When it comes to tomatoes there is a lot of uncertainty regarding feeding them to pets.
This is understandable, as tomatoes come from a dangerous family (the nightshade family), and can even cause allergic reactions and have inflammatory properties in some humans.
Other fruits and vegetables in this family include eggplants, peppers, tobacco, and potatoes.
So, you may be wondering: are tomatoes safe for rabbits?
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Since rabbits love most fruits and vegetables, it’s always important to make sure a certain fruit/ vegetable is safe before feeding them anything.
In regards to tomatoes, they are safe; although, only in small quantities.
Large quantities of tomatoes can make your rabbit sick; however, small amounts, alongside other foods, as a treat should be perfectly fine.
In controlled environments, tomatoes are healthy for your rabbits.
To give you some peace of mind, we have created a complete guide on everything you need to know about feeding your rabbits tomatoes. Let’s get straight into it!
Tomatoes Are Okay For Your Rabbit When In Small Quantities
As previously mentioned, the good news is that tomatoes are healthy for your rabbits; although, only in small quantities.
A healthy diet for rabbits consists of a mix of hay, pellets, and vegetables, with additional fruits only a few times per week.
Tomatoes make a great occasional treat or snack for your pet rabbit.
Not only will your rabbit love a juicy tomato to snack on, but tomatoes are also nutrient-rich, providing your rabbit with a healthy dose of nourishment.
Fresh tomatoes contain everything that keeps your rabbit healthy, including vitamins C and A, additional vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals.
However, it’s important to watch their quantities.
Generally, fruits make a perfect treat for your pet bunnies.
While the debate stands on whether or not tomatoes are regarded as a fruit or a vegetable, it’s all the same to your rabbit, and they’ll have no problem snacking on it.
However, it’s important to remember that tomatoes shouldn’t make a regular contribution to your rabbit’s diet.
Likewise, if you’re treating your rabbit with fruit or vegetables, these should be introduced in a rotation, allowing your bunny to benefit from a range of different nutrients and minerals every week.
While the stereotype of rabbits loving garden vegetables is somewhat true, their diet should primarily be made up of hay.
As a result, fruits should only be fed as a special treat in small quantities, and only a few times per week.
Feeding Tomatoes To Your Rabbit
To feed your bunny fruits and vegetables is extremely easy.
Typically, most rabbit owners will offer their fluffy friends fruits and vegetables straight from their refrigerators.
Not only does this save time, but it is also more cost-effective. Instead of throwing out any good fruits and vegetables, you can see if your rabbits want some.
However, before you start tossing your rabbit some pieces of tomato from your salad, there are a few important factors to keep in mind.
Generally, most vegetables and fruits that are suitable for humans are perfectly fine for your pet rabbit, however with tomatoes, there are a few precautions.
Firstly, you need to thoroughly wash your tomatoes. Like most fruits, it is often sprayed with pesticides to prevent pests.
These can sometimes be toxic and extremely harmful for rabbits.
Even with fruits grown from your garden, it’s more important to be safe than sorry, so always wash your fruit before feeding them to your pet.
Next, you’ll want to remove any leaves or stems from the tomatoes.
These parts of the tomato plant contain a high concentration of toxic chemicals that can make your rabbits unwell.
Even wild rabbits tend to instinctively stay away from tomatoes due to this fact, only chomping on the fruit and avoiding the stems.
Finally, you’ll need to cut the tomatoes into smaller pieces for your bunny. If you are using large tomatoes, try cutting them into slices.
Whereas if you’re using cherry tomatoes, slicing them in half should be fine. Once completed, remove all of the seeds from the tomatoes.
Typically, seeds aren’t recommended for rabbits, they can sometimes be poisonous and cause gastrointestinal problems.
How Much Tomato Is Okay?
It’s important to remember that rabbits have small stomachs. When feeding your rabbit treats, moderation is key; therefore, they should make up less than 5% of their diet.
Likewise, not all the same-sized tomatoes will be suitable for your rabbits. For instance, the flesh of one cherry tomato should fulfill your rabbit’s fruit cravings.
If you are using plum tomatoes, then a quarter will suffice. With large sandwich-size tomatoes, your rabbit will only need a slice for the perfect portion.
Feeding your bunny too many tomatoes could result in them not being hungry for their regular, necessary meals that contain most nutrients.
While rabbits love treats and won’t say no to one, too many can lead to malnutrition and can seriously affect your bunny long-term.
Therefore, you should ensure your rabbit has enough appetite to chew on fibrous hay which also prevents their teeth from growing too long.
One of the most important responsibilities of a pet owner is knowing your pet’s treat limit.
Therefore, when feeding your rabbit tomatoes, make sure to stick to the recommended guidelines to ensure they stay happy and healthy.
A pet owner’s number one priority is the safety of their pets. Therefore, making sure what they can and can’t eat is important.
While it’s generally safe to feed your rabbit most fruits and vegetables from the garden, you should always be careful.
Like most treats, tomatoes should only be fed in small quantities.
Hopefully, this guide has informed you on whether or not rabbits can eat tomatoes.