We are never happier than when we are eating! We can eat a wide variety of food, including of course that delicious hay to wear our teeth down. We need constant access to hay, a good quality dried food and small amounts of fresh food (preferably twice a day.) This is because we cannot produce our own vitamin C so we need to be topped up regularly in order to keep us healthy. A diet consisting purely of dried food though is not healthy for us as these dried foods are full of protein and excessive feeding can cause kidney stones. Please ensure you buy us good quality hay, damp smelly stuff just isn’t good enough. There are lots of different types available too such as Timothy Hay, Orchard Hay, Meadow Hay, Alfalfa… all good stuff and great as a treat. Small treat sized bags can be purchased on the internet.
We also enjoy a variety of wild plants including of course dandelions and grass. However, if you feed them to us please make sure the grass has not been treated and that anything you pick for us was not near the road otherwise we can be poisoned by exhaust toxins. Remember, we are what we eat and we don’t want to glow in the dark!
Any fruit or vegetable should be clean and fresh, anything left over should be removed before it goes stale. (See Fresh Foods for a comprehensive list of good things to eat) If you wouldn’t eat it yourself don’t expect us to think it’s yummy either!
Grass clippings from the mower should not be fed as they will make us poorly.
Finally, WE DO NOT NEED SHOP BOUGHT TREATS or any kind of salt lick. They are full of unnecessary rubbish that won’t do us any good at all. It’s our equivilant of living on Coke and crisps – it’s junk. If you want to treat us buy a pot of herbs – coriander, parsley, dill. Now that’s fine dining cavy style! A 30cm branch of hazel, apple or pear tree is delicious too and great for our teeth, we can nibble the bark off it and best of all it’s free from your garden too.
We will need clean fresh water daily and easy access to it of course.
Please make sure our water bottle is cleaned out well too, especially the spout. Bits from our mouths go back up through the spout and into the bottle so please change the water daily and use a mini bottle brush or a cotton bud for cleaning the spout. A soak in Milton once a week is recommended. (The metal spout that is, NOT US !!!)
Bowls of water are not really suitable as we drop food in them, our bedding goes in them and we like to float poos in them too! Not very hygienic now is it? We like bottles!