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Keeping Bulk Hay at Bay: Storage Solutions

Hay Storage

Oh, hay! Does anyone else feel like hay is the bane of their existence? The hay smells terrific, but the mess it makes is frustrating. Our valued supporters frequently contact our fantastic Customer Service Team for hay storage tips. However, keeping your hay tidy is only one part of the equation. Storing hay safely, so it stays fresh is also critical. Therefore, we thought it would be helpful to share real-life hay storage ideas.

Small Pet Select's Boxes: Safe for Hay and the Environment

Small Pet Select has all sorts of helpful information in our FAQs. While we have FAQ articles on hay storage, we thought we'd tie all the information together in one place. Additionally, our Auto-Ship & Save program minimizes the chances that you run out of hay and other supplies. Customers save up to 10% with our Auto-Ship & Save program. We occasionally offer extra savings on our hay, as well. If you have the space in your home, purchasing the jumbo boxes are an excellent value. However, storing your hay correctly, so it stays fresh is extremely important to your fluffy crew.

Environmentally Friendly & Breathable

We have an ongoing initiative to change our product packaging to environmentally friendly solutions. Most of our hay sizes already ship in recyclable cardboard hay storage boxes. Those boxes aren't just for shipping, however. Our boxes provide a clean storage environment that allows your hay to breathe. 

Why does your hay need to breathe, you ask? Just like any other plant-based material, it contains moisture. For example, when you purchase produce at the grocery store, they offer plastic bags to put your fruits and vegetables in. However, what happens when you get home? How many times have you left the produce in the bag and put it in your refrigerator? A few days later, you go to use it, and it's not edible. The reason is the plastic bags retain moisture and don't allow your purchases to breathe. The same thing happens to hay. Therefore, our cardboard hay storage boxes allow airflow and keep your hay fresh. Additionally, many of our customers use them to store other items when they finish the hay as they're very sturdy. 

Choose the Right Place in Your Home for the Hay Box

The other important thing you need to do to keep your hay safe is to put the hay in a cool, dry location. Here in Colorado, there's minimal humidity. Additionally, our garage is on the north side of our home. This allows our family to store our hay in the garage year-round. 

However, many of our customers live in humid areas. They must store their hay in a place that has a humidity-reducing system such as an air conditioner or a dehumidifier.

We're all ears graphic

Storage Solutions

Over the years, we've tried many ways to store hay. Believe it or not, it took 5 years for us to arrive at our current storage system. The hay stays fresh and clean. Plus, it doesn't drive my husband crazy. When we got Ears about 7 years ago, you would never know I tidied up the house while he was at work. The minute he came home, he would start sweeping up hay. As we all know, as clean as bunnies keep themselves, they love to arrange their space the way THEY want it. Their interior design theme usually involves a hay mess. 

Here's how our hay storage solutions evolved:

Ears' hay

Photo credit: Jessica Sullivan

Photo credit: Jessica Sullivan

My hubby built this wabbitat for Ears and his hay/supplies. It worked great except for the hay getting out and Ears using the hay box as a litter box. We transitioned to regular litter boxes after this.

Photo credit: Jessica Sullivan

Here's our current setup and the other hay lover in the house, Harper, the deaf rescued Australian Cattle Dog. She's happy when I accidentally drop the hay and loves all Small Pet Select hay varieties 😆. You can purchase all the Small Pet Select products you see in my pictures by clicking the links below. The large box on the left is a jumbo box of 2nd cutting to make sure we don't run out. The blue trash can is for dumping the dirty litter box contents. It gets smelly and there's a compostable bag inside for when the trash company does their weekly pickup. It's not good when the trash toter contents don't fully get in the trash truck and there's hay all over the street.

Abigail's Dad had a similar path to his current solution. Since he has 4 bunnies in 3 different spaces in his home (1 bonded pair and 2 singles), having the hay in a central location was vital to efficiently care for his buns. Unlike me, Abigail's Dad isn't clumsy, which minimizes hay mess as he's transporting it in his home.

Photo credit: Maurice Liang

Photo credit: Maurice Liang

As Abigail is an excellent follower, she calls our Alfalfa hay Balfafa just like her boss, Belinda the Spokesrabbit does. Abigail's Dad purchased the storage shelves at Home Depot.

Box-free Solutions

We received another neat solution from the SNORS (Special Needs Older Rabbits Sanctuary) rescue in the UK. One of the founders uses attractive large leaf storage bags for her hay. As her residents require a wide variety of hay, this idea facilitates safe and aesthetically pleasing hay storage. As an alternative, you could also use fabric laundry bags with handles. We found some on Amazon in cute patterns. 

Leaf storage bag
Fabric Laundry Bag

Looking for something more industrial that can be sanitized inside and out? Plastic bins or toters without the top (remember, the hay needs to breathe) can be cleaned using your choice of disinfecting methods. Additionally, they come in a variety of sizes to suit the amount of hay you need to store and some even have wheels!

12 gallon tote

Lowe's 12 gallon tote (holds 10 lbs. of hay)

50 Gallon Tote

Lowe's 50 gallon tote (holds  up to 60 lbs. of hay)

As there are multiple ways to store hay, we'd love to see your solutions. Please send them to or comment on our socials. Also, be on the lookout for our second part in this hay storage series. We are going to address tips to keep your palace polished next.

DISCLAIMER: External links are being provided as a convenience and for informational purposes only; they do not constitute an endorsement or an approval by Small Pet Select of any of the products, services or opinions of the corporation or organization or individual.

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