Amazing digestive results using Sherwood Pellets

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Post   » Tue Feb 27, 2018 11:10 am

Hey everyone,

I switched all 9 of my guinea pigs onto Sherwoood pet health pellets and have to share the awesome findings we have had so far. The pellets have no soy, wheat, byproducts, molasses or fillers like other brands.

1. All pigs who had weird poops or bad poops are normal and perfect looking

2. The unaltered male cages have way less smell

3. My chronic digestive upset pig Bullseye is successfully off Cisapride. He used to be on that twice a day every day for 3.5 years. I tried to take him off it before and it was always unsuccessful in less than 12 hrs. His stomach would stop, backed up and poop everyone once we got him going again. He is pooping perfect now and has normal stomach movement on his own.

4. My chronic bloat and sludge piggy Pecan depuffed in just a day after the switch where before it was a daily battle of the bulge. Gas drops and cisapride daily only to still look bloaty and now she is medication free. I do find she can only tolerate small portions of veggies as well but no more puffed up pig and discomfort. Her sludge has so far not been back in 2 weeks where before was a few times a week of very bad sludge that has caused bleeding and uti's. Deposits she has currently are white chalk powder vs her creamy coloured grit.

5. All pigs eat half as much as before and eat more hay. A pair takes 12 hours to finish 1/8th of a cup, before they would wolf down 1/4 cup in a few hours and want more. They are satisfied with less and no more scarfing it down.

I had to share. Perhaps think how ingredients could be bothering your pigs, I never considered before that their pellets played such a huge roll in their overall health. Soy and wheat are known allergens, hard to digest, can ferment in the stomach. Molasses can cause bad bacteria to form. Why not pay for good ingredients and natural protein vs having them fill up on unnecessary fillers.


Post   » Tue Feb 27, 2018 12:08 pm

I have never seen these pellets before. Are they available at a pet store (here in America where I live) or can I order them online? I’d love to make a switch. My pigs are very

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Supporter in '12

Post   » Tue Feb 27, 2018 12:34 pm

They have a website and are from the US. You can also find them on Amazon and for fellow Canadians you can find them at Hop Online (online store).


Post   » Tue Feb 27, 2018 12:38 pm

Okay! Thank you! I’ll definitely will be trying them when I get low on Oxbow Pellets

And got the T-shirt

Post   » Tue Feb 27, 2018 12:50 pm

A word of caution here. The primary ingredient in these pellets is alfalfa. I realize the Sherwood guy says that that's ok, but he cites absolutely NO research to back that up. And I wouldn't conclude that these pellets are better than a low calcium version until they've been used long enough to know whether or not they're implicated in bladder stones.

Anecdotal stories are fine, but they're not solid evidence.

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Post   » Tue Feb 27, 2018 1:05 pm

Well aware of the alfalfa. Have had pigs get stones on the other 2 top brands always talked about so clearly low calcium diets are not everything. I am simply sharing my experience. The pigs eat half the amount, so higher in calcium sure but half the amount so kind of levels out a bit there. One ingredients is a urine acidifier as well in the pellets and I see Pecan drinking more, so I am willing to give it a shot. She was 2 seconds from a stone prior and we were at our wits end for her bloat.


Post   » Tue Feb 27, 2018 1:19 pm

I am also giving these pellets a try with good results. This is after much discussion with other volunteers and our vets at Los Angeles Guinea Pig Rescue. I was having similar issues with 2 of my pigs having daily bloat issues that required meds all of the time. That has completely improved on the sherwood pellets. I actually freaked out at first when I saw that alfalfa was one of the main ingredients and said no way will I try these. Then as I said there was much discussion so I decided to give them a try. I have also had stone pigs and pigs with sludge on the other brands. I am still in the trial phase and keeping track of results. I absolutely love the fact that these have no soy, wheat, molasses, fillers etc. Whatever happens I do not see myself going back to pellets that do have all of those ingredients, as the tummy issues we were having before are not something I want to go back to. I’ll stop these if I see sludge or evidence of stones etc. Like everyone else I’m just trying to do whats best for these guys.


