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Dangerous Guinea Pig Food List – Unsafe Foods

Published: 8/23/2010 | Author: HappyCavy | Updated: 9/17/2017

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Small guinea pig eating grass

Guinea Pig Dangerous Foods

Updated: January 10, 2013

The below Guinea Pig Dangerous Foods List is a compilation of vegetables, fruits, and herbs that are not safe for guinea pig consumption.

Jump to the Guinea Pig Safe Food List to find out what plants are edible for guinea pigs.

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Anemone (windflower, tumbleweed)
Autumn crocus
Any kind – Too high in fat.
Baked goods (cakes, cookies)
Any kind – causes gas/bloating.
Bishop’s Weed (Ammi majus)
May contain toxic levels of nitrates.
Black locust
Caster oil plants (castor bean, palma)
Cherry trees (wild and cultivated)
Christmas pepper
Clematis (virgin’s bower)
Any kind – Too high in fat.
Coffee, soda
High in sugar, caffeine.
Daffodil (narcissus, jonquil)
Dairy products
Delphinum (larkspur, staggerweed)
Dicerna (bleeding heart, dutchman’s breeches, squirrel corn, turkey corn)
Diffenbachia (dumb cane)
Elephant ear
English ivy
Euphorbia (annual poinsettia, mexican fire plant, fire-on-the-mountain, snow-on-the-mountain)
Garland flower
Glory lily (climbing lily, gloriosa)
Golden chain
Goutweed (Aegopodium podagraria)
  See Bishop’s Weed
Ground Elder (Aegopodium podagraria)
  See Bishop’s Weed
Too pungent.
Hot herbs and spices
Lettuce – Iceberg
Low nutrition, high water content.
Indian spurge tree (pencil tree, malabartree, pencil cactus, monkey fiddle)
Jerusalem cherry
Jams, jellies, fruit preservatives
High sugar content.
High sugar content.
Lantana camera (red sage)
Marsh marigold (cowslip)
Matrimony vine
Meadow saffron
Mountain laurel
Mushrooms (amanita muscaria&amanita phalloides)
Any kind – too high in fat.
Olives (canned)
Pickled or brined vegetables are
NOT safe for guinea pigs
Peppers – hot and chiles
Phytolacca (poke weed, poke berry, ink berry)
Pickled vegetables (dill, pickles, capers, sauer kraut)
Pine needles
Poinciana (bird-of-paradise)
Poison hemlock
Potato and potato tops (leaves)
Poisonous if green or sprouted. Yams and sweet potatoes are OK in moderation.
Pyracantha (firethorn)
Raw beans
Rhododendron (laurels, rose bay, azalea)
Rosary pea
Choking hazard.
Snow-in-the-mountain (Aegopodium podagraria)
  See Bishop’s Weed
Soda, soda pop
High in sugar, caffeine.
Spring adonis (pheasant’s eye)
Strelitzia (bird-of-paradise)
Sweet pea
Dangerous of eaten unprepared or raw.
Tomatillo – leaves and stalk
Tomato – leaves and stalk
Trumpet flower (chalice vine)
Water hemlock
Yellow oleander (lucky nut, tiger apple, be-still-tree)
Dangerous Guinea Pig Food List - Unsafe Foods, 4.2 out of 5 based on 486 ratings
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  • Fresh Food Do you ever give your piggies wild foods?
  • No 🙁 Milk is not safe. I would avoid probably all Vitakraft products.

  • Marlana Phillips Campbell

    OK thank you!!

  • Marlana Phillips Campbell

    What treats can I give my guinea pigs to teach them tricks?

  • Tim Harb

    I also use the folded c&c grid now. Just if you do fold one make sure it is on the side where there is no seam. I had to learn the hard way after breaking a few.

  • Allyson

    I give my gunnia pig ice burg lettuce and tomatoes and she has lived for 5 years

  • Tamara DiGiovanni

    Awesome information! My question is, are a few plain Cheerios okay to give as a treat? I don’t like pet store treats. I feed plenty of fresh organic foods. I eat Cheerios all the time and you know how bad piggies beg and make you feel for having the audacity to eat in front of them without sharing!

  • Tamara DiGiovanni

    Oh gosh, please ignore my picture! I was on a political topic before I came here!

  • Hi, Tamara! Cheerios, along with any other grain products (cereals, pastas, etc.), are not at all safe for guinea pigs. Don’t feel bad keeping them for yourself!

  • Samantha Clear

    I have ecotrition Guinea pig food and it has small seeds is it safe and healthy?

  • Terry

    To the designer of the Dangerous Foods List…This is the correct spelling of poisonous. Just trying to help 🙂

  • phoebe wake

    Iceberg lettuce is safe but it just has no nutritional value, which is why it is said to be bad for them, because they are getting nothing out of it 🙂

  • Lily Hirst

    I’ve given my guinea pigs some of these things are they are perfect when u look at these things just remember they can eat some of them just not on a regular baseis ie, lettece , sweet peas , seeds. Also k noticed there was no avacardo that’s poison for them!

  • Donovan Eady

    Iceberg lettuce isn’t poisonous, for guineas I used to think so, but then one time a pet sitter fed Porkers my eldest guinea pig a stalk, and it wasn’t on the list, but he’s fine, I just fired the sitter and had a little “chat” with him, but Porky’s fine, and Iceberg lettuce doesn’t have any nutritional value for guineas, so it’s kind of like if your really hungry and you eat a bag of Doritos, your hunger may subside, but your not really getting anything out of it. So in general, don’t feed your pigs Iceberg lettuce because your basically just filling them up.

