A couple of days ago, I was walking through the supermarket when I saw a bag advertised as hamster bedding. It was made of pine wood shavings and was advertised for cats, guinea pigs and yes – hamsters.
I was shocked.
Here was a well renowned supermarket chain selling stuff to hamster owners, despite it clearly being unhealthy for hamsters.
However, I also realized this is not ill will – it is just lack of information.
So, that’s why I went back home, fired up my laptop and today, I can finally tell you the result.
PS: If you’re in a hurry we have listed the two best picks right here.
What is the best hamster bedding?
After researching more than 20 different kinds of hamster bedding and seeing our hamster test the best, we think the Carefresh Confetti Pet Bedding is the best hamster bedding. Please note this is the best option for both Syrian Hamsters and Dwarf Hamsters.
Here are the four main reasons:
- Virtually dust free and very allergy friendly (for both human and hammy)
- Soaks up urine odor and other bad smells from your hamster for up to 10 days
- High-quality material that is much more absorbent than shavings
- Super soft material that your hamster will enjoy
- 10-Day odor control
- 3X more absorbent than shavings
Further, we also really enjoy the colorful colors of the material and find that these works great for kids. In addition, the material is very easy to clean, making sure it is less of a hassle cleaning out your hamster cage.
With its allergy-friendly, high-quality material and practically odor-less environment, we recommend it as the top pick of the available hamster bedding out there.
- Clean and cozy bedding is safe for small pet
- Made of material that meets FDA standards
Our runner-up pick is the Kaytee Clean and Cozy Small Pet Bedding, White.
If you are not into the colorful bedding in our top pick, this is the best hamster bedding to get.
Like our top pick, the features are fairly similar and include:
- High-quality, allergy-friendly material
- Practically dust free
- Odor control
The bedding is super soft and fluffy, making sure your hamster will enjoy running around in its hamster home.
So, if you’re in the market for white bedding, this is the way to go (click here to see prize on Amazon)
How to choose the best hamster bedding
Now, we have just given you the short answer regarding what hamster bedding to pick. However, if you want to venture on your own and find one, or just want to figure out how we know “what is best”, we have outlined our methodology below.
Hope you enjoy it – below is an overview of the topics and you can just click these links to be taken to our research.
- Why you need hamster bedding
- What materials to avoid for hamster bedding
- What should the depth of my hamster bedding be?
- How do I know the hamster bedding is safe?
Why you need hamster bedding
In their natural environment, hamsters burrow deep underground where they build their nest.
And when we keep animals in captivity, we want to mimic their natural environment as much as possible.
This means it is very important to find some good bedding for your hamster. Not only will it be more enjoyable to run around it, it will also allow it to dig around in it and even make a bed for itself.
What materials to avoid for hamster bedding
Unfortunately, a lot of bedding material is sold that is simply not suitable for hamsters.
For example, some stores will sell cedar and pine wood shavings which should never be used for hamster bedding as they can splinter into sharp pieces.
These can hurt your hamster, causing both injuries and infections. In addition, they are often treated with a material that is toxic to your hamster.
Further, there is a lot of artificial, fluffy material on the market that seems like good options. However, the hamster can get their little legs entangled in the fluffy bedding and injure itself.
Finally, cat litter is sometimes sold as hamster bedding as well. Again, this should be avoided as hamster will not be able to digest the pieces they eat.
Here is a non-exhaustive list of stuff to avoid for hamster bedding:
- Wood and pine shavings – potentially toxic and your hamster can cut itself
- Fluffy, artificial material – hamsters can get entangled and injure themselves
- Cat litter – the hamster cannot digest the material if eaten
- Newspaper – the ink used can be toxic
- Bedding with scent – potential for an allergic reaction from your hamster
- Corn cob – can get moldy and is just not good for hamsters
- Sawdust – is very absorbent but has major health issues due to dust level
What should the depth of my hamster bedding be?
In the wild, hamsters dig down as deep as ~3 feet (1 meter), so we obviously need to have some depth to the bedding in our cage.
The good news is that it doesn’t have to be as deep as in nature.
Instead you should aim for at least 2 inches of bedding (6 cm) in your cage, which is sufficient – however, if you really want to treat your hammy, consider adding an extra inch to the depth of its bedding.
How do I know the bedding is safe?
There is so much bedding out there sold as hamster bedding, which is simply not good for hamsters.
If you are to find hamster bedding on your own we recommend the following guidelines:
- Should be FDA approved
- Should be virtually dust free (at least 99%)
- No wood shavings
- No toxic materials
So, if you go out there and got some hamster bedding, make sure to do your due diligence before buying. Your little hammy will appreciate it, whether it’s a winter white, robo hamster or even a chinese hamster.
Summing up: The best hamster bedding is…
… which all brings us back to where we started.
Our top-rated pick for hamster bedding is the Carefresh Confetti Pet Bedding (click to see the price on Amazon) and our less colorful pick is the Kaytee Clean and Cozy Small Pet Bedding, White (click to see the price on Amazon).
We hope you’ve enjoyed this and if you have any questions, just ask them below.
– From the team at My Perky Pet