Yes, guinea pigs can have mint, spearmint and peppermint without danger. Herbs are very beneficial for guinea pigs, and mint is also a herb. It consists of vitamin A in abundance that is healthful. Mint contains vitamin C in a low quantity, still, it is nutritious for them. It has a very high calcium and fiber content but is also loaded with sugar. That’s why frequent, and excess consumption of mint invites different health problems for piggies. Mint flowers, mint leaves, mint stems are the safe and healthy parts of mint to eat for cavies.
Nutritional Facts Of Mint
50 grams of mint contains the following nutrients:
What Portion Of Mint Is Safe For Guinea Pigs?
Guinea pigs can eat mint safely. But what should be the serving size? These tiny rodents should not be treated with mint more than two times per week. If they take it more often, they are at risk of many health issues like kidney or bladder stones. These can also originate because mint has calcium and surplus ingestion of calcium causes this problem.
Also, avoid the overabundance of mint. Give only one or a maximum of two leaves of mint at one time to your pet. Make sure you have kept a vigilant eye on the piggy as sometimes they continue eating round-the-clock.
Benefits Of Eating Mint For Guinea Pigs
When mint is appropriately served to guinea pigs, it provides them several health benefits. Some of these are:
Soothes The Digestion Process
Mint has dietary fiber that’s why it is beneficial for guinea pigs’ digestive system. It helps them to avoid gastrointestinal infections. It can also cure different digestive disorders of piggies. Mint can treat constipation and diarrhea too.
Mint is rich in vitamin A. Vitamin A is specifically beneficial for eyesight. It helps guinea pigs to fight against different eye infections.
Improves The Immune System
Vitamin A is not only beneficial for eyesight but also develops the immune system of guinea pigs. It allows your little pet to live a healthy life.
If your little rodent gets sick too often, try feeding it a moderate amount of mint.
Risks Of Mint For Guinea Pigs
If you don’t follow the instructions before giving mint to your cavy, you might see it suffering. Here are some risks associated with overfeeding of mint to guinea pigs:
Lack Of Vitamin C
Vitamin C is not present in enough quantities in mint, plus it is a vital element for guinea pigs. Therefore, if you only stick to mint as a snack for your pet, it might not get enough supply of vitamin C. Guinea pigs cannot make vitamin C on their own. They might get seriously ill because vitamin C serves many functions. Like, it prevents a disease called scurvy.
Due to being rich in calcium, overeating, this herb can cause kidney or bladder stones. Calcium is good, but only when it is taken in a limited quantity. If the pig has excessively consumed it, this can be harmful. The most common problem which arises from it is kidney stones. So, don’t make your guinea pig overeat mint.
Allergic Reactions To Mint Leaves
Commonly, guinea pigs become allergic to mint, and it doesn’t happen every time but often.
You have to carefully observe if your pet is showing any signs of allergy. If yes, then stop feeding this herb. Also, take it to a doctor as soon as possible. Allergic reactions can be proved fatal if not treated on time.
There is a high chance that the mint your guinea pig is having contains harmful pesticides or chemicals.
You can eliminate this risk if you give it the herb after washing. Washing the mint removes all such toxic chemicals from it. If you are negligent and your pet has ingested such chemicals, it can suffer from stomach issues.
What About Mint Flowers?
Mint flowers are one of the favorite diets of guinea pigs. They prefer it because it has a delightful smell and they are delicious to eat too.
Mint flowers are safe and healthy for cavies. They can enjoy it occasionally. Just like they can have mint leaves in moderation, the same rule applies to mint flowers.
However, washing them before consuming them remains mandatory.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Mint Leaves?
Yes, guinea pigs can have mint leaves. Mint leaves are a good choice for guinea pigs as many valuable nutrients are found in them. But, your pet cannot eat it daily. Also, don’t forget to rinse them before feeding them to your pet. Otherwise, there are more risks than benefits.
Are Mint Roots Dangerous For Guinea Pigs?
Guinea pigs can have mint and its leaves and flowers, but they cannot eat its roots. Roots have no benefit for them, and they are harmful instead. So, avoid giving mint roots to cavies.
Is Mint Stem/Mint Stalk Safe For Guinea Pigs?
Yes, guinea pigs can consume mint stems or mint stalks. They are in no way dangerous for them. They also contain essential nutrients and are only safe when you give them in a controlled manner.
Is Chocolate Mint Allowed For Guinea Pigs?
Yes, not only chocolate mint is allowed. But also it is preferred. Chocolate mint comes from peppermint. Peppermint is very rich in vitamin A, so; chocolate mint is also healthy for guinea pigs.
Besides this, chocolate mint is good in taste too. Cavies enjoy eating it; therefore, you can give it to them. But don’t allow them to overindulge it. If not, there can be harmful side effects.
Is Garden Mint Suitable For Guinea Pigs?
No, garden mint is not suitable for guinea pigs at all.Garden mint is sweet, and it is also called sweet mint. Guinea pigs usually prefer it because of its taste.
It is safe for piggies, but it is not very healthy because it lacks vitamin C and other vital nutrients, that’s why it is better avoided.
If you want to serve it to your pet anyway, you can do this by mixing it with some other healthy vegetable.
Why Is Mint Candy Not Safe For Guinea Pigs?
Mint candy is harmful to guinea pigs because of their sensitive digestive system, and they cannot easily digest it. Most of the chances are that your pet will choke while eating it because cavies have very tiny teeth and cannot easily chew them.
Your guinea pig can have mint. But mint candy is a big no for them.
Advantages Of Lemon Mint
Lemon mint is a type of mint, which is very much recommended for guinea pigs. It is rich in antioxidants thus is healthy for them. Antioxidants are very beneficial to guinea pigs, and they help them avoid inflammation.
Still, you can only treat your pet with it occasionally.
Grow Mint At Home
Mint is a herb that can be quickly grown in your own house. If you own a guinea pig, try growing this herb on your own. There are several benefits of this act. Firstly you would be sure that the herb is free of harmful chemicals. Secondly, it would be less expensive for you.
Alternatives Of Mint For Guinea Pigs
Although, you are allowed to give your pet mint. But it is advised to keep it as a secondary option. You should first go for the following more safe options:
Guinea pigs can have mint. It is healthy as long as it is provided in moderation. It contains some valuable nutrients like vitamin A. However, overeating is linked to many risks. Chocolate mint and spearmint are advisable. Garden mint is edible, but it should not be preferred. Mint candy and mint roots are strictly prohibited for piggies. Lemon mint contains antioxidants; that’s why it is a good choice for your little one as a snack. Growing mint at home is strongly suggested to the owners of these little animals.