Freezing fresh fruits and vegetables (vegetables)
You should not freeze fresh fruits and vegetables for later feeding to your pet.
For what ?
To answer this question, we will start by explaining to you what happens during freezing. You should already know that the majority of fruits and vegetables contain more than 90% water.
When the temperature is lowered slowly (which happens in your freezer), the water between the cells freezes into ice crystals . These sharp crystals then insert themselves into the cell walls . Once thawed, the food breaks down , the cell fluid leaks out and with it all the nutrients it contains. Also, food goes bad relatively quickly .
Fresh foods will then have lost their texture , density and even taste .
In some rabbits (the most sensitive) the state of the food could cause digestive disorders, such as diarrhoea. However, the 1st reason why you shouldn’t give anything frozen is that it no longer has any nutritional or taste value! Why give away something that is useless and not even good?!
As far as fruits and vegetables frozen in “flash” (ultra-rapid) in special devices are concerned, we leave you alone to be the judge. This phenomenon is called flash freezing . This results in microscopically small crystals that form between cells, which do not cut through cell walls . Once thawed, the result is clear in terms of taste and appearance: the freshness and flavor are better , the nutritional value is higher and the texture is well preserved.
No literature tells us if it is good or not for herbivores! We don’t know, we’re not going to say the opposite! We can just explain to you what is different between these two processes. What is certain is that fresh quality food is incomparable despite everything for the well-being of your rabbit or rodent, compared to frozen products.
Find our article on foods allowed for rabbits and guinea pigs.
Freezing dried fruits and vegetables (vegetables)
Fruits and dried vegetables do not need to be frozen to be stored BUT in a very specific case it can be useful.
Indeed, food moths (and sometimes weevils) love good natural and dried products. And in this kind of case, you tend to throw everything away so as not to be invaded in your home! If your product is stuffed with moths or the like, we advise you to throw it away. But if you just find a small butterfly or a small larva of it, it’s a shame to put everything in the trash.
This type of small animals are absolutely not dangerous for our big ears and our rodents. We just have to eradicate them so that they don’t settle in our cupboards. To do this, freezing remains your best friend!
A dry product cannot be degraded by the cold , because it is precisely dry! You can therefore freeze it (48 hours) to get rid of any small invaders.
It is essential that during this process your dry product is enclosed in a perfectly airtight container. Moisture must not be able to penetrate under any circumstances, this would damage your food and you should therefore imperatively throw it away.
When you take it out of the freezer, remove the product from its airtight packaging and let it come to room temperature, in the open air in a dry place. Once warmed up, you can store it in a container of your choice to preserve it as long as possible.
Give food that is still frozen to refresh your animal
In the pet world the practice is highly discouraged. However, in zoos this is a common practice for almost all species, even the most fragile. Ice cubes containing fruits and vegetables are distributed during heat waves.
We cannot therefore advise you in this area, but invite you to contact your specialist veterinarian on this subject. At BAMM, and this is just our own practice, not a universal truth, we only offer ice cream to our dogs.
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