One way humans show their love for their pets is by providing them with delicious snacks to eat.
We humans also know that guinea pigs love sugar and fruit, so it would make sense that we offer them jam. But, if you love your guinea pig, you should not feed them jam at all.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Jam?
No, absolutely not. Guinea pigs cannot eat jam, and you should not be feeding it to them. The reason that guinea pigs cannot eat them, even though jam has fruit as an ingredient, is that there is far too much sugar in even a small teaspoon of jam for it to be healthy enough for your guinea pig to eat. Guinea pigs and their digestive systems are very susceptible to high concentrations of any nutrient. So they should not be fed any jam.
Also, jams, jelly, and preserves are all cooked foods. Guinea pigs need to eat a raw, all-natural diet. Their digestive systems do not allow them to digest cooked food. So this is another way eating jam will hurt your guinea pig friends. As a rule, you should not be feeding any processed human food to a guinea pig. The most processed food they should be eating is their pellets.
What Will Happen If a Guinea Pig Eats Jam?
If a guinea pig eats jam once, then it’s not such a big deal. But they should not be eating jam at all, and they definitely should not be eating jam on a weekly basis. Jam isn’t made with just fruit. It has a lot of sugar added to it. Guinea pigs are small creatures that we’re not developed to eat human’s processed food or food with high concentrations of sugar.
If you are feeding guinea pigs jam, or another high sugar food, to them several times a week, you need to stop now. Feeding them sugary foods can usually cost high and low blood sugar crashes, dependency on sugar, and, worst of all, diabetes. Plus, their guinea pig diabetes could affect their heart muscles as well.
One critical piece of knowledge you should know is that if you have been feeding your guinea pig high sugar foods for a while and they become very thirsty and are always drinking the water, then that is a beginning sign that they are developing diabetes. If you switch them back to their naturally high fiber diet during the development of their diabetes, they will return to normal and not need insulin.
The Proper Diet of a Guinea Pig
There are three major parts to a guinea pig’s diet. The most crucial part of their diet has to be hay. 80% of all of their calories come from hay. The other 20% of their diet comes from vegetables, fruits, and pellets. When it comes to vegetables and fruits, feel free to mix and match all kinds of different foods so your guinea pig can have a balanced nutritious diet. But do not try to increase or decrease how much hay or how much vegetables and fruits they eat. They must be strictly an 80-20 hay balance.
Like we said before, hay is an essential part of a guinea pig’s diet. When you purchase hay, you need to look for high-quality hay where farmers don’t use a lot of pesticides to grow it. Pesticides can irritate a guinea pig’s stomach. Guinea pigs need a lot of hay, so owners place a brick of it in their cage so they can munch on it all day.
2. Vegetables and Fruits
For vegetables, they provide a lot of vitamins and minerals so your guinea pig can have a healthy body. The average serving size for a vegetable is around one cup, but many vegetables deviate from the serving size. It would be best to look up each serving size of each vegetable before you give it to your guinea pig. You must provide vegetables to your guinea pig every day.
When it comes to fruits, they also have many vitamins and minerals, but because of their high sugar content, they cannot be given every day like vegetables. It is recommended to only give fruits out as a snack one to two times a week at most. Most fruit serving sizes are around one to two tablespoons, but you should look each fruit up to be sure.
Pellets provide your guinea pig with essential amino acids and fats that it doesn’t have from vegetables or fruits are hey. Because of the high-fat content, you should give two tablespoons of pellets to your guinea pig every day.
What Other Foods Can Guinea Pigs Not Eat?
You would be frustrated at the sheer number of foods that guinea pigs are not supposed to eat. Many of those foods are raw vegetables. But those vegetables have high concentrations of minerals, nutrients, and vitamins that can hurt a guinea pig’s system, or they contain a compound that causes nausea and diarrhea. Here is a beginner’s list of foods they cannot eat.
- Alfalfa – as adults, as piglets it is like hay to them
- Tomato stems and leaves – fruit is just fine
- Sweet peas
- Iceberg lettuce
- All mushrooms
What Snacks Are Safe to Give Them?
If you want to give your guinea pig a safe snack, you have many options that don’t require processed human food. Many of those snacks will be fruit, so it’s best to keep serving size it to a minimum. But remember that snacks are special and not an everyday food, no matter how cute or fluffy your guinea pig is today! Here’s a quick list of safe snacks to spoil your guinea pig with:
- Guinea pigs cannot eat jam
- Jam and all other food like it have too much sugar
- If guinea pigs eat too much sugar to a while, they can develop diabetes
- Jam is also cooked food, and guinea pigs cannot eat cooked foods.
- There are many fruits and vegetables that your guinea pigs cannot eat.
- Raw fruits in small amounts are the best type of snack to give your little furry friend.