Providing variety in rabbit and guinea pig forage is so important, and helps them get all the micronutrients, phytochemicals, minerals, vitamins, and enzymes they need to be super fit. Some of us can find a good variety of greens and fresh herbs at the grocery store or farmer’s market, but it is always nice to add in the things that are not that easy to find locally.
We’ve found great sources for some binky-worthy organic whole dried herbs, so let’s talk about why these plants are so beneficial. Today’s featured herb: nettle!
You may have heard of “stinging nettle”, or maybe you’ve even brushed up against the leaves and felt the burning sensation. Dried nettle lose that sting, and is apparently yummy for rabbits – they scarf it up.
Nettle is known for anti-inflammatory properties (nettle interferes with the production of prostaglandins). All kinds of problems are inflammatory conditions, if you think about it. Everything from arthritis to urinary tract problems and upper respiratory irritations are inflammatory conditions – even allergies! Chemicals in nettle leaves may interfere with the nerve pathways that communicate pain, making soreness and stiffness less painful.
Nettle supports the immune response in general, and are also astringent. This astringent property helps keep the urinary tract free of bacteria, and may help keep chronic urinary tract and bladder problems under control.
So nettle is more than just a nom-nom, it is a healthy forage supplement.
The amazing power of plants, right? Wait, listen…is that your guinea pig or rabbit we hear? Telling you to get some of this yummy stuff? Hey, get those paws off the keyboard! Let the human do the ordering!