Friday, June 6, 2014

Product Review: Oxbow Timothy Hay Cakes

Today we're reviewing Oxbow Timothy Hay Cakes.
Hay cakes? What's that?
Like Oxbow's Harvest Stacks, this product is hay compressed into a solid shape, except these are much smaller than the stacks.

Something strange we noticed about this product is the feeding directions. On the package, it says: "Offer your animal 1-3 cubes per day in addition to or in place of loose hay." On their website, however, it says: "Offer your animals 1 cube per pound of body weight in addition to, or in place of, loose hay." We weigh about 1,000 grams each (a little less for Buffy, and a little more for Lola and myself), which converts to about 2.2 pounds. Does this mean we should only have two each (like the website says), or can we have up to three (like the package says)? And since guinea pigs can and should have unlimited timothy hay, why is there a restriction on the amount of hay cakes we can have, anyway? The only other ingredient listed besides timothy hay is sodium bentonite, a binder, which is a generally recognized as safe (GRAS) ingredient by the FDA.

This product bills itself as having the following advantages:
  • "offer[s] less mess for pet owners" 
  • "Great for travel!"
  • "Good for people with allergies; keeps dust and pollen at a manageable level."
These sound like they could be advantages, but the real question is: Will we like it?

Nibble, nibble... It's okay. Can we just have regular hay, though?
Thanks, humans!
So it's not bad, but we prefer real hay. We've let these things sit in our cage for a couple days now. We'll nibble occasionally, but this definitely is not our favorite Oxbow product. It's strange, because we're big fans of the hay stacks, and these don't seem like they'd be that different. We're wondering if we got a not-so-fresh batch of hay cakes when the humans ordered them online. We're going to have to give Oxbow Timothy Hay Cakes 3/5 stars for now, although perhaps we'll revisit that score in the future.


  1. Are there different ingredients in it? We prefer loose hay over shaped hay, so maybe you guys have something like that!

    1. No, there were only those two ingredients. We have no idea why there'd be a feeding restriction of any kind.