Mustard greens or Brassica juncea (Brown, Chinese, Jie Cai, Kai Choi, mostaza, India, leaf, Oriental or vegetable mustard) refer to a species of the mustard plant with edible flowers, leaves, roots, seeds, oil or can be used to make condiments. It also has medicinal uses as well as used as green manure and as a repellent, among other uses.
The mustard plant is a flowering plant that belongs to the family Brassicaceae with genera Sinapis and Brassica. Brassicaceae is also referred to as the mustards, crucifers, or cabbage family.
Can rabbits have it?
Yes. Rabbits can eat mustard greens. It is one of the leafy greens you can give this pet. It is safe and non-toxic. However, it is one of the plants that have high oxalic acid together with parsley, spinach, beet green, radish, tops, and sprouts.
In small quantities, oxalic acid is safe to human beings and animals including rabbits. However, a large amount of oxalic acid has been associated with kidney stones (oxalates binds with calcium to form calcium stones). Also, oxalates can reduced mineral absorption, and if they bind with iron, it forms ferrous oxalate which the body is unable to utilize.
Although we have mentioned that it has high oxalic acid or oxalates, you do not have to be afraid of giving this vegetable to your bunny. However, you only need to ensure you do not mix it with other high oxalic greens.
A bunny weighing two pounds needs a mixture of one packed cup of leafy greens daily. Therefore, mix mustard greens with others that that have low oxalic acid such as dill leaves, kales, mint, Escarole, cilantro, carrot tops, Bok Choy, arugula, raspberry leaves, watercress, wheatgrass, and so on.
Also, introduce it gradually beginning with a very small amount as you observe how your bunny’s tummy is going to respond. If all is well, you can gradually increase the amount.
Finally, ensure you clean this vegetable and it should be free of any pesticides, insecticides or herbicides. Organic sources will be the most recommended.
When it comes to feeding your furry friend, you need to ensure you provide unlimited clean, fresh water and hay. Fresh foods should account for between 10-15% of their daily food requirements and pellets account for about 5%.