Post   » Tue Feb 27, 2018 1:29 pm

My guinea pigs personally have had issues with bladder sludge, bladder stones, calcium deposits (ALL the time) and digestion issues. They are on oxbow pellets, orchard grass hay, a low calciun diet and urinary support tabs. I think I will try these pellets and also the tablets they have for urinary problems with their sample packs and see if it helps my pigs. I will be glad to let everyone know my findings as well throughout the process. They seem very promising

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Post   » Tue Feb 27, 2018 3:27 pm

A note on Skinnypig's observations - she says they are eating half the pellets they used to eat. This may be part of what is helping their health.

It would be helpful to have a breakdown of ingredients here. Alfalfa, though it does have lots of calcium, is also a high protein food which may have a positive effect on health.

If they do not add any other calcium at all, this might offset the negatives for this product.

Guinea Pig Papa

Post   » Tue Feb 27, 2018 3:27 pm

If I may ask, @skinnypigs1, where do you purchase these pellets from? I'm located in the same province as you, I would at least like a sample bag to try with my elderly boar Sly. He also has chronic tummy issues and soft stool, and I'd like to try them with him.

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Supporter in '12

Post   » Tue Feb 27, 2018 3:50 pm

Lynx when Pecan was put on way less of our other pellets while dealing with bloat and sludge there was no difference. She was cut back but it made zero difference. Now she eats more of the Sherwood than her cut back amount of the other pellets and is not bloated and so far not producing sludge, poops are so much better. I don't feel the amount is it at all, but the ingredients. Bullseye back on the other pellets while working things out it didn't matter if he had half a portion or a full portion, was always the same result for his gi health being a mess.

They have a pie chart of ingredients. Half Timothy hay, half alfalfa hay, small section safflower and small section flax, then the minerals/vitamins.

I get my stuff from Hop Online, online shop in Calgary. That is the only place I have found for Canada thus far.

Guinea Pig Papa

Post   » Tue Feb 27, 2018 3:57 pm

Thank you, @skinnypigs1. I actually went straight to Sherwood Pet Health and ordered a sample bag from them to try for Sly. Shipping was free, although the sample bag was $9 Canadian. Small price to pay if they work for him. Sly also has malocclusion issues and has trouble maintaining weight because of that. Perhaps this will help him as well.

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Post   » Tue Feb 27, 2018 4:00 pm

Guaranteed Analysis:
Protein minimum 14%
Fat minimum 5%
Fiber min-max 24-29%
Calcium min-max 1-1.6%
Phosphorous min 0.4%
Salt min-max 0.25-0.75%
Vitamin C min- 250mg/kg

Alfalfa Hay, timothy hay, whole flax, whole safflower, monodicalcium phosphate, salt, choline chloride, DL-Methionine, Vitamin C, Copper, Amino acid chelate, lysine, Zinc amino acid chelate, manganese amino acid chelate, niacin, L-threonine, selenuim yeast culture, ethylene diamine dihydroiodide, cobalt carbonate.


Post   » Tue Feb 27, 2018 4:06 pm

Here is a list of the ingredients for Sherwood Pet Health Adult Guinea Pig Pellets
I’ve got a folder here on my desktop of ingredients and analysis for all the most commonly used brands that I was looking at and pouring over when I was debating on trying these or not

Ingredients: Alfalfa hay, timothy hay, whole flax seed, whole safflower seed, Monodicalcium phosphate, salt, choline chloride, essential amino acids, chelated minerals, ethylcellulose coated ascorbic acid (vitamin C made shelf-stable by coating it in cellulose fiber), B-vitamins, cobalt carbonate.

