Can Rabbits Eat Asparagus? Find Out Here
I was reading through a pet forum recently when I can across these questions: “Can rabbits eat asparagus? Can rabbits eat raw asparagus? Should I cook asparagus for my rabbits? How about bunnies eating asparagus stalks particularly?” Most of the answers were not clear, so I decided to write a detailed blog post to answer the questions in detail.
This post give you more insight about asparagus and what it contains, you will know whether it is a good food for your rabbit or if it possess any health problem.
Now let’s take a look at what asparagus is and what it contains.
Can Rabbits Eat Asparagus?
Yes! Rabbits can eat asparagus. It adds excellent nutritional value to the diet and also helps to reduce the chances of constipation. It is good to add asparagus as part of the varied diet to give your bunny. You shouldn’t give asparagus only to your rabbit.
Continue reading to learn more about asparagus and rabbits.
What is asparagus?
Asparagus is a green vegetable that is recognizable for its long, pointy spears, which are grilled, roasted or steamed. It is known as a springtime vegetable and is grown commercially in Michigan, California, and Washington State.
Garden asparagus is an herbaceous perennial plant and a member of the lily family. The thin spears with their pointed, scaled tips that are eaten are the young shoots of the plant. If left to develop, these become a giant, feathery fernlike plant that dies back in the fall.
Asparagus plants grow everywhere in the world. The largest producers are China, Germany, Peru, and the U.S. Asparagus thrive in temperate climates, where the ground freezes. It is harvested once it reaches 6-8 inches tall, and the thickest spears are a half-inch thick. They start thin, get plentiful as the season progresses, and then decrease off again; harvest halts when the spears grow just to the thickness of a pencil.
Growing asparagus does demand space and patience. Many square feet are needed per plant, and it can take three to four years to produce good spears once the seeds are planted. This long wait and the short season has given asparagus an elevated status as a luxury vegetable, which accounts for its infrequent higher cost at the market.
What Asparagus Contains
Asparagus is made up of 93% water, and that means it is low in sodium and calories. The remaining part is made up of vitamins like vitamin B6, vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin K, zinc, folic acid, magnesium, riboflavin, potassium, thiamin, iron, chromium, manganese, copper, and beta-carotene. Moreover, this veggie also contains a decent amount of fiber.
Nutritional Value of Asparagus to Rabbit
It is important to note that asparagus is decently low in calcium, which is suitable for rabbits. Adult rabbits require a lower level of calcium to prevent kidney damage, and this is why asparagus is a valuable addition to their diet.
Rabbits absorb calcium at a much higher rate than other mammals. That can make the calcium content in their blood spike, which can lead to kidney stones and urolithiasis. That is why asparagus is an excellent food for rabbits.
Can Rabbits Have Asparagus?
Yes! Rabbits can eat asparagus. It adds excellent nutritional value to the diet and also helps to reduce the chances of constipation. It is good to add asparagus as part of the varied diet to give your bunny. You shouldn’t give only asparagus to your rabbit.
Asparagus is entirely okay to feed to your bunny as a snack or healthy treat. However, high water content can provide some issues for your bunny. But that can be offset by providing your rabbit with other veggies that have low water content. The key is not to only give vegetables that contain lots of water. You should balance the high-water containing vegetables with drier ones. Variation and balance are critical here.
Can Rabbits Eat Asparagus Stalks?
Yes, rabbits can eat asparagus stalk and benefit from the numerous nutrients it contains. Most rabbits should have no issue eating the whole asparagus plant, including the stalk. Asparagus stalks act as the stems of the plant, and mostly known to be soft at the tip and a bit hard at the other end. The hard base usually is snapped off before consumption. This gets rid of the hard part but does not necessarily make it easy for the rabbits to bite into.
Nevertheless, there are some cases that it is better to withhold the stalk from your rabbit. You should not offer a young rabbit asparagus stalk. The stalk will be delicate for them to chew, and they might have a difficult time digesting it depending on their particular age. If you notice a softening of a rabbit’s stool, as well, you should no longer provide them with asparagus.
Some rabbits are susceptible to the high water content this plant contains. Therefore, it is always best not to give it to them if they show signs of diarrhoea after eating it.
Can Rabbits Eat Raw Asparagus?
Yes, rabbits can eat raw asparagus, but it doesn’t matter whether you cook the asparagus before giving it to your rabbit or not.
Some people believe that rabbits should be given fresh, raw asparagus as cooking it might change the nutritional composition. Rabbits eat raw vegetables and love it so that raw asparagus would blend right into the mix.
Another school of thought believe that cooking the asparagus before offering it to your rabbit will make it easier to chew and digest. But this isn’t necessary since the difference is so minimal. If you’re whipping up some asparagus for yourself, you might want to consider making some extra for your precious bunny.
In the end, it doesn’t matter that much if the asparagus is raw or cooked.
Can Bunnies Eat Asparagus?
Yes, bunnies can eat asparagus.It is not bad for bunnies but should be minimal. You don’t want to feed your rabbit asparagus, because it might cause diarrhoea due to the high water content. It is, though, very low in calcium.
Use asparagus to supplement fresh vegetables and hay.Its low levels of calcium that prevent kidney disease make it well suited for your rabbit’s diet. That makes it an ideal veggie to provide to your bunny.
Remember, moderation and variation are critical to a rabbit’s diet. You should offer a variety of veggies for your bunny, including asparagus.
Do not feed asparagus fern to your bunnies or adult rabbits.
Can Rabbits Eat Asparagus Fern?
No, rabbits shouldn’t eat asparagus fern because it is poisonous for them. Apart from that, asparagus fern has little thorns hidden in its leaves which can cause injury in the mouth of a rabbit if ingested.
Your rabbit will not be able to eat because of the pain in its mouth, and this will, in turn, cause stomach problems. So try as much as possible not to feed asparagus fern to your rabbit.
Asparagus fern is an attractive plant with feathery leaves and a member of the lily family. It is not an edible fern as one might think even though it resembles fern in its flowerless yet attractive nature.
Whatever you do, never allow your rabbits to eat asparagus fern.
Can Rabbits Eat Asparagus? Summary
The post have provided answer to the popular question “can rabbits eat asparagus?” it is worthy to note that rabbits can eat asparagus but it should be in moderation. It is best you mix your asparagus with other dryer vegetables to avoid complications in your rabbit.
Do your rabbits eat asparagus? What do you think about it? Let us know in the comment section below!