First Cut Hay, Second Cut Hay, Third Cut Hay? WHAT??

In a previous post, we talked about two important types of hay. This time, let’s talk about different cuts!

Did you know that not only are there different types of hay but that there are also different cuts?

We hear you getting all concerned and confused. Rest assured, we’re gonna make this easy for you to understand.

People who grow hay cut that hay at different times of the year (typically three or four times). After that third or fourth time, the colder months come and the hay is left alone. Come spring time, we get our “first cut”.

That first cut is gonna be different than the second or third cuts. That first cut is going to contain some of last year’s cut too. it’s going to be longer or “older”.

First cuts of timothy are coarser (some rabbits don’t like that), they contain less moisture which make them easier to dry and keep dry. 

The nutritional make-up of a first cut is high in fiber and low in protein and carbs (starch). If you know for a fact that the hay you’re feeding your rabbit is first cut, feel free to add more pellets to your bunny’s diet.

Not every supplier is gonna be able to tell you what cut the product is. Oxbow, for instance, doesn’t specify on the bag what cut the hay is. Doesn’t really matter though because they’re generally going to be selling you a mix of second and third cut. Even if there’s a little bit of that first cut in the mix, it’s alright. Not the end of the world.

Second cut is high in protein and carbs. Even more so for the third cut.

Keep in mind that a healthy adult rabbit does not need rich feed, especially if you are offering pellets as well.

When you can, buy directly from the grower. The hay will be fresher, you’re rabbit will be happier, and you’ll know the cut.

Also, buy a plastic bin and lid so you can keep the hay fresh.

P.S. If you’re not near a grower of hay, Oxbow does a fine job. We sell Oxbow from the SHOP page. Each purchase you make of hay or whatever from that page gives us a percentage of that sale. It helps us care for the rabbits!

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