Are you wondering: can rabbits eat peanut shells? The answer is indeed a BIG NO. It is because peanuts alone are not suitable for them; how much more are their hulls?
Peanuts are not poisonous but may cause small trouble that can lead to severe ones when neglected.
I can attest to this fact. My friend’s pet almost died because of choking on peanuts.
Good thing he was able to get immediate help from his vet. He wasn’t aware that there are peanuts left on the ground; his pet found and ate all of them.
Well, peanuts provide humans a considerable advantage when it comes to the vitamins that are present therein. There’s no doubt why you would also stock varieties of nuts at home; cashews, pistachios, almonds, walnuts, etc.
Definitely, they’re fun to eat, especially when you’re studying, working, or watching movies with family or friends.
But, keep this in mind:
This food only creates harm and danger to rabbits. That is why you have to be careful not to mix peanuts or even carelessly drop a peanut shell near their cage.
In this article, we will know more about the effects of peanuts on rabbits and further elaborate on them.
By that account, you can be aware of their adverse impact on rabbits, and you can be cautious enough not to let your furry friend eat them.
If you are ready, let us dive into the discussion!
What Are Peanuts?
Peanuts, which are also known as goobers, are a kind of edible seeds that came from a legume plant.
Technically speaking, peanuts are vegetables. They are classified as Arachis hypogaea and are mainly cultivated on the ground. And yes, they are an excellent source of protein, fiber, and other minerals.
Despite its name, peanuts are not very much related to tree nuts because they are legumes like beans and soy. Peanuts are high in fat and are often used in making peanut oil.
They are widely grown in tropics and subtropics, making these essential to small and large-scale producers.
Here’s the deal though:
These nuts are not suitable for your rabbits though they’re okay for humans to consume. Peanuts are genuinely a good protein source though they can cause an allergic reaction in some people.
Similarly, rabbits can be allergic to certain types of foods.
Since peanuts are high in calories, they can cause weight gain in both humans and rabbits when consumed too much.
The shells of peanuts are primarily known for their cellulose. They are an excellent source of food energy and are made of glucose. But the inter-sugar linkages make the cellulose not fit for humans and your rabbit’s digestion.
Peanut shells are not soft, and they break down too quickly.
Come to imagine this:
Even if a person chews and chews the shell, this will cause an intestinal blockage. And it is the same with animals, especially rabbits, as they have sensitive stomachs. This part is also exposed to pesticides that contaminate the shell, causing toxicity.
The question is:
Can rabbits eat peanut shells?
Some sources say that peanut hulls are a potential source of fiber for rabbits. However, it would be best if you did not omit the fact that there are risks of contaminations that can poison and harm your pet.
If you want to be more careful, then do not give these shells to your rabbits. It is for a higher level of safety for your pet.
Risks Of Giving Peanuts And Peanut Shells To Rabbits
I know that you are now eager to know why peanuts and peanut shells are not suitable for rabbits.
There was a time when Thumper, my rabbit, happened to eat three pieces of peanuts and a small part of the shell. I was terrified because, after a few hours, he began to look weak like he was suffering from pain.
It is for this reason that my niece was not aware that nuts are not for rabbits, and she offered peanuts to Thumper.
Because of that, my pet became very sick and unable to hop happily like he always did. That was the time when we immediately rushed him to the nearest veterinary clinic to seek help.
So for you to further understand the dangers that might occur, here are the risks of feeding the nut and shell to rabbits:
#1. Peanuts can cause indigestion
This risk is the one that made Thumper sick because it caused painful bloating and diarrhea for him. As a severe effect, indigestion can lead to a condition called GI stasis- which can be deadly.
This is a strong reason why it is never a good idea to feed peanuts to rabbits.
You have to consider this matter because, as a pet owner, you should know that rabbits have weak stomachs.
If you fail to do it, you will surely experience a panic-like situation like when we almost flew to seek immediate help for Thumper.
#2. There is no nutritional value
Yes, nuts have many health benefits to humans; that is why these are one of the most popular snacks throughout the world.
They are packed with vitamins and minerals, which are very beneficial to us, but these have the opposite effect on rabbits.
Furthermore, they do lack fiber content which makes them hard to digest for your bunny.
Peanuts can cause your rabbits to become ill and will undoubtedly lead to significant health problems in the future. The recommended food for them should contain enough amount of fibers such as Hay.
#3. Can cause weight issues that include obesity
Because peanuts are high in calories, you can conclude that these foods can lead to a significant change in your pet’s body. It can make your pet gain more weight and become obese over a short period.
Obesity leads to various diseases like diabetes, arthritis, and a lot more.
That would be the result if you regularly feed peanuts and peanut shells to rabbits.
#4. Peanuts can be a choking hazard
Nuts and its shell can be a choking hazard to your rabbits. If this happens, then your pet will most likely suffer. Much worse, it can lead to death, especially if you didn’t notice it immediately.
With the fact that the hull breaks easily and hard in characteristic, your pet’s sensitive stomach will suffer from pain and blockage that can lead to unwanted events like death.
#5. Hulls may contain pesticides
There are other potential dangers for your rabbits in eating peanut hulls and these might be contaminated with pesticides. Because peanuts are prone to fungal diseases, farmers fight that harm by spraying pesticides on the plant.
Can Rabbits Have Peanut Butter?
The answer is NO. Technically peanut butter is even more dangerous for your bunny than peanut itself. The reason is peanut butter is made by adding extra fat and sugar which are detrimental to the stomach.
So, never provide peanut or peanut butter to your bunny.
So, Can rabbits eat peanut shells?
Peanuts and peanut shells are not for rabbits. These have many harmful effects on your rabbits, which can endanger their life in severe cases. That is why you need to observe extra care and be cautious enough not to serve nuts and their hull to your rabbits.
Though there are some sources that claim peanut hulls are a good source of fiber, it is still up to you if you will pursue giving these to your furry friend.
But as for me, I will not take the risk of giving my pet Thumper the hulls when there is more nutritious food that I can serve to him.
We sure hope you have learned a lot through this post, and thank you very much for giving the time to read!
Good luck with you and your bunny’s future endeavors!
Maria Schultz is a talented writer and a passionate animal lover who brings her expertise in the pet industry to the Petcosset team. With a degree in English and years of experience writing for various pet-related publications, Maria deeply understands the latest news and products in the pet industry. She is dedicated to providing pet owners with the most accurate and up-to-date information to help them take the best possible care of their small friends. When she’s not writing about pets, Maria can often spend time with her beloved pets, including a rescue dog and several cats.