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Last updated: 13 Jan 2020

The Best Guinea Pig Food (Review) in 2020

Oxbow Animal Health Guinea Pig Food

Oxbow Animal Health Guinea Pig Food

Standlee Hay Company Guinea Pig Food

Standlee Hay Company Guinea Pig Food

Hartz Guinea Pig Food Pellets

Hartz Guinea Pig Food Pellets

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Dr Tracy Douglas
Published 15:45 pm

Guinea pigs are fantastic little fellows who fill our homes with so much joy and amusement. They may be small in size,  yet they possess big personalities. However, like humans, guinea pigs require the right foods that contain all the vital nutrients necessary for their development. Selecting the best guinea pig food is not a simple task so in this article, we will explore which products and brands are worth spending money on. Look out for our best choice, premium pick and best value products below. Let’s begin.

The Best Guinea Pig Food

1

The first guinea pig food on this list that is also the best choice for any guinea pig owner is the Oxbow Essentials Adult Guinea Pig (Timothy Based), which is prepared from the pasture grass known as timothy grass. A timothy grass based-pellet is better for adult guinea pigs than alfalfa-based hays. Your adult guinea pig’s organs need much lower levels of alfalfa-based grasses when compared to the requirements of younger guinea pigs. Oxbow Essentials guinea pig food is rich in fiber, which is vital for the growth and health of the adult guinea pig. This highly rated food is also vet-recommended as it contains vitamin C, which is essential for your guinea pig’s development. It doesn’t contain excessive amounts of calcium, and phosphorous as a high phosphorous diet will shorten the lifespan of your guinea pig. Oxbow Essentials pellets are lower in protein and calories and this balance is just right for your adult guinea pig’s digestive system.

Low in calories, calcium, phosphorus, and protein.

Contains rich and essential fiber

Comes in three different sizes

It has uniform pellets

Specification:
  • Brand: Oxbow Animal Health
  • Model: 744845402918
  • Weight: 10 pounds

2

Another guinea pig food that will provide your pet with a well-balanced diet is the Kaytee Timothy Complete Guinea Pig Food. This product was created by a pet nutrition specialist to ensure that younger guinea pigs are given the right nutrition to increase their life expectancy. Kaytee’s guinea pig foods are mostly pellet-based and contain hand-picked timothy hays which are rich in nutrients. This delicious treat also has vitamin C needed for your guinea pig’s growth and immune system. It is also rich in fiber, which bolsters your guinea pig’s digestive system. The manufacturers of Kaytee Timothy Complete guinea pig food understand the importance of a healthy guinea pig in your home; thus, they go to great lengths to support your guinea pig with a healthy and balanced diet. It has a proven track record and for over a century they have been providing pets with the right nutritional meals for their development.

It is made up of long-lasting vitamin C

Net weight of five pounds

No sugary ingredients

Assists in dental growth through regular chewing

Specification:
  • Brand: Kaytee
  • Model: 100032617
  • Weight: 5 pounds

3

Another Guinea pig food that is highly recommended by vets is the Standlee Premium Western Forage Timothy Grass, which is also our premium pick. This high-quality brand of guinea pig food is rich in fiber, and the best part is that it is low in calcium and protein. This unique food variety improves the digestive and gastrointestinal systems of younger guinea pigs and helps them to function optimally. The highly productive fiber also supports your guinea pig’s dental health. Stanlee’s Timothy Grass is developed in the volcanic region of Idaho and has fertile soil in terms of nutrients. Southern Idaho has abundant sunlight, easy availability of water, and favorable humidity, which yields the best forages. Timothy Grass comes in a dry form though the final product may differ depending on the last day of harvest. It is additives free and does not contain any preservatives.

