No, rabbits can’t eat popcorn. This applies to both kernels, and popped corn. Your rabbit will get no nutritional value from eating popcorn but they’ll have to deal with plenty of digestive issues.
Popcorn that has been flavored (i.e. with salt, butter, or sugar) is even worse for your rabbit. The extra ingredients make it even unhealthier than it already was and can make digestion significantly harder. The same applies to anything like chocolate and caramel that you can add to popcorn – if you add a toxic ingredient your rabbit will suffer after eating it.
There’s a bunch of issues your rabbit might have to face if they eat popcorn. This is even more likely if they eat a lot of popcorn in one go, or eat it regularly.
Some of the potential issues include:
- Digestion issues: Eating the wrong sort of food is making a digestive system designed for fiber-rich foods have to try to digest other foods. This can cause pain, diarrhea, and even death in the worst cases. Popcorn hulls are an example of food rabbits can’t digest.
- Weight gain: Eating excessive amounts of food high in sugar and calories will cause your rabbit to gain weight. It could result in obesity which has a bunch of related issues (e.g. skin problems and heart conditions).
- Bloating: When gas builds up and expands their stomachs uncomfortably. If untreated and the bloating continues, it could cause a rupture.
- Diarrhea: The wrong type of diet can cause your rabbit to have loose stools. This affects the nutrients they can access and can cause dehydration.
- Choking: Popcorn (especially the kernels) are high-risk choking hazards. The kernels are hard and can get stuck, and popper corn can cause blockages and make your rabbit suffocate.
- Kidney and heart disease: Too much salt in their diet increases their blood pressure and puts strain on your rabbit’s heart and kidneys.
- Poisoning: Signs to watch out for include if your rabbit is in a haunched position, is lethargic, is not able to go to the toilet, has lost their appetite, and if they’re bloated. If your rabbit has these symptoms, contact a vet ASAP.
If your rabbit has eaten popcorn and seems to be struggling to breathe or you suspect that they have a blockage, take them to a vet ASAP. Other signs of an issue include not eating normally, loose stools, lethargy, and acting out of character.
If your rabbit has eaten homemade popcorn with little to no added salt, preservatives, and oil, they might be okay. Plain popcorn, if your rabbit manages to eat it without choking or it getting stuck, might pass through with no problems. In this case, give your rabbit plenty of hay and water, and monitor them closely.
If your rabbit has eaten a lot of popcorn or eaten popcorn that has any sort of added ingredients, it’s very possible that they’ll have issues. If they’re showing any symptoms of poisoning or choking, get them to a vet ASAP.
Can Rabbits Eat Salted Popcorn?
No, rabbits can’t eat salted popcorn. Adding extra salt onto popcorn (when plain popcorn should be avoided) is twice as bad. Too much salt can negatively affect rabbits, leaving them dehydrated and their organs working overtime.
Can Rabbits Eat Sweet Popcorn?
No, rabbits can’t eat sweet popcorn. It’s popcorn with extra ingredients like sugar that will overwhelm your rabbit’s digestive system. Too much sugar would have a hugely detrimental effect on your rabbit.
Can Rabbits Eat Toffee Popcorn?
No, rabbits can’t eat toffee popcorn. It’s already a food that should be avoided, but adding toffee makes it even more unhealthy. Toffee isn’t something your rabbit will be able to digest since they’re designed for fiber-rich food like hay.
Can Rabbits Eat Popcorn Kernels?
No, rabbits can’t eat popcorn kernels. The kernels are small, hard shells that can be heated into popcorn. They are a serious choking hazard and can potentially get stuck and cause internal blockages.
Can Rabbits Eat Corn?
No, rabbits can’t eat corn. This includes cobs, cooked corn, dried corn, and any other type. It’s not nutritional for your rabbit and creates a risk of choking. It’s also likely to cause a bunch of health issues, so should be avoided.
Can Rabbits Eat Sweetcorn?
No, rabbits shouldn’t eat sweetcorn. It isn’t toxic to them, but it isn’t great for their health either. This includes fresh, canned, and frozen sweetcorn. It doesn’t offer any nutritional value either, so there’s little point risking your rabbit’s health for a handful of sweetcorn.
What Should Rabbits Eat?
Your rabbit should be eating a balanced diet. This includes hay (to get fiber), fresh vegetables (for vitamins and minerals), pellets, treats, and drinking water. You can vary which vegetables and fruits you give your rabbit, but fundamentally they should be following this diet.