin C, and antioxidants needed in guinea pigs’ diet.
  • You can give your guinea pig a cube of pear or mix it with other fresh fruits like apples, grapefruit, and peaches.

Is It Safe For Guinea Pigs To Eat Pears?

Yes, all types of pears are safe for your guinea pigs to eat. It doesn’t have any toxins that could harm them.

pears on table but can guinea pigs eat pears

Then again, I recommend giving only ripe pears because unripe pears are bitter and could be a choking hazard for guinea pigs. Pear seeds could also be a choking hazard, so watch out for these when feeding.

Lastly, due to pears’ high sugar and water content, it’s best to feed them to your guinea pigs in moderation.

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Pear Seeds?

Guinea pigs should never be given pear seeds. They are small, sharp, and could easily get stuck in your guinea pig’s throat.

Additionally, pear seeds contain a small amount of cyanide [1]. The toxin is not enough to harm your guinea pigs, but it’s not worth the risk.

Can Baby Guinea Pigs Eat Pears?

You should not feed pears to baby guinea pigs. They are too small, and pears could become a choking hazard for them. At this age, they should be on a diet of alfalfa hay and their mother’s milk.

You can try feeding pears to guinea pigs once they are at least 3 weeks old. Start by giving them a small piece of pear. This will allow you to see if they are allergic to it.

Allergy reactions include an upset stomach, bloating, and diarrhea. If no allergic reaction occurs, you can continue to feed them pears. Give them only a small piece once a week until they are adults.

Risks of Feeding Pears to Guinea Pigs

Though pears are generally safe to feed guinea pigs, there are some things you need to keep in mind.

Too many pears can make guinea pigs sick. They can experience health issues, including weight gain, poor digestion, mouth sores, and urinary problems.

Now that you know the answer to the question, ‘can guinea pigs eat pears?’ and what to look out for when doing so, I will discuss its many health benefits below!

What Vitamins and Nutrients Do Pears Have?

Pears are rich in folate, calcium, vitamin C, copper, and potassium. This fruit is also a good source of fiber, protein, and antioxidants. Along with a well-balanced diet, all of these benefits a guinea pig’s health.

A medium-sized pear (178 grams) provides the following nutrients:

  • Calories:101 kcal
  • Protein: 0.64 g
  • Carbs: 27 grams
  • Calcium: 16 mg
  • Folate: 12.5 µg
  • Fiber: 6 grams
  • Vitamin C: 7.65 mg 
  • Vitamin K: 7.83 µg 
  • Potassium: 206 mg 
  • Copper: 0.146  mg 

The above data is from the USDA. [2]

Health Benefits of Pears for Guinea Pigs

1. Promotes Gut Health

Pears are a good source of fiber, one of the many essential nutrients for gastrointestinal health.

Fiber promotes regular bowel movement, which in turn, helps move food through the digestive system smoothly. Having plenty of fiber in the guinea pig’s diet helps prevent constipation.

2. Prevents Scurvy Disease

Pears are a great source of vitamin C, which is very important in preventing scurvy in guinea pigs. Scurvy is a disease caused by a deficiency of vitamin C.

Unfortunately, guinea pigs cannot store this vitamin in their body and therefore require it daily.

Vitamin C deficiency in guinea pigs causes fragile blood vessels, hemorrhage of the gums and tissues in the mouth, skin, muscles, and painful swelling of joints.

3. Prevents Cell Damage

Pears have a high amount of antioxidants. Antioxidants are molecules that fight harmful free radicals in guinea pigs. Extend life expectancy and help your pet guinea pig fight common disease by regularly feeding it pears.

How To Feed Pears To Guinea Pigs?

Before anything else, you want to make sure you’ve thoroughly washed the pear you will be feeding your pet. You must eliminate harmful pesticides if it’s coming straight from a pear tree or the market. 

pear on table but can guinea pigs eat pears

When it comes to feeding pears to your pet guinea pig, I suggest a couple of different methods you can try.

  • The first method is to simply slice a piece of the pear and feed it to them. Make sure the pear is ripe before giving them some. Unripe pears are bitter and will be difficult for guinea pigs to eat.
  • You can also try mixing pears with other fresh fruits and making a fruit salad. Mix with apples, blueberries, and peaches. Make sure to only use a small piece of each fruit to prevent overfeeding.

How Often To Feed Pears To Guinea Pigs?

You can give adult guinea pigs 2-3 pear cubes up to twice a week. This will allow them to enjoy this delicious fruit without negative health effects.

For baby guinea pigs, it’s not recommended to give them any pears. However, once they are at least 3 weeks old, you can try to feed them a small piece every week.

Other Fruits That Guinea Pigs Can Eat

Here are other great alternatives to pears/guinea pig fruits:

1. Apple

Apples are packed with nutrition; especially vitamin C. Guinea pigs need a lot of vitamin C to protect them from scurvy disease. Remember to feed them apples in moderation to avoid excess sugar intake.

2. Grapefruit

Grapefruit is another fruit that will make an occasional good treat for guinea pigs. It’s a good source of fiber, protein, and other vital nutrients, making it one of the many great alternatives to pears.

To prevent too much acid, feed only a small piece of grapefruit to them every once in a while.

3. Peaches

Peaches are safe for guinea pigs to eat, and it’s full of the nutrition they require as part of their daily diet. Because it is a sweet fruit,  peaches should also be fed to them in moderation due to their high sugar content.

READ MORE: Do Guinea Pigs Eat Oranges?

FAQs

Can guinea pigs eat pear skin?

Yes, guinea pigs can eat pear skin. Though not as flavorful as the actual pear, there’s no problem with feeding your pet guinea pig pear peels as long as you wash them thoroughly.

Do guinea pigs like pears?

Yes, because they’re sweet and juicy. Feeding them pears will introduce new flavors, and nutrients guinea pigs will surely enjoy.

Can guinea pigs eat canned pears?

Guinea pigs should not be given canned pears. This is because fruit juices in canned pears contain a lot of sugar, which can adversely affect your guinea pig.

Can guinea pigs eat frozen pears?

frozen pears but can guinea pigs eat pears

Yes, but the freezing process might break down some of the pear’s nutrients, making it less beneficial. Fresh pears are still the ideal type of pear to serve your guinea pig.

Conclusion

So, can guinea pigs eat pears? Pears are a safe, nutritious, and tasty treat for guinea pigs, but you’ll want to feed them in moderation.  

It’s best to feed them a small amount once or twice weekly. Aside from pears, there are many other fruits for guinea pigs to enjoy.

guinea pig waving at pear but can guinea pigs eat pears

So, did you ever feed pears to your guinea pigs? Let us know in the comments section!

References:

  • 1. Can Apple Seeds Kill You? | Britannica [Internet]. Encyclopædia Britannica. 2019. Available from: https://www.britannica.com/story/can-apple-seeds-kill-you
  • 2. FoodData Central [Internet]. fdc.nal.usda.gov. Available from: https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/169118/nutrients
Tamsin

Tamsin

Hi, I’m Tamsin. I’m a serious animal lover and dog behaviorist and trainer. In fact, I live on a farm with nine rescues! So, I love writing about and creating awareness around the health and wellness of all animals. Find her on Linkedin. Read her latest articles Learn more about her HERE.

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