Marigolds are popular summer flowers. Most people will grow them in the yard and other places around the home. With their bright colors, these flowers will enhance the look of the garden. Also, marigolds have a lot of nutrition. If you own guinea pigs, you may wonder if you can feed marigolds to them.
So, can guinea pigs eat marigolds? Yes, guinea pigs can eat marigolds, whether it’s fresh or dried. This flower has a lot of nutrition that can benefit your guinea pig’s health. While it’s nutritious, marigolds should only be fed to them in moderation. This will prevent them from having any health issues from consuming too many marigolds.
Benefits Of Marigolds For Guinea Pigs
Marigold has a lot of essential vitamins and minerals that guinea pigs require to stay healthy. It is also known to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant components.
Below are some of the health benefits of marigolds for your guinea pigs:
Soothes skin problems: The ointment of the marigold plant can treat many skin issues for guinea pigs. It can help with bug bites, wounds, dry skin, and blisters. The ointment should be an item to have at home, just in case your guinea pig is suffering some external injury.
Prevent Illness: Marigold is a good source of many antioxidant compounds like carotenoids and flavonoids. This helps fight off diseases and keep immunity strong. The antioxidants will prevent free radicals from damaging the cells in the body, which could lead to illnesses and diseases.
Antibacterial properties: Marigolds contain many nutrients that can fight off bacteria. These include harmful bacteria that cause illnesses, infections, and common colds. Marigolds are useful during the winter months to help keep the guinea pigs from becoming ill. You can sprinkle some dried marigolds on their food every other day to keep their immune system strong.
Risks to Consider When Feeding Marigolds to Guinea Pigs
Like many other flowering plants, marigolds should not be fed to them on a daily basis. This flower should be given to them occasionally to prevent any health issues.
If you gave too many marigolds for them to eat, they may start to have health problems. Below are some of the problems you may encounter:
Poisoning and Bad Digestion
Lots of plant-based products are sprayed with pesticides and herbicides.
While it may not be directly sprayed on the marigolds, your neighbor may spray the chemicals in their garden. The chemicals will then flow into your garden or yard.
These chemicals are very harmful to your guinea pigs. They will experience digestive problems such as diarrhea, upset stomach, and bloating.
Therefore, if you’re planning to feed marigolds to your guinea pigs, it’s best to grow them where it is safe and free from pollution.
Can Baby Guinea Pigs Eat Marigolds?
It will depend on how old the baby guinea pigs are. If they are under the age of 3 weeks old, they should not be fed any marigolds. Their digestive system has not developed properly enough to digest the flower.
Instead, baby guinea pigs should be on a diet of timothy hay and their mother’s milk.
Once they have reached about 3 weeks old, you can start to introduce marigolds to them. Start by giving them a small piece of the flower and wait 24 hours. This is to see if they have any allergic reactions to the marigold.
Within 24 hours, if you notice diarrhea, or they have an upset stomach, avoid feeding them any more marigolds.
On the other hand, if the baby guinea pig doesn’t have an allergic reaction, you can continue to feed them marigolds. Only feed them a small piece of the flower, once a week until they are an adult.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Marigold Leaves?
Yes, guinea pigs can eat marigold leaves, but it’s not recommended to feed them. The leaves don’t have any natural toxin, but it has a strong flavor that they may not like.
If your guinea pigs do eat the leaves, make sure where the marigold grows doesn’t have any chemicals used such as fertilizers, pesticides, and herbicides. All of these chemicals are dangerous for guinea pigs.
The leaves contain the highest concentration of chemicals.
How To Feed Marigolds To Guinea Pigs
When it comes to feeding marigolds to your guinea pigs, you have several options. Below are some of the ways you can feed marigolds to them:
Feeding Guinea Pigs Fresh Marigolds
There’s nothing like fresh marigolds for your guinea pigs. You can simply pick them from the garden and toss them to your cavies for them to munch on.
Be sure to give it a good wash first to remove any dirt and pests that may be on the flower.
Feeding Guinea Pigs Dried Marigolds
You can find dried marigolds sold in grocery stores, or you can make them yourself at home.
Dried marigold is a great way to give their food a boost in nutrition.
The best part is that you can use dried marigolds year-round.
Mixing Marigolds with Other Food
You can mix marigolds with other foods such as fruits, vegetables, pellets, and hay. Adding marigolds to their food will give them a boost in nutrition.
You can add fresh or dried marigolds to their foods.
How Many Marigolds To Feed Guinea Pigs?
While marigolds are safe for guinea pigs to eat, it’s recommended to feed them in small amounts.
Avoid feeding them in large amounts as it can cause digestive issues in your guinea pigs.
How Often Can A Guinea Pig Eat Marigolds?
Marigolds should be fed to your guinea pigs in moderation. The flowering plants don’t offer enough nutrients to meet the guinea pig’s dietary requirements. Feeding them too much of it will cause them harm, rather than good.
Marigolds should only make up 5% of their entire diet. The rest should come in the form of quality pellets, hay, and vegetables. You can give them 1/8 cup of pellets daily, followed by some vegetables, and an unlimited supply of hay.
To keep the guinea pigs safe and healthy, you should feed marigolds to them, once or twice a week.
Other Flowers That Guinea Pigs Can Eat
Dandelions have nutrients that guinea pigs require to stay healthy. You can feed them the flowers and leaves of the dandelion plants. However, only feed them dandelions that have been untreated with chemicals. If you or your neighbors spray fertilizers or pesticides in the garden and yard, it could contaminate the dandelions too. These chemicals are very harmful to guinea pigs, even death can occur.
Roses can be given to your guinea as a treat. The rose petals contain about 95% water and are low in calories. It also has small amounts of vitamin C, which helps prevent scurvy. Only feed them roses in moderation due to their high content of calcium.
This annual flower makes a great treat for your guinea pigs. Nasturtiums contain a lot of vitamin C that the guinea pigs need. They can eat all parts of the plant that includes the flower and leaves. It’s edible and safe for them to eat.
Marigolds make an excellent treat to feed your guinea pigs. It’s packed with essential vitamins and minerals that guinea pigs can benefit from. Be sure to only give them a few flowers at each feeding, once or twice per week. This will prevent them from having health issues and from consuming too many marigolds.