Parsley is one of the most popular herbs in the world, it gives a great vibrant taste to many different dishes. The green color and its irresistible scent make it hard to resist. Parsley’s fresh and the incredible smell brings you closer to the nature. It’s also highly nutritious and is available year round in your local supermarket. But is it so delicious for pets as it is for humans? Can guinea pigs eat parsley, for instance? Let’s find the answer to this question in this very article!
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Parsley?
Parsley contains much more than a decoration on your plate and guinea pigs are allowed to enjoy it as well. However, some restrictions should be taken into consideration. Otherwise, their overall health might suffer.
When buying for parsley, look for the one that has a bright green color and a fresh look. The leaves should be either flat or curved. Try to buy organically grown parsley since this will be healthier option for your pet. Organic herbs have not been treated with harmful chemicals and pesticides.
Benefits of Parsley
Parsley is rich in antioxidants. It also promotes heart health and protects against rheumatoid arthritis. Additionally, animal studies have shown that parsley’s volatile oil can inhibit tumor formation, especially in the lungs.
Parsley’s Nutritional Content
The restrictions we mentioned earlier are directly related to the nutritional content of this herb, so we made up a list with the most important nutrients contained by parsley. Parsley is rich in carbohydrates, vitamin K, and vitamin A. It is also extremely high in vitamin C, which is good for your guinea pig. 1 cup of parsley contains 133 % of vitamin C.
Parsley also contains zinc, potassium, magnesium, calcium and folate. Other important substances that we can find in this herb are iron, sodium, protein, phosphorus, thiamine, manganese, vitamin E, vitamin B6, riboflavin, pantothenic acid and niacin. Also, it’s needless to say that parsley is extremely low in fat.
The elements that interest us the most are calcium, phosphorus, fat, sugar and the level of oxalate acid. The fact that it contains such a great amount of vitamin C is great! All guinea pigs owners should know that their pets are unable to produce vitamin C on their own. So, it is only natural to say that they should get it from the food they eat. Parsley is therefore a great source of vitamin C and it should definitely be included in your cavies diets.
The disadvantage of this herb is that it contains calcium, which can end up hurting your little friend, instead of helping him get stronger. To prevent the excessive accumulation of this mineral, it is best to avoid feeding parsley too often. Once, maybe twice a week should be enough for your furry little friend.
Your guinea pig can also enjoy parsley stems. However, parsley stems should be also fed in moderation.
What Type of Parsley is Good for Guinea Pigs?
As you might have heard, there are several types of parsley. Guinea pigs can also eat Italian parsley. However, once again, this variety of parsley should be fed once or twice a week only.
Cow parsley, on the other hand, is a different type of herb. It is not flat nor curly-leaved, but it is also good for guinea pigs to snack on. The same goes for Chinese parsley, another variety great for these little piggies to chew on.
Parsley is one of the herbs that should be fed to your cavy in moderation and in small amounts. Do not forget that your pet’s main food should be high-quality hay and vitamin C reinforced pellets. Moreover, fresh water is a must and it should always be available for your furry pal. It is a vital component and should never be ignored. Parsley and any other herbs or vegetables, for that matter, should be fed in moderation. This way, you will be able to avoid any unforeseen side effects caused by taking in an excessive amount of veggies. You surely want to avoid any stomach problems like bloating, gas or even diarrhea. All of these will make your small and vulnerable guinea pig feel uncomfortable.
So, yes guinea pigs can eat parsley and they can also eat other veggies and fruits. However, you should keep in mind that these should not become a base for their diets. Ensure the basic foods for your cavies and after that get them out of the routine with different occasional treats. Add some more vitamins by preparing your pets small amounts of parsley snacks that they can munch on throughout the day. Parsley is an amazing food and they should not miss it, that’s for sure!