Guinea pigs are natural herbivores, they used to forage and graze on all sorts of leafy greens present out there in the wild to survive. since their domestication, in captivity, the bulk of the guinea pigs’ diet consists of pellets and timothy hay. In addition to the hay, we also feed vegetables to our guinea pigs. Feeding vegetables to guinea pigs, one may think that mushrooms also make a healthy snack for our little piggies, after all, it’s a healthy veggie for humans.
Well, not so fast. No doubt, mushrooms are listed as vegetables, but they are not really plants. They belong to the Fungi Kingdom. But fret not most mushrooms are totally safe and healthy for us humans to eat. Ok! But what about our little furry friends. Can guinea pigs eat mushrooms? Are mushrooms safe for Guinea pigs? If yes, then how often can guinea pigs eat mushrooms?
If you have been overwhelmed by the above questions keep on reading, we are going to address these questions and much more.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Mushroom?
Yes, guinea pigs can eat mushrooms. Most Mushrooms that are safe for humans to eat are ok for our guinea pigs to eat, too, provided they are not eating them in excess. While feeding mushrooms to your guinea pig, you should make sure that you do not give them any wild mushrooms as they can be deadly for them.
Moreover, you should only give mushrooms to guinea pigs in small amounts, occasionally, as a treat. Mushrooms do not have much nutritional value to offer to our piglets so they will only fill their tiny stomachs but not fulfill their nutritional needs. Additionally, never share cooked mushrooms or any other cooked vegetables with guinea pigs—guinea pigs cannot digest processed food.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Raw Mushrooms?
Yes, guinea pigs can eat raw mushrooms. In fact, they should only be given raw mushrooms and no cooked mushrooms, since guinea pigs cannot digest processed foods. Having said that, you should avoid giving any mushrooms growing in your lawn or on the sidewalk to your guinea pig. You must be wondering why?
Are Mushrooms Safe for Guinea Pigs?
More mushrooms are totally safe for pets, including guinea pigs, but some can be life-threatening if consumed even in small amounts. Around 99% of the mushrooms the total mushrooms are entirely safe for guinea pigs, but the reaming 1% can be deadly for pets (guinea pigs), according to the Animal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA).
So, to the question “Are mushrooms safe for guinea pigs?” Yes, mushrooms can be safe for guinea pigs but not the wild varieties.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Store-Bought Mushrooms?
Yes, store-bought mushrooms are totally safe for guinea pigs. In fact, it is advised that you not only feed your guinea pigs store-bought mushrooms but also yourself.
|Unless you are a seasoned mycologist, you should even touch a mushroom that you find randomly growing in your lawn or on the sidewalks—you never know which could be deadly.|
Seeing any mushroom growing in your lawn, on a sidewalk, or in parks, you should assume that it is poisonous unless you are sure that it is not a poisonous one. Since only seasoned mycologist can tell that for sure, you should always assume that it’s the wild one, just to be on the safe side.
Are Mushrooms Good For Guinea Pigs?
No, mushrooms are no good for guinea pigs to eat. They have little to no nutritional value to offer to our guineas. Eating mushrooms will only stuff our furry friends’ stomachs without meeting their nutritional needs. If you take a look at the nutritional profile of mushrooms, you will see that it only has to offer manganese to our guinea pigs and no else of much value. So, it is best that we avoid feeding mushrooms to our guinea pigs since some mushrooms can be deadly for our piglets.
What If My Guinea Pig Ate Wild Mushrooms?
If you allow your guinea pig to go outside and play in the lawn, chances are he may have nibbled on a mushroom growing in the corner. Guinea pigs do not know what is good for them and what could be poisonous for them so they might even take a bite or two of the mushroom cap they encounter even if it was a wild mushroom.
If you think your piggie has eaten a wild mushroom, you should immediately remove him from the scene and call your vet. You should observe your guinea pig for any signs of poisoning. More so, you should also not how much of the mushroom guinea pig has eaten. The vet may ask you a bunch of questions. If need be, the vet might ask you to bring your piggy to the clinic. In that case, you should take the mushroom cap that your piglet was eating with you to the clinic for the vet’s inspection.
How Lethal Can be Mushroom Poisoning for a Guinea Pig?
Given that guinea pigs are too small, even a bite or two of mushrooms could lead to a serious sickness. Moreover, eating too much of a store-bought or safe mushroom may still cause mushroom poisoning in your furry friend.
The severity of the mushroom poisoning in your guinea pig would depend on the amount and type of mushroom that he has consumed. In mild cases, your guinea will experience some gastrointestinal issues, vomiting, and diarrhea and would get better after some time. But in extreme cases, hospitalization may be necessary. Sometimes, eating a wild mushroom could lead to the tragic demise of a guinea pig.
Signs of Mushroom Poisoning in guinea Pigs
|Most Common Signs of Mushroom Poisoning in Guinea Pigs|
· Reduced appetite
· Excessive drooling
· Trouble breathing
· Skin rash
· Uninterested in drinking water
· Dietary changes
· Heart beating faster
Healthy Alternatives to Mushrooms for Guinea Pigs
To make it interesting, guinea pig owners are advised to share fresh vegetables and fruits with their guinea off and on in moderate amounts. But given that mushrooms are not much healthy for guinea pigs and also involve a risk of eating a wild mushroom, what could be better alternatives to mushrooms?
Instead of treating your guinea pigs with mushrooms, we advise you to give them the following fruits and vegetables.
|Moderation is the key!|
|Even while sharing these healthy vegetables and fruits you should keep in mind that moderation is the key. Eating in excess of any vegetable or fruit would be counterproductive.|
The Final Verdict: Can Guinea Pigs Eat Mushrooms?
Yes, guinea pigs can have mushrooms—all the store-bought mushrooms including portobello, white, and button mushrooms—but never the wild mushrooms. The rule of thumb is; that mushrooms that are unhealthy and poisonous for humans to eat are also toxic to pets. More so, guinea pigs can safely eat mushrooms sparingly as a treat, if eaten in excess, they may experience mushroom poisoning. And one minor detail, guinea pigs cannot have any cooked mushroom or any other cooked food for that matter—processed food upset their stomachs.
Check out other guides to what guinea pigs can or cannot eat: