Even a novice rabbit grower knows that grass is the basis of a fluffy pet’s ration. In summer, when the fields are covered with a carpet of fragrant wormwood, rabbit owners ask themselves: is it possible to feed eared birds with this plant? The answer is unequivocal: you can and even need.
Composition and properties
Rabbits have always been partial to wormwood because of its specific taste and aroma – even the most fastidious and thoroughbred representatives will not refuse to eat this plant. But wormwood is not only tasty, but also useful: the composition is rich in a mass of substances and components that are indispensable for maintaining the health of a rodent:
- vitamin C;
- bitter glycosides;
- potassium salts;
- ketolactones – ketopelanolide A, ketopelanide B and others;
- organic acids – malic, succinic;
- sesquiterpene lactones – absintin, anabintin;
- resinous and tannins;
- flavonoids – artemetin and others;
- essential oil.
Essential oil, the concentration of which in the plant is 0.5-2%, has a list of its own beneficial elements:
- thuyl alcohol;
But the benefits of wormwood for the rabbit do not end there. This plant is a storehouse and source of such micro and macro elements as:
The benefits and harm of wormwood for rabbits
This combination of beneficial components has a beneficial effect on the rabbit as a whole, especially on the rodent’s digestive and immune systems. Introduction to the daily menu of this plant allows you to protect the animal from beriberi and maintain its health at an optimal level.
Responsible attitude to the diet of the rabbit and competent introduction to the diet of wormwood will bring the next animal favor:
- Increased appetite. Good appetite is important at the stage of active growth of pets, especially if the rodent is raised for sale.
- Improving the work of the stomach. A rabbit with a healthy stomach is a contented and healthy rabbit.
- Removing the effects of food poisoning. Some types of poisoning (especially chemical) rodents are very difficult to tolerate. Wormwood will speed up the amendment process and make life easier for the pet.
- Reducing gas formation. Any rodent is aware of the problem of excessive accumulation of gases that can bring the baby a lot of discomfort. The plant allows you to remove accumulated in the intestine gases.
- Protection against parasites. The wormwood contains components that prevent damage by parasites, for example, coccidia, provoking the development of coccidiosis. In addition, the plant is an excellent natural and environmentally friendly cure for worms in rabbits.
However, not all wormwood is equally useful for a rabbit. A breeder should avoid such plant species as vermouth and Chernobyl. These types of grass are poisonous for rabbits, and the use of freshly harvested wormwood can lead not only to severe poisoning, but also to death.
If the rodent has problems with the kidneys, or the rabbit is expected to be replenished in the near future, it is better to refuse wormwood altogether.
Everything is good in moderation, and wormwood is no exception to this rule. Its excessive consumption of rabbit leads to negative consequences:
- loss of appetite;
- urinary retention;
- muscle paralysis and even death.
Proper collection of plants
So that the wormwood eaten by the rabbit was not only tasty, but also useful, its collection place plays an important role. Grass collected from the road or not far from an industrial enterprise will not only add health to the animal, but will most likely cause poisoning.
One of the main selection criteria for wormwood is its appearance. Dirty, spoiled and diseased plant should not get into the rabbit feeder. In addition, it is best not to cut the grass, and pick off by hand. The metal tip (scissors, sickle, lawn mower) leads to its oxidation upon contact with the stem, as a result of which the chemical composition of the grass changes, and not always for the better.
How to feed the rabbit wormwood?
Isolated wormwood can be given no more than once a week. On other days, offering the plant to a rodent should be combined with other herbs in such a way that the percentage of wormwood in relation to the whole plant food consumed by the rabbit is less than 40%. Learn more about what kind of grass can be added to the rabbit’s diet, learn from this article.
In the summer season, when the plant can be found almost throughout the entire territory of Russia, fresh wormwood is a way to save money on feeding a pet.
In order to get as much benefit from the plant as possible, it must be added to the menu from the appearance of the first shoot until the grass becomes fully mature. This is due to the fact that each stage of growth of wormwood is accompanied by changes in the chemical composition. As a result, the beneficial properties of a newly emerged plant and a fully mature plant differ significantly.
Freshly mowed grass is not suitable as food for rodents – it needs a bit of a whale. To do this, lay a wormwood laid with a thin layer for a day in a well-ventilated area. If there is none, then you can use the courtyard or balcony, the main thing is to provide a shelter and prevent moisture ingress. After the time the plant can be eaten rabbit.
In dried form
In winter, wormwood can be dried so as not to deprive the rodent of nutrients in the cold winter season. Dry leaves and stems in any convenient way, the main thing – to achieve complete drying and prevent the formation of mold. As a rule, the attic is used for these purposes, but any other room with a horizontal surface is also suitable.
Drying method does not differ from drying. The only difference is the time required for readiness. It can take several days or even weeks to dry the wormwood, depending on the humidity in the room.
The volume of dry wormwood in the pet’s diet should also not exceed 40% of the rest of the plant food.
Wormwood is an indispensable plant in the rabbit’s diet. It will provide the animal with all the necessary vitamins and substances, promote healthy digestion and protect the pet from diseases and parasites. The main thing – to comply with precautions and do not exceed the dosage.