Rabbits are the cutest pet anyone would love to have. But just owning them won’t complete the game since you have to take proper care of them while having the right knowledge.
Many owners assume they can feed their rabbits bird seeds since it contains many healthy ingredients. But can rabbits eat birdseed?
We’ll let you know here if bird seeds are a yes for your bunny whether it’s a wild rabbit or a domestic one.
Do rabbits eat birdseed?
Rabbits eat bird seeds. Specifically, wild rabbits are fond of birdseed but other species can eat it anyway if given. Although bird seeds aren’t enough to keep a rabbit healthy, it doesn’t cause them any harm. Rabbits can be allowed to eat birdseed along with other rabbit foods.
Bird seeds are a combination of different seeds such as millet, sunflower seed, flax. As named they are to feed birds. But if eaten by rabbits these foods won’t harm them unless the consumption is monitored.
Rabbits are herbivores. Though they mainly eat plant-based food like a leaf, wildflowers, etc. But they can eat bird seeds too if given a chance.
Bird seeds contain nutrients such as vitamin A, D3, a few types of vitamin B, and calcium which are beneficial for rabbits. So they can have birdseed in a certain amount
Wild rabbits are the biggest customer of bird seeds. Since they live in the wood, they eat whatever they find including bird seeds fallen on the ground.
Most rabbits that live in the wild prefer having foods like birdseed that contains healthful oil. As it’s tough to survive the cold in the wild, the fat keeps themselves warm.
Bird seeds are not a regular food for domestic rabbits. They are carefully brought up by humans, so have selective food habits. But if they ever find birdseed, they consume it out of attraction which doesn’t harm them.
Cottonball rabbits can eat bird seeds. They live on plant-based food but get attracted easily toward fruits, flowers, or seeds. Cottonball rabbits prefer sunflowers seeds along with their usual menu.
Is birdseed safe or harmful to rabbits?
Bird seeds are generally safe for rabbits since it has many healthy ingredients including vitamin A, vitamin D3, calcium, and many other minerals. These are undoubtedly good for any animals’ well growth as well as rabbits.
So if rabbits consume bird seeds sometimes, it’s totally safe. It might even help them with good health.
However, bird seeds should not replace a rabbit’s natural food menu. Because bird seeds are fat-based, full of oils and the amount of fat in a rabbit’s meal must not cross 3%.
If the feeding of bird seeds to rabbits isn’t controlled, the fat in the rabbit’s body can go up to this percentage. Thus it can invite risk for those cute bunnies. Apart from this, a little birdseed will not ruin anything for rabbits.
What are bird seeds made of?
Bird seeds are simply the combination of various seeds, grains, fruits, vegetables, and nuts. It’s an easy-to-eat food containing many nutrients for birds.
There are various kinds of bird seeds made of different things. Here we’ve listed some of the common ingredients that most bird seeds contain:
- Different sunflower seeds such as black sunflower oil, that’s stripped or hulled.
- Cracked corn
- Nyjer seeds
- Dried mealworm
- Fruits such as cherries, oranges, raisins.
- Safflower seeds etc.
What seeds can rabbits eat?
Rabbits eat plant material mainly but because they are forager in a way they can or try to eat anything they find attractive.
Many owners try to keep their rabbits’ diet a bit interesting so along with their usual food such as grass, leafy vegetables, or plants, they look for seeds. Seeds contain protein, vitamins, calcium, fat, etc. that is good for rabbits if given occasionally.
Since rabbits’ food processing and habits are mostly focused on plant-based things, you cannot give them any seed to eat. So let’s take a look at what seeds your rabbits can enjoy –
Black oil Sunflower seeds:
Sunflowers seeds, especially black oil sunflower seeds are popular choices for many animals including rabbits. They contain vitamins, calories, and mostly oil which is good for your rabbit’s health when fed sometimes.
Sunflower seeds contain nothing harmful for rabbits, so they can eat this seed.
Rabbits can eat pumpkin seed. The seeds of pumpkin have vitamin A, B, iron, calcium, etc. important elements that can be beneficial for rabbits’ health. They can eat this seed in its raw form, but occasionally.
Millet seeds can be fed to a rabbit. They are small-sized and have minerals and vitamins. Usually, rabbits living in the wild eat millet for health benefits. But domestic rabbits aren’t very familiar with it.
Rabbits can eat safflower seeds that is hulled. They might not provide much nutrition but won’t harm until frequently eaten.
What seeds are bad for rabbits?
Seeds aren’t essential to add to a rabbit’s diet. Rabbits get all the required nutrients from plant-based foods. Still, sometimes they get to eat seeds while living in the wild or as a treat from their owners.
But not every kind of seed is good for rabbits, so now you may wonder what seed can cause them harm. You can get an idea about that from below:
Corn is not a suitable seed for rabbits to have. Corns are hard to digest for a rabbit. Since it has hulls, digestion passage can be blocked.
Moreover, it contains excessive sugar and carb which are not good for a rabbit’s body. High-carb in the corn may lead your rabbit to gastrointestinal stasis.
Rabbits should never be given peanuts. They are hard to crack and swallow. Most importantly, peanut contains a high amount of fat that can harm your rabbit with fatty liver disease.
Eating peas might make you happy but it’s totally bad for your bunnies. Dried peas can block rabbits’ intestines since they aren’t chewable for rabbits. Also, dried peas can cause major harm to a rabbit’s teeth since they are too hard for them.
Beans are a big no to add to rabbits’ food regime. They might eat beans as a treat sometimes but dried ones can be dangerous for them to digest. Also when consumed a little much, beans can result in gas or digestion problems in rabbits.
Do rabbits like birdseed?
Rabbits are foragers. They love to roam around and try to eat whatever they see in front of them. So along with plant materials, rabbits consume random foods too.
Rabbits living in the woods come across bird seeds often and they eat those seeds fallen in the ground. Though it’s not their usual food, they are more into plants. But as it doesn’t cause them any problem so they like to eat it.
Especially Cottonball rabbits get attracted to seeds easily and have it often.
Mostly, in the winter they like to have some bird seeds as birdseed contains a lot of fat and thus keeps the rabbit’s body warm in extreme cold. To fight cold, domestic rabbits prefer bird seeds at times.
About domestic rabbits, birdseed is hardly in their meals. But if the owner decides to give the bunnies a treat with bird seeds, rabbits eat them. But it’s not a familiar item for them so they prefer other food over it.
What do rabbits love to eat the most?
Since rabbits are herbivores they prefer plant materials over anything. Their food habit includes leaf, fresh hay vegetables, plants, fruits, and grass.
Rabbits love to have grass. Besides they eat plenty of fresh hays, mainly meadow hay or timothy hay. Herbs such as basil, parsley, or thyme are also on their list.
Vegetables make rabbits happy. All of us have seen rabbits’ love for carrots but they eat many more vegetables. Fresh lettuce, cabbage, cauliflower, beetroots, asparagus, baby sweet corns are some of the vegetables rabbits love to eat.
Rabbits like fresh fruits which includes berries, apple, banana, grapes, papaya, peach, mango, and so many other fruits. However, fruits aren’t always on their plates, they get it sometimes as a sweet treat or to find the meal interesting.
Occasionally domestic rabbits are given dried fruits in small pieces which they eat with joy, so these can be enlisted to their favorite food chart as well.
Eating birdseed doesn’t cause any harm to rabbits so they, mostly wild ones take it as food. But the nutrient requirements of rabbits aren’t similar to birds, so eating bird seed doesn’t fulfill their health needs. But since it’s not harmful, rabbits can have it along with their regular diet.