Papaya is a really popular tropical fruit that is a summer favorite for many. It is a storehouse of anti oxidants and vitamins A, C & E. It also contain healthy enzymes that aid digestion and reduce inflammation in the body.But have you ever wondered, can rabbits eat papaya?
Yes, pet rabbits can safely eat papaya and its is really healthy for them too. Not only does papaya help boot skin and fur health in rabbits it can also help relieve symptoms of an upset stomach.Papaya is used as an ingredient in many commercial rabbit pellets and treats.
Most rabbits love the sweet taste of papaya and will be delighted to get some every now and then, learn more about the nutritional benefits of papaya, what parts of papaya pet rabbits can eat and good alternatives to it for rabbits down below.
Nutritional Benefits Of Papaya
Papaya, also known as Pawpaw or Papaia is a sweet fleshy tropical fruit. It can be found throughout the world and is a popular ingredient in fruit salads or desserts.
It is sweet and delicious when ripe with a yellowish-orange color. The nutritional information for 1 cup or about 100 Grams of Ripe Raw Papaya.
- Calories – 43
- Fiber – 2 grams
- Vitamin C – 60mg
- Vitamin A – 152mcg
- Folate – 37mcg
- Potassium – 140mg
- Carotenoids – 1679mcg
Not only does it cover most of the essential vitamins and minerals needed by pet rabbits, Papayas also contain a good amount of micronutrients such as Choline, Folate, Pantothenic Acid, and other anti-oxidants.
If you have access to fresh Papayas when they are in season or if your rabbit loves the taste then it can be a good fruit to add to your rabbits diet.
How Much Papaya Can I Give To My Rabbit?
Even though Papaya is one of the healthiest fruits for rabbits in terms of its nutritional values, it also contains quite a bit of sugar. Fruit in general should only be given to rabbits in small quantities as a treat.
Too much sugar from fruits in a rabbit’s diet can lead to stomach problems like stomach ache, bloating, irregular stool, and even GI Stasis. In the long run, consuming too many sugary fruits can lead to obesity in pet rabbits.
Whenever you introduce some new food to your rabbit, start out with just a tiny bit to see how your rabbit’s stomach reacts to it. If your rabbit likes papaya and their stomach can handle it you can give them a small thumb-sized piece of Papaya once or twice a week as a treat.
Can Rabbits Eat Papaya With Skin?
Papaya skin is the thick yellow or green outer part of the Papaya fruit. It is often discarded when the fruit is served. Although the skin of Papaya is not toxic to eat, it does contain a sap that looks like latex which seeps out as soon as you take it off the fruit.
This latex gives the skin of the Papaya a sticky feel which is not very tasty. It can easily get onto a rabbits fur or their face and make a real mess. If it gets in their eyes it can be quite irritating. Therefore it is best to remove the skin from the Papaya when you give it to rabbits.
If your rabbit ever get Papaya latex on their fur you can soak it with mineral oil and then wipe it off with some soapy water, if their fur gets matted with Papaya latex then trimming that bit of fur is the best option.
Can Rabbits Eat Unripe Or Green Papaya?
Green Papaya or Unripe Papaya is considered more of a vegetable rather than a fruit. It is a popular summer vegetable especially in Asia where it is eaten both cooked and uncooked.
Green or Unripe Papaya has an astringent taste which is often cured by cooking or by adding lime so it is not the perfect vegetable for pet rabbits as they may not like the taste of raw green papaya.
Unripe Papaya also produces a lot of sticky latex when cut which can be quite a hassle to clean if it gets on your rabbit’s fur or their face. Overall it is best to stick to the ripe yellow Papayas if you want to give it to a rabbit.
Can Rabbits Eat Papaya Seeds?
Papaya seeds are hard black seeds that can be found in the center of the Papaya fruit. An average-sized Papaya can have hundreds of these tiny seeds.
Even though Papaya seeds are not toxic and perfectly edible for us humans, they can easily get stuck in a rabbit’s throat which can be really dangerous. A papaya seed stuck in a rabbit’s throat can choke them and even kill them.
So make sure whenever you give papaya to a rabbit slice the Papaya and remove the seeds with a spoon. It is super easy and just takes a minute so it is well worth the effort.
Are Processed Papaya Treats Healthy For Rabbits?
Papaya is used as an ingredient or as a flavoring in a lot of rabbit treats and pellets. Rabbits love the taste and smell of Papaya and love to eat food flavored with it.
That being said too much processed food is not good for anyone. Commercial Papaya rabbit treats may often contain lots of other ingredients which are not the best for pet rabbits likes grains or nuts.
It’s best to avoid processed treats as much as you can and stick with real fruits. In case your rabbit really loves them, here are a few that you can safely try out.
- Kaytee Fiesta Healthy Toppings Papaya
- VitaSmart Complete Nutrition Natural Foraging Blend
- Brown’s Tropical Carnival Fruit Treats
- Kaytee Fiesta Gourmet Variety Diet Rabbit Food
- Exotic Nutrition Critter Selects Fruit Medley Small Animal Treats
These are some of the healthier options on the market when it comes to Papaya rabbit treats. Remember to give them to your rabbit sparingly, eating too many rabbit treats can definitely be a lot of trouble for your pet rabbit. It can cause stomach aches and may even lead to a vet visit.
Alternative Fruits To Payaya For Rabbits?
When it comes to fruits for rabbits, Papaya can be considered one of the best out there but it is a tropical fruit and may not be available around the year or at all in some places so knowing some good alternatives to Papaya for your rabbit can be quite helpful.
Found throughout the world Apples are a great fruit for rabbits as it contains lots of Vitamin C, Minerals and Dietary Fiber which helps rabbits digest their food and keep their gut moving.
Watermelon is perhaps the most ideal fruit for rabbits, it is juicy, refreshing, and best of all, low in sugar which can upset a rabbit’s stomach. Rabbits can happily eat all parts of a watermelon even the rind but do remember to take the seeds out as they can get stuck in a rabbit’s throat.
An all time rabbit favorite, Bananas are loaded with Vitamin K and Potassium and tons of healthy minerals. Rabbits love its sweet taste and it is the perfect treat when you want to hand feed ans spend some quality time with your bunny.
Closing Thoughts On Can Rabbits Eat Papaya
There you have it. Now that you know whether rabbits can eat papaya, go ahead and give your bunny a tasty treat. Just make sure that you keep the amounts to just a small piece or two every week.
Papaya can be a great addition to any rabbit’s diet but remember, fresh papaya is not the same as store bought papaya treats, those always have added preservatives or sugar which is not healthy for rabbits.
Here are some other posts about what rabbits can eat and what they should definitely not.
- Can Rabbits Eat Cauliflower? Florets, Stalks & Leaves?
- Can Rabbits Eat Cucumber? Fruit, Leaves & Flowers?
- Can Rabbits Eat Watermelon? All That You Need To Know!
- The Balanced Rabbit Diet Guide – Feeding Rabbits Simplified
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