The answer, to keep it short and sweet, is yes! Guinea pigs are able to eat bell peppers and can safely consume any color! But like all fruits and veggies that you choose to include in your guinea pig’s diet, it’s important to be sure of the benefits and potential risks that exist—especially since there’s such a variety of bell peppers.
We've also got a Vegetable Master List that lists common veggies that your piggy can and can't eat!
What vitamins and other nutrients do bell peppers contain?
Different colors of bell peppers contain different amounts of the same things! Green bell peppers contain 80.4 mg of the vitamin in a 100 g portion, red bell peppers contain 127.7 mg in a 100 g portion, and yellow peppers contain 183.5 mg in a 100 g portion! As a whole, bell peppers are an amazing source of Vitamin C, and you can't go wrong with any color when it comes down to it.
Vitamin C is needed by your guinea pigs to prevent scurvy, which has a multitude of negative effects on them, including lethargy, excessive bleeding of small wounds, difficulty eating resulting in weight loss, and other effects. It’s also great for boosting their immune system, which will help with defending your piggy against infection and illness.
Bell peppers also contain different amounts of calcium depending on the color! For example, in a 100 g portion, green bell peppers contain 10 mg, red peppers contain 7 mg, and yellow peppers contain 11 mg. Calcium is needed to build and maintain your guinea pig’s bones. This is especially important in guinea pigs that carry the satin gene, since they have trouble properly absorbing calcium from their diet and it leads to the decalcification of their bones.
What other benefits do bell peppers provide for your guinea pig?
Bell peppers are great at promoting a strong immune system, and of course contain tons of fiber, which helps with good digestion, which is important if your guinea pig’s diet is filled with a lot of variety.
What are the downsides about bell peppers for guinea pigs?
Unfortunately, as good as they are for your piggies, there are some negatives to bell peppers. Unlike the softer seeds of something like a cucumber, the seeds of bell peppers are hard, and can serve to be a choking hazard. It’s important to remove all of them if you are serving the bell peppers to your guinea pig.
Bell peppers can also cause an upset stomach if too much of it is served to your guinea pig. This can lead to diarrhea. There is also a high sugar content, which isn’t good for piggies, since it can lead to the development of diabetes and obesity over time.
How should you go about feeding your guinea pig bell peppers?
When taking into consideration all the nutrition factors, green bell peppers are the best for your guinea pig to eat, because of their lower sugar content. It has almost 2 g less than the other colors. However, all colors of bell peppers can be safely consumed by piggies.
When preparing bell peppers for guinea pigs, guinea pigs are able to eat the seeds, but we usually remove them! Make sure to avoid the stem, as well as the leaves.
As for portions, according to the Humane Society, two half-inch slices per day is perfectly okay to give to your guinea pig. Others may opt for giving it to them less often. When it comes to deciding what is best for your guinea pig, it’s important that you pay attention to their physical condition and do what’s best for them!
Guinea pigs can eat bell peppers, but do they like it?
Our piggies love anything sweet, so it’s safe to say they love to eat bell peppers!
Overall, it is OK to feed your guinea pigs bell peppers!
We always want to emphasize this, but it’s important to carefully moderate how much of any food you choose to feed your piggies! Careful research, as well as paying close attention to your own guinea pig’s responses to new foods is the best way to decide whether a certain food item is good for them.
What else can guinea pigs eat?
Check out our Vegetable Master List for an extensive list of vegetables for guinea pigs!