Yes, rabbits can eat rocket. This leafy green (also known as arugula) is a great addition to your rabbit’s diet and should be mixed with several other vegetables as part of their balanced diet.
One handful or one cup of rocket is enough for an average-sized rabbit. You should always combine vegetables for variety (e.g. with kale, watercress, romaine lettuce, or mint.) Rabbits can eat the leaves, stalks, and flowers of rocket – it’s all safe!
Health Benefits of Rabbits Eating Rocket
Rocket is a nutritious leafy green with a peppery taste that most rabbits love. It’s packed full of vitamins and minerals and low in calories – an ideal combination for rabbits!
- Vitamin A (for their eye health).
- Vitamin C (for anti-inflammatory and antioxidant).
- Vitamin K (for reproductive health).
- Iron (for making blood cells).
- Magnesium (for bone structure).
- Copper (for energy and to prevent anemia).
- Potassium (for reduced blood pressure and to help the heart function).
- Calcium (for strong teeth and bones, and blood clotting).
- High water content (for hydration).
Things to Consider Before Giving Rabbits Rocket
There are a few things to consider when giving your rabbit rocket:
- Calcium content: Overloading on calcium can cause your rabbit to develop urinary conditions that are painful and require vet treatment. To prevent this, limit the portion of rocket to one cup per day and vary the leafy greens regularly so they get some vegetables with lower or no calcium.
- Oxalic acid: Rocket also has high levels of oxalic acid, which are okay in small amounts but if eaten too much, or eaten with other foods that are also high in oxalic acid (like spinach) it can be problematic.
- Baby rabbits can’t eat rocket: Don’t introduce rocket into your rabbit’s diet until they’re at least 12 weeks old. Only at this point can you gradually bring new food into their diet, and even then some people wait until closer to one year old.
- Wash it first: You should always thoroughly wash vegetables and herbs under running water to clean off any chemicals (like pesticides) or dirt before giving it to your rabbit.
- Introduce it slowly: When your rabbit has rocket for the first time, you should only give them a small amount and then monitor them for 24 hours to see how they react. If all is well, you can give them more next time.
What if My Rabbit Won’t Eat Rocket?
If your rabbit is refusing to eat the rocket you offered them, it could just be that they aren’t a fan of the peppery taste and smell. If this is the case, remove the rocket and try another vegetable instead.
What Else Should Rabbits Eat?
Rabbits need to eat a balanced diet to be as healthy as possible. The biggest proportion of this should be hay (unlimited amounts of fiber-rich hay). They also need a variety of fresh vegetables, a small number of pellets, and treats occasionally. Don’t forget to give them plenty of drinking water too.
Can Rabbits Eat Cooked Rocket?
No, rabbits shouldn’t eat cooked rocket. This is because cooking rocket reduces the nutritional value and also alters the texture to make it softer. Altogether, rabbits should avoid cooked vegetables and stick with fresh.
Where Can I Get Rocket?
You can either buy rocket from the store or grow it at home. In both cases, it’s better if it’s organic. If getting organic isn’t possible, don’t worry – you’ll just need to thoroughly wash it to remove any lingering chemicals before serving it to your furry friend.