When trying to add a little variety to their pet’s diet, many chinchilla owners offer chopped fruit and vegetables as occasional treats. While some of these foods are perfectly safe for a chinchilla to eat, there are others that you should avoid giving to your chinchilla. Two foods that chinchilla owners might consider feeding their pet are grapes and raisins. So, can you give you chinchilla these foods?
Can Chinchillas Eat Grapes?
Although there are many fruits that are fine to feed to a chinchilla, grapes are that experts disagree whether they are safe or not. Some say that you should not give this fruit to your chinchilla at all and others say that they are fine in small quantities.
Can Chinchillas Eat Raisins?
Similarly, many experts advise against feeding raisins to your chinchilla, although some owners do give them as an occasional treat. They are simply a dried variety of grape, so they can have the same effect on your pet.
Why Can Chinchillas Not Eat Grapes or Raisins?
As raisins are a dried variety of grapes, these two fruits share very close nutritional values. It is the nutritional content of these fruits that means that they are potentially harmful to chinchillas. They have a high water and sugar content which is unhealthy for chinchillas. They are also acidic and acidic foods are known to affect chinchillas negatively.
What Happens to a Chinchilla If It Eats Grapes or Raisins?
There are several problems for chinchillas that are associated with eating grapes and raisins. The first is that the acidity and high sugar levels can cause stomach problems for chinchillas. They may experience stomach pain and diarrhea. In turn, this can lead to dehydration and stress. There are some reported cases of chinchillas suffering from constipation and bloating when they are given raisins to eat daily, and this is uncomfortable for the chinchilla.
A further problem with chinchillas eating grapes and raisins is that the high sugar content and acidity are not good for their teeth. One of the most common health conditions from which chinchillas suffer is dental issues, usually overgrowth, impacted teeth, and infections. Sugary foods will make their dental health deteriorate and worsen existing dental problems.
Both grapes and raisins are potentially dangerous for chinchillas as they can cause them to become ill. Many chinchillas experience stomach problems when eating these foods. Therefore, you should only give as an occasional treat once or twice a week and if you notice that it is making your chinchilla ill, do not feed them grapes or raisins at all.