Berries are some of the healthiest foods we can eat.
They are chock full of vitamins and antioxidants.
But what is good for us is not always good for our pets.
And chinchillas have especially sensitive digestive systems.
Can chinchillas eat blackberries then? Or is this another in a long line of healthy foods that are not healthy for chinchillas?
Keep reading to find out if you can feed your chinchilla blackberries. We will cover everything you need to know about giving your pet this fruit.
Can Chinchillas Eat Blackberries?
Chinchillas can eat blackberries, but it needs to be in very small amounts. Blackberries have a high amount of sugar and water, which can cause your chinchilla harm if eaten in excess.
And with an animal this small, ‘excess’ is a tiny amount. We will explain just how much you can feed your pet below. First, let’s dig into exactly why you have to be so careful with how much of this fruit you feed your chinchilla.
Why Are Blackberries Unhealthy for Chinchillas?
Blackberries are well-known for being juicy fruits. But this means they are full of water. They are also high in sugar and both of these factors can cause a lot of harm to your chinchilla if it eats too many blackberries.
Chinchillas don’t need to consume much water to survive, because they have adapted to live in an arid environment. Chinchilla hail from the Andes mountains, which have a dry climate, with very little water for your chinchilla to drink.
Chinchillas have adapted to the lack of water, so they don’t need large amounts of water to survive, because they are able to retain it for longer periods of time.
Giving your chinchilla too many watery snacks can result in sickness and diarrhea due to their sensitive digestive systems. It can also bloat your little friend and cause some pain, since they aren’t used to holding so much water in their bodies.
It’s also not healthy to feed your chinchilla too much sugar. Just the same as humans, too much of this can cause your chinchilla to put on weight and more long-term effects can result in dental issues or health conditions such as diabetes. Plus, it is hard on their digestion.
The best thing you can do for your chinchilla is to feed it a diet consisting only of Timothy hay and pellets. Any sugary foods, no matter how healthy they might be for us, should only be a small snack, no more than twice a week.
How Much Blackberry Can A Chinchilla Have
You should not feed your chinchilla any more than half a blackberry at a time. And you should only give it this amount once or twice a week. Basically, it should never be more than an occasional treat. The same is true for any fruit you can give your chinchilla.
Can I Feed My Chinchilla Other Fruits?
The same advice holds when it comes to feeding your chinchilla any other fruits. They are all high in sugar and water. If you want to feed your pet some fruit, dried fruit, such as raisins and sultanas, is a better option.
Even though dried fruit is still be sugary, these treats do not have any water in them, making them less harmful to your chinchilla. But again, just stick to one or two small pieces of dried fruit a week, due to the sugar.
What Is A Healthy Diet For A Chinchilla?
Chinchillas are primarily herbivores, so you should ensure that they eat plenty of leaves and grass. The majority of their diet should be hay. Add in pellets once or twice a day (these are also primarily hay).
Your chinchilla’s diet should consist of 35% carbohydrates, 15% protein, 30% fiber, 4% sugar and 3.5% fat. It’s important to stick to these percentages, because too much fat can cause liver damage to your chinchilla. And since they have sensitive digestive systems, too much of any type of food that isn’t hay could cause stomach pains.
Are Raspberries Better?
Can chinchillas eat raspberries. They are very similar to blackberries, as well as other berries like strawberries, blueberries or cranberries. That means the same rules apply. Do not feed your chinchilla a large amount. Limit the amount of this berry to no more than half a raspberry twice a week.
Your chinchilla will love a small amount as a treat. But because raspberries are also high in sugar and water, feeding your pet a large amount will cause digestive issues such as bloating, sickness or even diarrhea.
This should go without saying, but you should not feed your chinchilla both raspberries and blackberries at the same time. It would still be far too much sugar and water for your chinchilla to digest. The amounts given here go for all fruits. If you feed your pet a small piece of one fruit twice a week, you should not feed it any other fruits or sugar-filled treats that week.
Can Chinchillas Have Blackberries: Final Thoughts
Chinchillas can eat blackberries, but only in very limited amounts. Like all other fruit, blackberries contain a lot of sugar and water. Both cause issues for a chinchilla’s sensitive digestive system.
If you want to feed your pet blackberries, give it half a berry once or twice a week, and no more. If you’re just looking for a good treat for your pet, dried fruit or flowers are better options.