Oxbow Harvest Stacks – How do they fit in to your guinea pig’s life?

Seven Oxbow Harvest StacksBecky W

Oxbow Harvest Stacks. What does your guinea pig think?

Guinea Pig Today was recently approached to review the Oxbow Harvest Stacks. We had been aware of them for quite some time, and have even used them occasionally ourselves. However, we hadn’t really considered them as being one of the cornerstones of the guinea pig’s diet (hay, pellets, vitamin C, and fresh veggies). So it is a good time to really take a look at the product both in the context of its importance to the guinea pig and its convenience to the guinea pig owner.

Guinea pigs need hay, lots of hay. Many authorities believe that 75% of a guinea pig’s diet should be hay. So obviously you need to have a lot of it on hand to meet their needs. Good hay should be green and fresh. This can be difficult if you don’t have enough guinea pigs to buy hay in bulk. Sadly, most bagged hay is lacking that nice rich green color and gets a bit sticky and hard by the time it gets to you.

Oxbow’s process of compressing the hay seems to practically stop the hay from aging. The stacks are good for two years after the date stamped on the package. We all know how bagged hay would look after two years, and it’s not nice. So the stacks have a very good shelf life. Not that your guinea pig is going to leave any hay around for two years.

The next thing that I personally find really exciting about the Harvest Stacks is the fact that they eliminate so much dust. They have 80% less dust than loose hay. This may not mean a lot to most people, but it can be everything for those that are allergic to hay dust. It’s not just humans that are allergic to hay dust there are guinea pigs that have hay allergies too. This certainly could be a product to look into for those pets.

With many people living in apartments and condominiums, Harvest Stacks are so space efficient. You would need to bring home many bags of loose hay to equal one small box.
The guinea pig owner that travels with their pet will really appreciate both the compact size and not having their car smell overwhelmingly of hay. Another good travel point is to just break off a chunk and put it in the carrier without fluffing it. This gives the guinea pig something to really chew on and pass the anxiety provoking travel time more quickly.
Did I mention how much the guinea pigs love this hay? They really do adore it. So if you prefer for them to have loose hay for their main source, it’s a great occasional treat – a pig-friendly, healthy one.

The last thing we needed to do was to see if it really fluffs up the way Oxbow says it will. It looks pretty good to me and I’d say it looks like Seven sure does approve.

So I find I like this product in just about every way. If I owned one pair of guinea pigs, I could certainly see it becoming a very big part of my pet’s diet.

Well, I do own just one pair but I foster about 6 to 10 guinea pigs most of the time. So for cost sake it remains the 40 pound boxes for me. However, going forward I see this becoming a constant in my guinea pig pantry.

A quick Google search shows they are widely available in a few different flavors, timothy carrot, timothy chamomile, and plain timothy. Prices start at about $11.69 a box.

If you have a great idea for an article about guinea pigs, please let us know. Guinea Pig Today is a network of guinea pig lovers and we’re always looking for the next great story. View our submissions page for more information on how to submit your idea.

Becky W, Writer, GPT

Becky Wilson has worked in guinea pig rescue for about five years now. Starting as a foster parent and quickly moving into a administrative and decision making position. Before the move to rescue she was a glass artist and plans on renewing her love for glass fusing by starting a business incorporating guinea pig cremains in glass.

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July 2015
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