What Can I Use for Hamster Bedding?

What Can I Use For Hamster Bedding?

Maybe you’re a new hamster owner, or maybe you’re just trying to save money. Maybe you’re just trying to find the best options for hamster bedding in general. 

Hamsters are wonderful pets that are cuddly, active, and energetic. Hamsters are nocturnal, so they’ll be most active during the night. 

With that said, they will do most of their sleeping throughout the day time. Just like humans and other animals like dogs and cats that prefer to sleep in a comfortable environment, these creatures are no exceptions either. Regardless of your hamster breed, they’ll all need bedding too!

If you’re looking for different things to use for hamster bedding, you’ve come to the right place. Just keep on reading and find out more information about the various types of hamster bedding that you can use for your little fuzzball.

What Can I Use for Hamster Bedding?

What Is Hamster Bedding?  

Hamster bedding is the material in which you line your hamster’s cage with. There are many materials that you can use, each with their own positives and negatives.

What Can I Use for Hamster Bedding?

The Importance of Bedding for Hamsters  

All animals need someplace where they have a sense of security, warmth, and comfort. For a pet hamster, that spot is their bedding.  

It is important to provide your pet with a clean and safe environment. For your own sake, you’ll probably prefer that it’s odor-free.  

Your hammy will be in contact with their bedding all day. So, it pays to ensure that the bedding is high quality and comfortable for them.  


What Can I Use for Hamster Bedding?


Safe Hamster Bedding  

Your hamster will invest a great deal of energy in their enclosure, so it’s important that the bedding will provide them with shelter and be hygienically safe. There’s a good chance that your little amigo will do a decent amount of nibbling on the material too. This is why hamster bedding should be completely safe and made of non-toxic chemicals, so that they can chew on it to their heart’s content, if need be.  

Safety should always be prioritized in any type of material that you provide your pets. Hamster bedding is certainly no exception to the rule. It’s important that we shouldn’t need to stress over our hamster’s health. If certain hamster beddings might be unsafe, it can hurt our fuzzy companions.  

Current ASPCA advice is to avoid any scented sheet material. The synthetic materials that are used in these could agitate your hamster, or even make them sick. You need to be careful about anything dusty. Particles can harm your hamster’s lungs and cause a bunch of other issues.  

The RSPCA and ASPCA both suggest that paper is the best alternative for your hamster.  

What Can I Use for Hamster Bedding?

What Materials Should NOT be Used as Hamster Bedding?  

Not all bedding is created equally, as some are much better choices than others. Some can even harm your hamster. Shockingly, certain materials are excellent options, while others are poor options, and can even contain questionable substances or materials inside.  

Pine and cedarwood can be rough and can dislodge and break apart into sharp pieces. These sharp pieces and fragments could potentially wound your hamster, creating expensive vet visits. Another common issue is that once your hamster urinates, the strong scent of urine combined with the pine aroma can potentially lead to breathing problems in your hamster.

Pet stores additionally stock “soft sheet material”. It’s suggested that hamster pet owners purchase cushy or soft sheet material as it is delicate and justifiable, as pet owners want their hamsters to be as comfortable as possible. In any case, this material is a much better option than pine or cedarwood. Any type of bedding that can be hard or rough is typically not a good choice, as any hard pieces that your hamster may eat are incredibly difficult to digest. Likewise, hamsters have little, delicate legs, which can get harmed when they roam around in these unsafe beddings.  

Hamster in bedding

Why Use High-Quality Hamster Bedding? Which Bedding is Best?

Obviously, when keeping any creature as a pet, you need to consistently think about their natural environment. The closer you can get to recreating a hamster’s common habitat, the happier your hamster will be. Providing any pet within an environment that is as similar as possible to what they are naturally used to is ideal.

This is why you should always try to find the best hamster bedding available. You should look for bedding that your hamster can dive around in and be as comfortable as possible in; just as though they were in the wild. Their bedding material should be safe, effective, and ideal for hamsters. 

