Okra is a vegetable that grows during the summer months. They are known for their sweet and grassy flavor. These vegetables are easy to plant and most people that enjoy eating okra will grow them in their garden. If you have rabbits as pets, you may wonder if they can eat okra.
Can rabbits eat okra? Yes, rabbits can eat okra, which includes the pods, leaves, and stems. Due to the vegetable containing oxalic acid, the leaves, pods, and stems can be given to them once or twice per week. Other than that, okra is full of nutrition and the rabbits can benefit greatly from it.
Is It Safe For Rabbits To Eat Okra?
As long as the rabbits are fed okra in moderation, you shouldn’t worry about the oxalic acid causing them any health issues.
Health Benefits of Okra for Rabbits
Okra is low in calories, but it’s packed with nutrients. This vegetable is a good source of fiber, protein, and vitamin C. All of this can benefit the rabbit’s health in many ways.
One cup (100 grams) of raw okra contains the following:
- Calories: 33
- Carbs: 7 grams
- Protein: 2 grams
- Fat: 0 grams
- Fiber: 3 grams
- Magnesium: 14% of the Daily Value (DV)
- Folate: 15% of the DV
- Vitamin A: 14% of the DV
- Vitamin C: 26% of the DV
- Vitamin K: 26% of the DV
- Vitamin B6: 14% of the DV
The above data is according to the USDA
Below are some of the health benefits of feeding okra to your rabbits:
Help Prevent Diseases
Okra is high in antioxidants, which is are a natural compound that is excellent at fighting off free radicals. The cells in the body are damaged by free radicals.
Free radicals are known to cause oxidation damage which will eventually lead to illness and diseases.
Free radicals are molecules that are created by food that the rabbit eats, cigarette smoke, and radiation.
By feeding rabbits plenty of food high in antioxidants, it will help prevent cell damage and diseases.
May Lower Blood Sugar
Okra is known to help maintain healthy blood sugar levels. Rabbits, especially those kept in captivity have a high chance of developing high blood pressure.
By feeding okra to rabbits, it can help decrease the blood sugar level and help them stay healthy.
Help Aid In Digestion
Okra is high in fiber content, which is known to help with digestion. Fiber is important for keeping the digestive system healthy and working properly.
Rabbits that consume enough fiber will have a lesser chance of having constipation.
By promoting regular bowel movement, food will travel through the digestive tract smoothly.
Can Baby Rabbits Eat Okra?
Baby rabbits are too young to eat the okra plant. Their digestive system isn’t developed enough to be able to digest okra.
Rabbits under the age of 12 weeks should be on a diet of hay and their mother’s milk. This is all that they should eat until they reach the age of 12 weeks.
Once the baby rabbits are at least 12 weeks old, you can start to feed them some okra. Since their digestive system is still developing, you should give them a tiny piece of okra. Also, this is to test if they have any negative reaction to the okra plant.
If they have any negative reaction to okra, stop feeding them the vegetable. When they have a reaction to okra, they may vomit or have diarrhea.
On the other hand, if they don’t have any negative reaction and they enjoy eating it, you can continue to feed them okra. It’s best to feed them only a small piece of okra once a week.
Can Rabbits Eat Okra Leaves and Stems?
Yes, rabbits can eat the leaves and stems of the okra plant. The leaf is very nutritious as it contains a lot of protein.
The leaves can be fed to rabbits and they will eat it like other leafy greens.
As for the okra stems, rabbits will usually nibble on them due to the toughness of it.
How To Feed Okra To Rabbits
To feed okra, you can feed them the pods, leaves, and stems of the okra plants. They will eat the leaves and pods, while they’ll nibble on the stem.k
To feed the okra pods, cut them into small pieces, and give them to the rabbits. You can also give them the whole pod too.
For the leaves of the okra plant, pick it off the stem and give it a good wash first. This will remove any dirt and debris that may be on in it. After that, give the rabbit a whole piece of leaf for them to eat.
For the stem, cut a piece of the stem off. The top part will be a bit softer than the bottom part. Cut about 6 inches and wash them first. They give them to the rabbits to eat. Since the stem is tough, they will nibble on it.
How Many Okra To Feed Rabbits?
Since okra is considered as non-leafy greens, it’s should be fed to them in moderation. This means okra should be given to them once or twice per week.
The amount of okra to feed them is about a teaspoon for every two pounds.
Okra should only make up 10% of the rabbit’s overall diet. The rest should come from hay. Hay is the rabbit’s staple diet and should be available to them at all times of the day.
Other Vegetables That Rabbits Can Eat
Kale is a leafy green that can be fed to the rabbits daily. This is a vegetable that’s part of their staple food. Kale is packed with nutrition that rabbits can benefit a lot from. While you can feed kale to them daily, make sure to keep hay available to them at all times.
Broccoli is a vegetable that makes an excellent treat for rabbits. It’s packed with antioxidants, fiber, protein, and much other nutrition. However, it also has a high content of starch. Too much starch will cause health issues for the rabbits such as obesity and high blood pressure. For that reason, feed them broccoli in moderation.
Zucchini is a vegetable that can be fed to the rabbits daily. This vegetable is packed with nutrition that the rabbits can benefit from. Feed them half of the zucchini a day either itself or mix it with over vegetables.
Okra is a vegetable with a lot of nutrition that the rabbits can benefit from. You can feed any part of the vegetable as it’s good for them to eat. However, due to the oxalic acid that’s present in the plant, it’s best to feed them in moderation to avoid any health issues.