The right pellets


Post   » Wed Jan 17, 2018 9:38 pm

I have been owning guinea pigs for three years now and I started each with oxbow brand pellets but each time I have tried none will eat the pellets, so my bf would buy the vita Kraft brand and that has mixed stuff with the pellets, and they eat it all including the pellets. Why is this? I have tried numerous times to get them on the healthier pellet diet but with no success, what tips or methods can I use to get them to eat pellets.
Thank you :)

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Post   » Wed Jan 17, 2018 9:50 pm

Pellets aren't the most important thing in their diets, and the bad stuff in Vita Kraft outweighs the good. If you're using the VitaKraft Complete guinea pig food, it's made of alfalfa, and that has way too much calcium for adult guinea pigs.

I'd just throw the VitaKraft stuff out for the birds, and feed them only Oxbow or KMS Hayloft pellets. They're good quality, and don't contain calcium carbonate, which has been implicated in bladder stones.

You can feed them good quality veggies, preferably a wide variety of colors, such as radicchio, red or yellow peppers, etc. If there's a veggie they particularly like, you can dice it into tiny, tiny pieces and mix it in with the pellets. That may encourage them to try them.

My pigs went without pellets for years because of bladder problems. Good quality hay (NOT the stuff you buy in small bags from pet stores and places like Walmart) and good quality veggies make a pretty good diet for them.


Post   » Wed Jan 17, 2018 9:56 pm

Thank you, the vita kraft it is is the vitakraft vita nature. They get daily hay (as that’s main diet) and daily veggies, I could try the oxbow pellets again, maybe add veggies in it?
I want the best for my piggies and these three years I have tried and still willing to give the best pellets

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Post   » Wed Jan 17, 2018 10:02 pm

That's better than the Complete stuff. It's at least made with timothy. But it does have calcium carbonate in it, and that would be enough for me to turn it down. The only two in the U.S., that I know of, that don't use it as the calcium source are Oxbow and KMS Hayloft.


Post   » Wed Jan 17, 2018 10:06 pm

I’ll try oxbow pellets again and see what I can do to make it tasty, any suggestions?

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Post   » Wed Jan 17, 2018 11:29 pm

See the fourth post above this one. That's the only suggestion I've got.


Post   » Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:19 am

The KMS pellets are fresher (they smell fresh!) and my pigs devour them like they've been starving in the desert for months.

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Post   » Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:39 am

There's a date on KMS pellets. I've never had any that have been milled more than two weeks previously.

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Post   » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:35 am

I wouldn't feed the Vita Kraft at all, and just put out the Oxbow (or KMS if you decide to go that route, which I recommend). If your pigs are good hay eaters, they won't need much of the pellets anyway.


Post   » Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:44 pm

My picky boy loves KMS pellets. He is the king of lazy but will move mountains to get to them.

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Post   » Thu Jan 18, 2018 4:57 pm

I've fed all of my girls (past and present) KMS pellets. I feel they are the best!


Post   » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:08 pm

Thanks everyone!! I’ll get oxbow pellets for them.

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Post   » Fri Jan 19, 2018 10:59 pm

Two other brands that do not contain calcium carbonate are Zupreem (which is timothy-based but also contain a small amount of alfalfa), and a lesser-known brand made by Sherwood Animal Health. My guys are picky; I have two who like Oxbow well enough, but the other three won't touch it. I stopped using KMS a couple of years ago when shipping rates on it went up, but I may eventually have to re-consider.


Post   » Fri Jan 19, 2018 11:22 pm

Right and sadly I think that’s why they like the vitalraft cause it tastes great just something I don’t want to give them, they are all happy and healthy just want to give a better choice of pellet for them


Post   » Thu Jan 25, 2018 8:55 pm

They'll definitely be picky with the "healthy" stuff at first. Look at it this way, seed mixes are equivalent to chips and trail mixes with the candy inside. Oxbow is more like a healthy cracker, lol. So it'll take a while for them to actually WANT to eat the oxbow pellets. Did you try following the transition instructions that are on the back of the Oxbow bag? That may help :)


Post   » Fri Jan 26, 2018 5:28 pm

Actually, the best way to do it is to just take away the crappy stuff and give the good stuff. And then wait them out. They won't starve. As long as you give even the smallest amount of the crappy stuff, they will eat that and leave the other.


Post   » Wed Jan 31, 2018 2:28 pm

Double check the Sherwood pellets. I bought them thinking they were great, but one of my boys started having grit in his pee and he had never had an issue with calcium before. I went back and checked the bag, and the calcium a higher amount than most brands for piggos. I instantly switched him off of it, and haven't had an issue since.


Post   » Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:03 pm

I feed mine Kaytee Timothy complete. They love the stuff and the calcium looks low to me. 0.4 minimum, 0.9 maximum.

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Post   » Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:11 pm

Does the Kaytee product have corn in it? Do you have an ingredient list? Look over for information on how to evaluate pellets.


Post   » Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:43 pm

It's corn free. I'll try to attach a picture with the list.
How would you post a picture in the forums?

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