  • Donovan Eady

    Peppers should be avoided, as well as any kind of grain, like seeds, rice, toast doesn’t pose as a fatal threat, but can give your piggies diarrhea and could make them sick, but they will recover, so avoid wheat and grains, if your food has grain in it, don’t worry, but I’m talking about rice and seeds, try to avoid iceberg lettuce because it has no nutritional value and you will be filling your piggie up. Hope this helps a few people!

  • tabby

    i feed my guinea pigs green beans,carrots,brocolli,dandelion leaves and hay.

  • Haley Mason

    What if your guinea had potato can it kill them? it was a white potato and both of them ate it, but unfourtenly one of mine passed and I don’t know the cause. 🙁

  • Nicole

    Are the leaves of the Common Nettle ( Urtica Dioica) safe for guinea pig consumption? ( not all plants of this species have bristles that sting)

  • Justine

    I have been seeing a lot of posts about giving guinea pigs iceburg lettuce. DON’T DO IT. Not only is there no nutritional value, it causing bloating, gas, and discomfort. There is no point in giving them iceburg lettuce. Dark greens… Spinach kale and various other types of lettuce that are dark in color. Avoid giving them the stalk as well.

  • StarlaSkyy

    Bitch im not immature because i wanted to know an answer to a question, if i was fucking immature i would have just started feeding them cheese squares. The fuck? Use your damn head. I hope someone punches the hell out of you for being such an ass. I know if i could I would throat punch your stupid ass. But thanks for the information, dipshit.

  • Danielle Radtke

    Hi, I recently got a Guinea pig and he came with Vitacraft complete nutrition and it says that it has ground corn and flaked corn. Is that ok for him to eat?

  • While I’m not familiar with Vitacraft, we wouldn’t feed anything with any type of corn. We find that KMS Hayloft pellets are very good and not very expensive for what you’re getting:

  • jordan

    can they have fruit from fruit cups

  • Kaylee Boo

    Put it in a toilet paper tube

  • PnP

    Wow! I had a guinea pig that died “mysteriously” a year ago… and now I know why! I fed it 2 bananas every week! Thank you SO much for creating this blog!! Now my other two piggies can live longer, knowing that they can trust what I feed them. Also… what are some good (and safe) toys to create for my pigs?

  • Hi, PnP. Here is an article we wrote about toys for your guinea pig:

  • debra

    can guinea pigs eat juniper berries?

  • debra

    I have a small pets bed that I have made up for my guinea pigs and I fill it with sweet timothy hay ..there male guinea like to lay it in and eat away

  • No, guinea pigs cannot eat juniper.

  • Faith Walker

    I give my guinea pig reddish and he likes it never had a problem before

  • Rhonda Stone

    Hi, I was wondering if the pigs could have lemon tree leaves and stems. My potted tree is in need of pruning and I thought maybe my Lil pigs could have them as something different.

  • Melissa Green Curit

    I have a guinea pig that is 7 years old and he LOVES red bell pepper. He eats it, a smallish piece, 2-3 times a week. I have had other piggies who have also eaten it and it hasn’t been a problem. I highly doubt that your guinea pig died from the red pepper, although you might want to consult with a reputable veterinarian who treats guinea pigs for more answers. We had a guinea pig who died of lymphoma, who went downhill in a matter of a few days before he died-your guinea pig may have been hiding an illness that he couldn’t fight anymore.

  • Kate Kaminski

    Alfalfa hay shouldn’t be given to adult pigs, the calcium content is too high.

  • Leanne Roper

    bell peppers are good for them (remove seeds though) the ones that are not good are chilli peppers ect

  • Oliver Ondick

    they aren’t giving the bell peppers to the guinea pigs ALL the TIME.

  • Sarah Radmore

    I’m a new piggy owner. Can I feed him green onion? Once in a while.

  • Hi, Sarah, guinea pig cannot eat onion of any kind — including green onion.

  • Sarah Radmore

    Okay. Thank you for quick response. I appreciate it and so does Chewy.

  • Denise K.

    no , any type of onions is poisonous for them

  • Julie Shaw

    Can I give my pigs butternut squash n salad onions ?

  • Ariana Parker

    Can guinea pigs eat the flesh of a tomato?

  • Yes, guinea pigs can eat the flesh of a tomato. But tomatoes should be fed sparingly, as they are high in sugar.

  • Zane Vaughn McArthur

    My one loves iceburg lettuce. But doesnt drink alot of water. So me washing it and feeding her that should be ok?

  • Iceberg does have a lot of water content, so it would definitely hydrate her. But it’s concerning that she isn’t drinking water. Is it possible she’s drinking water but you aren’t noticing? You could use the “measure and mark” method to find out how much water she is actually drinking:

    “For water, mark a line on your guinea pig’s water bottle in the morning, and check how much is gone in the evening.”

    Sometimes when a guinea pig has a UTI, they may not drink water from a bottle because peeing hurts, and reducing their water intake reduces their need to pee. You may want to monitor her closely to ensure she is healthy:

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HappyCavy has been online since June 2009 with Hammy and Piglet. In October of 2009, a sweet, fuzzy cavy named Bitsy joined the webcam broadcasts.

Feebee and Buttercup were welcomed to the HappyCavy Forever Home as friends and co-conspirators in January 2011. Dot joined us on July 2012, and Winnie and Rosie were the most recent addition on February 8, 2015 and June 6, 2015, respectively. Learn more about the guinea pigs here.

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