Guaranteed Analaysis
Crude protein, minimum……14%
Crude Fat minimum…………….5%
Crude Fiber min..………………...24%
Crude Fiber max……………………29%
Calcium (min)……………………... 1%
Calcium (max)………………………. 1.6%
Phosphorus (min)………………... 0.4%
Salt (min)………………………………0.25%
Salt (max)…………………………….0.75%
Vit C min……………………………….250mg/kg


Post   » Tue Feb 27, 2018 6:28 pm

We have recently transitioned to Sherwood for both the pigs and the rabbits. It's only been about a week, but I've already noticed some positive changes. Up to this point, we've been feeding Oxbow, low calcium vegetables, and our water is filtered. There have been quite a few things, some large, expensive and traumatic, others just small things, that seemed to pile up and made me really look at what we were feeding and consider making a change.

We have one pig, Truman, who was diagnosed with a suspected bladder stone last February, it either broke up or he passed it, because he never required surgery. He does still cry when passing stool, but maintains weight and appetite and has a good attitude. The tentative diagnosis for him was Interstitial Cystitis. He's not passing calcium like he should and it sits in his bladder. So far I haven't noticed any significant changes with Truman, aside from the fact that he's actually passing the sludge now.

In January, we unexpectedly lost Roosevelt, Truman's cagemate,to a very large bladder stone. He was booked for surgery, went downhill and they suspected it may have passed into his urethra, pushed his surgery up, and the morning we brought him in felt like it was actually in a ureter. Our clinic isn't equipped for micro surgery, we could have taken him to Cornell, but his recovery prognosis was poor. I wasn't going to torment him and so we decided the kindest thing to do was to let him go.

Fiona, my female rabbit, has always been what I'd call finicky. The Oxbow pellets were hit or miss with her, sometimes she'd eat them, sometimes she'd ignore them. Her hay intake wasn't that great either and I very rarely ever saw her drinking. Two weeks ago she went into GI stasis. No apparent cause noted by the vet. If you think hand feeding a guinea pig is a challenge, rabbits are worse. I think I still have scratches. It took probably two days to get her back to eating enough on her own to stop hand feeding, and a week before she went back to normal. Since switching, her stool...which were pretty consistently small and black, are much more golden brown and normal looking. She actually eats the pellets, her hay intake has increased and I actually see her at the water dish. I feel like she's more active as well. I look back on some of her old photos and realize she looked bloated and unhappy.

Gus, my senior pig. Back in November he had short period of appetite change and weight loss. As he's hit senior age, he's also had some issues with soft,smelly poop. He went off pellets, but was showing interest in hay and veggies. We booked him in with the vet, who said clinically and body composition wise everything checked out. We decided to book a follow up, I'd chart weight and diet for the week and see what happened. Nothing significant was changed in his diet, just lots of observation. The first few days, his weight continued to dip slightly, but then a few days before our followup it went back up to what we had deemed his "senior weight." He maintained weight and appetite until January, but the soft and smelly poops were pretty consistent. He lost weight while I was gone for two weeks and they were in my husband, but as soon as I got home it went back up and every thing was normal. It started up again about two weeks ago, right around the time I'd been debating making the switch in foods. Our vet visit today was inconclusive. She wants to see how he maintains on the new pellets.

This is what his poops looked like before, and this is a week off Oxbow.Image

There's been a few other small things I've noticed as well. Woodrow looks far less puffed and bloated, and my pens and litter pans smell better. Every one is eating more hay, and drinking more water. They used to throw themselves at the dishes for the Oxbow. Now they seem much more measured in grazing on the pellets through out the day than just inhaling them. I was really on the fence switching, but after the past few months something needed to change. So far I'm happy with what I'm seeing. My vet is on board with trying them out and was interested in looking into the food. We also talked about some of the studies being done about the risk vs benefit of low calicum diets and whether you're trading one issue for another by restricting too much calcium. If you don't get the right balance, the body pulls it from the bones and then you end up with other issues. Just thought I'd add my 2 cents.


