How to choose the best small animal bedding for your hamster

Providing the best care possible for your hamster includes selecting the safest, most comfortable bedding and nesting material for their home. It should allow them to burrow and hide, just like in their natural environment, but also needs to be absorbent, control odor and be easy to clean-up.

 There are several options for bedding available including paper, wood, hay, grasses, grains, but not all perform the same.

Important features in hamster bedding include:

  • Soft & comfortable
  • Controls odors
  • Highly absorbent
  • Dust free
  • Safe with no harmful chemicals
  • Good for burrowing
  • Easy clean up
  • Made from sustainable materials
  • Biodegradable

We recommend:

 We do not recommend:

  • Cedar wood shavings and other shavings that are not kiln dried – wood containing volatile oils may easily irritate a hamsters’ respiratory system
  • Fluffy bedding made from artificial fibers like cotton or polyester stuffing – may cause choking if eaten
  • Corn cob – hamsters may eat and it can mold easily
  • Newspaper – inks may be toxic
  • Scented bedding – may lead to respiratory problems for your hamster
  • Straw – may have sharp ends

 It is best to check the label carefully of any small animal bedding. If you have questions or concerns, you can always contact the manufacturer directly or consult your local vet.

When setting up your small pet’s home place 1-3” of paper bedding in your pet’s home or more if preferred, the more the better, as small pets often enjoy burrowing. However, the actual amount needed will depend on size of your small pet’s habitat, pet size and quantity. To keep your hamster happy and healthy, spot clean daily and completely change the bedding once a week.

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