Guinea Pigs

The 9 Best Bedding for Guinea Pigs (2020)

best bedding for guinea pigs

If you’re about to welcome a guinea pig into your family, you’ll need to create a cozy and safe place for your new pet to call home. One of the most important choices you’ll need to make is deciding what to use for guinea pig bedding.

There are many options to choose from, so keep reading to discover how to find the best guinea pig bedding.

Best bedding for guinea pigs

There are several different guinea pig bedding options to choose from, each of which has its own pros and cons. We’ll look at the benefits each different type of bedding has to offer a little further down the page.

In the meantime, check out our top picks of the best guinea pig bedding across a range of popular categories.

Best fleece guinea pig bedding options

GuineaDad Fleece Liner 2.0

If you’re searching for a healthy and long-lasting guinea pig bedding option, the GuineaDad Fleece Liner 2.0 is well worth checking out. Featuring a comfortable layer of fleece atop absorbent bamboo fiber, this cage liner is designed to draw liquid and mess away from your pet’s living area.

These liners are dust-free, while bamboo’s anti-bacterial and odor-resistant properties help keep your guinea pig’s cage clean and hygienic. They also feature a cozy pocket on top, which provides a same and comfortable spot where your guinea pig can burrow in.

The main downside of this fleece bedding is that it’s more expensive to purchase than other bedding options. However, because it can be washed and reused, it’ll probably end up being more cost-effective in the long run.

Pros
  • Reusable
  • Anti-bacterial and odor resistant
  • Five sizes available
  • Also features a waterproof backing
Cons
  • More expensive upfront than other bedding options
  • Requires ongoing maintenance to keep it clean

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FLAdorepet Guinea Pig Bed

Some guinea pigs enjoy the finer things in life and like to live in luxury all year round. If you want to pamper your pet, consider getting him one of these fleece beds for his cage.

Soft and cozy, this bed provides a warm retreat for your furry friend on those cold winter nights. It’s also lightweight and machine-washable, so it’s easy to keep clean and can be reused time after time.

There are three different sizes available to suit your guinea pig, but they won’t cover the entire floor of the enclosure like a cage liner will. Still, if you’re searching for a comfortable and warm pet bed, the FLAdorepet Guinea Pig Bed is worth considering.

Pros
  • Soft and warm
  • Machine-washable
  • Affordable
Cons
  • Doesn’t cover the whole cage
  • Can deteriorate after repeated washing

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Best aspen guinea pig bedding options

Small Pet Select Aspen Bedding

Aspen is a safe and hygienic bedding option for guinea pigs, and this aspen bedding from Small Pet Select is one of the best choices on the market.

Made from kiln-dried aspen logs, this bedding has absolutely no additives. Produced 100% sludge-free, it can be both recycled and composted, making it an excellent choice for environmentally-conscious buyers.

Best of all, it provides a safe and comfortable environment for your guinea pig to call home.

Pros
  • All-natural with no additives
  • Recyclable and compostable
  • Made from kiln-dried logs
Cons
  • Not the cheapest option available

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Kaytee Aspen Small Pet Bedding

This all-natural hardwood bedding from Kaytee is one of the most popular guinea pig bedding options on Amazon, and it’s not hard to see why. Made with no artificial colors or additives, it’s been processed to eliminate dust and other debris.

It doesn’t contain any ink or aromatic oils, so it’s safe for your furry friend, and is designed to eliminate odors from your pet’s cage. And because it’s biodegradable, it’s also a good choice for the environment.

Available in packs of up to 8 cubic feet, Kaytee Aspen Small Pet Bedding can also be purchased in bulk to help you save money.

Pros
  • All-natural
  • No ink or aromatic oils
  • Available in bulk
Cons
  • Some customers complain about the smell of this bedding

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Living World Aspen Shavings

These kiln-dried aspen shavings from Living World are another affordable guinea pig bedding option. Hypoallergenic and free of scents and dust, they’re designed to be gentle and safe for your cuddly companion.

Capable of absorbing up to four times their weight in moisture, Living World Aspen Shavings comes in packages ranging from 600 cubic inches to 4 cubic feet. If you’re worried about your pet suffering from respiratory problems or sensitive skin, this product is definitely worth a closer look.

Pros
  • Affordable
  • Hypoallergenic
  • No aromatic oils
Cons
  • Doesn’t control odors as well as some other options

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Best natural guinea pig bedding options

Carefresh Small Pet Bedding

Made from reclaimed natural fiber, Carefresh Small Pet Bedding is worth a look if you’re searching for natural bedding for your guinea pig.

