Can Rabbits Eat Cat Grass?

Categorized as Bunny Diet Tagged

Last Updated on October 15, 2022 by Rei Garnet

Cat grass can be eaten by rabbits because most cat grass is from the seed of rye, barley, oat, or wheat, all of which can be eaten by rabbits in moderation.

Just make sure that your rabbit is not eating cat grass in lieu of hay. Greens like cat grass should only account for 10% of your rabbit’s diet.

Also, make sure that your rabbits are at least 12 weeks old before you give them any cat grass. Feeding plants to rabbits that are less than 12 weeks old could trigger digestive problems.

Finally, if its the first time your giving cat grass to your rabbit, you should introduce it slowly to determine if it would have any negative effect on your rabbit’s health.

Now that I’ve given you the gist of the article, read on as I explain in more detail why rabbits can eat cat grass:

Would rabbits intentionally eat cat grass?

Yes, your rabbits would intentionally eat cat grass. In fact, they would most likely eat all of them in one sitting due to how much rabbits love them.

Here’s a few examples from rabbit owners on how much rabbits like cat grass:

A rabbit will devour it within minutes. The cat will gnaw on it over a few days.

NotTheDroidUrLookin4

Yep I grew some cat grass for my bun, he loved it.

Kittiebot

Here’s a video of a rabbit eating cat grass:

As you can see, rabbits would devour cat grass within minutes due to how much they love it!

Is cat grass safe to be eaten by rabbits?

brown and black rabbit on green grass during daytime

As long as your rabbit is not eating cat grass in lieu of their normal diet (hay), then cat grass can actually be beneficial to your rabbit.

It is also not recommended to feed young rabbits (less than 12 weeks old) any kind of vegetables or plants. For young rabbits, it is best that you stick to feeding them hay. They are the most susceptible to digestive problems.

Finally, if it’s the first time you’re feeding cat grass to your rabbit, it’s recommended that you limit it to see how your rabbit will react to it.

Feed them a little bit of cat grass at first. If they do not show any signs of digestive problems, you can feed them the recommended amount.

How much cat grass can a rabbit eat?

The amount of cat grass you should feed your rabbits depends on your rabbit’s current weight and age.

You can use the diet portion calculator below to see how much cat grass (vegetables) you should feed your rabbits per day:

Diet Portion Calculator For Rabbits

If you don’t have a weighing scale, here’s the estimated weight of rabbits based on their breed and how much cat grass to give per day:

Rabbit’s weight based on breedAllowed cat grass per day
Small breed (1.1–3.5 pounds)<128 grams
Medium breed (6 to 10 pounds)384-640 grams
Large breed ( 9 and 12 pounds)384-760 grams
Source: Patry, Karen, et al. The Rabbit-Raising Problem Solver: Your Questions Answered about Housing, Feeding, Behavior, Health Care, Breeding, and Kindling. Storey Publishing, 2014.

When can rabbits start eating cat grass?

The table above assumes that your rabbit is old enough (1–5 years old) to regularly eat vegetables (cat grass). Another important factor when deciding how much cat grass to give your rabbits is their age.

Here’s a table that shows how much cat grass you can give your rabbits as they get older:

AgeVegetables
12 weeksIntroduce vegetables (one at a time) in small quantities < 1/2 oz (15 g)
7 months
to 1 year
Increase vegetables
fed daily gradually
Adult
(1-5 y)
1-2 cups per 6 lbs (2.7
kg) BW
Seniors
(>6 y)
Source: Basic-Rabbit-Care

Make sure you follow the table above and only feed your rabbits vegetables (cat grass) if they are old enough. It’s also important to introduce any new food slowly and only in small quantities.

When should you not feed cat grass to rabbits?

A rabbit standing in grass

Gist:

You should not feed cat grass to rabbits that have any digestive problems or when you notice any changes in their stool.


If your rabbit is already having digestive issues like uneaten caecotrophs or watery stool, then you should immediately remove any other food you’re giving to your rabbits except hay.

Your rabbit might not be getting enough fiber because you got the portion of their diet wrong. Remember that your rabbit should be eating 80–90% hay, 10% vegetables, 5% pellets, and occasional treats.

Finally, bring your rabbit to a veterinarian just to be safe. Most of the time, rabbit owners misdiagnose their rabbits with just softer stool, which can be corrected by feeding more hay. When in fact it’s diarrhea, which is fatal to rabbits.

Risk of overfeeding cat grass to rabbits.

  • Uneaten caecotrophs: Uneaten caecotrophs are usually caused by a diet that is low in fiber or overfeeding foods that are high in water content. Cat grass alone could not meet the daily fiber requirement of rabbits. Therefore, cat grass should only be fed in small amounts as a supplement to a hay-based diet.
  • Diarrhea: Overfeeding cat grass to rabbits could also lead to diarrhea because of the lack of fiber in them. Your rabbit’s diet should mainly consist of hay and pellets. Vegetables like cat grass should only be fed in small amounts because rabbits cannot get enough fiber from them. If your rabbit is suffering from diarrhea, bring your rabbit to a veterinarian immediately because diarrhea is fatal to rabbits extremely fast.
  • Gastrointestinal stasis:  Gastrointestinal stasis is also caused by a diet that is low in fiber and too many carbohydrates. When your rabbit is overfed with the wrong kind of food, like cat grass, it could lead to an imbalance in your rabbit’s gut flora and slow down the passage of food through the GI tract. If you suspect that your rabbit might be suffering from GI stasis, immediately bring your rabbit to a veterinarian because GI stasis could lead to organ failure and death if not treated.

Healthy alternatives to cat grass.

white and black rabbit on green grass

Your rabbit would love you if you provided them with different kinds of food.

Rabbits in the wild have an abundance of food available to them.

This is why rabbit experts suggest giving your rabbits a variety of choices when it comes to food, because they believe that it’s the key to a healthy diet.

Here’s a list of vegetables and leafy greens that are a great alternative to cat grass:

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

What’s the best type of cat grass for rabbits?

Every kind of cat grass (Oatgrass, Barleygrass, Wheatgrass, Ryegrass, and Orchard grass) can be fed to rabbits. There’s currently no study that concludes which type is best for rabbits.

Can cat grass replace hay?

No, hay is still better for rabbits. Cat grass should still be considered as an complement to a hay rich diet in rabbits.

Conclusion

Cat grass can be eaten by rabbits. Most cat grass is from the seed of rye, barley, oat, or wheat, all of which can be consumed by rabbits in moderation if they are not eating cat grass in lieu of their normal diet (hay).

Cat grass alone cannot meet the daily fiber requirement of rabbits; it should only be added to their diet as a supplement to a hay-based diet.

Cite this article

Bunny Horde (December 8, 2022) Can Rabbits Eat Cat Grass?. Retrieved from https://bunnyhorde.com/can-rabbits-eat-cat-grass/.
"Can Rabbits Eat Cat Grass?." Bunny Horde - December 8, 2022, https://bunnyhorde.com/can-rabbits-eat-cat-grass/

By Rei Garnet

I’ve loved and cared for rabbits since I was 9 years old, and I’m here to share my passion for rabbits. My objective is to help rabbit owners give their rabbits the best life possible.