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Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is the difference between all the different types and cuts of hay?
  2. How much hay should I feed my rabbit?
  3. Do you have good quality of "X" in stock right now?
  4. My rabbit won't eat any hay, what should I do?
  5. Why should I buy this paper bedding?
  6. What is Rabbit Hole Hay doing to ensure my small pets safety during this RHDV2?
  7. I received dusty, dirty, brown, etc. hay, what do I do?
  8. I received a dead mouse, rat, bird in my hay, what do I do?
  9. My question isn't listed, who do I ask?

1. Q) What is the difference between all the different types and cuts of hay?

A. Coarse Timothy Hay is known for its high fiber and low protein, making it a great food source for adult rabbits, guinea pigs and chinchillas. By late spring or early summer the hay is ready to be harvested for the first time of the growing season. It’s usually by mid June that the farmer cuts the first growth of the year. During this early growth the plant grows long thick stems, short broad leaves, and long seed head (flowers) making it coarser than the two later cuts. When this is harvested it is commonly referred to as First Cut Timothy Hay and is a great choice to maintain healthy teeth and digestion.

Medium Timothy Hay is known for being a softer hay with its long thin stems, short seed heads, and broad flat leaves making it easier for rabbits, guinea pigs, and chinchillas to eat. After the first harvest of Timothy Hay, the hay is then left to regrow and is harvested a second time usually by late summer, commonly referred to as Second Cut Timothy Hay. Medium Timothy Hay is also high in fiber and low in protein making it a great choice for your small pet’s dental health and digestive system particularly if they are aging and need softer hay.

Soft Timothy Hay is known for containing mostly leaves with very few stems or seed heads. This grade of hay comes from the third seasonal harvest of Timothy Hay or an exceptionally soft second harvest. Stems, if any, will be thin and occasional seed heads will be short. The key to this grade of premium hay is that it is made up almost entirely of soft leaves. It’s good for small pets that have soft or weak teeth which makes it hard for them to eat more coarse types of hay. Soft Timothy Hay offers all the nutrients and fiber that are required for digestive health, but due to its softness it doesn’t cover dental health. Therefore, we recommend investing in chew toys, such as Apple Sticks, or mixing in some coarse hay such as Coarse Orchard or First Cut Timothy to maintain healthy teeth. 

Soft Orchard Grass is known for being the softest hay that we carry. For pets and owners who are allergic to Timothy Hay, Orchard Grass can be a great alternative. Orchard Grass is great for digestive health and can be fed free-choice to your rabbits, guinea pigs, chinchillas. Soft Orchard Grass has long soft grass blades, minimal seed heads and fewer stalks than other types of hay. Due to its softness, we recommend investing in chew toys or supplementing their diet with a little coarse hay to keep their teeth in good health.

Coarse Orchard Grass is very similar to First Cut Timothy Hay and is known for its large seed heads and more fibrous leaves and stems. For pets and owners who are allergic to Timothy Hay, Orchard Grass can be a great alternative. Orchard Grass can be fed free-choice to your rabbits, guinea pigs, chinchillas. Coarse Orchard Grass provides long strands that promote natural chewing behavior. It holds a great balance of roughage and nutrition to benefit both dental and digestive health.

Alfalfa Hay is full of protein and nutrients, making it perfect for growing rabbits between the ages of 3 weeks and 7 months. Alfalfa Hay has a thicker stem and lots of elliptical leaves compared to the long thin leaves found on grass hays. Mature rabbits can only eat a limited amount of Alfalfa due to the high levels of protein and calcium. Adult rabbits also require more fiber than alfalfa can provide to maintain healthy digestion. Transition your 7 month old rabbit off of Alfalfa Hay and onto a grass hay (such as Timothy or Orchard).

Mountain Grass is high in fiber and low in protein and calcium content, ideal for keeping the digestive tracts of rabbits and other small animals functioning properly. It's made up of a variety of wild grasses that grow in a mountain meadow. Mountain Grass contains a variety of textures and colors, which your small pet will enjoy. Typically it has leaves that are fine and coarse in texture with almost no stems. It's known for being a grass hay that wild rabbits would naturally feed on with an added benefit of being coarse enough to wear down their teeth.

 

2. Q) How much should I feed my rabbit?

A. Baby Rabbits (Birth to Eight Weeks)
Baby Rabbits, or kits, between birth and three weeks old should be fed solely on their mother’s milk. By three to seven weeks of age, rabbits should still feed on the mother’s milk as well as very small helping of Alfalfa Hay and Pellets. When rabbits are about seven weeks old, they should have access to unlimited Alfalfa Hay and Pellets. Kits are usually weaned from their mother’s milk by eight weeks of age, depending on the breed.

Juveniles (Eight Weeks to Seven Months)
Between weaning and seven months of age, the juvenile rabbit can have an unlimited amount of Pellets and Alfalfa Hay. At three months of age, start introducing small amounts of vegetables into your rabbit's diet. Introduce one vegetable at a time, if any vegetable seems to cause digestive problems, avoid feeding it in the future.

Young Adults (Seven Months to One Year)
Young adults (seven months to one year old) should feed mainly on Timothy Hay. Timothy Hay is extremely important for rabbits at this age because it keeps the rabbit healthy and at the right weight. At this time in their life they should be eating fewer pellets (½ cup of pellets per every six pounds of rabbit’s body weight daily). Because of the decrease in pellets, along with the unlimited Timothy Hay you can increase the amount of vegetables to make up the loss in nutrition. Fruits can be given, but no more than 1-2 ounces (2-4 tablespoons) per every six pounds of body weight daily.

Mature Adults (One to Five Years)
By the time rabbits reach one year old, they should be fed an unlimited supply of Timothy or grass hay. You should decrease the amount of pellets to be ¼ cup per every six pounds of body weight daily. As vegetables are introduced and after your rabbit has deemed them tolerable, you should feed them 2 cups per every six pounds of body weight daily. Fruits can be given sparingly (a max of 2 tablespoons per every six pounds of body weight daily).

Seniors (Six Years and Older)
Senior rabbits can be fed the same as mature adults but keep an eye on their weight. If they begin to have weight loss issues and can’t maintain their weight, you can increase the amount of pellets they have. Alfalfa Hay can also be given to underweight rabbits in order for them to gain weight, but only if their calcium levels are normal. To determine senior’s calcium levels and other components of their blood it’s recommended that they receive annual blood workups.

To help you out further we have put together a simple feeding calculator, that will help you figure out how much hay, pellets, veggies and treats to feed your rabbit.

 

3. Q) Do you have good quality x” in stock right now?

A. We monitor our inventory carefully, so if we don’t have what you are looking for in stock, we will not allow you to purchase it. Our goal is to have your product to your doorstep within no more than 5 business days of your order. We do our best to keep everything in stock, but some products are outside our control. 

 

4. Q) My rabbit won’t eat any hay, what should I do?

A. Rabbits should have fresh hay available 24 hours a day. Hay should make up 80-90% of a bunny’s diet because it’s rich in fiber and provides the roughage that helps reduce the danger of hairballs and other blockages. Hay also helps maintain the length of their continuously growing teeth–if uncomfortable chewing is an issue, a visit to the vet is mandatory. If this isn’t the problem, try feeding her in her favorite areas––like her litter box or the couch, as she may only want to eat there. If that doesn’t work, have her play! There are many rabbit-safe toys on the market that are designed to help encourage play and eating that might help you turn the corner. Sometimes, especially if you haven’t always fed your rabbit the best diet they will take time to acclimate to their new diet. Stick with it, and try to not give back in to their old unhealthy diet. Many rabbits are stubborn, but hunger generally rules the day.

You should also check the hay you purchase. Large scale providers do not hand-pack hay, and it’s typically shipped many times before it gets to you, and can arrive damaged. Rabbits will usually not eat powdered hay and will search through it to find larger strands. This is why it is important to get the best quality hay affordable, which is dust-free/sweet smelling/slightly green with long strands. You should also try a variety of hays to find which one your furry friend will enjoy most. You can flavor the hay by adding things like sage, rosemary, basil, parsley, peppermint and cilantro. Rub the hay and one of the additives to release the oils––remember that a little goes a long way. If this doesn’t seem to work, look to see if the rabbit is more focused on other tasty food and treats, and reduce those to redirect them.

If the issue persists, your bunny may be ill. If you don’t find stool in her litter box, or you find diarrhea, take her to the vet (the one who does her annual checkups) and go over stats and symptoms. NEVER try home remedies on a (potentially) sick bunny, unless recommended by your vet. Waiting for remedies to work will give your vet less time to help your rabbit.

It’s important to know that rabbits have difficulty passing gas; if you feed your bunny foods that cause gas, she might be in pain. If you spot her hunched over and looks like she is trying to press her belly to the floor, then she might have gas pains. You can speak with your vet to see how to help relieve her pains so she can eat again.

 

5. Q) Why should I buy this paper bedding?

A. Our food grade paper bedding is super absorbent and has quick action odor protection. Because it is super absorbent, it can last much longer than other beddings including, shredded newsprint, wood shavings or clay based litters (please never use clay based litters with your small pets, they can be extremely dangerous). Did you know that our paper bedding can absorb 6 times its own weight?!

If you worry about the environmental effect of the bedding, you can relax because the bedding is tested dioxin free! It’s 100% environmentally friendly, and FDA approved food grade virgin paper! Now that’s a deal! You no longer have to worry if your small pet nibbles or consumes it because it’s safe for them to ingest.

What could be better than environmentally safe bedding? Comfort! It’s soft and gentle, and is resistant to matting. So, when they snuggle up and dream of the dance of the Timothy Hay Fairies, they will not wake up due to a clump causing discomfort.

Additionally, they won’t be disturbed by dust from sand, dirt, or grit because there is none! The bedding is 99.9% dust free, something that you cannot expect with other beddings.

 

6. Q) What is Rabbit Hole Hay doing to ensure my small pets safety during this RHDV2?

A. At Rabbit Hole Hay, we are monitoring this virus closely and at this time it has NOT affected our area of the country (Northern California). Additionally, all of our hay is from the 2019 growing season from Northern California and there have been NO reported cases affecting the area of the country where we source our hay. 

As mentioned above, the USDA estimates that RHDV2 can remain stable for 3 months. Taking into account the dates of the recently confirmed cases and dates of harvest, we can safely reassure you that no Rabbit Hole Hay product that is available (whether on our website, Amazon, or Chewy) is currently at risk for being a carrier of RHDV2. 

Our goal here at Rabbit Hole Hay is to continue to monitor the information coming from health officials carefully to ensure we are following any recommended precautions to keep your small pet safe. We are confident at this time based on the latest available information that the transmission of RHDV2 from a packaged product like our Rabbit Hole Hay, is highly unlikely. While RHDV2 could be transmitted in hay, it would require a rare combination of circumstances for the virus to be present and remain stable.

Even knowing that, we are committed to remaining vigilant both in how we monitor and how we move forward with product safety as it relates to RHDV2. We will be paying close attention to all the hay we source in the coming days and months to ensure it is processed in a way that helps us keep your small pets safe.

Click here to read about the virus and other questions asked about it.

 

7. Q) I received dusty, dirty, brown etc. hay what do I do?

A. First of all, it is important to remember that the products we sell are direct from the farmers, and the quality varies based on weather patterns, including drought some years and an overage of rain others! Having said that, if you have received hay that you are dissatisfied with, please email support@rabbitholehay.com and let us know. You can also take a look at our shipping and returns page. We will do whatever we can to ensure you are pleased with our product.

 

8. Q) I received a dead, mouse, rat, bird in my hay, what do I do?

A. Yikes! We apologize! Throw the offending hay away and let us know so we can send you a replacement!

If you are curious how this happened, the simple answer is that we receive our hay in 100 pound bales directly from the farm and break it up to provide you with the amount that you ordered. While we try to make sure this doesn’t happen, occasionally in our larger boxes, something like this sneaks by. At least you know it came straight from the farm! Oh, and sorry again.

 

9. Q) My question isn't listed, who do I ask?

A. Just because we haven't answer your question on this page doesn't mean we can't help you out! Below are a few extra help guides, see if your question can be answered on one of them:

Still have your question? Head on over to our Contact Us tab (you can also click here) and ask us!