Are you curious to learn if guinea pigs eat mushrooms? After all, if mushrooms are cooked the right way, it is a delicious treat for us humans. But can guinea pigs have mushrooms and any of their kind like wild mushrooms?
Do guinea pigs like mushrooms? Or mushrooms in cooked food like mushroom soup?
Well, you’re going to find the answer here – what little guinea piggy’s favorite grubs are and if mushrooms are included.
First off, you should know everything about mushrooms, including their nutritional facts.
Important info about your guinea pig, mushrooms serving, etc.
Mushroom nutritional health facts
White mushrooms contain the following per one-cup serving:
- Carbohydrates- 3 grams
- Fiber- 7 grams
- Fat- 0.2 grams
- Protein- 2 gram
- 15 calories per serving
If your think that’s it, the same cup of white button mushroom still has more nutrients, like:
- Vitamin D- 6 international unit
- Vitamin C- 5 milligrams
- Niacin- 5 milligrams
- Calcium- 1 milligram
- Choline- 1 milligram
- Folate- 2 one-millionth gram
- Selenium- 5 one-millionth gram
- Copper- 0.2 milligrams
- Zinc- 0.4 milligrams
- Potassium- 223 milligrams
- Phosphorous- 2 milligrams
- Magnesium- 3 milligrams
You might have thought that mushrooms are bland and not very nutritious. But based on the above stats, different mushroom varieties actually contain nutrients and vitamin A and vitamin B that are healthy for your pets.
Potassium and calcium are also important in maintaining a healthy diet for a guinea pig. Feeding your little fur baby a white button mushroom as a treat is a good way to maintain a healthy balance of potassium, calcium, and other nutrients in their body that can contribute to a stronger immune system.
Some other helpful facts about mushrooms to guinea pigs’ owners
Eating mushrooms are strange because they do not belong to any basic food group that you know. It’s not exactly the same as asking, “Can guinea pigs eat cabbage?” or “Can guinea pigs eat tomatoes?” because they’re neither fruit nor vegetable.
Your first impression might be that a mushroom is a vegetable, but you are mistaken.
They are many types of this edible fungus, and the most common ones are Portobello, shiitake, enoki, button, cremini, and oyster mushrooms.
Many cultures use mushrooms as ingredients in cooked food, especially in Japanese, Chinese, European, and Korean dishes.
The mushrooms that you see being sold in supermarkets are grown commercially on farms that are mostly family-owned and are different from wild mushrooms.
While some mushrooms are edible and contain nutrients that are beneficial to your guinea pig’s health, there are kinds of wild mushrooms that are poisonous and toxic. These wild mushrooms are dangerous and can lead to demise from toxic poisoning if eaten.
Some varieties of raw mushrooms are even cultured due to their hallucinogenic and psychedelic properties. And some wild mushrooms are used raw in native medicinal applications in many parts of the world.
Some wild mushrooms are used for wool-dying and many other fibers that come from nature. Some wild mushrooms are used to start fires and are known as tinder fungi. Obviously, it can be very dangerous if your guinea pig ends up eating a wild mushroom.
Do guinea pigs eat mushroom varieties?
Mushrooms: yes and/or no
You already know that there are many types of mushrooms and for different uses besides eating.
So if you are asking, “Do guinea pigs eat mushroom?” the short answer is yes, they do, but dependent on the type of mushroom.
“Shiitake Mushrooms” by Building Blocks Show is licensed with CC BY-ND 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/
Can guinea pigs have mushrooms of a specific kind?
Is feeding your guinea pig mushrooms safe?
Some mushrooms are safe to eat. The edible mushrooms used for cooking like Portobello mushrooms, white mushrooms or white button mushrooms, or baby Bella mushrooms are alright for guinea pigs to eat.
Guinea pigs cannot eat wild mushroom varieties that are inedible, toxic, psychedelic, or any other kind not meant to be eaten because these wild mushrooms contain poisonous substances.
When feeding your guinea pigs, give them raw mushrooms and never cooked mushrooms. Mushrooms, when cooked, are not very good for your guinea pig’s health.
Do guinea pigs eat mushrooms and like them?
How often guinea pigs can eat mushrooms? Can guinea pigs eat mushrooms all the time?
