Can Rats Eat Sweet Potato?

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Can Rats Eat Sweet Potato

This plant is used in many delicious dishes and is healthy for us humans, being domesticated 5000 years ago, but can rats eat sweet potato?

Nutritional Value

Sweet potatoes are starchy and have a lot of complex carbohydrates, dietary fiber, beta-carotene along with micronutrients such as the vitamins B5 or B6 and manganese. While it is cooked the amount of vitamin C increases to cover around 24% of our daily needed dose from 100 grams and this plant provides one of the best nutritional values you can get from foods.

Many pet owners give their pet rat cooked sweet potatoes as treats but the raw ones contain some substances that are very toxic to rats so this is a clear case where you have to see if the advantages outweigh the risks.

Can Rats Eat Sweet Potato


Even if your pet rat might benefit from the nutrients we mentioned above, the sweet potato also comes with some serious dangers due to the other substances it contains. We have seen that potatoes are safe to feed to your rat and most people consider these to be very similar although this isn’t the case.

The raw sweet potatoes contain a compound that will create cyanide inside a rat’s stomach so this means that despite all the benefits you can think of, these will prove deadly to your pet so keep them out of their reach if you care about the well-being of your rat!

When they are cooked this substance looses it’s potency but we still wouldn’t try to give sweet potatoes to our pet since there are much safer alternatives for them to get the nutrients they require, ones that don’t have the possibility of killing them.

My Rat Ate Sweet Potato

The cooked versions will probably have all the toxic parts destroyed so you shouldn’t worry too much if you don’t see any symptoms but the raw ones are much more troublesome. The main difficulty is that rats lack our gag reflex so they aren’t able to throw up the things that do them harm so it is very problematic to get it out of their system.

Usually though a rat will first test out any new food by taking only small bites and seeing how they react to it, so maybe the quantity wasn’t high enough to put them in serious danger. You should definitely phone a veterinarian and tell them about the incident, following their instructions from there on, because they might want to keep the pet under observation or try to clean their stomach.

Can Rats Eat Sweet Potato

If you know a pet ate something that is on the forbidden list or something that caused problems before then you should never simply ignore the problem. Make sure that they are fine by keeping them under observation or even going to a vet and also ensure that they won’t have access to that harmful food anymore in the future.

Short Answer:

Raw sweet potatoes are highly toxic for rats so you should never feed them to your pet intentionally.

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