Post   » Tue Feb 27, 2018 8:16 pm

I just switched my girls to it after a high sugar scare in one of my piggies urine. when I was looking at what it in oxbow I was appalled. every one knows you cant give piggies lots of fruit because of the sugar but they were using molasses in their pellets. so after I did research I was on the fence to switch after losing a piggy to stones my self. but after watching the videos and watching skinny pigs reviews I decided to switch. just like our food all the additives are not good for them* in our food the additives are not good for us either* . my girls are still in the process of switching but I have found they are not eating as much their Urine does not smell hardly at all. mine did not have issues with the poops as much but one of my girls does have issues with her weight and I am hoping that this switch will help since I am cutting out sugars. ( and because I forgot to put it in My girls hardly ever get fruit. and I do watch the amount of calcium veggies they get as well )


Post   » Thu Mar 01, 2018 3:41 pm

My experience has been similar to skinnypigs1 (Abby) - I first learned about Sherwood pellets from the rescue (Rabbit Meadows) where I volunteer at every Sunday and then also during the same time - my vet started to recommend them and even start selling them off her shelf! She is a well respected exotic animal vet in Western WA and I see her regularly since I have 10 pigs. So I switched all 10 of my pigs (both male and female, various ages, breeds and sizes) over to the Sherwood pellets gradually and then after a week or so - completely. The results were all positive - they eat about half less than the previous KMS pellets I had them on (Oxbow before that), and they graze through them consistently throughout the day. Their urine all smells better and their poos are much better formed and consistent and not mangled or smashed or soft looking. I have a pig that has pretty bad arthritis and her energy to move has increased since being on the Sherwood pellets. Also, the white gritty calcium deposits have decreased in all of my cages. The pigs are also more motivated to eat more hay versus just pellets or veggies or treats - which is never a bad thing. And - their fur is so much more shiny and soft and fluffy! All three of my rainbow pigs have passed away in the last couple of years from some type of digestive issue so I was pretty desperate to find something that would work consistently and I think I have found that in the Sherwood pellets. I know they are made from alfalfa and have calcium content, but the previous pellets I was using wasn't seeming to help with all the fillers added and I like that Sherwood pellets have a very short and mostly natural ingredient list. They are so high quality and you can just physically tell by their color and smell. I hope more guinea pig lovers and caretakers take this thread/discussion and Sherwood pellets seriously as we all know our piggies are so sensitive - so we need to stay on top of supplying the best food out there for them!

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Supporter in '12

Post   » Sun Apr 22, 2018 11:08 am

Just wanted to update anyone who was interested or following about the pellets.

We have been using them for just over 2 months now:

1. All the pigs have softer and shiner fur.
2. The pigs who were able to be off medications are still medication free (no more daily bloat scares for Pecan & Bullseye is pooping without help).
3. The cages that previously were having tons of calcium deposits all the time on the other pellets, now have just a very normal amount, some here or there and they are powdery white, not gritty or very washed out.
4. Everyone has maintained their weight, even though they are satisfied with less pellets.
5. Everyone still takes 12-24 hours to finish their portions, which makes me happy, as that seems healthier to spread it out.
6. Everyone eats more hay, drinks more water and seems very content.

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Post   » Sun Apr 22, 2018 12:05 pm

skinnypigs1, verrrry interesting that your nekkid pigs have "softer and shiner fur" ;-) [just kidding, I imagine you have some haired guinea pigs too]

Has anyone on these pellets had a whole body xray in this time? I wonder because it is possible to have not enough calcium which could show up as bone loss on an xray. I would imagine this could be especially true for satins.

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Supporter in '12

Post   » Sun Apr 22, 2018 12:34 pm

Haha I actually thought about that after I wrote it. I only have 3 skinny pigs right now and 6 furry piggies.

No one has had an x-ray while on the new pellets. Pecan had one before we switched pellets because of serious bloat.

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