A: Yes! 92% of UK vets recommend Burgess Excel. This is based on an annual survey of veterinary professionals.
We pride ourselves in our outstanding relationship with the veterinary community and continued commitment to producing high quality, balanced, and healthy food for your small animals.
A: Each of our nuggets are formulated with a carefully balanced mix of vitamins and minerals, specifically tailored for your small animal. Our rabbit nuggets have a different formulation to our guinea pig food, just like our ferret and rat food have a different, tailored mix just for them!
Some of the vitamins and minerals we include in our recipes are:
Vitamin A – Supports eye health and it’s antioxidant functions support the immune system
Vitamin D3 – Supports calcium absorption in the body, which helps to maintain bone and dental health.
Vitamin C – Just like us humans, guinea pigs can’t produce their own vitamin C, which is why we add this essential vitamin into all of our guinea pig nuggets
Vitamin E – This vitamin has antioxidant properties and supports the body’s natural defences
Zinc – This mineral is essential for animals as it has lots of functions in the body. It’s involved in a process called protein synthesis, which has an important role in skin and coat health.
Iron – Just like we need to get enough iron in our diet, so do our pets. Iron has an important role in their blood, as it makes up part of the structure of haemoglobin which transports oxygen in the red blood cells.
Copper – Copper has an important role to play in lots of functions within your animal’s body. It’s part of a powerful structure of antioxidant enzymes which supports the immune system. It also helps with nerve function.
Iodine – We all have a thyroid gland which requires iodine to work. The thyroid gland produces important hormones that regulate growth and the metabolism of fat, protein, and carbohydrates.
A: All our Burgess Excel nuggets are made at our own factory in the heart of Yorkshire. We make our nuggets through a process called thermal extrusion. Thermal extrusion is when most of the ingredients that make up our tasty food are ground down into a fine flour and mixed together. We then add steam and water to make a soft mixture which can be pushed through a die plate to form the shape.
A: Thermal extrusion has lots of benefits compared to other forms of making small animal nuggets.
Our nuggets contain wholegrains, which are a source of fibre, protein and energy in the form of starch. Because we use heat in our process, this means the starch is cooked (gelatinised), and can be easily digested by your small animals – so they can make the most of its nutritional benefits.
Cooking nuggets also reduces things called anti nutritional factors in the food. Many of the ingredients used in animal food contain these anti nutritional factors. These are components in foods that can reduce the effectiveness of some of the nutrients. Because of the temperatures reached in our cooking process, these compounds are destroyed, increasing the nutritional quality of the food.
The heat from our cooking process also kills any other harmful bacteria or viruses. Many of the ingredients in small animal nuggets don’t undergo many processes before they are made into nuggets. This means they could come into contact with the wild animal population, which can carry a range of illnesses and diseases. But the thermal extrusion process, and heat used, helps to make our Burgess Excel products safe for your pets.
A: Although some of the ingredients seem similar on the label, our rabbit and guinea pig nuggets are specially formulated for each species. Just like us, guinea pigs can’t produce their own vitamin C, which is why we include protected vitamin C in all our guinea pig food. This is a special form of vitamin C which isn’t destroyed by the cooking process. Don’t forget to store your guinea pig nuggets in a cool, dark, dry place.
A: Rabbit nuggets do not provide your guinea pigs with the essential nutrients they need from their nuggets to stay happy and healthy. Therefore, we would not recommend you feed your guinea pigs rabbit nuggets, or vice versa. The essential protected vitamin C in guinea pig nuggets helps your piggies to thrive, plus our guinea pig nuggets have been specially formulated, with the correct levels of protein and fibre, to support guinea pigs, whereas our rabbit food has been made with buns in mind.
A: Rabbits need a high fibre diet, that’s carefully balanced to meet their needs. While the majority, 85-90%, of their diet should be high quality feeding hay or fresh grass, nuggets play an important part in helping rabbits get the other essential nutrients they need.
The grain we use in our rabbit nuggets is wholegrain wheat. Wheat is a fantastic source of fibre from the bran, as well as protein from the endosperm, which helps with growth and muscle maintenance. When the wheat is cooked through our extrusion process (how we make our tasty rabbit nuggets), the starch in the wheat provides an easily digestible source of energy.
Generally, rabbits can eat grains and don’t need a grain free diet. However, if you have any concerns about your rabbits’ digestion or any intolerances, it is best to get in touch with your vet as soon as possible.
A: We don’t make grain free guinea pig food. Our three guinea pig food varieties, Mint, Blackcurrant & Oregano, and Indoor guinea pig nuggets, all contain grain. These are a variety of wheat, wheat feed, and oat feed.
Guinea pigs need a high fibre diet as this helps to keep their delicate digestive system moving so they can stay happy and healthy. The more fibre the better, which is why 85-90% of their diet should be high quality feeding hay or fresh grass – foods that are packed with fibre! The grains in our guinea pig nuggets also help to boost their fibre intake. They are all great sources of beneficial fibre for your piggies.
Guinea pigs don’t need a grain free diet. Grains are great sources of fibre in nuggets, and they don’t have any problems digesting them. If you have any concerns about your guinea pig’s health, contact your vet.
A: All Burgess Excel feeding hay is grown on British farms, by farmers we know and trust. Hay is produced through cutting high quality grasses and then drying them.
We pride ourselves in the outstanding quality of our feeding hay for rabbits, guinea pigs, and chinchillas.
A: The main difference between hay and straw is that hay is a food, whereas straw is not. While they may look similar, their functions are very different.
Hay is made from cut grass that has been dried. High quality feeding hay can then be fed to small animals, such as rabbits, guinea pigs, and chinchillas. In comparison, straw is made from the leftover stems from grain, like barley and wheat. Once the grain has been harvested, the stems are left. These stems are often used as bedding material for animals. Whilst straw is high in fibre, it isn’t very palatable, so it is unlikely that your animals will eat it.
Due to these differences, you should not feed straw to your rabbits, guinea pigs or chinchillas. Their diet should be 85-90% high quality feeding hay or fresh grass as this is high in fibre, which is essential for their health and wellbeing.
A: Rabbits should have unlimited access to high quality feeding hay or fresh grass. 85-90% of their diet should be feeding hay or grass, and the easiest way to achieve that is to give them as much as they want! Pop at least their body size worth of hay in their rabbit housing each morning and keep an eye on it throughout the day. If they’re running low, top it up with some more tasty Burgess Excel Feeding Hay.
A: Hay is made from grass, which is dried after it is cut. The main difference between meadow and timothy hay is the type of grass. Timothy hay is made from timothy grass whereas meadow hay is a mixture of grasses.
We have a range of both types of hay, Timothy Hay Box ,Long Stem Feeding Hay, and our best selling Dandelion & Marigold are all made from timothy hay and our Meadow Hay Box and Hedgerow Herbs are made from meadow hay.