The best hamster bedding won’t only provide you with odor control, but will also be comfortable enough for your hamster to appreciate scurrying about in it.  

A typical issue that many hamster owners come across with is the safety of the hamster bedding materials.

There’s a great deal to talk about with this, so we’ll cover everything that you need to know so you can get a bedding that is safe and a great fit for your hamster.

Best Hamster Bedding

Which Materials Can I Use for Hamster Bedding? 

There are numerous choices available for hamster bedding. The main thing you’ll need to consider is the location and material of the bedding.

Your hamster’s cage should be in a spot that is fairly quiet, but isn’t too secluded or far away from their owner. Perhaps the living room or spare bedroom is a good option. There are no set of rules that a hamster has to be in a certain room or not, but remember, because they’ll be there all day, it’s important to pick a location for them that they feel comfortable in.  

Once you’ve found the perfect location for your hamster’s cage, now’s the right time for purchasing the bedding. Hamsters make their own little beds out of various materials out in the wild, so the most ideal way to create bedding for your pet is to let them do it by themselves, just like wild hamsters do!  

Numerous individuals like to use things they have around the house for hamster bedding. In any case, there are a lot of pre-made materials that your hamster couldn’t imagine anything better than to twist up in. A portion of these materials can be purchased through stores or online and many are cost-effective.

Below are some of the best pre-made hamster beddings that can be bought: 



Best Hamster Beddings For Your Hamster



Aspen is one of the best and safest wood-based sheet materials for hamsters. Aspen is the best option if you’re searching for a bedding that’s odor-free and affordable.

In spite of the fact that aspen tends to stick to specific hamster fur, especially long-haired Syrian hamsters, we still think this wood-based bedding is a great option. You don’t have to be worried about the specific issue, because it’s mostly cosmetic and does not pose any real harm to your furball. Besides, you should regularly brush your hamster often, as it can even be very therapeutic and relaxing for them and yourself! Think of it as a little one-on-one time with your hamster.

You can look at various aspen beddings from Kaytee and other different brands. These are readily available online from retailers, as well as nearby, physical pet stores.

Note: Try to avoid Aspen bedding with Cedar or Pine, as Pine and Cedar are both incredibly poisonous to your hamster.   





Other than their Clean and Cozy arrangement, Kaytee has many more products. This Granule Blend small pet bedding is created from a variety of materials. This bedding in particular is made of reused and recycled materials that are perfectly safe for your hamster.  

In any case, as this kind of sheet material isn’t strong enough for your hamster to shape passages or homes in, we suggest using as a top layer of bedding, on either aspen or paper-based sheet material.   

Just make sure to stick to unscented bedding in general. Anything that isn’t odor free or is scented could potentially be harmful for your hamster’s lungs or well-being. Unless the bedding specifically says that it’s safe for hamsters and scented, it’s a good idea to just avoid scented beddings altogether, if possible.


Paper-Based Bedding  

This hamster bedding from HealthyPet is one of the most well-known and effective paper-based hamster bedding options in the market.

Although this is more expensive than Aspen, this material comes in a wide variety of colors that offer odor control and comfort for your hamster.

Additional reminder: While choosing your bedding, make sure that you stick solely to non-scented varieties of bedding. Scented beddings can contain poisons and could potentially pose a health risk to your hamster. You should try to avoid them at all costs. 

More Recommendations:  Click each of the products to see the prices:


Homemade Hamster Beddings  


what can I use for hamster bedding

In the past few years, tissue has been a very popular and great choice for a paper based bedding that is fairly cheap. However, paper bedding will always have the downside of not having very good odor control.  

Additionally, another downside that paper-based bedding has is that it doesn’t last very long either. You’ll have to change the bedding often, probably much more often than you think. Although tissue is easy to find and very cheap, the money you save might not be worth the extra headache of the added cleanup effort. Thankfully, there are always many different options that you can use for hamster bedding.


What Can I Use for Hamster Bedding?

