Honey is mainly made up of sugars with fructose accounting for about 38%, glucose 31%, dextrin 5% and sucrose 1.5-3%. It also has small amounts of vitamins, proteins, enzymes, and biogenic stimulators.
Besides being used in culinary, as a sweetener and in fermentation, it is often hailed for its antifungal, antibacterial, anti-diabetic properties, among others.
Can rabbits have honey?
Rabbits should not have honey whether raw, processed or any other of its products including mead, honey bars and so on. It joins the list of other harmful foods that include bread, cookies, pasta, crackers, avocado, cereals, iceberg lettuce, oatmeal, walnuts, chocolate, potatoes, meat, peanut butter, among others.
Technically speaking, it does not have any poisonous ingredients. However, its high amounts of sugars and low fiber will be disastrous to your furry friend’s cecum. Bunnies are herbivores meaning they depend on plants and plants alone and they have a hindgut digestive system (are hindgut fermenters) which can handle high-fiber, low energy foods such as hay.
Fiber helps in promoting their gut motility, in eliminating any ingested fur to avoid furballs since bunnies do not have the ability to vomit. It also helps in wearing down the ever-growing teeth and promote a healthy gut.
Honey on the other side is a high-energy, low-fiber food. Rabbits cannot handle the excess sugars it has. Expect cecal dysbiosis that is often accompanied by diarrhea due to the shift of the cecum flora (the bad bacteria will outnumber the good ones). Enteritis, bloating, gas and other gastrointestinal problems may also arise.
Furthermore, it is highly calorific, imagine one tablespoon has about 64 calories. This means that if you allow your bunny to have honey, it will gain weight and possibly be obese.
Obesity is associated with several other health problems including reducing lifespan as well as difficulties in grooming.
Can rabbits eat honey nut cheerios?
This is one of the breakfast cereals which General Mills cereal company introduced in 1979 and they are sweetened with honey.
We have had a discussion on whether rabbits can eat cereals and not where the answer was no for any kind of whole grain or processed cereals.
If you are a new bunny owner, you need to know that some of what we consider as superfoods or healthiest foods may not be suitable for your rabbit. Their digestive system may not be able to handle them, and they may not provide the required or necessary nutrients.
Your bunny needs diets that are high in fiber such as hay which should account for over 80% of their daily food requirement, some fresh foods mainly the leafy greens and about 5% pellets.
Keep treats such as fruits and non-leafy veggies to about a teaspoon per a bunny weighing two pounds per day.