P.O. Box 637 ~ Winfield, IL 60190-0637 ~ (630) 842-5033
SELECTING AND FINDING HAY FOR YOUR RABBIT
Hay is an important part of a house rabbit’s diet. Locating a good hay source and selecting quality hay is important. The quality and texture of hay will vary throughout the season depending on harvest time and weather. Most bale hay is a mixed grass variety. The content of mixed grass hay will vary from field to field. As a rule of thumb, a grass mix that is good for horses is also appropriate for rabbits. When selecting bale hay it is a good idea to ask to see the bales and select the bale yourself. Here are some guidelines on selecting a good bale of hay for your rabbit:
* Hay should be clean and dry
* Hay should have a fresh, grassy smell – should not smell musty or damp
* Hay should not be crumbly or dusty
Below are some sources of good quality hay that have been used by our HRS members:
LOCAL SOURCES OF BALED HAY
(You may want to call ahead to check availability)
Animal Feed & Needs
401W. Gulf Road,
Arlington Heights, IL
Grayslake Feed Supply
21 Seymour Ave.
The Trellis Farm and Garden
2N492 Kirk Rd.
St. Charles, IL
The Barn Owl (baled hay only)
1 N 583 Gary Ave.
Carol Stream, IL 60188
15250 W. Wadsworth Rd,
MAIL ORDER SOURCES OF GOURMET HAY AND RABBIT SUPPLIES
Sweet Meadow Farm
(Wonderful Meadow hay!
Can buy an economical 9 lb. box of hay)
Woodinville, WA 98072
Good Orchard hay for those allergic to timothy hay
American Pet Diner
Zooh Corner Rabbit Rescue
The Bunny Basics
Pet Care Depot
The Organic Hay Co.
Small Pet Select
One Ear Up Hay
RABBIT SAFE LITTERS
Below is a list of rabbit safe litters that are readily available in the Chicago area.
Recycled newspaper product; very absorbent, low dust. Can scoop out wet sections to refresh pan between changes. Also available in soft formula for pets with tender feet.
Soft egg-carton type paper litter.
Pelleted paper product. Can scoop out wet sections to refresh pan between changes.
Straw and grass pelleted litter. Can scoop out wet sections to refresh pan between changes.
Feline Pine and All Pet Pine
Pelleted litter made from processed, kiln-dried pine. Can scoop wet sections to refresh pan between changes..
Aspen base pelleted litter. Can scoop wet sections to refresh pan between changes. Can compost.
Aspen Shavings or Chips
Aspen is a rabbit safe wood. Absorbent; can be messy as it is easily tracked out of the litter pan.
Magnum Horse Bedding
Horse Bedding Pelleted wood products. Very absorbent. .Much cheaper than small animal litters because it is sold in larger quantities. Can scoop wet sections and can compost. Available at many feed stores that also carry baled hay.
Recycle your newspaper – shredded or whole; inexpensive; avoid colored dyes.
Hay and straw
Alone or used in combination over newspaper or any rabbit safe litter. A perfect method for recycling your rabbit’s picked over hay. Very inexpensive; pan full of hay entices bunny to nibble hay throughout the day.
The HRS Chicago, along with our veterinarians, does not recommend the use of
(1) cedar or pine shavings because they can cause problems with the respiratory tract. They can also cause liver disease in small animals This type of liver disease can be reversed by removing cedar and pine from the environment OR (2) any type of scoopable or clay kitty litter. Rabbits whose diets do not contain enough fiber may eat it. The dust and residue from these litters tend to accumulate throughout the gastrointestinal tract and can lead to fatal blockages. Clay litters can cause damage to the stomach.