If you’re a hamster owner, you’ll know how important it is to keep your little furry friend happy, safe and in good health. There are many things that factor into this, including the food that you give them, the exercise that they are able to get and how much you interact with them. It is also really important that you give them the best home that you can and this includes using the most appropriate bedding in their cage/tank.
What characteristics does good hamster bedding have?
In the wild, hamsters dig into the ground to build vast underground nests in dry dirt or desert sand. Replicating this environment for your pet isn’t always easy, but there are some characteristics for good bedding that you should always try to look out for, these include:
- Comfort – Without a doubt, you will want to make sure that the bedding you provide is comfortable for your hammie. On the whole, you will want something soft and snuggly that doesn’t hurt their paws or skin as they walk over it.
- Non-toxic – It is absolutely essential that the bedding you use is safe. This means that if your hammie gnaws on any of the bedding (as they sometimes like to do), it shouldn’t harm them in any way. The bedding should be free from any toxins that can cause hamsters internal problems.
- Enrichment – Hamsters love to burrow! Giving them the right material to do so will help enrich their lives, plus if you have a hamster terrarium then it’s really fun to watch them making their network of tunnels.
- Absorption – Something that is often ignored is the ability of bedding to soak up hamster urine or fluid from their water bottle. This is important, not only because it can start to smell but also because hamsters can experience health issues from living somewhere too damp. Hamster enclosures should generally have two types of bedding, one for nesting in and one to line the cage. Nesting bedding should be a soft, shredded material like paper and bedding for lining the cage should be stronger and good for burrowing. Historically pine sawdust has been the go-to product to use for lining a cage, but it is widely accepted that pine can release chemicals which are harmful to hamsters. It is now generally accepted that the best material to use is Aspen bedding.
What is Aspen bedding
In terms of reliability and affordability, aspen bedding is one of the best bedding materials available. This bedding is essentially shredded shavings from the Aspen hardwood tree variety, but compared to other wood types it is not toxic to hamsters.
Why should I use Aspen bedding
Aspen bedding ticks all the boxes for the essential bedding characteristics listed above. Hammie’s love it because it is soft and you’ll like it as it stands above other types of bedding when it comes to absorbing moisture and therefore controlling odours. When it comes to cleaning out your hammies’ enclosure, it’s good to know that Aspen bedding is also recyclable and compostable.
Where can I buy it?
We buy our Aspen bedding from Amazon, where it’s available at a good price and with quick shipping.
If you enjoyed this blog on Aspen bedding for hamsters you might also like to read about DIY hamster bedding.