No preservatives and chemicals

Rich source of fiber

Rich natural green ingredients and colour

Soft and long strands

Specification:
  • Brand: Standlee Hay Company
  • Model: 1200-6110-0-0
  • Weight: 10 pounds

4

The fourth on the list is the Hartz Guinea Pig Small Animal Food Pellets. This food brand is one of the best guinea pig supplies you can purchase on the market. It is delicious, which will leave your guinea pig craving for more. It is also very rich in nutrients. The food components or ingredients have been carefully picked to meet your guinea pig’s taste and nutritional requirements. Harts Guinea Pig Small Animal Food pellets provide your pet with the right amount of fats, fiber, and protein to prevent them from becoming overweight and also aids their digestive process. These Guinea pig pellets have been fortified with omega acids, vitamin C, and minerals for your guinea pig’s maximum growth. Vitamin C is necessary for your guinea pig’s bone formation. Omega three and six acids are suitable for your guinea pig’s heart and skin, respectively.

Weighs ten pounds

Digest easily

The pellets come in various sizes

Maintains and beautifies the skin

Specification:
  • Brand: Hartz
  • Model: 3270098212
  • Weight: 10 pounds

5

One of the best Guinea pig pellets on the market is the brand called the Kaytee Timothy Biscuits Baked Treat. If you want to reward your guinea pig with a completely different flavor from the ones he/she is used to, then this variety ticks all the right boxes. Kaytee Timothy Treat is prepared using mostly apples. You can offer it as a reward to your guinea pig when playing or during bonding sessions. However, it should be served together or after your guinea pig’s main meal. Additionally, it is not a meal replacement but rather a supplement. For younger guinea pigs, it can be served as the main staple, but it shouldn’t be done frequently. Kaytee Timothy Biscuits are made up of dry timothy molasses. The sun-cured molasses provides your guinea pig with the right amount of fiber needed for your guinea pig’s digestive system.  As it’s made from apples, it has the right balance of vitamins, particularly for younger guinea pigs. Additionally, with each bite that your guinea pig takes, the apple content naturally cleans your guinea pig’s teeth.

Manufactured from apples

Best for playing and bonding sessions

Made up of sun-cured molasses

Flavorful

Specification:
  • Brand: Kaytee
  • Model: 100037504
  • Weight: 4.2 ounces

6

Oxbow Animal Health Western Timothy Hay for Pets is next on our review list. Feeding guinea pigs can be simple when you have the right information available to you. This timothy hay for guinea pigs is the perfect source of long fiber, which is good for the proper functioning of the digestive systems of younger pets. It is low in nutrients such as protein and calcium. It is sorted and packed manually with great attention to detail. Again. It contains no flavors, additives, unnatural colors, and preservatives as it is harvested directly from the farm – as such, it is natural and fresh. It also comes in different sizes to meet consumer’s needs. Pet nutritionists have recommended that a guinea pig’s meal should consist of about 75 percent of hay. Hence it is vital to choose a great brand like Oxbow for your guinea pig’s complete dietary needs and development.

Highly fibrous

Available in different product sizes

Helps to maintain clean teeth

Helps in food digestion

Specification:
  • Brand: Oxbow Animal Health
  • Model: 448006
  • Weight: 7 ounces

7

Moving on, we have Kaytee Fiesta Guinea Pig Food. This guinea pig hay product is fortified with nutrients and consists of seeds, fruits, vegetables, and grains. It’s selling point is that it has a wide variety when compared with the other guinea big supplies on the shelves, and the diversity of the product is excellent news for guinea pigs. The fiesta variety is made up of probiotics and prebiotics, which improves your guinea pig’s digestive system. It is also an excellent source of antioxidants which boost your guinea pig’s immune system. Again, Kaytee Fiesta Guinea Pig Food is rich in omega-three acids, which is right for your guinea pig’s brain, heart, and eye. The Kaytee Fiesta product’s texture and shape make chewing natural and fun for most guinea pigs. 

