Essential and no essential nutrients
A nutrient refers to a substance that provides an animal with nourishment needed for its growth and life maintenance. This substance can be found in the various dietary foods consumed, be taken from the environment or synthesized by the animal and it can be essential or nonessential.
Essential nutrients are those that the body cannot produce at all or produce in the needed amounts whereas those that the body can produce or synthesis does not need to be in their diets are nonessential nutrients. Here is what rabbit’s need:
- Drinking water
- Essential and nonessential proteins
- Fats and oils
- Carbohydrates and fiber
- Essential and nonessential vitamins
- Micro and Macrominerals
These nutrients are vital, and each of them must be provided in the rabbit’s diet in their required amounts. Otherwise, there might be deficiencies. However, providing too much of some of the nutrients such as fats, oil, minerals, some vitamins and so on may also have negative impact including toxicity and digestive issues.
It is worthwhile mentioning the fact that energy is not one of the required nutrients but often gotten from the carbs, proteins, and fats.
Finally, a good understanding of how the digestive system of a rabbit works will go a long way in ensuring you can quickly decide on which sources of nutrients will be ideal and which ones will be harmful. It is not about providing these nutrients but ensuring they are obtained from foods that these animals can digest with ease.
You already have an idea of what bunnies need. If you desire to get details, here are posts covering each in details:
- Do Rabbits Drink Water and How Much?
- Rabbit Carbohydrates and Fiber Requirements and Use
- Rabbit Diet Protein Functions and Risks
- Minerals in Rabbit’s Diet and Functions
- Vitamins for Rabbits – Requirements, and Deficiencies
- Fats and Oils Functions in Rabbit Diet Need & Risks
As you have seen, all the six nutrients that rabbits require are essential for their growth, development, and wellbeing. Any deficiencies or excesses may have some negative impacts.