Avocados for pigs? This question came to my mind a few days back when I was searching for healthier treats for my pet pig. Like most of you, I took my laptop, searched, and got surprised that no article on this subject is giving a satisfactory answer. Some of the writers were calling it okay for pigs whereas the few warned about the risks.
So, I decided to answer it in a way it should be answered. In this article, we would be discussing can pigs eat avocados? If they can, do they like avocados?, Are they safe? What’s the right way of feeding avocados? And what vitamins and minerals do they contain? Now let’s get started
Can Pigs Eat Avocados? Yes, Pigs can eat avocados. It’s up to you whether you want your pigs to eat avocados or not. Pigs don’t mind charging themselves up with any fruit or vegetable. Avocados are fine neither healthy nor that harmful if they are being fed in the right manner. But if they can be avoided, they should be avoided.
Do pigs like avocados?
The appropriate answer to this question “whether pigs like avocados or not?” pigs aren’t picky eaters. They do not strongly hate any edible fruit or vegetable. So, how can they not like this earthy, grassy, and nutty flavor?
Why avocados should be avoided for pigs?
According to Colorado State University, Avocados are not entirely bad, the oil-soluble substance called “Persin” is toxic for pigs. Persin can not only be engulfed through avocados but with seeds and avocado trees as well. It doesn’t matter how this toxic substance gets in, it’s just harmful in all senses. So, avocados that are enriched with several vitamins and minerals must be avoided for this toxic part.
However, avocado waste is healthy and rewarding in all senses
The advanced livestock keepers know how they can get benefits from this rewarding fruit and they have been doing it for years. Yes, avocados can be toxic but the risk can be minimized. The one way to feed avocados without putting your pig’s life at stake is allowing them to eat the avocado waste only.
A well-known advanced pig farmer has been feeding avocados waste to improve fat production and carcass qualities.
Reasons to feed Avocado to Pigs
Feeding avocado wastes minimize the feeding cost. Pigs eat a lot, feeding cost is 70% of the total annual cost a livestock keeper has to bear.
So, you see, feeding avocado waste can not only improve fat production and carcass qualities it also helps in cutting down the total cost and improving the profit margin.
There is nothing bad about feeding waste or scrap to pigs as this poor little creature does enjoy finding edibles from the wastes.
Now that my readers are well aware that avocados can be fed but they should be avoided as it contains an oily substance that is considered highly toxic for birds and animals like pigs.
Persin, if consumed in a noticeable quantity, can become a reason for the poor animal’s death. Fortunately, by following the few basic feeding rules, the life-threat and other health-related risks can be minimized to some extent. So, let’s discuss some
How should you feed avocados?
As from the above-mentioned headings you might have judged that it’s crucial to be careful with the avocados. It’s important to mention here, that these feeding rules may not make avocados completely safe to be consumed but they would surely bring down the risks. The general feeding rules are:
- Writing this golden “feed-in-moderation” rule on the top because this toxic substance can only be engulfed in minimal quantity. As the quantity rises, risk increases as well.
- Avocados should be washed before feeding as the chemicals are mostly sprayed to boost production, so if with the oily toxic substance these unnecessary chemicals get passed down the throat. The risk of avocado toxicity increases.
- You can mix avocados or avocado wastes with other fruits and veggies that are considered safer for pigs. Feeding avocados mixed with other nutritional fruits or veggies is the best way to minimize the risk.
Other than the toxic substance that is imprinting the bad image, avocados are packed in all essential nutrients humans, animals, and birds need to live a healthy balanced life. This article would be incomplete if we do not allow you to see both sides of the picture.
What vitamins and minerals avocados contain?
Avocados are the forgiving fruit that contains 20 different vitamins and minerals but magnesium, potassium, iron, calcium, vitamin A, D, C, and B-6 are found in abundance.(Source) What do these nutrients do? Let’s find out
Magnesium, an essential macro-mineral that is needed by pigs for the healthy functioning of several important functions including immune, muscle, and nerve function. Moreover, an adequate amount of magnesium keeps the heartbeat steady, adjusts glucose level, and improves bone health and stability.
Like magnesium and all other crucial nutrients, potassium is demanded for growth. Potassium and magnesium both play similar roles as they have got the reputation of improving metabolism, nerve function, and muscle activity.
Animals, whether it’s pigs or not, need iron for similar reasons as we humans, plants, and every living organism on planet earth do. Iron improves health and supplies oxygen to all the needed parts of every living organism’s body.
Calcium is a rewarding nutrient that is needed to improve and maintain healthy teeth and bones. Besides these two important functions calcium with other important nutrients improves health and growth rate.
Vitamin A deficiency is common in pigs and it leads to night blindness and respiratory issues so it must be supplied in crucial growth years. This rewarding vitamin is also known for bone formation, metabolism, growth, vision, skin, and hoof health. So, it performs similar roles for pigs as well.
Pets are generally vulnerable to vitamin D deficiency, pet pigs are just no exception. One out of five pigs are seen catching the trend and it is usually noticed by the following signs
- Stiff, weak, or bent bones
- Posterior paralysis
So, if you can not arrange enough sunshine, you have to supply it through food and avocados are just perfect for the job.
Vitamin C is needed by the pigs in great amounts especially when they are living in poor conditions.
It rewards the pig’s body in multiple ways including tissue growth and maintenance, immune regulation, and amelioration of oxidative stress. Moreover, it also helps in routine functions and metabolizes glucose.
We as a successful pig farmer, suggest you keep your pigs away from avocados. If the history or present of anything is alarming or doubtful, it should be avoided. Since avocados are not considered that healthy because of the presence of a “persin” so it better to not let your pigs have some.
Other Treats for Pigs
- Can Pigs Eat Oranges?
- Can Pigs Eat Chicken Bones?
- Can Pigs Eat Eggs?
- Can Pigs Eat Apples?
- Can Pigs Eat Grapes?
Pigs can eat avocado but they should not be fed. Avocados are harmful because of the presence of toxic substances called “persin”. However, avocado wastes are a much safer and healthier option. If you have to feed anyway, avocados should be fed fresh, washed, and in small quantities.