Bedding experiment

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Post   » Sun Jan 27, 2008 7:58 pm

This guinea pig breeder [don't kill me just because she's a breeder] said fleece was bad bedding because they'd chew on the fibers and they weren't good for them. She reccomended pine bedding. Quote: "Your guinea pigs will thank you for it."

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Post   » Sun Jan 27, 2008 8:02 pm

Since when to breeders have best interest at heart? They have only the interest of their pocketbooks. Pine is the cheapest thing out there usually.

Let Sleeping Pigs Lie

Post   » Sun Jan 27, 2008 8:38 pm

"said fleece was bad bedding because they'd chew on the fibers and they weren't good for them."

It is true that a guinea pig should not be allowed to chew on polyester fleece. If you have a guinea pig that likes to chew blankets or towels, fleece may not be the best bedding option.

There are also a few members here that do not use Carefresh for the same reason; their guinea pigs enjoy eating it.

As I mentioned before, I do not use the disposable pads in my cage, since one of my girls now thinks that plastic is dinner.

If you have anything in your cage that your pet thinks is tasty and is in danger of being ingested, you should remove it. Always err on the side of caution. This is common sense.

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Post   » Mon Jan 28, 2008 8:31 am

None of mine have ever really chewed the fleece. Maybe briefly, just in the beginning, but not since then.

Well, moment of truth. Tonight I will be changing out Toby & Otis' cage (the first one "fitted" with the cardboard liners), and will see how well the cardboard held up.

I can say that the fleece has been dry all week with no odor. I also like that I used double-sided tape to secure the fleece to the cardboard, and it has stayed relatively nice and neat for a change.


Post   » Mon Jan 28, 2008 8:36 am

Mine would pay no attention to chewing the fleece but the but would eat the disposable pads if they could!

I had one pig that loved to burrow under towels and fleece but others don't try it. I guess it depends on your pig.

Mine love the fleece though and really stretch out and relax on it. It's really cute.

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Post   » Mon Jan 28, 2008 8:36 am

Please post your findings as soon as you can, sef. I would love to know if the cardboard layer worked well.

I have given up on the fleece. I would put a piece of it on top of the carefresh in the sleeping section of their cage. Quilt still doesn't like it and goes to sleep in the hay. Shaking it out takes so much time as the carefresh and aspen get stuck to it.

So, bowing to Quilt's odd preference (has never seemed to like fleece) and in the interest of time, I'm sticking to Carefresh in the sleeping area and aspen in the rest of the cage. I just periodically pick out and refresh the carefresh throughout the day. The aspen gets messy around the cage, but it's too expensive to use Carefresh throughout.

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Post   » Mon Jan 28, 2008 8:57 pm

Well, I pulled up Toby's & Otis' cage, and found that the cardboard underneath was actually in good shape. I had used two layers, and it was intact and most of the urine had dried--leaving only a little white residue. There were really only a couple of wet spots (where someone had recently peed), and they didn't make the fleece damp as far as I could tell.

Dumb question, but can I recycle the dirty cardboard or will it need to be trashed? I assume it should go in the garbage.

The only real negative (so far) is that it takes quite a while to cut down new cardboard to fit. There is probably a better way to do it, but I cut several big pieces and overlapped them where necessary.

I'm fairly satisifed that this will work. Just need to weigh if the hassle of bringing cardboard home and cutting it is worth not having to take fleece and towels outside to shake, and then laundering. It was nice just tossing a single piece of fleece in the pigs' laundry bag this time.

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Post   » Mon Jan 28, 2008 10:34 pm

Give it a try. You might find it easier than you expected. I suspect the winter is drier and you will have less moisture held. You'll also get a better eye for good cardboard sizes.

Let Sleeping Pigs Lie

Post   » Tue Jan 29, 2008 12:32 am

"I pulled up Toby's & Otis' cage, and found that the cardboard underneath was actually in good shape."

This is good news! I'm so happy for you. :)

Is Toby & Otis' cage the most difficult to keep clean?


Post   » Tue Jan 29, 2008 8:33 am

I usually put the cardboard boxes I use in the pig cage in the recycling after shaking out any poos, but that's not a large volume of cardboard. I have always assumed that a little pig pee is not going to be a problem, what with everything they do to recycled paper pulp.
Do you have curbside recycling or do you have to go to a recycling center?


Post   » Tue Jan 29, 2008 8:59 am

I would think the cardboard would have to go into the garbage just like pizza boxes do.

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Post   » Tue Jan 29, 2008 9:30 am

tracis -- no, not harder to clean. Theirs was just the first cage to get "fitted" with the cardboard liners, and it had been almost a week so...I was curious to see how it stood the test of time. And pee. :]

Tonight I will pull up Henry's cage and see how he did!

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Post   » Tue Feb 26, 2008 11:03 am

Thought I'd give an update on my bedding experiment. It has been a couple of weeks or so using the cardboard liners under fleece, and they are working surprisingly well. Unlike towels that tend to get wet and stay wet, the cardboard dries. There is virtually no wetness when I remove them for cage cleaning, and no odor.

Since it was cumbersome to remove large sheets of dirty cardboard (I had thought they would be soggy and could probably be rolled up--wrong), I have started cutting them into 13.5" squares at work and tiling them on the bottom of the cage. So, a 3 x 3 cage takes 9 cardboard tiles. When it's time to clean the cage, just lift up the fleece, pick up the "tiles," done.

The downside to the tiles, is that they don't lie flat and can shift out of place. I haven't figured out a solution for that yet. Making taping them together would help.

I found that a single layer of cardboard tiles works just as well as double layers. The urine never really soaked to the second layer, so it was a waste of time and cardboard. I just use a single layer of the tiles, now.

Another thing, is that I have to use double-sided tape on the corners, to keep the fleece in place. Not a biggie.

So...if I can work out how to keep the tiles in place without shifting, that would solve my biggest problem with it.


Post   » Mon Mar 10, 2008 9:14 am

Is this corrugated cardboard? I wonder if one could score partway through it before putting it down, therefore keeping it in one piece or at least a few larger pieces but still allowing it to be easily folded up for disposal.

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Post   » Mon Mar 10, 2008 2:09 pm

Yes, it's corrugated. That's a good idea about scoring...I may see if that would work.

Hilary Holmes

Post   » Wed Aug 26, 2009 10:48 am

Hi Folks, I've been looking at the discusion about cardboard. I use a really helpful and knowledgeable lady to buard my piggies from time to time. She uses cardboard which has beenn chopped up into squares of about 1cm. It comes in bales ready packed, as a by-product of cardboard box manufacture. All her dozens of guineas and rabbits (kept separately, I'm pleased to say) are kept on it and seem really happy. I've been using it for over a year now and my fellas reallky like it. They can snuggle down into it, making nests for themselves, and like to forage in it, looking for little treats. It's cheap, warm, ecologically sound and bio-degradable. They love it!!

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Post   » Wed Aug 26, 2009 11:45 am

I can't imagine cardboard being anything but wet and smelly.

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Post   » Wed Aug 26, 2009 12:08 pm

Sounds like Carefresh?

Hilary Holmes

Post   » Wed Aug 26, 2009 4:04 pm

With regard to the cardboard being wet and smelly, actually, it's not at all, obviously they need cleaning out evry 2 or 3 days, but any bedding needs to be dealt with regularly. I guess in the end, it's whatever suits you and your pigs, we all have different ideas and mine piggies are very happy on it. Not sure if it's Carefresh, will check next time I speak to Dr. Hendey, who they board with and who uses it.

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