Weighs two and a half pounds

Excellent source of vitamin C

Contains seeds, fruits, and vegetables

Comes in a durable bag

Specification:
  • Brand: Kaytee
  • Model: 100032317
  • Weight: 4.5 pounds

8

The new entrance on our list is Vitakraft Guinea Pig Food. Vitakraft’s product is the ideal guinea pig treat with quality components that make their food appealing and delicious to most guinea pigs. They have a variety of mixtures, such as fruits, pellets, and vegetables. They are nutritious and well-balanced food that is essential for your guinea pig’s health. It also has omega-three acid, which is vital for your guinea pig’s brain development, and the probiotics work perfectly for your guinea pig’s digestive health. Vitakraft guinea pig food beautifies your guinea pig’s coat, boosts their immune system and helps their heart to function efficiently.

Made in the USA

Colorful blend of ingredients

Boosts your guinea pig’s immune system

Stored in a resealable container or bag

Specification:
  • Brand: Vitakraft
  • Model: 34411
  • Weight: 4.9 pounds

9

Next on our list is the Wild Harvest Advanced Nutrition Diet for Guinea Pigs. This type of guinea big hay provides a complete array of various ingredients for your guinea pig’s needs. It contains minerals, vitamins, and other essential components required for your guinea pig’s health. It has a unique formula, and the pellets are highly fibrous. It has a blend of vegetables and fruits, making it delicious and flavorful to meet your pet’s taste. Again, it has Timothy hays and a rich source of vitamin C. Unlike the other products discussed above. The Wild Harvest Advanced Nutrition Diet is made up of peas, corn, and soybean. The mixture of these food components helps shape your guinea pig’s foraging conduct, which is vital for your guinea pig’s mental stimulation.

Contains a mixture of corn, soybean, and peas

Manufactured specifically for guinea pigs

It is naturally tasty and delicious

It has different packaging depending on the size

Specification:
  • Brand: Wild Harvest
  • Model: G19708
  • Weight: 8 pounds

10

The final entry onto our list is the Oxbow Guinea Pig Performance Young Guinea Pig (Alfalfa Based). This delicious variety is intentionally crafted to offer a high level of protein, energy, fiber, and calcium, which are necessary for younger guinea pigs to live a healthy life. Smaller guinea pigs need more energy and protein than their adult counterparts. Because the vitamins and protein are well balanced, it helps pregnant and lactating guinea pigs. The alfalfa that is used in preparing the Oxbow Guinea Pig Performance food is rich in natural juices, which will effortlessly attract your guinea pig to feed on it.

It is made with juicy alfalfa hay

The hay is natural and fresh

It is moist and nutritious

Not suitable or recommended for adult guinea pigs

Specification:
  • Brand: Oxbow
  • Model: 744845402802
  • Weight: 5 pounds

Best Guinea Pig Food Buying Guide & FAQ

What to Look for in Guinea Pig Food

When purchasing guinea pig foods, you should look out for the following ingredients.

  • Vitamin C: Ensure that your guinea pig food contains enough vitamin C. Guinea pigs are mammals who are unable to produce vitamin C naturally on their own. Therefore it is essential to provide it to them directly through their feeding.
  • Hay: A good guinea pig food should have hay. Guinea pigs require hay for their dental health and digestive system.
  • Pellets: Your guinea pigs' pellet-based foods should also be high in energy. However, too much of it can result in your guinea pig becoming obese and also may lead to dental issues.
  • Natural vs Artificial: When buying guinea pig food, you should make sure that the food is fresh and natural. Avoid artificial foods as much as possible.

Hands feeding guinea pig

What to Avoid Feeding Your Guinea Pig

Avoid feeding your guinea pig the following:

  • Certain vegetables such as cabbage, potatoes, avocado, and lettuce.
  • Guinea pigs are herbivores and, as such, do not feed your Guinea pig with meat or dairy items.
  • Again, avoid feeding your guinea pigs with fruits that are high in sugar. Fruits with sugar must be served in moderation.
  • Avoid foods that are highly rich in calcium and protein.
  • Do not offer your guinea pig citrus fruits such as orange, lime, and lemon.

