What To Use For Hamster Litter?

by Hamster Care

What to use for hamster litter?

Hey there valued human. When it’s time for you to (ahem) go, we bet you prefer it to be in a place that is comfortable, clean, and not very smelly. It’s the same for hamsters. You want your fuzzy hammy to be healthy and safe, so think carefully about what to use for hamster litter before putting it in their enclosure. Choosing the right litter for small animals is super important.

Simulate their natural habitat

To stay relaxed and comfortable, all hamsters burrow. To simulate their natural environment, they prefer hamster litter that facilitates burrowing and nesting.

What kinds are safe?

Some hamster litter is more absorbent, and some reduce odors better than others. Conversely, some bedding advertised for hammies is health risks. To keep your little buddy safe, your litter needs to have the following characteristics:

  1. Minimal dust (hamster respiratory systems are very delicate)
  2. Does not clump (Clay-based cat litters could cause a nasty blockage if your hammy ingested the material.)
  3. Absorbent
  4. Unscented 
  5. ​Free of additives

You’ll want to choose unscented paper or aspen bedding for your resident hamster.

Below we’ve listed several of the best hamster litters we could find. We went over the pros and cons of these products, and listed them out for you.

Kaytee Small Animal Potty Training Litter

This is a natural bentonite potty litter designed for hamsters, gerbils, and other small animals. It is made from clay, which is normally not a good idea for hamsters. However, Kaytee makes this hamster potty litter specially from volcanic ash clay, which makes it dust free and hypoallergenic.

This product comes in an easy to store size of 16 ounces, or super-saver size of 8 pounds. The rounded granules make potty training simple and comfortable for smaller critters like hamsters.

Many buyers of this product report that it does very well in reducing and even entirely eliminating latrine smells that many hamster owners struggle with.

So Phresh Paper Pellet Small Animal Litter

This product is of natural pellets made from 100% recycled paper. The pieces are a lot bigger than the smaller granules of other litters, and can be used as bedding as well. While it is made with bigger pets like ferrets and rabbits in mind, it would still work very well as litter for adult hamsters or the bigger breeds of hamsters.

The pellets are absorbent, deodorized, environmentally friendly and completely biodegradable. Because this product is made from paper and not clay, it doesn’t stick to the sides and bottom of a litter box like clay litters tend to.

Fresh News Paper Small Animal Litter

Another product made from recycled paper, this item is also a safe and effective choice for small animals like hamsters. These pellets are super absorbent and biodegradable.

You can compost them, and they are even safe to put in an incinerator. Not only does this litter eliminate and lock away odors, but gives nearly twice as much volume of litter when compared to clay litters.

The odor reducing feature of this litter comes from the baking soda included in the pellets. While baking soda is safe for hamsters in reasonable amounts, there are other critters, such as rats, that will find it toxic.

If you are looking for a litter or bedding for a multiple-critter home, double check if baking soda is safe for all your furry friends.

Dangerous Litter: Softwood

You need to stay away from a few more attributes when considering what to use for hamster litter. You might think pine or cedar shavings are safe as they come from the woods and they smell nice. Unfortunately, these softwood varieties give off phenols. Phenols are organic compounds. Without going too deeply into the chemistry, you should know most simply that phenols vaporize into the air and they are toxic. However, as we mentioned earlier, safe hamster litter choices are plentiful.

Can You Use Cat Litter for Hamsters?

No! Please do not ever put litter developed for cats into your hamster’s litter box.

Cat litter is designed for use by cats, and could cause serious health problems for little critters like hamsters. Many cat litters are made from or contain clay and sand. These create small granules and can get into a hamster’s eyes or ears, causing scratching and other damage.

A hamster can also swallow or chew on litter, and if they ingest any cat litter, it could cause intestinal blockages. An intestinal blockage is a very serious condition that can quickly become fatal.

Cat litters also tend to be doused with chemicals to cover ammonia odors. These chemicals and scents can be very harmful to a hamster.

There are plenty of specially formulated litters for hamsters and other small animals available. Always use a litter designed for hamsters and little critters. Avoid using cat litter for hamsters!

Are you looking for more insights into hamster care? Add a comment below to let us know!

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By HamsterCareTip.Com

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