It is safe for rabbits to eat kale in small quantities. Dark, leafy greens are important for rabbits, and they will provide your rabbits with lots of nutrients and vitamins. You need to be careful about feeding your rabbit too many vegetables, however, as a balanced diet is crucial.
Kale is very good for your rabbit, but it needs to be given in limited quantities. It can cause gas buildup, and as rabbits aren’t able to pass gas, this can actually be very dangerous for them. You will need to keep an eye on your rabbit if you regularly feed it kale, or other leafy greens that can cause gassiness.
Is Kale Good For Rabbits?
Kale is good for rabbits, yes. It is a fantastic source of vitamin C, vitamin A, and vitamin K, and it also contains many kinds of vitamin B.
It is also a great option because it does not contain much sugar, which is something that you need to be careful about when it comes to feeding your rabbit vegetables.
Vitamin A is good for your rabbit because it can help to protect its organs, and it will also boost its immune system.
Your rabbit should have a large handful of leafy green vegetables that have been washed thoroughly every day. Ideally, you should rotate these greens so that they are not getting too much of any single one.
What Is Dangerous About Kale?
There are two potential issues that can arise from feeding your rabbit a lot of kale. The first has already been mentioned: it can lead to gas. This is true of most of the brassica family. You should therefore not feed your rabbit any of the brassicas for two days running.
This will allow time for your rabbit’s digestive system to fully process the food, ensuring that the gas does not get built up inside your rabbit. Because your rabbit can’t pass gas, it is very important to be careful of this.
The second is that it is high in calcium. While your rabbit does need some calcium, it’s important not to give your rabbit too much calcium overall. Rotating the greens that you feed to your rabbit is key to ensuring it doesn’t get overloaded with any nutrient or mineral.
What Happens If I Give My Rabbit Too Much Kale?
There are two possible outcomes from feeding your rabbit too much kale.
The first is a short-term but potentially very dangerous one.
If you give your rabbit too much kale, it could suffer from a gas buildup in its system. This can, in some cases, actually be deadly. Even if it is not, it is very uncomfortable for your rabbit, and it may go off its food for a few days.
You do not want your rabbit in this situation, and it is possible that even a vet will not be able to solve it, so limit kale quantities.
The second potential issue is calcium, and this is a long-term result of eating too much kale.
Over time, if too much calcium builds up in your rabbit’s system, it may develop calcium stones in its kidneys. Calcium is necessary for the rabbit to stay healthy, but it must be balanced in order to be healthy.
A rabbit that is an average size should be given about 510 mg of calcium per day to stay healthy. More than this could result in issues as your rabbit gets older.
What Warning Signs Do I Need To Look Out For?
You should always keep an eye on your rabbit’s droppings and how much it eats. If your rabbit has suddenly gone off its food, or if it is not pooping as normal, you should pay attention. Contact your vet to discuss the issue and get professional advice on how to deal with it.
Don’t wait to see if the issue clears up on its own, because it could be fatal if it is not dealt with.
How Should I Give Greens To My Rabbit?
Before you introduce any new greenery to your rabbit, you should do at least one test run, and possibly more. Make sure that the greenery is well washed to remove any pesticides, grit, dirt, etc.
Cut the greenery into chunks, and only introduce one food at a time. If you are giving your rabbit kale for the first time, only give it a very small amount.
If the rabbit eats it, keep an eye on your rabbit over the next few days. If you notice any abnormalities in the rabbit’s droppings or the rabbit seems uncomfortable, do not feed it kale again.
If your rabbit seems fine and comfortable, you should then give your rabbit another small helping, and again observe how it is behaving over the next few days.
From here, if there are no further problems, you should be able to make kale a part of the rabbit’s regular diet. If you do notice any issues in the future, you should stop feeding your rabbit kale, and choose other leafy greens instead.
How Often Can A Rabbit Have Kale?
A rabbit can have kale up to three times a week. You should rotate it with other leafy greens so that the rabbit gets a good mixture of nutrients and vitamins. It is not a good idea to give your rabbit too many foods from the brassica family, regardless of how often you rotate them; the total should be low overall.
Members of the brassica family include:
- Brussels sprouts
If you are feeding your rabbit any of these, make sure you are including other greens in their food rotation as well, to avoid overdosing them on gassy foods.
Kale is a great food for your rabbit, but only if it is fed in small quantities. Some people do not recommend feeding your rabbit kale, but if it does not upset your rabbit’s system, it is fine to include it in part of their weekly greens rotation.