It is no surprise that rabbits love leafy vegetables. But is every leafy vegetable safe for rabbits? Iceberg lettuce, a staple in salads and burgers, have you thought of sharing a piece of it with your rabbit? Well, don’t!
Lettuce is a great addition to your rabbit’s diet but iceberg lettuce is NOT. Iceberg lettuce contains a lot of water with no significant amount of nutrients or fiber which is why it is not a recommended rabbit food.
Why do you think iceberg lettuce is an exception when lettuce, in general, is recommended to be a good “rabbit food”? Is iceberg lettuce just not recommended or is it toxic to the rabbits/
Keep reading because we are gonna discuss everything a rabbit mom needs to know about your rabbit and iceberg lettuce.
Let’s hop starlight in!
Is Iceberg Lettuce Toxic To Rabbits?
Let’s get this out of the way… iceberg lettuce is not toxic to your rabbit but it is just not recommended for your rabbit because of its high water content and less to no nutritional benefits.
Like many lettuces, iceberg lettuce contains lactucarium, a milky fluid that is not good for your rabbit. Lactucarium can get to the leaves while the rabbits eat the lettuce and it is bad for them.
Lactaturium is a chemical agent that causes both sleepiness and some pain relief (analgesia). It is also called rabbit opium because if your rabbit consumes lactucarium it gives the same symptoms as the actual opium.
The consumption of iceberg lettuce causes agitation, nausea, dizziness, hallucinations, and blurred vision in your rabbit due to the presence of lactucarium. If you witness any of these symptoms then it is better to rush your bunny to the vet to be on the safe side.
Wild iceberg lettuces are however different from cultivated iceberg lettuces. In both the lactucarium contents are different. It is greater in the wild lettuces which is why that’s more dangerous for the rabbits.
Because of this, you have to be very careful if you are going to let your rabbit roam around wild areas or even in your garden.
What Happens If My Rabbit Eat Iceberg Lettuce?
You don’t have to worry even if your rabbit eats iceberg lettuce. It will not necessarily kill your rabbit. But it still will cause a few health problems in your rabbit.
Eating iceberg lettuce can cause dizziness, hallucination, nausea, and diarrhea in your rabbit. Most of the symptoms are harmless and will wear off in a couple of hours if given care.
But if your rabbit eats too much lettuce, then it won’t be the lactucarium that will affect your rabbit, it is the water content of the lettuce. Iceberg lettuce contains the most amount of water content.
Even though water will keep your rabbit hydrated, too much water with too few nutrients and fiber is not your rabbit’s best friend. Consuming too much lettuce will cause diarrhea in your rabbit and cause dehydration and fatigue.
Diarrhea in rabbits could become a health risk as it will make your rabbit lose all the water content in its body which can cause dehydration. Rabbits and dehydration don’t go hand in hand. That’s why it’s important to make sure that your rabbit doesn’t consume too much lettuce.
How Much Iceberg Lettuce Can Rabbit Eat?
Even though a small amount of iceberg lettuce is considered not harmful for your furry baby, it is still not recommended to feed your rabbit iceberg lettuce. This is because apart from causing potential health problems, iceberg lettuce has no nutritional value.
Because of the risk, it poses and the low nutritional value, it is recommended that your rabbit does not consume iceberg lettuce.
What Is The Nutritional Value Of Iceberg Lettuce?
- Calories – 12 kcal
- Fat – 0 g
- Carbohydrate – 2.35 g
- Fiber – 1.2 g
- Sugar – 1.18 g
- Protein – 1.18 g
- Sodium – 12mg
- Calcium – 24mg
- Iron – 0.35 mg
- Potassium – 141 mg
- Vitamin D – 0 mg
- Water – 93.9 g
Iceberg lettuce is mostly water with no significant nutrients. To say, iceberg lettuce gives your rabbit nothing.
Can Rabbits Die From Iceberg Lettuce?
Don’t worry, iceberg lettuce cannot kill your rabbit. Even though it is unhealthy for your rabbit because of the high water content and lactucarium, it still won’t be a reason for killing your rabbit.
The high content of lactucarium and water will cause diarrhea and physical weakness in your rabbit and not death, however, if your rabbit is too small or is a baby, iceberg lettuce could be a potential health risk and can cause death.
So the best advice we have is: DO NOT FEED YOUR RABBIT ICEBERG LETTUCE!!!
Frequently Asked Question
Can rabbits eat weed?
Can Rabbits Eat Romaine Lettuce?
Even though lettuces are a good addition to a rabbit’s diet, iceberg lettuce is not. There are no health benefits your rabbit could get from it hence it is better to avoid it completely.
However, if your rabbit consumes iceberg lettuce, it won’t be a reason for death if your rabbit is older. Given that, it is still recommended to take your rabbit to the vet immediately.
I hope this article solved all your queries about feeding your rabbit iceberg lettuce.
For more queries comment down below!