My chins are not eating the timothy hay

channeltool

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Feb 1, 2009
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68
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New Jersey
I usually purchase Kleenmama's third cut but last years batch was poor quality so I thought I would try Rabbit Supply but my chins will only nibble so I tried American Pet Diner which the quality has been going downhill for sometime and the batch smelled old and musty. I also tried Small Pet Select which they did eat but the new box was too dry, brown and they wouldn't touch it. I want to go to a local farm for timothy but it is eastern timothy and I do not know if my chins will eat this hay. Any suggestions on a good quality hay company? Thanks!
 

Amethyst

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Alberta
Each chin seems to have their own preference on hay, which can be frustrating since what one likes another may not. The one I buy the most is the Oxbow hay, but that is not consistent and you do seem to need to look at the bag before you buy it to make sure it looks good. The most suggested one I've seen is Small Pets Select, I can't get it here but from what I've heard they guarantee the hay is good, so if you get a bad box just call or e-mail them and they try to make it right.

Timothy hay is timothy hay, the only difference is where it's grown. So "eastern" timothy is just timothy grown in the eastern part of North America, "western" timothy is grown in the west. Most is grown in the west since the soil is richer and produces better quality hay. Some farmers will let you sample the hay before you buy since it's just a small animal all you need would be a handful. One thing to keep in mind about hay direct from a farm though is it's not sorted to remove non hay items (weeds, sticks, rocks, dead things, etc) like hay sold in stores for small animals is, so you will want to look it over as you put it in the cage.
 

Devynthecatwithsocks

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Jan 30, 2019
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157
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Southern California
Hay can be very frustratring when u have a picky chinchilla. I have 2 and one will eat anything u hand her and the other one pretty much wont touch it, even alafa hay. You just have to find a blend that ur chin likes. My picky one will only eat oat hay so I mix it with western timothy (my other chins favorite) so they each get something they like. I would suggest just trying different blends and seeing if one will stick. I would try giving a bit of alfalfa to see if they'll even like that. Alfafa is a very sweet hay, not recommended for daily use but more so as a treat. Since hay is essential to their diet and health of their teeth its pretty important to find a good hay. I personally use oxbow since that's what is accessible to me, but even for my picky one I had to buy the hay the shelter was giving her (Their personal mix) before she would even touch oxbow
 

channeltool

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Joined
Feb 1, 2009
Messages
68
Location
New Jersey
Thanks for the help.
Each chin seems to have their own preference on hay, which can be frustrating since what one likes another may not. The one I buy the most is the Oxbow hay, but that is not consistent and you do seem to need to look at the bag before you buy it to make sure it looks good. The most suggested one I've seen is Small Pets Select, I can't get it here but from what I've heard they guarantee the hay is good, so if you get a bad box just call or e-mail them and they try to make it right.

Timothy hay is timothy hay, the only difference is where it's grown. So "eastern" timothy is just timothy grown in the eastern part of North America, "western" timothy is grown in the west. Most is grown in the west since the soil is richer and produces better quality hay. Some farmers will let you sample the hay before you buy since it's just a small animal all you need would be a handful. One thing to keep in mind about hay direct from a farm though is it's not sorted to remove non hay items (weeds, sticks, rocks, dead things, etc) like hay sold in stores for small animals is, so you will want to look it over as you put it in the cage.
If I pick up a bale from a local hay supplier do I have to clean it before use? Or just pick through it to make sure there isn't any foreign material in the bale. Thanks for your help!
 

channeltool

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Joined
Feb 1, 2009
Messages
68
Location
New Jersey
Hay can be very frustratring when u have a picky chinchilla. I have 2 and one will eat anything u hand her and the other one pretty much wont touch it, even alafa hay. You just have to find a blend that ur chin likes. My picky one will only eat oat hay so I mix it with western timothy (my other chins favorite) so they each get something they like. I would suggest just trying different blends and seeing if one will stick. I would try giving a bit of alfalfa to see if they'll even like that. Alfafa is a very sweet hay, not recommended for daily use but more so as a treat. Since hay is essential to their diet and health of their teeth its pretty important to find a good hay. I personally use oxbow since that's what is accessible to me, but even for my picky one I had to buy the hay the shelter was giving her (Their personal mix) before she would even touch oxbow
Thanks!
 

JohhnyBishop

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Feb 21, 2021
Messages
5
Location
London, UK
For UK readers I ordered some timothy hay from Haybox.club - Timothy Hay Box 'Blend'.
I red another thread where Amethyst has suggested to choose something in between rather than coarse cut.
It has good reviews.
They all 3 chins eat it but their timothy hay eating is inconsistent.
I think one chinchilla provokes the others to come and join the feast.
They always express this attitude where "what my friend is eating must be tastier than what I hold in my paw, let's check it out!"
They go after pellet which is like their 1st source of food while timothy hay may or may not disappear from the feeder.
Maybe my expectations are too high, expecting them to eat hay like cows.

My impression is that hay has to be super dry. If it's "on display" for over a day it absorbs some humidity which is unappealing to chinchillas or it loses the aroma or both. I mean the place I live I consider dry and it's not an old house.

I don't know what you think but I reckon a feeding schedule is better than food at the table all the time.
They definitely expect and wait for a food top up in the morning before they go to sleep.
I am just against food waste and looking for solutions to address it.
 
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