Can Rabbits Eat Dates? (Know the Facts!)

You could provide your bunny with a small portion of dates occasionally, even though dates are much more sugary. But we recommend you don’t provide the dates to your bunny. This could cause stomach upset and digestive issues. 

Rabbits have a very sensitive diet. You should not give them sugary foods as regular food. Hay, moderate amounts of pellets, and water are the regular foods of bunnies. Treats (sugary items) are usually added to regular meals to bring variety. 

Have you ever thought that all those treats like dates are good for your bunny? Keep reading to find out. 

Why Rabbits Shouldn’t Eat Dates?

Dates are high in natural sugars like glucose, fructose and sucrose. While sugars occur naturally in fruits, excessive intake can cause health problems for rabbits. The high sugar content of dates can lead to obesity, gastrointestinal issues and dental disease if fed too often.

The flesh is fairly high in calories and low in essential nutrients compared to leafy greens, vegetables and hay. Additionally, the pits contain small amounts of cyanide which can be toxic if consumed. For these reasons, dates should only be an occasional treat.

A few pieces, 2-3 times per week is sufficient. Rabbits have sensitive digestive systems and high sugar foods can disrupt their gut balance. It’s best to focus their diet on hay, veggies, leafy greens and pellets. Dates lack the nutritional value of these staple foods. Moderation is key for high-sugar fruits like dates.

Nutrition facts of date

The nutritional value of one date (8g) is as follows 

  • Calories: 23
  • Sugars: 5g
  • Fat: 0g
  • Sodium: 0.2mg
  • Carbohydrates: 6g
  • Fiber: 0.6g
  • Magnesium: 3.4 mg
  • Iron: 0.1 mg
  • Protein: 0.2g
  • Potassium: 53mg

Source: verywellfit

Take a look at the amount of sugar. A regular date contains 5 grams of sugar. That’s dangerous for your pet bunny. 

Your bunny will be fat if you feed it date regularly. It will also be susceptible to microbes. 

In addition to obesity, your bunny might not want to eat the regular boring diet if she or he is addicted to this sugary and tasty treat. Therefore, you will be in trouble. 

While dates are good for us, they won’t provide any nutrition to your bunny. 

do rabbit eat dates

Can rabbits eat dates seeds?

Date seeds contain small amounts of cyanide, so it’s best to avoid feeding the pits to rabbits. The fleshy part of the date fruit, however, is safe for rabbits to eat. Dates make a tasty treat that’s high in natural sugar and fiber. When feeding dates to bunnies, be sure to remove the pit first.

You can chop or mash the date flesh into bite-sized pieces. Introduce new foods like dates gradually and in moderation to avoid digestive upset. Dates should only account for a small part of a balanced diet. Focus on providing plenty of hay, leafy greens, pellets, and vegetables. Overall, dates are a fine snack for rabbits if seeded and fed properly.

Can rabbits eat dates everyday?

It’s best to limit dates as a treat for rabbits, rather than feeding them daily. Dates are high in natural sugars like fructose and glucose. While safe in moderation, too many dates can lead to weight gain or digestive issues in rabbits. Ideally, dates should only account for 1-2 tablespoons of a rabbit’s daily diet.

Their main food sources should be hay, leafy greens, pellets, and vegetables. Dates lack the nutritional value of these staple foods. Feeding too many could lead to nutritional deficiencies over time. An occasional date, 2-3 times per week, is fine for most rabbits. But it’s better to keep dates to a minimum and opt for healthier, low-sugar treat options like carrots, apple slices, or kale daily. Moderation is key when feeding high-sugar fruits.

Can rabbits eat dried or chopped dates?

Rabbits should not be fed dried, fresh, or chopped dates. They should not be fed any type of dates to reduce the chance of obesity and stomach trouble. 

Can rabbits eat pitted dates?

Rabbits should not eat pitted dates. Every type of date contains more or less the same nutritional value and a lot of sugar. Sugar is bad for bunnies, so you should not feed them pitted dates. 

Healthy Alternatives to Dates for Rabbits

  • Carrots – Crunchy, a sweet root vegetable that’s rich in vitamins and minerals. Feed in moderation.
  • Green Leaf Lettuce – Mild-tasting green that’s low in calories and high in vitamin A and folate.
  • Cucumbers – Refreshing, hydrating veggie that aids digestion. Peel skin before feeding.
  • Bell Peppers – Sweet, crunchy, and full of vitamin C. Opt for red, yellow, or orange colors.
  • Broccoli – Nutritious green that’s high in fiber. Feed cooked florets in small amounts.
  • Celery – Crisp stalks that are low in sugar and calories. Cut into bite-sized pieces.
  • Green Beans – Nutritious legumes packed with antioxidants like vitamin C and beta carotene.

What should you feed your bunny regularly instead of dates? 

Rabbits have a very simple diet. Fiber makes up the majority of their diet. Hay is their main food source. Take a look at the bunny’s regular diet.

HayYou should ensure an unlimited supply of hay. Different types of hays are available in the market or at your nearby farmhouse. You could provide your bunny the alfalfa hay, oat hay, meadow hay, etc.. To avoid the wastage of hay, you could use a hay rack in the rabbit cage or hutch.
Pellet foodDifferent types of pellets are available for the bunny. However, Pellets are not the main diet. You could give the pellets as an additional source of energy and nutrients.
WaterWater is the most needed in the rabbit diet. Most of the pet bunnies don’t want to drink water at the beginning. You could use a water bottle or bowl to ensure a regular water supply. During the winter, you could use a heated water bottle to avoid the water from freezing.  
Rabbit-safe treat (includes vegetables and sugary fruits)You could provide the treats once or twice a week to your bunny. Most of the treats contain like dates high amounts of sugar. That isn’t good for your bunny in the long run.

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Final Thoughts 

Dates are not harmful to your bunny if he eats a small amount. However, don’t provide dates as regular food. There are a lot of rabbit-safe treats available around you. Consider providing one of them. 


Alex is a full-time rabbit lover and part-time Biologist. He is a proud parent of two rabbits. It's his childhood dream to rescue endangered animals and make the world better for living.

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