Last Updated on August 23, 2021 by Rei
While a pet rabbit accidentally eating a small amount of toast is not dangerous, it should still be avoided. Toast is mostly made out of starch and complex carbohydrates, both of which are bad for rabbits if fed in large amounts.
Rabbit’s digestive system cannot process starch and carbs well and could lead to digestive issues like GI stasis, diarrhea, and uneaten caecotrophs.
Now that I’ve given you the gist of the article, read on as I explain in more details why toast should not be fed to rabbits:
Risk of overfeeding toast to rabbits.
As I said earlier, rabbits are bad at digesting starch and complex carbs and could lead to all kinds of digestive distress if fed in large amounts.
Here are some of the possible problems you might encounter when feeding large amounts of toast to your rabbits:
Diarrhea in rabbits mainly happens when they are fed the wrong diet. The majority of your rabbit’s diet should be high in fiber(hay) and low in carbs and starch.
If you notice any changes in your rabbit’s stool, in both size and consistency, bring your rabbit to a veterinarian immediately. Untreated diarrhea is dangerous and often fatal extremely fast, especially to young rabbits.
Feeding your rabbit large amounts of toast(low fiber and high in starch) could lead to an imbalance of pH in your rabbit’s gut causing an upset in the bacteria living there.
That, in turn, produces painful gas that would eventually lead to your rabbit developing a condition called GI stasis — which could lead to organ failure and death if not treated.
Uneaten caecotrophs happen when the consistency of the caecotrophs is so soft that instead of your rabbit eating it, would often become entangled in your rabbit’s fur instead.
It’s often hard to differentiate the difference between caecotrophs and diarrhea because most of the time when a rabbit owner notices that their rabbit’s bottom is full of poop, they always assume that diarrhea is the culprit.
You would know the difference between the two by looking at your rabbit’s litter box if there are any hard poop pellets in there. If your rabbit has diarrhea, all you would see is soft or no stool at all.
Uneaten caecotrophs are most commonly caused by a change of diet, lack of fiber, and obesity.
Overfeeding the wrong diet can also lead to obesity. Rabbits who are caged all day and are fed a diet that’s high in starch and carbs are the most prone.
Healthy alternative to toast
The best diet for rabbits is the one that mimics what they eat in the wild. Their main diet should be 80% hay, 10-15% veggies, and 5% pellets.
If you’re planning on giving toast as treats to your rabbits, try one of these alternatives instead:
Just make sure that you limit giving treats two 2 times per week and the amount should be based on your rabbit’s body weight:
|Rabbit’s weight based on breed||Allowed sugary treats|
|Small breed (1.1–3.5 pounds)||1 teaspoon|
|Medium breed (6 to 10 pounds)||1-2 tablespoon|
|Large breed ( 9 and 12 pounds)||2-3 tablespoon|
Rabbit’s digestive system is not made to digest large amounts of starch and complex carbohydrates. That’s why feeding large amounts of toast or bread to rabbits is bad because it could lead to conditions like diarrhea, GI stasis, uneaten caecotrophs, and obesity.
But if your rabbit accidentally ate small amounts of toast, just observe their stool for any changes and feed large amounts of fiber(hay).
If you’rew planning on giving your rabbit toast as a treat, a much healthier alternative would be fruits like banana, strawberries, grapes, etc…
Just make sure that you limit giving your rabbit sugary treats to 2 times a week.
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Sources and further reading