Is It Safe For Rabbits To Eat Onions?

Do you ask yourself can rabbits eat onions? No! adding onions to rabbits’ meal or serving rabbits with onions is a bad practice, this is because, onions contain thiosulphate which are toxic to rabbits. This chemical attack the red blood cells of your rabbits and may lead to disorder known as hemolytic anemia.

So, what if you mistakenly fed your rabbits with onions? Or if you rabbits eat some onions in the garden, what are the common symptoms and all you need to know has been put together in this content.

Can Rabbits Eat Onions?

Onions do more harm to your friend than simply causing an upset stomach or a bad odor. Toxins in this common ingredient may pose a risk to your pets. Complications can range in severity from the minor to the life-threatening.

Onions contain thiosulphate, which is an active ingredient. This component is toxic to rabbits. Your pet’s red blood cells will be severely damaged if they are fed or accidentally ingested onion. This condition is known as hemolytic anemia.

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Red blood cells may burst in the rabbit’s circulatory system as a result of this disease. An additional component of onion compounds is a sulfur compound called organosulfur. It is commonly discovering to precede a medical condition among rabbits, where poison may be absorbed by the digestive system of rabbits.

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An increased risk of harm and other adverse effects is also possible in rabbits, especially if they consume a lot of onions. With this said, you may want to leave out onions from your rabbits’ diet.

A member of the Allium family of vegetables, the common onion is closely related to herbs like garlic, leek, and chive as well. These herbs have numerous health benefits for humans, including boosting the immune system’s ability to fight off disease.

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Onions and other herbs in the same family operate as anti-inflammatory agents and have cancer-fighting properties. They also help with digestion and heart health. A large number of beneficial minerals and vitamins are also included in them, including iron, antioxidants, phosphorus, calcium, folate, vitamin C, and vitamins B6 and many more.

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But if onions are so healthy for people, can rabbits consume them? If so, will this make them toxic and cause health or digestive issues?

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Why Are Onions Harmful To Rabbits?

Toxic Allium family plants like onions, garlic, and all other herbs can seriously harm rabbits and even the majority of other animals. Usually avoided, they are difficult to digest.

A rabbit’s body may experience hemolytic anemia if they consume onions. This is a blood condition that causes red cell loss, which can further cause anemia and lightheadedness in your rabbit. Severe anemia and even death can happen in extreme circumstances.

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It is well known that onions can also have an immunosuppressive impact, lowering the rabbit’s immune system. Additionally, they can make rabbits have anaphylaxis.

These are the reasons why it is never a good idea to give our bunnies onions or any other herbs from the onion family, such as garlic. They won’t help and could result in major health issues for rabbits.

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The problem is that there isn’t any one portion of an onion that contains the toxin that is specifically dangerous to pet rabbits. In actuality, they can be found throughout the entire onion. This indicates that it is present in the juice, flesh, leaves, and processed powders.

This indicates that eating onions, whether they are raw, cooked, fried, or powdered, might cause harm to rabbits. This is a general issue, not just with onions.

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In actuality, all other allium-related foods can be predicted to have the same harmful consequences. Leeks, chives, shallots, and garlic are included in this. These foods all contain the same toxic substance.

The potency of garlic and onion powders is even higher than that of fresh versions. As a result of their presence in many foods consumed by humans, this could actually imply that they are even more dangerous.

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The list of poisonous foods that should never be fed to your rabbits includes onions as a result of this. Because they are hard to digest, they cause a loss of red blood cells.

How Do Rabbits Show Symptoms Of Onion Toxicity?

The only way to determine whether your pet rabbit accidently or purposely ate onions is by watching them. Fainting and collapsing, lacrimation, pale gums, reddish urine, oral irritation, loss of appetite, weakness, and lethargy are a few symptoms to keep an eye out for.

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The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals lists rapid heart rate, panting, and vomiting as other symptoms. If you see any of these, you should take your pet to a nearby vet straight soon to prevent the problem from getting worse and becoming unmanageable.

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Based on your rabbit’s symptoms and the results of any blood tests, your veterinarian will evaluate and diagnose its health. If your rabbit recently consumed vegetables and the veterinarian finds hemolytic anemia or any Heinz body development, the combination of all the symptoms will undoubtedly lead the doctor to believe that onion toxicity is to blame.

