A rabbit should be fed different food for a healthy balanced diet. When it comes to vegetables, there are many leafy greens to feed your pet rabbit. Some of them will enjoy it and some, will not. Like humans, rabbits have their own personality and taste for different kinds of food. One of the healthy leafy green you can try to your pet rabbit is cabbage.
So can rabbits eat cabbage? Yes, the rabbit can eat cabbage and it’s healthy for them. However, they should only be fed cabbage in small quantities and only a couple of times a week. Too much cabbage could cause them to have digestive problems such as an upset stomach and diarrhea.
Types of Cabbage To Feed Rabbits
There are many different varieties of cabbage available for your rabbit to eat. The best one to feed them is the darker varieties. These will have the highest amount of nutrition in them, especially fiber and antioxidants.
Cannonball Cabbage – These are also known as green cabbage. It’s one of the most popular cabbage varieties. With their dense leaves that are wounded tightly over each other, which is how they get their name. The thick and dark leaf of this cabbage makes them ideal for feeding rabbits.
Bok Choy – This leafy vegetable is another variety of cabbage that’s excellent for feeding rabbits. They have slender stems with dark leaves that are packed with nutrition. Another great cabbage variety for rabbits.
Red Cabbage – This cabbage variety is also known as the purple cabbage or red kraut. They actually get their color according to the pH value of the soils that it grows in. Red cabbage is packed with nutrition and an excellent choice to feed your rabbit.
Savoy Cabbage – This variety of cabbage is more tender than other cabbage. This cabbage doesn’t have a lot of nutrition like the rest of the cabbage. However, it’s still a great cabbage to feed your rabbit.
While there are many other varieties of cabbage available, the above are the ones that have the most nutrition in them. Each rabbit has its own taste and you may need to try each variety until you get to the one they like to eat.
Health Benefits Rabbits Get From Eating Cabbage
Rabbits can benefit a lot from eating cabbages. These leafy greens are packed with nutrients, especially fiber. Fiber helps the digestive system of the rabbit with digestion.
While fiber content is high in cabbage, there are other sources of vitamins and minerals as well. One of them is vitamin B6. For a rabbit, this is very important as it helps break down protein for the development of muscles.
Cabbage also contains vitamin K. This vitamin is great and helpful for rabbits that are pregnant. They will need a lot of it during their pregnancy.
Other vitamins and minerals that are not that much, but still important are vitamin E, magnesium, potassium, and zinc. Each plays a vital role in promoting the health of rabbits.
Below are what’s included in 1 leaf or raw cabbage:
|1 Raw Cabbage Leaf||Amount|
How Much and How Often To Feed Cabbage To Rabbits
Cabbage is great for rabbits, but too much could make them sick. A rabbit should only be fed one cup or less of cabbage at each feeding. Also, they should be fed cabbage no more than four times per week.
If you’re just starting to feed them cabbage, start with a small amount first. YOne or two leaves should be given to them when they are starting out. You’ll want to give their stomach time to adapt to the new food. As they get used to eating cabbages, you can increase the number of vegetables.
Sometimes, you may find that your pet rabbit isn’t eating any of the cabbages. This isn’t something that is wrong with them. Just like humans, each person has a different taste for different food. With that in mind, if your rabbit is ignoring cabbages, stop feeding them.
After a while, start feeding the cabbage to them again. If they still refuse to eat it, it’s best to give up on feeding them cabbage. Besides cabbage, there are plentiful of other leafy greens to feed rabbits.
Can Rabbits Eat Cooked Cabbage?
Rabbits are accustomed to eating raw cabbage. In the wild, raw cabbage and other vegetables are what they are used to eating. Their digestive system is designed to digest raw foods.
However, cooked cabbage can be fed to rabbits too. With cooked cabbage, you’ll be losing a lot of precious nutrients. This happens with any vegetables that are cooked. Cooking will cause them to lose their nutrition.
When feeding them cooked cabbage, you’ll just be feeding them a vegetable that has a lot of water but no nutrients.
How To Feed Cabbage To Your Rabbit
The best way to feed cabbage to your rabbit the first time is to simply give them plain leaves. By doing so, if there are any side-effects caused by the cabbage, this will ensure that the cabbage is the problem.
After about a week, if there are no signs of side-effects from eating the cabbage, you can start mixing it with other vegetables. Cabbage can be mixed with other leafy greens to make a salad. This will provide a lot of nutrition for your pet rabbit in one feeding.
When feeding them cabbage, just give the one or two leaves to start with. As the gradually start to be accustomed to the taste, you can feed them more cabbage.
Also, cabbage tends to rot quickly at room temperature. Those that don’t get eaten within 2 hours or so, should be quickly discarded. It’s not a good idea to leave cabbage in their cage for too long. Spoiling vegetables tend to attract bacteria and pests.
Can baby rabbits eat cabbage?
It’s not recommended to feed cabbage of any variety to a baby rabbit. Their digestive system hasn’t fully developed yet.
For the baby rabbits, they should be fed only their mother’s milk for the first seven weeks. After that, they can be fed alfalfa hays and pellets. After 6 months, you can start to feed them grass hays.
Therefore, cabbage should only be given to rabbits after they are 1 year old.
Can rabbits eat cabbage every day?
Cabbage is safe to feed rabbits, but they should not be fed to them daily. Too much can cause them digestive problems such as diarrhea, gas, and bloating.
Fresh vegetables like cabbage are a great source of nutrients, but they do not meet the diet requirements of the rabbits. Cabbage is not dense enough in calories or fiber for a rabbit to depend only on it.
Also, cabbage could make the rabbit fill up to quickly which will prevent them from eating the staple food of grass hays.