How an unbalanced diet can lead to disease in your Small Animals

An unbalanced diet can have significant impacts on the health of rabbits and guinea pigs, leading to various diseases and health issues. Vetafarm’s Origins range provides you with readily available food and supplements to ensure your small animal receives all the nutrients it needs. Each diet is completely balanced and is formulated to make up 20% of your rabbit or guinea pig diet, alongside 75% of quality hay and 5% of treats. Additional supplementation is only required for small animals that are not fed on Cavy Origins or Rabbit Origins.

Dental disease

Rabbits and guinea pigs have continuously growing teeth. A diet without sufficient access to high-fibre hay can lead to dental overgrowth, causing dental disease, pain, abscesses, and difficulty eating. Origins Fescue Mini Bale is a high-fibre hay that is grown locally, here in Australia on our farm. Providing your small animal with unlimited access to hay is essential to ensure that their teeth are constantly being grounded down to prevent dental overgrowth.


Often many commercial rabbit and guinea pig foods are made up of high carbohydrates and fats, which can easily lead to obesity if not fed in moderation. Excessive consumption may lead to an increased risk of obesity which can lead to various other health issues.

Vitamin C Deficiency

Guinea pigs cannot synthesize vitamin C on their own and rely solely on their diet to receive it. A diet without vitamin C can lead to scurvy – a condition which leads to weakness, poor wound healing, swollen joints and sometimes death. Providing your guinea pig with a balanced diet that contains vitamin C is essential to allow your guinea pig to thrive. Cavy Origins contains stabilised vitamin C making it super easy and convenient to ensure your guinea pig receives all the essential nutrients it needs to thrive. Vita C Tabs is a readily available vitamin C supplement that can be added to your guinea pigs’ water daily. Vita C Tabs are only necessary for guinea pigs that are not fed Cavy Origins.

Bladder Stones

An unbalanced diet with excessive calcium and insufficient water intake can lead to the formation of bladder stones in guinea pigs. These stones can cause pain, bloody urine, and urinary tract infections.

Digestive issues

Feeding an unbalanced diet with excessive carbohydrates and sugary treats can impact the digestive tract and gut flora of rabbits and guinea pigs. Overconsumption can result in diarrhea, bloating, and digestive upsets.

Providing a complete and balanced diet with unlimited access to fresh hay, a variety of fresh vegetables, limited amounts of pellets, and plenty of fresh water is essential. Never feed them foods that are toxic or harmful to their digestive systems, such as chocolate, caffeine, onions, and certain plants.

If you suspect your small animal is suffering from illness or disease, be sure to seek advice from your veterinarian straight away!

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