Day 1: Toilet RollI started off simple with just stuffing an empty toilet roll with hay and placing it on the floor of their cage. The guinea pigs weren't the most excited for this, and were a bit put out by the new way of giving them hay. I saw Knuckles give it a few bites, but then left them til I returned home from work. At that point, the toilet roll itself was slightly chewed and the hay was gone from each of them. It wasn't much of a hit but I think if I added a few vegetables mixed in with it, it might be more enjoyable.
I have had a wire vegetable ball for a while now, and usually use it only for its main purpose of holding vegetables and hang it on the side of the cage so its easy to get to. This time I filled it with their normal ration of hay and some celery then hung it from the roof. Knuckles again was the first out of them both to jump into it, and I could see him really working hard to get at his food. By the time I returned home from work there were only a few strands of hay left, but those too were gone within the hour.
Day 3: Cardboard BagToday I gave Schmutz the different hay method. I have done this before a few months ago and I knew how much he loved it. I filled a cardboard bag with hay and his daily vegetables, then cut some holes in the sides and bottom and closed off the top. Schmutz straight away was ripping it open, throwing it around his cage and trying to get the contents out. It is always great to see him get so involved with hay time as usually he doesn't seem to care about it much. I do have a short video of him playing with it that I will get up onto our instagram account (DaisyPets). Once we get another bag of food, I will definitely be trying this one with the guinea pigs.
Day 4: Egg CartonI filled an egg carton with vegetables in each egg spot, and on top of that put their hay before closing the lid and putting it in their cage. As usual, Knuckles was first in and was pushing his way into the carton. After a little while, the top sprung open and BMO joined in. This one, I could tell was a favourite as they had to dig through the hay to get the vegetables, and once those were cleared out they went for the hay. I got home and it was empty and even the carton had multiple bit marks out of it. I want to think of a way of making a similar hay toy for them, that is more permanent as I enjoyed their enjoyment.
Day 5: Wire Vegetable Holder on the floorThe last day was for Schmutz as well. I filled the same wire vegetable holder with hay and vegetables and put it on the floor of his cage. He was delighted to be able to throw it around, and try and grab at the vegetables while it was rolling away from him. He even threw away the toy carrot that was next to it so he could get a better angle on it. Things that Schmutz can move and throw about are his favourite kind of toy I have noticed and this really made him work for his food. I am not sure how the guinea pigs would react to this method, but I bet they would still love to eat the contents either way.
I hope you enjoyed seeing the different variations I came up with for feeding hay. I would like you all to try and do this, and if you do make sure you either tag me in some instagram photos, or make me aware of the blog/video! Some people from YouTube that I would love to do this are CarisLittlePiggies, PiggiePigPigs, The Cavy House, SkinnyPigs1 and TheSmallPetShop. Thanks for reading :)