Product Type: Friendship Estates small pet food
Newest Review: ... poses no risks if ingested. So anyway the day the parcel arrived I ripped it open excitedly and started rearranging my Hermanns tortoises'... more
Multipurpose for multiple species (TORTOISE USE)
Friendship Estates Friendly Readigrass
Member Name: dawnmarywhite
Friendship Estates Friendly Readigrass
Advantages: Gorgeous smell, long lasting
Disadvantages: Goes mouldy quick with moisture
Readigrass is just that - grass that has been made ready for animal use by freeze drying. The drying process kills any nasties that would otherwise have been present, and leaves behind a product that has so many uses, stays fresh in storage and smells wonderful. It can be used for small furries as well as tortoises (off the top of my head, rabbits and Guinea pigs I think but don't quote me), but I am going to concentrate on my experiences using it with tortoises for this review. Despite having small furries, I've never tried it with them (yet).
So, when I first tried this, I bought it because I wanted to offer some different substrate in my indoor tortoise table. And because this is just composed of grass, it poses no risks if ingested. So anyway the day the parcel arrived I ripped it open excitedly and started rearranging my Hermanns tortoises' house. It looked brilliant and you could smell it as soon as you walked into the room. However, after a few days I found a lot of mould.
I deduced this to be due to placing a layer over their topsoil substrate, and after clearing it out I moved the soil and put a thick layer directly onto the floor. This worked much better! Every morning without fail I found one of my pair buried deep in the pile. The other wasn't fussed, although he did dig about in it. But that's tortoises for you, they all have distinct personalities and likes/dislikes.
Giving tortoises something to dig down into is pretty essential. Plain topsoil is the general best all-over substrate to use as it's natural and cheap, but it doesn't hurt to provide more interest for them, in fact you should. They are wandering animals and thrive on stimulation. They often like to dig down to sleep as they would in their natural habitat, for protection and they will also do this if they want to cool down for a little while. This dried grass is an excellent way to provide all these possibilities in a different way to soil.
When used directly on the floor, it lasts much much longer. It's easy to spot clean any patches that have been peed on, as it clumps together and you can see it's wet. This means you don't have to replace the whole lot at once. I bought a trial pack (I can't remember the weight) for about £2 + P&P but it was very decently sized and lasted me for ages. I am not currently using it, but I do plan to buy some more in the future. They'll be outside soon so it'll be time to remodel their indoors home.
This dried grass can also be used as part of the diet for tropical tortoises such as Sulcata, Leopard and Indian Star; these species need more fibre in their diet than Hermanns and other Mediterranean tortoises (though as said it won't hurt Med tortoises to eat this at all). This is a brilliant stand by as these tortoises also don't hibernate, and finding decent food throughout winter without relying on too much supermarket-bought stuff can pose a challenge.
So there you have it - a substrate that is edible, a suitable part of the diet for many species, long lasting (if used and stored properly) and smells wonderful and fresh. That's a truly multipurpose product!
Summary: A fabulous & good value product
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