Why we’ve got hay fever!

For lots of small furries, every day should be a hay day! And not any old hay will do – always opt for high-quality feeding hay to help your small pets stay healthy and happy – and now you can Subscribe and Save 10%! To meet the needs of your discerning dry grass nibblers such as rabbits, guinea pigs, chinchillas
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10th February 2022

For lots of small furries, every day should be a hay day! And not any old hay will do – always opt for high-quality feeding hay to help your small pets stay healthy and happy – and now you can Subscribe and Save 10%!

To meet the needs of your discerning dry grass nibblers such as rabbits, guinea pigs, chinchillas and degus, any hay you provide as part of their daily diet has to be grown and harvested especially for eating.

Burgess in-house vet, Dr Suzanne Moyes, explains: “Top quality feeding hay plays an essential role in your small pets’ health and wellbeing. Bedding hay is often cheaply manufactured and has poor nutritional value, so it’s vital that you choose hay that’s specially grown for small pets to feed on that’s cut at the right time to capture all the natural goodness.”


The Pet Food Manufacturers' Association advises: “Herbivores such as rabbits, guinea pigs, degus and chinchillas are animals that only eat grass and plant-based food. All herbivorous small mammals need plenty of good quality fresh hay and/or grass on a daily basis. In fact, this is an essential part of their diet to keep their digestive system and teeth healthy.”

Burgess Excel Feeding Hay is grown specially for eating and is:

  • Fresh and fragrant, barn dried, and dust extracted to ease irritation and protect respiratory health
  • Made with 100% natural ingredients
  • Much more tasty
  • Nutritionally rich and laboratory tested
  • High in Beneficial Fibre for gut health
  • Good for dental health


For rabbits, guinea pigs and chinchillas, the most important part of their diet is fresh grass or hay. In fact, 85-90% of a these small pets’ diet should be high-quality feeding hay and grass – that’s equal to their own body size in hay every day! High-quality feeding hay, harvested straight from the field, is an excellent source of fibre and helps to maintain a healthy gut, reduces the risk of your pets getting tubby and serves to grind down their continuously growing teeth, helping prevent dental disease.

Dr Moyes adds: “Chomping on hay also does wonders for your small pets’ emotional wellbeing. For example, in the wild, rabbits spend around 70% of their time foraging and eating grass and other plants. That’s another reason why feeding high quality, sweet smelling, tasty nutritious hay makes such a difference to the quality of life of our small pets.”


Rabbits like to poo and chew. Bunnies generally prefer to munch on hay while they’re resting and, while it may seem a little odd to us humans, they also like to ‘poo and chew’, so put a pile of hay in their favourite resting places and hang a hay rack above their litter tray.

How to make your small animals' hay entertaining

Making hay time, playtime, can encourage your small furries to eat all the hay they need to stay happy and healthy. All you need is a little imagination...

  • Most fibrevores like to play and throw toys around, so incorporating hay as part of play activities is a great way to encourage your pets to pull, bite and chew at it. A willow ball or cardboard tube filled with hay is ideal for batting about.
  • Try putting a bunch of hay in a sheet of brown paper and tie the ends with a strand of hay to look like a Christmas cracker. Your small pets will love chucking this around and then ripping it open to get to the hay inside.
  • forage weave made with fresh forage such as sticky weed, rose or wild dog rose, bramble, hazel and buddleia is great for rabbits and guinea pigs. It can also be adapted for chinchillas and degus by using high-quality feeding hay anddry forage and is an ideal way to promote natural browsing behaviour and also encourage stretching and reaching to keep your small pets in good shape. Find out more about foraging for your small furries >>
  • If you have small pets, you’ll never run out of uses for cardboard loo rolls! And, turning them into hanging hay-filled toys couldn’t be simpler. Make a few and hang them at different heights to provide some snacking fun with a bit of a challengeFind out more about DIY enrichment toys for your pets >>

GOOD TO KNOW The grass used in our Burgess Excel Rabbit Nuggets, Guinea Pig Nuggets, Chinchilla Nuggets, Feeding Hay and Treats for small pets is sourced from the UK to meet our stringent specifications and is exclusive to Burgess. No other pet food manufacturer has access to our grass, and we are justifiably proud of its provenance. At Burgess, we have a long tradition of supporting British farmers. As part of our ongoing commitment, we actively source our ingredients as close to our mill as possible. Find out all the reasons why we’re proud of our grass >>


Excel Meadow Hay Box is our biggest hay pack yet! This high-quality British Meadow feeding hay is perfect for rabbits, guinea pigs and chinchillas. It comes in a handy, resealable and fully recyclable box! Subscribe and Save 10% >>

Also available is our Excel Timothy Hay Box >>

!!! BRAND NEW!!!

Excel Green Harvest Feeding Hay is made from 100% first cut meadow hay, sustainably dried, and dust extracted for respiratory health. This extra green, yummy feeding hay is suitable for rabbits, guinea pigs, and chinchillas.

GET FREE DELIVERY on orders over £15*

*UK mainland delivery only. T&Cs apply.

Do rabbits eat cucumber or broccoli? Can chinchillas eat carrots? What veg is safe for guinea pigs? We've all the need-to-know small furry nutrition info here >>


Excel Nap & Nest is great for use as litter and bedding and is suitable for rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters, and small animals. Made from unused offcuts from the teabag production industry, it’s super absorbent, easy to spot clean and soft on little paws.

Are your small pets Burgess small pets? Join the Burgess Pet Club for exclusive offers and rewards.

  • You can also sign up to the Excel Bunny Base– a safe Facebook community for rabbit guardians that are looking for advice and friendly discussions from likeminded owners – and there are lots of cute bunny photos and videos!
  • Or why not join the Excel Squeak Squadon Facebook? This is a safe community to find advice and friendly discussions from likeminded guinea pig owners. You can also join Berry & Bramble, our special G-force guinea pigs, on weekly missions and fun competitions.

CARE MORE Find lots of useful advice on caring for your rabbits, guinea pigs or chinchillas from Burgess, the pet experts.

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