The peach botanically known as Prunus persica refers to the deciduous tree that produces edible juicy fruits often known as peaches with nectarines being a genetic variation.
Nutritionally, this summer fruit has carbohydrates, sugars, fiber, vitamin C, E, K, folate, niacin, potassium, cholerine, phosphorous, zinc, copper, magnesium among other nutrients.
The vitamin C they contain can help fight cancer and as an antioxidant better your skin. They also help in heart and eye health, improving digestion, and managing diabetes among many other benefits.
Can rabbits eat nectarines and peaches?
Back to our big question. Yes. Rabbits can eat peaches and nectarines with their skin but without their pits. They are among the fruits that bunnies eat and will add on to their nutritional need. As already hinted, you must remove their pits or seeds and stalk before giving them to your furry friends.
As much as they are some of the fruits safe for rabbits joining ranks with pears, plum, papaya, berries, pineapples, apricots, star-fruits, cherries, apples and so on, they should strictly be given as occasional treats. A teaspoon of peaches or nectarines per two pounds of rabbit weight is enough and should be given once or twice a week.
You cannot feed your bunnies large quantities of any fruits daily since they are high in sugar and carbohydrates. Lagomorphs, where rabbits belong, can digest foods with high fibers, low sugar, and carbohydrates with easy. However, foods with sugar and carbohydrates may present various digestion problems including gas, bloating, diarrhea, gut motility, and fungi and bacterial imbalance in your bunny’s gut, among others.
Do not forget the carbohydrates and starch can lead to weight gain, obesity and other problems that come with obesity.
Can rabbits eat peaches leaves, branches or wood?
Like other single-seeded fruit such as plum, cherry, and apricot, rabbits cannot eat peach leaves, branches or wood. They are all poisonous. Medirabbits.com warns against feeding your bunnies with any of the single-seeded fruits.
Instead, opt for branches, leaves, and wood of fruits that have multiple seeds such as apples, pears, vines, grapes and so on. They are safe, even when their twigs, leaves or wood is still green. Their seeds are also safe. However, some may present a choking hazard and should be removed.
As a rule, remove pits from fruits, even if they are not poisonous to avoid choking or digestion problems especially if your bunny ingests too much of the seeds that present a choking hazard.
Finally, keep varying the treats you provide to your furry friends. Besides fruits, non-leafy vegetables including carrots, celery, bell peppers, zucchinis, broccoli and so on are a good alternative that has less sugar.
How to introduce your bunny to fresh foods
All fresh foods including fruits that rabbits eat, leafy greens and non-leafy vegetables must be introduced slowly. Begin with small amounts and watch how your bunny’s tummy is going to respond to them. Should it cause a problem, stop the fresh food and give them their recommended diets.
Secondly, ensure you clean the, well to remove any residues of pesticides, insecticides, and herbicides. The foods should be fresh (leave wilted or those with molds aside).
Now specifically to treats, you can give them while interacting with your bunnies to help grow a bond, when you are training them such as to use their littering trays or in their logic or puzzle toys to keep them intelligent and enchanted.
Bunnies, like human beings, have a tooth for sweet things and they will like nectarines and peaches so much. They may want more, and you may be tempted to give in and give them more. It is not recommended.
Secondly, this food treat should not replace your rabbit’s normal diets which are mainly hay with sparing amounts of high fiber pellets and other fresh foods.