Types of Guinea Pig Food

There are different types of guinea pig food on the market. However, depending on the ingredients and composition, guinea pig foods can be classified into three different types – pellets, hays, and treats.

  • Guinea Pig Pellets: They contain vitamins A to E and minerals like phosphorous and biotin. Do not feed them with pellets that are made up of nuts or preservatives.
  • Guinea Pig Hay: There are different types of Guinea pig hays, but the famous ones are grass hays and Timothy hays. Hays imitate the forest like or natural surroundings of guinea pigs in the bush. As such, Guinea Pigs are traditionally attracted to its natural texture and scent.
  • Guinea Pig Treats:  Your pig will enjoy treats that are high in nutrients and minerals. Treats that contain a lot of sugar should be avoided.
  • Complete Guinea Pig Diets: A perfect Guinea pig diet should consist of a well-balanced protein, calcium, phosphorus, and vitamins that are important for your guinea pig’s growth. It should also be made up of the right number of pellets, hays, and treats.

Best Guinea Pig Food Brands 

The best brands currently on the market are listed below.

  • Oxbow Guinea Pig Cuisine: This brand of food is made explicitly for older Guinea pigs. It consists of fiber and vitamin C which are vital for guinea pigs. It has no additives and preservatives.
  • Sweet Meadow Timothy Guinea Pig Pellets: This product is manufactured for guinea pigs age nine months and above. It is also rich in vitamin C and calcium.
  • Burgess Excel Guinea Pig Food: Burgess Excel has 36 percent of fiber and is an excellent source of vitamin C.
  • Supreme Selective Fortified Diet for Guinea Pigs: This tasty variety has no sugar content; as such, it helps to prevent obesity.
  • Small Pet Select Guinea Pig Food Pellets: This brand’s ingredients are fully sourced in the United States. It consists of vitamins and high-grade Timothy hays.

Best Guinea Pig Food FAQ:

Q: How much should I feed my guinea pig?

A: You should feed your Guinea pig once every day with about 1/6 cup (medium size) of pellets and supplement it with a small number of vegetables and an unlimited amount of hays.

Q: Can guinea pigs just eat pellets?

A: You should serve them with varieties such as vegetables, freshwater, and hays. Pellets are useful for your guinea pigs, but they are supplements and should not be viewed as the major meal of the day.

Q: Can guinea pigs eat dog food or cat food?

A: Most pet foods are made for a specific target audience and are not generic. Thus, before the staples are made, they take into consideration the nutritional requirements of each pet. So, a cat or dog food may not contain the dietary components or ingredients that your guinea pig needs for his growth and general wellbeing.

Two guinea pigs are having meal

Our Top Pick

Drum roll please, and the winner is Oxbow Essentials Adult Guinea Pig (Timothy Based). Here is a quick recap of why we recommend this product to any guinea pig owner. This quality brand is highly fibrous, which is suitable for your adult guinea pig and also contains the right amount of vitamin C, which aids your guinea pig’s development. You can also rest assured that your pet will be receiving a quality well-balanced diet when using this product. This is due to the fact that the calcium and phosphorous levels are not too high and it is also low in protein and calories. So, for owners who are worried about their guinea pigs putting on weight, this variety is best suited for your little Champ.

Sources:

  1. Guinea Pig Nutrition - Mississippi State University
  2. Housing and Feeding Your Guinea Pig - College of Veterinary Medicine at Illinois
Dr Tracy Douglas
Dr Tracy Douglas
General Practice Veterinarian, currently working at the Glenwood Veterinary Clinic, Glenwood Springs, Colorado. Dr. Douglas began her veterinary career as a Veterinary Nurse in Highton Veterinary Clinic, Highton Victoria, and then as an Emergency Veterinarian in Uintah Pet Emergency, Colorado Springs, Colorado. Tracy is particularly interested in surgery, neurology and internal medicine, which gives her a well-rounded knowledge on animal health and well-being. She received her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from the University of Melbourne, while her undergraduate bachelor of science is from the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York.
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