Can Guinea Pigs Eat Oats? (Are They Safe?)

Guinea pigs are popular pets and must be fed a varied and healthy diet to maintain good physical condition. Guinea pigs are not particularly fussy eaters, but it is important to control what they eat to keep them healthy. With this in mind, can guinea pigs eat oats?

Guinea pigs can eat oats, but oats can be bad for guinea pigs. Oats contain high levels of phosphorus which can cause urinary tract infections in guinea pigs and other compounds that negatively affect digestion. Oats can also make guinea pigs overweight very quickly, but this can be beneficial to help sick guinea pigs gain weight.

There are many food items that are unsafe for guinea pigs, and it is the responsibility of the guinea pig owner to understand what they should and should not be eating, as well as what a healthy guinea pig diet looks like. Let’s learn more about oats for guinea pigs and find out how this food affects our piggies.

Nutritional Data for Plain Oats

NutrientAmount (per 100g)
Calories371 kcal
Protein13.7 g
Fat6.87 g
Carbohydrate68.2 g
Fiber9.4 g
Sugar1.42 g
Vitamin C0 mg
Calcium47 mg
Phosphorus458 mg
Iron4.64 mg
Magnesium270 mg
Potassium358 mg
Selenium28.9 µg
Source: USDA Food Database

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Oats?

Guinea pigs are herbivores with a wide and varied diet. They should eat various foods to maintain optimal health, but can you safely feed oats to guinea pigs?

Oats are not generally recommended for guinea pigs. Oats are often classified as a food to avoid feeding guinea pigs, but the reality is that the answer here is a little less straightforward than it may seem.

Oats are very high in phosphorus, which can cause severe urinary tract and kidney problems in guinea pigs if consumed too much. Oats also contain a high amount of carbohydrates and fiber, which can cause digestive problems in guinea pigs.

This food item is not healthy for guinea pigs on a regular basis. In addition to the phosphorus and carbohydrates, the high caloric content of oats can cause guinea pigs to become overweight very quickly, which can lead to a whole host of other problems.

However, oats can be helpful in specific situations. Guinea pigs lose weight quickly when they are ill, and oats can help them gain that weight back much faster than other foods. It is fine to feed plain oats to guinea pigs in small amounts, as long as it is for short-term use only.

Oats are not toxic to guinea pigs, and guinea pigs tend to like them, but they should not be fed to guinea pigs unless the animal needs the oats for a specific reason or oats are recommended for your guinea pig by a vet.

The nutritional content of oats is not ideal for guinea pigs, so oats should only be given to piggies very infrequently and only in small amounts.

Do Guinea Pigs Like Oats?

Oats are not an ideal food for guinea pigs, but if you do give oats to guinea pigs in the right circumstance, will they enjoy it?

While oats are not good for all guinea pigs, many guinea pigs love oats. Some guinea pig owners provide oats for their guinea pigs as occasional treats, and state that these animals thoroughly enjoy eating oats and will eat as much as they are given.

Guinea pigs like oats so much that oats are often recommended for guinea pigs who refuse to eat anything else. If a guinea pig gets sick or hurt and will not eat, they are more likely to eat oats, even if they will not eat anything else.

Oats are a favorite food for guinea pigs, but it is not a food that should be readily available for piggies due to long-term health concerns.

Are Oats Bad For Guinea Pigs?

We have established that oats are not ideal for guinea pigs, but there are occasions when oats can be good for these animals, even as a recommendation from vets. Are oats then good or bad for guinea pigs?

The truth is that oats are not good for guinea pigs. Oats can cause digestive and urinary tract issues in guinea pigs and causes them to gain weight rapidly.

Oats are not a natural aspect of the guinea pig diet. If guinea pigs eat oats too frequently, or if they eat too many oats, they are likely to get sick and develop health problems.

One of the most significant problems that oats can cause in guinea pigs is rapid weight gain, leading to chronic obesity and related health problems.

Oats have a very high caloric content, and guinea pigs thrive on a low-calorie diet. Excess calories are stored as fat, causing the guinea pig to gain weight very quickly.

Although guinea pigs love to eat oats, they should not be fed unless medically necessary, regardless of how much they enjoy eating them.

When To Give Oats To A Guinea Pig

Guinea pigs should not eat oats as regular treats, but the reality is that there are some occasions when oats may be beneficial for guinea pigs, despite the potential issues that this food item can cause.

If a guinea pig becomes sick, they will likely drop a lot of weight quickly. Being underweight is as dangerous for guinea pigs as being overweight. The only way to restore the animal back to good health is to bring the guinea pig’s weight back up to healthy levels.

Using oats to help the animal gain weight quickly is very effective and can help the animal return to a normal weight. This is an effective method vets use to help skinny guinea pigs gain weight quickly.

Oats are not healthy for most guinea pigs. But if the animal is unhealthy, sick, skinny, or growing too slowly, oats can be a good way to help boost the health of guinea pigs if used in a controlled manner.


Guinea pigs can eat oats, but they should only be given to guinea pigs very sparingly. Oats can be used to help sick or malnourished guinea pigs regain their health and recover from illnesses.

Guinea pigs also love eating oats, but it can be very bad for them over time, so never give your guinea pigs oats too often, and avoid making oats a part of their regular daily diet.

If you’re looking for some alternative healthy treats that your guinea pig is bound to love, be sure to check out our next article on 15 Favorite Foods That All Guinea Pigs Love.

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