That question will depend on your guinea pig. Some guinea pigs will quickly devour the bits of mushrooms like it is the most delicious thing they ever tasted.
Yet, some guinea pigs cannot eat mushrooms and ignore them completely. That is why mushrooms are meant to be given as occasional treats only – a few times in a week or less – and not a regular thing.
“Fresh button mushrooms” by flowercarole is licensed with CC BY-ND 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/
How many mushrooms can guinea pigs eat?
Are there bad effects after guinea pigs eat mushrooms?
Not too much and only occasionally. As mentioned, serving mushrooms is meant as treats and not included in a typical guinea pig’s diet, so give only a couple of slices at a time.
Do not give mushrooms, especially wild mushrooms, to baby guinea pigs still a few months old.
For adults, the appropriate amount is one slice of baby Bella mushroom or white mushroom or one-half cube of Portabella mushroom.
Any time you serve something new to guinea pigs, it is crucial to keep tabs on them to ensure the mushroom won’t lead to symptoms of poisoning or an interruption in their regular digestive flow that is extremely detrimental to their health.
After your guinea pig consumes the mushroom slice, frequently watch over them for the following twelve hours.
You will have to make sure that the mushroom won’t lead to ill effects like diarrhea, gassiness, bloating, and other stomach-related conditions.
The negative effects probably would not happen after only eating one tiny piece of mushroom, but those situations have happened before. And when it does, take it to the vet immediately for medical assistance to avoid further health problems.
What are the nutritional needs of guinea pigs?
Since edible mushrooms would not have enough nutrients that guinea pigs eat, they have to get nutrition from other sources. They need calcium, vitamins, and more. Otherwise, your guinea pig might not come out as healthy as you want them to be.
What are the foods that you, as a pet owner, should give to your guinea pig?
Guinea pigs’ teeth are constantly growing, so they have to be fed with high-fiber goodies to chew and bite on.
Also, guinea pigs are herbivores, which means they only eat plants and plant-based foods. And to be clear, these won’t include meat, dairy products, eggs, or insects.
Understandably, you love your pet guinea pig and want to let it eat the most delicious foods. Yet it does not mean you can give it food you have eaten on the table. Although there are some human delights that guinea pigs can eat, there are proper foods you can give them.
Scurvy in guinea pigs
Since guinea pigs are not able to manufacture their own vitamin C, they need to have something that supplies it. They are also especially susceptible to scurvy, so you need ample food rich in vitamin C to oppose this.
To fight scurvy, guinea pigs require thirty to fifty milligrams of vitamin C every day. Commercial guinea pig food and some fruit and veggie treats are already loaded with vitamin C, as well as calcium, potassium, and other important nutrients.
You can also provide vitamin C in the form of liquid or tablet, but your guinea pig might not want to eat or drink it.
If your notice symptoms of scurvy – like loss of weight, diarrhea, sneezing, crusty eyelids, or loss of hair – consult your vet immediately. Also, your guinea pig should have annual check-ups.
With the right kind of tender, loving care, your pet guinea pig can remain with you for up to eight years.
When should you feed your guinea pig?
Guinea pigs are similar to cows because they graze and munch all day. They are also like us and are awake during the day and sleep at night.
Guinea pigs should be fed twice a day: one in the morning and one in the evening. They tend to overeat, so make sure you’re not feeding them excessively and only the proper amount.
If there are any leftover uneaten food in the cage, take them out and throw them away.
What can guinea pigs eat?
Be sure the kinds of food (like fruits and vegetables) you will give to guinea pigs are fresh, including the treats. While it is good if you feed your guinea pigs with treats that are high in calcium, vitamins, and other nutrients, it is much better if you know that these are organic and fresh.
Here is the best food to give guinea pigs and include in their daily diet:
Guinea pigs need fiber in their diet, and an ample amount of hay provides that. They need it for digestion. Thus, hay has to be available all the time. Since it masticates like a cow, it needs a constant supply of hay.
Hay can also aid in the wearing down of its choppers since they grow unceasingly.
You have to make sure the hay is top quality, dry, and does not have mold. The best hay to give is Timothy hay, which is high in fiber, low in protein, and with lots of energy guinea pigs need.
