No, rabbits can’t eat chicken. It doesn’t matter how it’s cooked, or if it’s just a small amount, under no circumstances can rabbits eat chicken. Your rabbit is a herbivore and their stomach is designed to digest plant-based products. As a meat product, chicken would be indigestible to rabbits and cause them a great deal of gastrointestinal distress.
Risks of Rabbit Eating Meat
Apart from the fact that they can’t digest it, there’s a bunch of issues that can come from a rabbit accidentally eating chicken.
Eating even a small amount of chicken can cause problems because chicken has:
- High fat: If your rabbit eats too much fatty food, they’ll gain weight. This increases the risk of obesity, hepatic lipidosis, and atherosclerosis.
- Lots of protein: Rabbits will struggle to digest too much protein and can develop enteritis. The biggest signs of this are watery diarrhea and lack of appetite.
- Low fiber: A diet low on fiber would mean low energy for rabbits. They’d struggle with digestion and their teeth wouldn’t be worn down as they need to be.
For these reasons, you should be extra careful to keep your rabbit away from meat. Read on to find out what to do if your rabbit does accidentally eat chicken.
What if My Rabbit Eats Chicken?
If you catch your rabbit munching on chicken, remove it from them immediately. Then give them extra hay and water while you call a vet. In the case of chicken, even just a little bit of it can be harmful so it’s always best to err on the side of caution and check with a professional. Monitor for any signs such as diarrhea, bloating, lethargy, and more.
In the best case, they might just have some discomfort, in the worst it could be fatal. Always do preventative measures where possible (e.g. securing your rabbits if you’re eating chicken and not leaving chicken where a rabbit can get it). Also, when in doubt, speak to a vet for advice – it’s not worth risking their health if you’re unsure.
What Should a Rabbit Eat?
Your rabbit’s diet should be made up of five main areas:
- Hay: Your rabbit needs unlimited fiber-rich hay. This should be good quality hay and is helpful for digestion and your rabbit’s teeth.
- Water: Make sure your rabbit always has access to clean drinking water.
- Fresh vegetables: A variety of raw leafy green vegetables should be given to your rabbit every day. This could be watercress, kale, romaine lettuce, and similar foods.
- Pellets: One bowl of store-bought pellets should be given to your rabbit every day.
- Treats: Your rabbit can have treats once or twice per week but you should alternate the treats every week, for example, apple one week, orange the next.
Can Rabbits and Chickens Live Together?
While rabbits and chickens can be kept together, it is inadvisable. This is because it’s difficult to bond the two species, and they have entirely different dietary requirements and behaviors. If possible, it’s best to keep them apart.
From living with a chicken, your rabbit can also develop these infections:
- Salmonella: This bacteria problem can cause diarrhea, stomach cramp, and pain. It’s the same as what we can get from eating uncooked chicken.
- Coccidia: A parasite that can affect kits and chicks, it lives in the intestines and can cause liver issues.
- Pasteurellosis: This can cause cholera and goes in a cycle from rabbits and chickens eating each others’ poop.
Can Rabbits Eat Cooked Chicken?
No, rabbits can’t eat cooked chicken. Aside from not being able to eat chicken raw, cooking foods usually makes them worse for your rabbit. The process of cooking reduces nutrients and changes the texture for the worse. Rabbits shouldn’t have any sort of cooked chicken – including boiled, roasted, barbecued, and more.
Can Rabbits Eat Chicken Bones?
No, rabbits shouldn’t eat chicken bones. Though rabbits do need tough things to chew on to keep their teeth ground down, chicken bones aren’t a good option for this. Rabbits shouldn’t eat any sort of bone – especially with traces of chicken on. A branch from a fruit tree would be a better option.
Can Rabbits Eat Chicken Eggs?
No, rabbits don’t eat chicken eggs. A rabbit is unlikely to attempt to eat a chicken’s egg, as they are unable to digest it. Should they take a bite, they’d be plagued by stomach issues afterward. A rabbit might break an egg by accident if they’re living in the same space as chickens.
Can Rabbits Eat Chicken Feed?
No, rabbits can’t eat chicken feed. The feed is designed for chickens which are omnivores, so a herbivore like a rabbit wouldn’t be able to digest a lot of the stuff contained in chicken feed and so should be avoided. If your rabbit does eat chicken feed, they could potentially get sick from eating it, especially if they eat a lot.