So, most of us know that feeding hay is crucial for our chinchillas, but equally importantly is feeding pellets. But it can sometimes be a little bewildering knowing which band of timothy hay pellets to purchase for your chinnies. After all, there’s so many different brands on the market.
What actually are they, and is there any difference between a cheaper or more expensive brand?
Thankfully, with just a little knowledge it can be easy to know what to look for when you’re scouring the shelves in the local pet store searching for the best pellets to buy for your chinchilla.
Timothy hay pellets are also sometimes called cubes. And, much as the name gives away, the main ingredient is timothy hay (no prizes for having already guessed that….)
But not only do they contain hay, they also contain a carefully balanced combination of everything else your chinchilla needs to keep him in good health. And although they don’t look much like hay, a good quality pellet will always have the majority of its ingredients being that all important timothy hay.
As mentioned above, pellets also contain the vitamins and minerals that your chinchilla needs to eat on a daily basis. Feeding pellets is the easiest way to ensure that he gets his daily dose of these.
And, because they contain timothy hay, they’re also a great source of the fiber he needs to ingest every day to ensure good digestive health.
When you buy timothy hay pellets for your pet, then it’s stated by law that they need to be labeled in the same manner as food for humans. In other words, they must have a label that states the ingredients in them.
This list is always stated in the same way – with the ingredient of the greatest quantity being named first, and the other in descending order below. This makes deciding what pellets to purchase much easier, as if the top item in the list is not timothy hay, then simply don’t buy them. Look for another brand that does have timothy hay at the top of the list.
If your chinchilla seriously won’t eat his pellets (but eats his hay and other food), then the first thing to do would be to try him on some different brands. It might just be that he doesn’t like the taste of the ones you’re giving him at the moment.
Also, be aware that chinchillas don’t tend to overeat. So if you’re giving him too many pellets then he won’t eat more than he needs.
However, if your chinnie goes off his food altogether, then this could be a sign that he’s ill. In this case, you should consult urgently with a chinchilla savvy veterinarian to ensure that there’s nothing wrong with either his teeth, or any other kind of illness.