Sunday, May 24, 2015

Product Review: Small Pet Select Orchard Hay

As you may recall from our post on what type of hay guinea pigs should eat, orchard hay is a type of grass hay. Grass hays should (such as timothy and orchard hay) be fed to us in unlimited quantities (unlike legume hays). We've tried orchard hay before a couple times: once in a mix (Kaytee Orchard Blends Hay), and once by itself (Oxbow Orchard Grass Hay). We liked both of those hays, so we have high hopes for this new one: Small Pet Select Orchard Hay.
This is Orchard Hay.
There are a few differences between orchard hay and timothy hay that we should point out:

  • Some people claim that orchard hay is less severe for people with allergies.
  • Orchard hay tends to be softer than timothy hay, and therefore might be of a risk of guinea pigs poking themselves.
  • The list price at Small Pet Select for 20 pounds of timothy hay is $44.99, while it's $49.99 for the same amount of orchard hay (although it's currently on sale for $40.00). 
  • Orchard hay has little to no seed heads, unlike timothy hay. For us, this is a big disadvantage!

Let's give Small Pet Select's orchard hay a try!
Smells fresh! Munch, munch...

Tasty! But where are the seed heads?
This is some nice, tasty hay. Our only issue with it is that it's missing the seed heads, which is our favorite part! If you're like us, what you may want to do is encourage your humans to mix different types of hay so you get the best of both worlds. We'll give Small Pet Select Orchard Hay 4.5/5 stars!


  1. That is interesting. We use timothy hay. My guinea pigs love the seed head so I am sure they would look for the seed heads if I offered them anything new.

  2. I've been wondering about this.. since trying the Orchard Hay, my pigs won't eat their Timothy Hay!! Is that okay? I was concerned the Orchard Hay is not as good for them, but it seems here that they're equal in nutritional quality?

    1. Grass hays tend be nutritionally similar. Guinea Lynx provides a hay nutrition chart that shows there are some minor difference in timothy and orchard hay if you're interested, but you should be fine feeding your piggies either one.

  3. Squeaks likes fresh grown mint sprigs. He gets a few a day, I grow it myself. Have you given your guineas any herbs? Squeaks loves the "flowers" in his Timothy hay. We will have to pass on the orchard hay.