The main focus of Carefresh bedding is comfort, with each bag designed to offer a soft and welcoming environment for your guinea pig. It’s also twice as absorbent as shavings and offers up to 10 days of odor control. And because it’s 99% dust-free, it’s also gentle on your guinea pig’s respiratory system.

Carefresh Small Pet Bedding is available in bags ranging in size from 10 to 50 liters.

Pros
  • Reclaimed natural fiber
  • 10-days odor control
  • 99% dust-free
Cons
  • Some customers have complained about inconsistency between batches

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Small Pet Select Natural Paper Bedding

Another all-natural guinea pig bedding option with plenty of rave reviews, Small Pet Select Natural Paper Bedding is created with safety and comfort in mind.

99% dust-free and with no additives or dyes, it’s designed to be gentle and harmless to your furry friend. It’s also made with unbleached virgin fiber rather than recycled materials, so it is non-toxic.

Best of all, this natural paper bedding creates a comfortable environment for your guinea pig, encouraging burrowing and nesting behavior. For extra peace of mind, it’s also made in the USA.

Pros
  • No additives or dyes
  • Comfortable and absorbent
  • Made in the USA
Cons
  • Some complaints about inconsistency between batches

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Best guinea pig bedding for odor control

Kaytee Clean & Cozy Extreme Odor Control

If you’re searching for the best bedding for guinea pig odor control, Kaytee’s Clean & Cozy Extreme Odor Control ticks all the right boxes. Providing a guaranteed 14 days of odor control, it’s designed to keep your guinea pig’s cage clean and fresh.

It’s also 99.9% dust-free to help look after your pet’s health, and soft enough to support your guinea pig’s burrowing and nesting habits. Available in 40L and 65L bags, it’s a little more expensive than ordinary bedding.

But if you want to keep your cavy’s cage odor-free, the extra cost may be well worth it.

Pros
  • Controls odors for 14 days
  • 99% dust-free
  • Absorbent
Cons
  • More expensive than other options

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Vitakraft Fresh World Bedding

Vitakraft Fresh World Bedding is another product that promises to provide 14 days of protection against odors. Made from 100% recycled paper, it doesn’t contain any baking soda and is designed to rapidly absorb moisture.

It’s also biodegradable and compostable, so it is good for the environment, and is available in 975 and 2,130 cubic inch bags. Even better, Vitakraft Fresh World Bedding is made in the USA.

Pros
  • Controls odors for 14 days
  • Made in the USA
  • Rapidly absorbs moisture
Cons
  • More expensive than other options

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What to look for before buying guinea pig bedding

There are several factors to consider when buying bedding for your guinea pig. The best guinea pig bedding options should be:

  • Your guinea pig’s comfort will no doubt be one of your top priorities, so you’ll need to choose bedding that’s cozy and comfortable. The best bedding encourages cavies to burrow and nest, and will give them an environment where they feel safe and warm.
  • The best guinea pig bedding is highly effective at absorbing urine and ensuring that your guinea pig’s enclosure stays clean and dry.
  • Good at controlling odors. No-one likes the smell of urine, so make sure the bedding you choose is good at eliminating nasty odors.
  • Gentle on your pet’s respiratory system. Bedding materials that contain dust are a big no-no. Because your guinea pig has a very sensitive respiratory system, this type of bedding can cause breathing difficulties and other respiratory issues.
  • Non-toxic. Any bedding you choose must be 100% safe for your guinea pig. Avoid any guinea pig bedding materials that may contain substances that could be toxic to your pet if ingested, or that could potentially cause physical injury.
  • Good for the environment. If you’re conscious of your eco-footprint, look for bedding options that are either reusable or biodegradable. Bedding made from recycled materials is also a good choice.
  • Finally, don’t forget to consider your budget. While some bedding options may cost more upfront, they could end up being cheaper in the long run if they’re reusable or have a longer lifespan.