It’s important to keep in mind that your rabbits’ hemolytic anemia could also be caused by a number of other illnesses. In order to properly treat and medicate your cherished pet, it is crucial to obtain appropriate examination and diagnosis.

Other Dangerous Foods Like Onions

Other poisonous foods have the same negative consequences on your rabbits. There are actually quite a few others. The avocado is one of them. Avocados typically cause the worst reactions in rabbits. They are known to contain severe respiratory issues when consumed and may even result in death.

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Additionally known to induce renal failure are raisins and grapes.

You must keep your rabbits’ reach away from every portion of these fruits. Grape juice and raisin bagels are also included in this. Of course, it’s best to stay away from all other allium herb family members as well. Since pets should never be given onions, garlic also has similar effects. The same family also includes chives, leeks, and scallions.

However, some people assert that garlic can immunize your rabbits, bolstering their resistance to illness. After all, garlic is an antibiotic and an antiseptic that relieves bloating and gas in humans.

It also has expectorant properties for the lungs. Unfortunately, this notion has remained a theory, and it has been observed that garlic is poisonous to rabbits.

The good news is that garlic does not naturally attract rabbits. This is one of the reasons you should sprinkle a little garlic-infused water on your plants to deter rabbits from stepping on them and damaging your prized plants.

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Your rabbit needs a healthy diet that includes things like fresh hay, such as timothy, grass, and oat hay. Along with high-quality pellets, the list can also include fresh vegetables and water. Anything that is more than a treat should generally only be offered in small amounts, just to be safe.

What Occurs When A Rabbit Eats An Onion?

Ingesting onions can make a rabbit develop hemolytic anemia. This is a blood disorder that causes red cell loss, which might further cause your rabbit to become anemic and lightheaded. Serious cases can sometimes result in severe anemia and even death.

Can Rabbits Consume Raw Onion?

Is my rabbit able to consume garlic and onion? Despite the numerous alleged medical benefits of onion and garlic, rabbits should not be given these foods. In addition to having an immunosuppressive impact on rabbits, onions and garlic can cause anaphylaxis in them.

Are Onion Peels Edible To Rabbits?

A small amount consumed once should not be dangerously harmful. You might experience some stomach discomfort or a brief, mild decline in appetite. A large amount consumed or several small amounts consumed over a long period of time would be more hazardous.

Do Rabbits Consume Garden Onions?

Rabbits are fairly toxic to onions. Fortunately, rabbits are good at self-regulating healthy vegetables, and in the wild, they won’t eat your onions. They WILL, however, consume onions if they are unable to discover any other food sources.

Can Purple Onions Be Eaten By Rabbits?

You shouldn’t feed onions or any other members of the onion family to rabbits. They can result in hemolytic anemia, which is poisonous to rabbits, as well as anaphylactic shock. They can make you feel queasy and have immunosuppressive effects. Give your rabbit no foods containing onions or onions in general.


There is no need to elaborate more; onions, in any quantity, are extremely harmful to rabbits. A typical rabbit weighs about 2.5 kilograms. Even just 20 grams of onion can pose a serious threat to their lives. The toxins thiosulphates and disulfides found in each part of the onion can cause harm to your pets’ red blood cells.

Always be careful to prevent your rabbits from developing into any type of allium herb. This applies to both fresh and foods that contain them, even in powdered form, in snacks or treats. Your rabbits will be harmed and poisoned by them. In any case, be sure to speak with or see your veterinarian.

Author: David Arthur

David's lifelong passion for animals blossomed into a dream profession in 2020. He founded Petscareway Inc., a professional pet care company situated in the Texas. Several veterinarians have educated him in Pet First Aid and CPR since 2003. David decided to become a certified Pet First Aid and CPR instructor in 2011 after completing an instructor training course. David decided he had to be a part of ProPetHero when he discovered them in 2016 and saw how they were offering ER veterinarian-led training to everyone. As a result, he became a member of the ProTrainings family, the designers of ProPetHero. He volunteers and fosters for The Boxer Rescue Inc in his spare time, is a health-conscious Boxer breeder, and is a member of the Middlesex Boxer Club and Wachusett Kennel Club. David has served as a mentor to many people in the pet industry and in the small company world. When he's not working or helping, he's competing with his dogs in agility, lure coursing, and conformation trials across the country. David can be seen training with his puppies, hiking with them on trails, or playing in his backyard when he is not at a trial or trying to find a nice home for a Boxer through the rescue.

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