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Can Mice Eat Bananas? What You Need to Know!

Nicole Cosgrove

Mice make great pets, especially for first-time pet owners. They are clean, quiet, and easy to care for. They’re also easy to feed. Mice are opportunistic eaters who will eat just about anything.

And, yes, this includes bananas. It’s perfectly fine to feed mice bananas. They even provide mice with some nutritional benefits. Keep reading to learn more about mice and bananas, as well as other foods mice can and cannot eat.

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Wild Mice vs. Pet Mice

gerbil mice in humans hand
Image Credit: Milada Vigerova, Pixabay

In the wild, mice are scavengers. They eat a wide variety of foods including seeds, plants, grains, invertebrates, small vertebrates, and even carrion. However, pet mice have different nutritional needs. For one, they aren’t as active as wild mice. Pet mice can quickly become obese if they are overfed and inactive.

What Is a Healthy Diet for Pet Mice?

Because they are less active, pet mice don’t need the same foods a wild mouse would. They will typically need around 100 calories per day. For optimal health, you should feed your pet mouse species-specific pellet food. This should make up the majority of their diet. You can put it in a small dish but it might be better to put a little in different areas of the cage as this encourages foraging behavior and keeps your mice moving.

Although it is weird and somewhat disgusting, mice will also engage in coprophagic behavior. This means they will eat their own feces. Their stomachs are able to absorb more nutrients on the second passage. It’s normal behavior for mice and won’t harm them.

Finally, mice should also eat fresh fruits and vegetables. This is where bananas come in!

What Parts of the Banana Can Mice Eat?

Your pet mouse will find the flesh of bananas the tastiest. When you feed your mice bananas (and any other fruit or vegetable) you should cut them into small, manageable pieces. Some mice will even eat the peel of the bananas. This won’t harm them but too much can cause stomach upset as the peel of a banana is very high in fiber.

It’s best not to feed your mice too much banana or any other food for that matter. They do best when they are provided with a varied diet that includes all the nutrients they need without excess to cause weight gain.

What Are the Benefits of Bananas for Mice?

Bananas are a healthy occasional treat for mice that offer some nutritional benefits. They contain fiber, potassium, vitamin C, vitamin B6, and antioxidants. They are also a little high in natural sugars. While this isn’t as unhealthy as added sugars, you should still avoid giving your mice too many foods that are high in sugars. It can cause them to gain weight which will eventually lead to other serious health problems.

What Other Fruits and Vegetables Can Mice Eat?

Along with bananas, there are many other fruits and vegetables your pet mice can eat. Remember, don’t overdo it with any one type of produce and use these foods as special treats.

Some favorite options for mice include:
  • Apples
  • Berries
  • Bok Choy
  • Broccoli
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Carrots
  • Cooked Corn
  • Green Beans
  • Kale
  • Mango
  • Melons
  • Peaches
  • Pears
  • Peas
  • Plums
  • Spinach
  • Tomatoes

Don’t forget to dice their food into small, manageable pieces. You can also hide these foods around their cage for the mice to forage. However, you’ll want to make sure to remove any uneaten portions daily to prevent rotten food and bacteria.

What Foods Aren’t Safe for Mice?

While mice in the wild are known for eating anything they can get their hands on, this doesn’t mean they should or that it’s good for them. Some foods you should not feed your mice include:

  • Seed/grain mixes – These are very high in fat and can cause weight gain.
  • Rhubarb – This vegetable is poisonous to mice.
  • Walnuts – While mice like to nibble on seeds and will eat other nuts, walnuts are poisonous to them.
  • Grapes or raisins – These are also toxic to mice.
  • Processed foods – Most processed foods are packed with unhealthy levels of salt and sugar.
  • Fried foods – Mice are prone to rapid weight gain and don’t need extra fat and calories from oils in fried foods.
  • Chocolate – Chocolate is toxic for many animals, including mice.
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Final Thoughts

In conclusion, yes, mice can eat bananas. They even provide nutrients, vitamins, and minerals essential to the health of your pet mice. However, you should only feed mice bananas and other produce in moderation to prevent weight gain.

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Featured Image Credit: Kseniia Vladimirovna, Shutterstock

Nicole Cosgrove

Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand. She has a strong love for all animals of all shapes and sizes (and particularly loves a good interspecies friendship) and wants to share her animal knowledge and other experts' knowledge with pet lovers across the globe.