Those of you that have a hay box...

dannif_piggies

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Hey guys, those of you that have a dedicated hay box, rather than a hay rack or just using hay as bedding, what do you use below the hay? I would love to have a dedicated hay section/box for the piggies especially Willow as she is always jumping in the hay rack to run through it... I used to have a hay box for Honey and just would put hay in it, but she would love it so much when she weed there, she wouldn't move (not sure if this would be different now she doesn't have the cysts)... at the time I tried a puppy pad and would just throw out the puppy pad and all the hay, once or twice a day, this was okay but also wasteful, and now she has this strange obsession with eating everything she's not meant to (including the puppy pads) I don't think this would work 😂 Ive seen people use like wood litter? Is this any good?

Suggestions and ideas would be great though 😊 Thank you in advance!
 

Posyrose

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I use Fitch under the hay. It's recycled paper bedding and very soft and absorbent. It is wasteful, as I change it every few days, but I have changed to fleece from Fitch throughout the cage, so it's less waste over all.
 

dannif_piggies

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I use Fitch under the hay. It's recycled paper bedding and very soft and absorbent. It is wasteful, as I change it every few days, but I have changed to fleece from Fitch throughout the cage, so it's less waste over all.
Thank you for this suggestion. Is this similar stuff to carefresh bedding?
 

KathT

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I have a large hay tray which I line with a puppy pad and then a thin layer of fitch type bedding, then hay on top. Mine love burrowing in the hay and although it’s quite wasteful, the rest of their cages are fleece so it’s not too bad. I buy hay by the bale too which is cheaper than pet shops etc.
 

Danielle Smith

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I have used (at different times) newspaper, wood litter, shavings, Megazorb, and Aubiose across 11 pigs with 4 hay boxes.

Of all of them, I like Aubiose the best, here's why:

  • Newspaper: got soaked very quickly and stuck itself to the bottom of the hay box (I put ten sheets or so on the top of each other, and still the same problem. My pigs love peeing in their hay boxes!). Had to change it every day. A single newspaper (£1.30) lasted 11 pigs a day or two.

  • Wood litter: I did this with either non-slip liner on top (can get this at B&M Bargains, Wilkos, Dunelm), or with fleece on top. Pee soaks through to the wood litter, and poo can easily be shaken into the bin. The wood litter lasted for 4-6 weeks with weekly stirring up to bring the intact pellets to the top. This would have been a great substrate if it hadn't started smelling strongly of ammonia/pine quite quickly. A £6 30L bag did 11 pigs for around 4 weeks.

  • Shavings: I had to change this twice a week as it wasn't very absorbent. As long as I kept on top of changing it, it didn't smell. My pigs were a bit sneezier on it though. A £8 20kg bag lasted a month with 11 pigs.

  • Megazorb: lasted a week easily, no ammonia smell but a very strong wood pulp smell which some people don't like (me included). It was also quite dusty so, again, sneezy pigs! A £8 85L bag lasted 3 weeks with 11 pigs.

  • Aubiose: I'm using this at the minute. First, unlike shavings or Megazorb, it's really easy to get out of the bag due to it's consistency (I can't explain really, almost like picking up dry sand?). It lasts a whole week with practically no smell at all! It tracks around the cage a lot less than sawdust or Megazorb and when it gets on fleece, it can be hoovered up very easily. It's also pretty much dust free, great for my more sensitive pigs. A £12 20kg bag lasts around a month.

I promise I'm not a paid Aubiose advertiser, I'm just super happy I've found a substrate that works for me! I still want to try Fitch (which is similar to Carefresh, yes), but from what I understand the price has went up prohibitively in the past few months. Hope this was helpful!

EDIT: as other users have said, hay by the bale is the best if you can find good-quality stuff near you. I'm lucky enough to live an hour and a half away from the people who sell Ings Hay (www.hay-and-straw.co.uk), so I get the hay for £6.50 a bale +petrol.
 

Janey

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I use Megazorb in my trays and happy with the way it absorbs the pee and doesn’t smell at all, once it’s in the tray - I only notice the smell when I’m scooping it out the bag.
 

dannif_piggies

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Thanks everyone! I may just have to give some of these a go and see what works best! Lots of choices!
 

Julie M

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I use back to nature (paper litter) it’s also called breeder celect cat litter. It’s cheaper to buy the cat litter type than the small animals type. Unless theirs a deal on. I just put the hay on top. I only have 2 piggies now though. I also use it in my hamsters toilets and it’s great as the wet bits swell up so are easily removed.
 

teddymouse

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l use under cupboard racks for hay racks,with a gravel tray that has a puppy pad with 4/5 hands full of bits of coir on top ,this works well for my herds, and l don't get alot of wastage.DSCI1107.JPGDSCI1093.JPG
 

teddymouse

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don't know if it was in the GP, l've used it for a couple of years, after trying other types of bedding ,and find its good as it soaks up ten times its volume. and does not smell.
 

teddymouse

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Where do you get coir from?

l buy in bulk 25kg sacks,in 5kg blocks, from a firm on e bay, cost of £24 per sack ,p&p free. you can get small blocks in home bargains and £land at £1. just make shore there the ones with no addtives.


just to add this is spent coconut husks ground up.
 

artcasper

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I use a cat litter tray
Lined with quite a few sheets of newspaper
Topped with a generous layer of Fitch
Topped with hay
Change it twice a day..
 

dannif_piggies

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l use under cupboard racks for hay racks,with a gravel tray that has a puppy pad with 4/5 hands full of bits of coir on top ,this works well for my herds, and l don't get alot of wastage.View attachment 96240View attachment 96241
I currently am using an "over the door" storage rack thing, and it works, but Willow loves to just run through the hay, and Honey loves sitting in it, so if I can give this to them, without Honey sitting in her urine 🙄 Your cage looks great!
 

Betsy

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My lot have a haybox when they are outside on the patio and I put a couple of pee pads under the hay and change them regularly.
 
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teddymouse

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I currently am using an "over the door" storage rack thing, and it works, but Willow loves to just run through the hay, and Honey loves sitting in it, so if I can give this to them, without Honey sitting in her urine 🙄 Your cage looks great!

lol
not a cage! it's a 14foot; x 12foot summer house ,see thread " it's here".
 
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