When it comes to taking care of your pet rabbit, it is important to know what they can and cannot eat. While many fruits and vegetables are perfectly safe for your bunny, there are some that you’ll want to be careful of. In fact, there are even a few that are outright dangerous for rabbits to consume.
Table of contents
- Why is Pomegranate Dangerous for Bunnies?
- Can Rabbits Eat Pomegranate Skin?
- Can Rabbits Eat Pomegranate Seeds?
- Can Rabbits Eat Pomegranate Leaves?
- Can Rabbits Drink Pomegranate Juice?
- Should You Give Pomegranate as an Occasional Treat?
- What Fruits Are Safe to Feed Your Pet Rabbit?
So, can rabbits eat pomegranate fruit? The short answer is no, rabbits cannot eat pomegranates.
In this guide, we’ll go over why it is unsafe to feed your rabbit this type of fruit and why you need to skip it altogether in favor of a different treat for your furry friend.
Why is Pomegranate Dangerous for Bunnies?
To start, let’s be perfectly clear. You should not feed your pet rabbit pomegranate in any form.
Now, the sweetness is something that most rabbits enjoy. But there are other factors that must be considered, too.
While tasty to most bunnies, there are actually a multitude of reasons why this fruit should not be part of your pet’s diet in any capacity.
However, to make the reasoning behind why rabbits should not eat pomegranate more clear, we’ll break it down into three categories: high sugar content, possible digestive problems, and seed toxicity.
High Sugar Content
One of the main reasons why rabbits should not eat pomegranates is due to the fruit’s high sugar content.
Most rabbits lead very sedentary lifestyles, even with additional exercise outside of a cage. With a diet that is filled with sweet foods including fruits, it is possible for your pet to gain weight quickly.
Obesity is a common health problem for many rabbit breeds, meaning you should choose what your animal eats carefully and avoid high-sugar fruits like pomegranate.
Likewise, feeding your rabbit a well-rounded diet full of healthy, low-calorie fruits and vegetables is a better option than filling them up full of sugar.
While it is nice to give your pet an occasional treat for a bit of variety, thinking about their long-term health is more important.
Another reason to avoid feeding your pet bunny pomegranate is that it can cause digestive problems.
The high acidity level of pomegranates can cause loose, runny stools in rabbits. Not only is this uncomfortable for your pet, but it can also leave you with a messy cage.
In fact, even the smallest bite of pomegranates can lead to digestive distress, making it a better idea to avoid it altogether.
Why? Rabbits have far different digestive systems than humans or even other pets, like dogs and cats. What their stomachs are able to tolerate is quite different, meaning even a tiny amount of some substances or too much sugar can create an issue.
Anyone who has ever cleaned up after a sick rabbit will tell you that this isn’t a situation you want to deal with, but it also is quite uncomfortable for the animal, as well.
However, the biggest reason why you should not feed your rabbit pomegranate is due to the toxicity of the seeds.
Fruit seeds are highly dangerous to most bunnies in general. Why? Some fruit seeds—like those from apples, pears, peaches, plums, and apricots—contain trace amounts of cyanide that can kill a rabbit. Feeding the flesh of the fruit is sometimes okay, but it really depends on which type and how much.
With pomegranates, the seed is literally embedded within the fruit itself. This makes it very difficult to remove, which means giving your pet a piece with a seed inside poses a significant health risk.
Thus, it is better to skip feeding your rabbit any amount of pomegranate and opt for a safer option instead.
Can Rabbits Eat Pomegranate Skin?
While rabbits can eat pomegranate skin, the bitterness and texture is highly offputting to most animals.
That means it is safe for your bunny to eat, but they probably won’t like it.
Plus, pomegranate skin can be waxy and hard to digest. Nearly all breeds of bunnies have delicate digestive systems, which can be aggravated by eating this type of fruit rind.
Can Rabbits Eat Pomegranate Seeds?
You should never feed your rabbit pomegranate seeds. In fact, you should never feed your pet any type of fruit seeds.
While not all fruit seeds contain cyanide, it is better to err on the side of caution and skip giving them to your rabbit altogether.
Why? The risk is just too great and there’s no real nutritional value to doing so anyway. So, skip the fruit seeds and stick with safe fruit flesh and pulp from varieties other than the pomegranate.
Can Rabbits Eat Pomegranate Leaves?
Rabbits can safely eat pomegranate leaves. However, it probably isn’t their most favorite treat and should be replaced with something else.
Romaine lettuce (see also ‘Do Rabbits Eat Romaine Lettuce?‘), herbs, zucchini, and bell pepper are all tasty alternatives that rabbits love. Sticking to these items instead of feeding pomegranate leaves is definitely a better option.
What if your pet accidentally eats pomegranate leaves in your yard? While most people don’t have pomegranate trees around, this is possible. There’s no direct toxic risk with these leaves, you should still watch your pet for signs of digestive distress, such as loose stools, refusal to drink water, or panting.
Can Rabbits Drink Pomegranate Juice?
Due to the high sugar content, rabbits should not drink pomegranate juice. Furthermore, most bottles of juice you buy in the store contain additional ingredients, some of which could be toxic to bunnies.
Instead, it is better to give your pet rabbit a healthy amount of cool, fresh water. Bunnies need to stay hydrated and run the risk of severe health complications if they’re not appropriately drinking enough fluids each day.
Should You Give Pomegranate as an Occasional Treat?
As we’ve previously mentioned, it is not a good idea to feed your bunny pomegranate. However, some pet owners insist that it is still okay as an occasional treat.
While the low caloric level and magnesium contained in pomegranates are healthy, there are just too many risks associated with seed toxicity, high sugar content, and overall digestive response.
Thus, it is better to opt for feeding your pet rabbit safe seedless varieties of fruits like bananas, grapes, or watermelon.
What Fruits Are Safe to Feed Your Pet Rabbit?
While your rabbit should not eat pomegranates, there are other safe fruits for bunnies to enjoy.
To keep digestive issues and sugar consumption to a minimum, most veterinarians advise to not feed your pet these treats more than once or twice per week.
- Apples with the seeds removed
- Berries of multiple types including strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries
- Melon including cantaloupe, honeydew, and watermelon (see also ‘Can Rabbits Eat Watermelon?‘) with all seeds removed
- Peach with the pit removed
- Nectarine with the pit removed
- Plum with the seed removed
Again, fruit seeds are highly dangerous and toxic to rabbits. Any treat you give your pet should be thoroughly inspected to ensure it doesn’t include seeds.