Cardboard is another cheap, yet simple and effective bedding for your hamster and other critters. Delivery boxes, bathroom tissue boxes, paper towel rolls, and egg containers are all potential options of bedding material. If you are interested in cardboard, make sure that it doesn’t have any ink on it or other harmful chemicals that could pose a risk to your hamster if chewed on. Make sure that you carefully tear apart the cardboard and that there are no large pieces that your hamster could potentially hurt themselves with either.

Paper Pulp  

What Can I Use for Hamster Bedding?

Even though paper pulp bedding can absorb much better than regular thin pieces of paper can, making paper pulp can take quite a bit of time, but can be well worth it. It’s great because it’s also another relatively cheap option for hamster bedding.

Making pulp isn’t as difficult as you might think either. It certainly does take some time, but can be worth it if you’re on a tight budget.

How to Make Paper Pulp Bedding for Hamsters

To start, rip the paper that you will be using into about 1.5 to 2.5 in. pieces, then put them into a 5 gallon container of water and fill about halfway. At some hot water to the mix, and make sure that it fully covers the paper. Make sure that the water is not too hot or that you don’t boil it because you will be touching and handling it once it’s in the bucket. Stir it around to get rid of any leftover ink.

Remember, we don’t want any ink on paper once we’re done, as it can be harmful to hamsters. Next, simultaneously squeeze the paper while draining it with your strainer of choice. Make sure to try to get the paper into a ball shape and do your best to strain. Try to get rid of as much water as possible. Once you’ve gotten rid of a majority of the water, put the paper once again back into the bucket and repeat the process with hot water.

Repeat this again until you know that there is no ink left over. Keep trying to get small balls of paper and then drain them as best as you can. Once you’ve formed your ball sized balls of paper, soak them in warm to hot water for at least two hours.

Remember to keep straining and squeezing the water out until you see that there is no remaining ink left. Once again, drain the paper and then try to shape it into a ball again. At this point, you can now start breaking it apart as much as you can – ideally in very small pieces, but not too small. Aim for something that’s in between the size of a blueberry and cherry. Once you’ve made them into that size, you can leave them to dry. Once the paper has completely dried out, and you can go ahead and use it as your hamsters bedding.


What Can I Use for Hamster Bedding?

Finally, we hope you’ve got some options up your sleeves now while you’re looking for a modest and simple solution or just temporary material to use while you sit tight for your hamster bedding to arrive.

At that point, it’s acceptable to use paper in your hamster cage. You simply need to guarantee that the paper is non-lethal and not completely covered in ink throughout. All things considered, it’s important to remember that paper is not the best option for masking odor. Your hamster cage is very likely to start to smell, typically sooner than later, if you’re only using paper as bedding.

The softest forms of bedding for hamsters will usually be unscented facial tissues, bathroom tissue, napkins, newspapers, and paper towels. Likewise, you can use any spare paper you have, including printer paper. If you have arthritis or don’t want to use your hands to manually tear apart the paper, you can use a paper shredder to help you out.

What Can I Use for Hamster Bedding?

How to Prepare Bedding for Your Hamster

Before adding any bedding to your hamster cages, you should ensure that the bedding is free from bugs or other different creepy crawlies that could hurt your hamster.  

To do this, you should put any new bedding in an enclosed container and put that in your freezer and wait about two days. Some people only wait a day, but waiting the full two days ensures that there are no bugs or other harmful bacteria to worry about. Once you’ve waited long enough, take it out of the freezer and allow it to get back to room temperature. At this point, you’re ready to use it as bedding for your hamster!  

What Can I Use for Hamster Bedding?

Final Thoughts 

It’s amazing how many different materials you can use as hamster bedding, including materials such as specialized bedding, aspen, and paper.  

Getting your hamster the best bedding for their cage is very important, as it helps provide warmth and comfort to them.

Hopefully, this post gives you enough information to either make your own bedding, or purchase hamster bedding that is safe, high-quality, and most importantly – one that your hamster will love!

In the event that you run out of bedding, you can always make more from common materials you can find in your house!