Sweet potatoes are known for both their tastiness and nutritional benefits to humans.
This leads to the question; can rats eat this delicacy?
What is a Nutrient Composition?
The most prominent nutrients in sweet potatoes are carbohydrates.
It also contains a considerable amount of beta-carotene, dietary fiber, manganese, and vitamins B5 and B6, making it one of the complete foods known to man.
When cooked, it provides vitamin C up to the levels recommended by nutritional experts.
It is not uncommon to find people feeding sweet potatoes to their pet rats.
However, if you pay close attention, you will notice that most of them cook it beforehand.
This is because uncooked potatoes are harmful and potentially deadly to rats.
What are the Side Effects of Sweet Potatoes?
There is no denying that sweet potatoes have several nutrients that can improve your pet rat’s health.
As mentioned above, uncooked sweet potatoes contain substances that can hurt the well-being of your pet rat.
For this reason, it is essential to exercise caution before introducing them to your pets’ diet.
When your rat consumes raw sweet potatoes, the substances it contains react with chemicals in the digestive tract to form cyanide.
The consequence of this reaction is your pet’s death unless it gets a prompt response from a qualified vet doctor.
On the contrary, cooking lowers the risk of cyanide formation by making harmful substances less potent.
This, however, does not mean that cooked sweet potatoes are entirely safe.
It is much better to feed your rat with elements that have zero potential health risks.
What Happens When a Rat Consumes Sweet Potatoes?
As you would expect, your rat will be excellent if you feed it with cooked sweet potatoes.
The problem, however, kicks in when they consume raw potatoes.
Unlike humans, rats are incapable of vomiting foods that cause complications in their digestive system.
This characteristic increases the severity of the effects caused by eating uncooked sweet potatoes.
The primary reason why most people fail to notice the effects of raw potatoes is that rats are often cautious when trying new substances.
As a result, the amount they consume might not be enough to produce visible effects.
It is advisable to call a vet immediately.
Your rat eats uncooked sweet potatoes.
The doctor should then clean the pet’s stomach and keep them under observation until the effects subside.
Alternatively, they can perform first aid and leave instructions on how to take care of the animal until it heals.
As a pet owner, it is your responsibility to ensure that the animal is always healthy. This includes observing its diet to make sure that it does not consume anything harmful.
In case that happens, it would be best if you called a veterinary doctor.
More importantly, it would be best if you put in measures so that the pet can never reaccess such foods.
If you care about your pet rat’s physical well-being, you should never feed them with uncooked sweet potatoes.