Nowadays, most companies add many additives, colouring, and unhealthy ingredients to pellets for guinea pigs. So instead of doing hours of research like I did, you can lay back and relax, because I have already done it for you!
Are pellets necessary for guinea pigs?
The short answer is, no. That is because guinea pigs can be perfectly healthy without pellets as long as they consume enough nutrients and vitamins, especially vitamin c every day from their hay and vegetables. However, pellets are a good supplement for guinea pigs to make sure they get the right amount of vitamins and minerals.
How do I know if these pellets for guinea pigs are healthy?
How do you know what is healthy or not in guinea pig’s pellets? Here are some factors that I considered when researching a good pellets brand and type for adult guinea pigs.
- Is the first ingredient Timothy Hay?
- Does it have at least 25mg of vitamin C?
- Little or no added sugars, or molasses.
- 25 ingredients or less – all added vitamins count as one ingredient
- protein should be 14% or more of the daily intake
- High in Fibre – very important!
- Little or no alfalfa hay
- No nuts, seeds or fruits
- Filler with vitamins and antioxidants
- fat content no more than 5%
Disclaimer: These pellet brands are not sponsored. These are all my opinions. These guinea pig food recommendations are for adult guinea pigs
Are pellets for adult guinea pigs and young Guinea pigs different?
Yes, just like humans, growing guinea pigs and fully grown guinea pigs require different amounts of nutrition. For example, most pellets for young guinea pigs are alfalfa hay based because of the higher calcium content. On the other hand, adult guinea pigs should limit alfalfa hay as they can cause obesity and calcium stones.
Is your guinea pig in a healthy weight range? This article tells you how to weight your guinea pig and what should their weight be.
1. Supreme PetFoods Selective Naturals Grain Free Guinea Pig Food
This healthy grain-free natural guinea pig food suits well for all guinea pigs, especially those with calcium stones as well as piggies’ sensitive digestion problems like bloat and gas.
Number of ingredients: 11
Protein: 16% Fibre: 20%
Pros: no wheat, corn, added sugars, high in fibre, natural ingredients, rich in omega 3 & 6 (which is good for their skin and coat), supports digestion and dental health, good calcium and phosphorus ratio
Cons: contains soya bean oil (8th ingredient)
2. Versele-Laga Complete Cavia Guinea Pig Food
This guinea pig food is made with clean ingredients, containing extra vitamin C and antioxidants
Number of ingredients: Exact amount unknown as the website didn’t clearly state it, but around 11
Protein: 14% Fiber: 20% Vitamin C: 1000mg
Pros: timothy hay based, elderberry boosts immune system, rich in omega 3 & 6, prevents selective eating behaviour, herbs for digestion, antioxidants, high in vitamin c
Cons: colourants, did not state the exact ingredients in description
3. Zupreem Timothy Naturals Guinea Pig Food
This guinea pig food is timothy hay flavour, and also great for weight management, nutrition and digestion
Number of Ingredients: 15 (total 39)
Protein: 14% Fibre: 25% Vitamin C: 300 mg/kg
Pros: Timothy hay-based, rich in omega 3 and 6, lots of vitamins and minerals, high in vitamin c, good for digestion
Cons: contains alfalfa meal (3rd ingredient) as well as dried molasses (7th ingredient)
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4. Kaytee Timothy Complete Guinea pig Food
This timothy hay based guinea pig pellets has both probiotics and prebiotics. In addition, this food also supports chewing activity.
Number of ingredients: 17 (41 in total)
Protein: 14% Fibre: 23% Vitamin C: 200 mg/kg
Pros: high in protein and fibre, lots of minerals, support dental and digestive health, no artificial preservatives, contains probiotics and prebiotics
Cons: contains sun-cured alfalfa meal (6th ingredient), cane molasses (7th ingredient) as well as soybean oil (10th ingredient)
5. Oxbow Garden Select Adult Guinea Pig Food
Oxbow animal health has been around for more than 5 generations. Of all the pellets for guinea pigs from oxbow animal health, I like this one the most
Number of Ingredients: 16 (36 ingredients in total)
Protein:12% (minimum) Fibre (max):26% Vitamin C: 250mg/kg
Pros: hand-selected timothy hay, prebiotics supports digestive health, high in vitamins and minerals such as vitamin A and zinc.
Cons: Contains oat hulls (4th ingredient), canola meal and whole barley (5th and 6th ingredient), as well as canola oil (13th ingredient)
There is no best kind of pellets for guinea pigs, as each piggy has different needs in terms of nutrition needs, age and preferences. That being said, please remember to look at the ingredients and guaranteed nutrition analysis before buying. Don’t buy based on the looks of the package or the headlines!
I think that the Versele-Laga Complete Cavia Guinea Pig Food as well as Supreme PetFoods Selective Naturals Grain Free Guinea Pig Food are the healthiest, as they have lots of nutrients with little or fewer unnecessary ingredients.
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