Can Guinea Pigs Eat Dock Leaves
Dock leaves also known as a broad-leaved dock, or bitter dock is a highly invasive perennial plant that can be found on all temperate continents. This plant is known to come from the genus Remux and has a lot of various species with which the most common one being found in Europe, and it is called broadleaved dock. These plants offer a lot of benefits to humans because of the nutrients they possess. Dock leaves are known to contain alkaline substances in their Sap hence, they can neutralize the burning sensation caused by the acidic nature of a nettle plant sting. Dock leaves are also known to contain some antihistamines which help to produce a soothing effect on the wound.
However, can the same effects it has on humans be extended to guinea pigs? Can guinea pigs even eat dock leaves? What is the health risk attracted to feeding dock leaves to your guinea pigs? To find out the answers to all these questions, you will have to continue reading this article.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Dock Leaves
No, guinea pigs can not eat dock leaves at all. Dock leaves are toxic plants to your guinea pigs because of the presence of a toxic substance in them. The poisonous substance present in them is called Oxalic Acid, and ingesting this chemical by guinea pigs makes them prone to various digestive problems. Also, you will find a high amount of calcium oxalate in the plants, and too much of this nutrient in the body of your guinea pigs will lead to urinary problems like bladder or kidney stones as you predicted. Therefore, a combination of both substances in your guinea pigs' digestive system will surely cause serious health risks to your guinea pigs. However, if they nibble on them or are given to your guinea pig in small quantities, it may not cause any serious health risks
Possible Health Risk Of Feeding Dock Leaves to Guinea Pigs
Dock leaves are a type of wild plant that provide a lot of benefits for humans especially when it was cooked. However, when it is in its raw and natural form, it is known for being a toxic plant that should not be fed to any type of pet including your favorite cavies. Since guinea pigs' stomachs can not digest cooked food then they can not eat them. But what happens if you mistakenly feed raw and fresh dock leaves to your pets? Continue reading to find out the answer
Kidney or Bladder Stone
Feeding dock leaves to your guinea pigs will lead to them having kidney or bladder stones. This is because dock leaves contain a decent amount of soluble calcium oxalate, and the presence of these nutrients in their body system will lead to small stones (pebbles) forming in their kidney or bladder. But before that, the amount your guinea pigs consume will determine if it will develop quickly or slowly and after it has formed it will form a blockage or disturb the operations of both organs.
Dock leaves also contain a decent amount of phosphorus, potassium, and other essential nutrients. When these nutrients are excess in the body system of guinea pigs it may lead to a stomach upset, but before that the guinea pigs may be experiencing diarrhea, vomiting, bloating, etc
This is a common health risk for all guinea pigs. Most guinea pigs have an allergy reaction when they are mistakenly fed Dock leaves even though it was not meant to be given to them. This allergy reaction will alert the pet owners to their guinea pigs indicating to them that they are not in favor of these plants
Careless pet owners that choose to ignore all the signs and symptoms their pets have displayed after ingesting Dock leaves, then they will face the consequences of causing their death.
What type Of Dock Leaves Can Be Eaten By Guinea Pigs
It has been stated above that Dock leaves have several types, and they can be grown on almost all continents. Does this mean that some types of dock leaves can be given to your pets? No, all types of Dock leaves including the curly dock, butter dock, blunt leaf dock, broad-leaved dock, etc are not good for your pets. They all have a similar amount of calcium oxalate in them even if they are from different continents. Hence, once you notice this is a variety of dock leaves, do not feed them to your guinea pigs
What Other Types Of Leaves Can Be Eaten By Guinea Pigs
Guinea pigs are natural herbivores thereby, they are drawn to various hay and vegetable. They spend most of their time grazing on wild plants in the field. This is plants can be dangerous and beneficial for your plants depending on the type of leafy food that was given to them. Majorly, veterinarians usually recommend food that is high in vitamin C and low in sugar and calcium to your guinea pigs, but what are the examples of those leaves that are safe for your guinea pigs
The following leaves should be fed to your guinea pigs instead of feeding them dock leaves: Leafy green lettuce, red or green leaf lettuce, arugula, asparagus, alfalfa, endive, turnip greens, dandelion greens, basil, bok choy, kale leaves, cilantro, parsley, watercress, mint, celery, cucumber, cabbage, broccoli, borage, coriander, dill leaves, rosemary leaves, carrots tops, Brussel sprouts, silver beets, and many more.
There are also a lot of fruits that can be given to your guinea pigs, and they include: Apple, apricots, berries (blackberry, blueberry, strawberry, cranberry, raspberry), banana, cherries, kiwi, mango, orange, carrot, pear, pineapple, etc
No, guinea pigs can not eat dock leaves because of the decent amount of calcium and oxalic acid that is present in them. Although the plants are rich in vitamin C which is an essential nutrient a guinea pig need to remain healthy, they also contain a decent amount of phosphorus which can be bad for your guinea pigs if it is being overfed. However, if your guinea pig nibble on these plants or eats a small proportion, it may not lead to a treat to the doctor. To find out more about the possible health risk and other related questions linked to dock leaves, you can read through this article.