Last Updated on April 21, 2022 by Rei Garnet
While it’s true that marshmallows are not toxic to rabbits, you should still avoid giving your rabbits one because it’s too high in sugar.
Rabbits that are fed large amounts of sugar are at risk of developing digestive problems like diarrhea and GI stasis.
Marshmallows are mostly made out of sugar, corn syrup, and gelatin (plus some air). Every ingredients of marshmallows are not recommended to be fed to rabbits in large amounts.
If you notice any changes in your rabbit’s stool, both in size and consistency, immediately bring your rabbit to a veterinarian.
Now that I’ve given you the gist of the article, read on as I explain in more details why rabbits can’t eat marshmallows:
Risk of overfeeding marshmallows to rabbits.
Sugar, being the main ingredient of most marshmallows, carries a certain risk when fed in large amounts.
Rabbits have difficulty digesting sugar.
Here are some of the risks associated with feeding your rabbits large amounts of marshmallows:
Diarrhea in rabbits is often caused by the wrong diet or when the diet is changed too fast.
Feeding your rabbit large quantities of marshmallows would check those two boxes I mentioned.
Gastrointestinal stasis is also possible when a rabbit is fed large amounts of marshmallows, which are high in carbs and starch.
GI stasis happens when the balance of bacteria in your rabbit’s gut is disrupted due to a high-carb, low-fiber diet.
This disruption would cause painful gas that would eventually lead to organ failure and death if not treated immediately.
The signs of GI stasis are:
- Hunched posture
- Decreased appetite/anorexia
If you notice any of these signs, immediately bring your rabbit to a veterinarian.
Obesity in rabbits is also possible when fed large amounts of starchy food.
Rabbits that are confined in cages all day without exercise and fed large amounts of high-carb, low-fiber diets are the most susceptible to obesity.
Healthy alternative to marshmallows as treats.
If you’re planning on giving your rabbits marshmallows as treats, these alternatives are much healthier.
Here are some alternatives that you can give to your rabbits one to two times per week as a treat:
- Apple (remove seeds)
- Cherries (remove seeds)
FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
Should you panic if your rabbit eats a little bit of marshmallow?
No, as long as your rabbit is eating the right kind of diet and you are not giving them a ton of marshmallows to snack on, they should be fine.
Feeding a lot of hay would help prevent any digestive problems that might occur if your rabbit accidentally eat some marshmallows.
What to do if your rabbit ate marshmallows?
Observe their behavior and poop for any changes. You should also feed them a lot of hay.
If you do notice any changes in their poop or behavior, take them to a veterinarian.
A rabbit eating small amounts of marshmallows is not a concern as long as the rabbit is on a fiber-rich diet.
Just make sure that you monitor their stool for any changes both in consistency and size.
A rabbit that’s fed large amounts of high-sugar foods like marshmallows could lead to digestive distress like GI stasis and diarrhea.
It could also lead to obesity, especially in rabbits who are confined in small cages all day without access to regular exercise.
If your rabbit is exhibiting signs of digestive distress, immediately bring them to a veterinarian.
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