These kinds you can buy commercially in the pet food section in your local grocery store. The more specialized varieties are available in pet shops. These have all the right nutrients guinea pigs need and are pre-formulated to include the right amount of vitamin C, calcium, and others.
The best guinea pig pellets are the ones recommended by your veterinarian, and be sure to follow the instructions in its packaging concerning feeding and quantity.
These can be given as treats for guinea pigs and also part of their diet. Introducing new veggies should be done one at a time since you have to observe possible ill effects.
As mentioned, be sure they are fresh, pesticide-free, and grown organically. Here are some of the most scrumptious veggies for guinea pigs:
- Carrot tops
- Romaine lettuce
- Tomatoes, only the fleshy portions
- Bell peppers, either green or red
These vegetables are loaded with vitamins and minerals that guinea pigs need.
Fruits contain vitamin C but also have lots of sugar that may not be suitable for guinea pigs if given many. Only feed them small sliced pieces as occasional treats.
Here are the best fruits to give:
Experts recommend that feeding treats to your pet guinea pig will not surpass ten percent of its entire intake of food.
Some treats that you might give are the processed kind that has salt, sugar, and artificial flavorings, which are not beneficial for guinea pigs, so make it a habit to always read the labels. The whole concept of treat-giving is its frequency since some are not healthy enough to be eaten every day and meant on occasion only.
If you want to provide your guinea pig with a more nutritious treat, consider giving them fresh edible mushrooms.
Your guinea pig is still a rodent, and its significant attribute – like all the others in the rodent family – is gnawing, which means it likes to chew on stuff.
Since your guinea pig’s teeth perpetually grow, it needs to chew on things to make them trim. Give it wooden sticks, blocks, or toys meant for small animals. Those chewy things are not only for its teeth but to remedy itself from boredom.
You can give it salt licks or mineral stones, which is a combination of treat (that can supplement its diet with minerals) and chewy toy. However, too much salt is still bad, so only give it in moderation.
Some animals like guinea pigs have a way to supplement their diet with the nutrients they need.
They produce cecotropes, which are tiny pellets that go through their intestines and out the anus. These contain nourishment they absorbed from plant materials.
It may look strange and a bit off-putting, since to the ordinary eye, it looks like your guinea pig is consuming its feces. However, cecotropes are an essential part of its diet.
Put your guinea pig’s foodstuff in a ceramic dish instead of one made with plastic. Ceramics are tough, resistant to gnawing, and too heavy to be toppled over.
It can also withstand wear and tear longer than other types of dishes. Find a shallow and wide bowl, and place it away from where it tends to defecate.
Regularly clean it with soap and water, and keep it dry.
Water bowls vs. water bottles
A typical guinea pig will drink one hundred milliliters per kilogram or about three ounces per two pounds of water every day. If your guinea pig abruptly drinks more water or less than necessary, consult your vet immediately.
Be sure the water is fresh for your guinea pig to drink.
A water bowl is alright, and your guinea pig will drink more water from it. Yet, it can easily be pooped on, so you have to always clean it.
A water bottle is also okay, but your guinea pig might clog the tips with food.
“Drops of water on the edge of a wild mushroom in macro” by Horia Varlan is licensed with CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/
Types of food that you should NOT feed to your guinea pig
There are kinds that your guinea pig should never eat due to different reasons. Some are dangerous, toxic, poisonous, have too much sugar, a possible choking hazard, can cause bloating or gassiness, weaken the immune system, and many more.
ASPCA or the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals has information on their website about various foods that should not be fed to different types of pets.
However, since your guinea pig is regarded as an exotic pet, you should consult an exotic animal vet for advice on nutrition for your guinea pig.
Here is a list of what you should NOT feed to guinea pigs:
- All kinds of nuts
- Chocolate and other caffeinated products
- Inedible mushrooms (these are mostly wild mushrooms; edible mushrooms are okay to eat)
- Iceberg lettuce
- Dairy products
- Peanut butter
- Corn kernels
Now you know everything there is to know about guinea pigs, mushrooms, and what they like or don’t like to eat. As a truly caring pet owner, it is your responsibility to provide the best things for your guinea pig. This way, both of you will remain best buddies for a long time.