Every owner of the guinea pig is thrilled when it comes to the feeding time because the cavies get really excited to hear us coming with food! Every time they hear the fridge door open, or someone being in the kitchen, they start skipping or jumping around happily, knowing they will get some munchies or food treats. This is why our job is to make sure we give them only the best and the healthiest foods, otherwise our guinea pigs might get ill.
So, today we will talk about tomatoes. Yum! But, these ones are even better – grape tomatoes! Nice, bite-size, flavorful, small tomatoes that look like huge cherries are the best thing ever (click here to read about regular sized tomatoes and see if guinea pigs can eat them). Now let’s see if guinea pigs can benefit from grape tomatoes as well.
Can guinea pigs eat grape tomatoes? Yes, guinea pigs can eat grape tomatoes and they love them too. Guinea pigs love all types of tomatoes – grape, cherry, Roma and others. This veggie is very beneficial and tasty for guinea pigs, it’s like regular food and a treat at the same time. The edible parts of grape tomatoes are the flesh, seeds, and skin. The stem and leaves of any type of tomato are not good for guinea pigs in fact that those parts are poisonous for them and should be avoided.
There is no one that would refuse the super-tasty grape tomatoes. They are amazing by themselves, in salads, as toppings on meals, or in smoothies – very versatile, healthy, and tasty! Luckily, our guinea pigs love them too. They go crazy for grape tomatoes, especially if you purchase them fresh and if they are bit crunchy. Now let’s see what are the benefits and risks of feeding grape tomatoes to our guinea pigs.
Health Benefits of Guinea Pigs Eating Grape Tomatoes
- Low in calories and fat – The grape tomatoes are not very caloric, and this makes them perfect for those with special nutrition plans or diets and guinea pigs fall into this category. Also, they have no fat, as a food item, this makes the grape tomatoes a light and easy food and that is exactly what guinea pigs need.
- Cardiovascular health – Since there is no cholesterol as well, this makes grape tomatoes a perfect food for the cardiovascular health of guinea pigs. The cholesterol is enemy number one for the clogged blood vessels and hypertension (or heart problems). With the potassium in this veggie, there is less risk of stroke, pressure problems, kidney problems, and there is less stress. Guinea pigs can get stressed as well, of course!
- Energy – With the carbs and proteins, there will be both fast and slow-release energy, depending on the serving size the guinea pig has consumed. There are also fibers in the grape tomatoes and this can improve the digestion of the guinea pigs. The cavies will have regular and better bowel movements with the grape tomatoes and with vitamin A, almost all organs of the guinea pig will improve or stay healthy.
- Vitamin C and iron – Most importantly there is some vitamin C in grape tomatoes, which is crucial for guinea pigs. If they are in a deficit of vitamin C, they are prone to a disease called scurvy and that’s dangerous. It leads to swellings in joints, internal bleeding, loose stool, rough fur… Lastly, there is also iron which is important for healthy blood. Iron is vital for curing anemia and other blood-related issues in guinea pigs.
Nutrition Facts of Grape Tomatoes
So, in 100 g (3 oz) of grape tomatoes, or 13 grape tomatoes, these are the nutritional facts:
- Total of 27 calories (not very caloric and suitable for all nutrition plans)
- 0 g fat (this means blood vessels will not be clogged with fats)
- 0 mg cholesterol (this is great because it will also keep blood vessels unclogged and the heart healthy, cholesterol is known to cause cardiovascular problems)
- 2 mg sodium (a normal amount of salt for a veggie)
- 247 mg potassium (prevention from stroke, high pressure, kidney and heart problems, stress)
- 5 g carbs (fast energy)
- 2 g fiber (for good digestion and bowel movements)
- 3 g sugar (a normal amount of sugar for a veggie)
- 1 g protein (for slow-release energy that lasts longer during the day)
- 9% vitamin A (a strong antioxidant that protects from free radical damage and illnesses. This vitamin keeps lungs, vision, skin, kidneys, heart healthy)
- 43% vitamin C (the most needed and important vitamin for cavies – they cannot be healthy without this!)
- 6% iron (good for the blood)
Risks to Consider When Feeding Grape Tomatoes to Guinea Pigs
- In the stems and leaves, there is a plant poison called ‘solanine glycoalkaloid’. This is toxic for guinea pigs, so they can eat the flesh and skin of tomatoes only – never the stem and leaves! (Click here to read more about tomato leaves and why they are poisonous for guinea pigs). This same toxin is seen in potatoes too, as well as eggplants.
- Also, there is a bit of sugar in grape tomatoes, so don’t feed the cavy too much of this veggie to avoid the excess sugars.
Serving Size and Frequency of Grape Tomatoes for Guinea Pigs
Basically, the frequency of serving for grape tomatoes is not strict when it comes to guinea pigs – you can give grape tomatoes to the guinea pigs almost every other day.
It depends how often you feed the guinea pigs with grape tomatoes but in general, a quarter of a normal tomato is fine, or in this case, 2-3 small grape tomatoes for the serving size.
Important: Remember, do not feed the guinea pig stems and leaves of (grape) tomatoes! These parts contain the toxins that can harm them. See the ‘Risks’ section above for more details on this.
Quick Facts on Grape Tomatoes
- Guinea pigs can safely eat grape tomatoes, and they love the taste too.
- The edible parts are the flesh, skin, seeds.
- The toxic parts are the stem and leaves of the tomatoes.
- There is a minimal amount of calcium which is good.
- Also, grape tomatoes have many vital nutrients for guinea pigs, including vitamin C
- Cavies can eat 2-3 small grape tomatoes every other day (or a quarter of a normal tomato)
Before I let you go, one final thought on food. With food, you can’t ever be too careful which is why I get all guinea pig food from a reliable source such as Amazon. If you are not sure what to order but believe your little piggies deserve some great treats please check our Helpful Guide to the Best Guinea Pig Treats to get some ideas. We have also made a full list of foods that guinea pigs can and can’t eat (150+ Types of Foods). Be sure to also check our recommended products page for everything you will ever need to assure a happy life for your Guinea Pigs. Hope this information was helpful and you have found the answer you were looking for.
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