What to use for guinea pig bedding

There are several guinea pig bedding alternatives to choose from when setting up your pet’s enclosure:

  • Fleece bedding. A relatively new option that’s rising in popularity, fleece bedding’s biggest strength is that it can be machine-washed and reused. It’s also effective at absorbing moisture, but costs more upfront than other options.
  • Aspen bedding. While many types of wood are unsafe for your guinea pig, aspen shavings are a safe and economical bedding material for guinea pigs. Aspen shavings are non-toxic and dust-free, but isn’t as effective at controlling odors as paper bedding.
  • Paper bedding. Paper bedding has long been a popular choice among guinea pig owners all around the world. Not only is it soft and comfortable for your fluffy friend, but it’s also highly absorbent and effective at minimizing odors. There are all-natural options and products made from recycled paper available, but paper bedding can be a little more expensive than some other options.
  • Combination bedding. There are also some bedding products available that contain a mixture of aspen shavings and paper bedding. These products are designed to be more absorbent than shavings alone and provide a clean and comfortable environment for your pet.
  • Hemp bedding. Hemp is another bedding material worth considering. Though it’s not widely available, it’s non-toxic and quite effective at absorbing moisture and controlling odors. However, it’s not as soft as some other bedding options.

Is fleece or bedding better for guinea pigs?

Fleece has only become a popular bedding choice for guinea pigs in relatively recent times, but it’s now recognized as a safe and affordable option. However, should you choose fleece bedding over some of the more traditional bedding materials?

The answer depends on factors like your budget, how much time you have to care for your guinea pig, and even personal preference. To help make the choice easier, let’s take a look at the pros and cons of fleece bedding.

Pros

  • Soft and comfortable. Perhaps the main attraction of fleece is that it’s perfect for creating a cozy and welcoming environment for your cuddly pet.
  • Fleece is dust-free and doesn’t contain any toxic chemicals, so you don’t need to worry about it being harmful to your pet’s health.
  • Fleece cage liners can be machine-washed and then reused. This not only saves you the cost of buying replacement bedding, but it also means fleece is better for the environment than disposable bedding.

Cons

  • Takes time to maintain. Not only will you need to clean poop off the fleece at least once a day, you’ll also need to take the time to wash and dry the fleece regularly. You’ll need to make sure to wash it according to the instructions to avoid damaging the liner’s wicking properties.
  • Can start to smell. Even with regular washing, a fleece liner can start to smell over time.

The reality is that there’s no one bedding material that is clearly better than all others. It’s up to you to research the pros and cons of each option before deciding on the best one for your pet.

What bedding is bad for guinea pigs?

One of the crucial concerns when choosing guinea pig bedding is finding a bedding material that’s safe for your pet. Unfortunately, there are some common guinea pig bedding alternatives that can actually be harmful to your furry friend. These include:

  • Dust can cause serious respiratory problems and allergies for your guinea pig, so sawdust should never be used as guinea pig bedding.
  • Pine and cedar shavings. While pine and cedar shavings may be suitable for some other small animals, they’re not safe for guinea pigs. They contain dust, phenols and oils that can all harm your guinea pig’s sensitive respiratory system.
  • Straw simply doesn’t have the absorbent properties you’d expect to find in the best guinea pig bedding. It’s also not as comfortable as other options, and could potentially cause injuries to eyes, ears and other body parts.
  • While newspaper can be used to line your guinea pig’s cage and then topped with other materials, it should never be the only form of bedding you provide. This is because it isn’t very absorbent and can lead to an accumulation of bacteria, which can, in turn, cause urinary tract infections.
  • Clumping kitty litter. Cat litter isn’t designed to be used as guinea pig bedding. It also contains harmful chemicals and could lead to an intestinal blockage if ingested.

FAQs

Can you use cat litter for guinea pigs?

No. Cat litter should not be used as guinea pig bedding due to the chemicals it contains and the fact it is not safe to be ingested.

Can I use newspaper for guinea pig bedding?

Newspaper is an effective cage liner when topped with another form of absorbent, odor-controlling bedding. However, it’s not suitable to use as your guinea pig’s sole bedding material, as it doesn’t absorb moisture particularly well.

How much bedding does my guinea pig need?

After you’ve lined your guinea pig’s enclosure, a good rule of thumb is to top it with at least three inches of bedding material. This should help absorb moisture and odors, create a comfortable environment and prevent foot problems.

Conclusion

With so many guinea pig bedding options to choose from, choosing the right one for your pet can be a difficult task. However, if you’re willing to research your options and shop around for quality products, you’ll be able to find the perfect bedding to keep your guinea pig comfortable, safe and healthy.

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About author

Steven is the guy behind SmallPetJournal. He has six years of experience keeping small pets, from guinea pigs, rabbits, to hedgehogs. He currently lives with his wife & three guinea pigs in Texas.

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