What Is the Best Bedding for Guinea Pigs?

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Guinea pigs on a blanket bed
Photo by Jaroslaw Slodkiewicz on Unsplash

Guinea pigs are great pets for experienced and beginner pet owners. They require lots of care, attention, and affection. A significant part of their care process involves providing them with suitable bedding. Guinea pig bedding must be absorbent, soft, and of high quality to ensure your pets stay comfortable and healthy.

Any unsuitable bedding can lead to sickness. So, what is the best bedding for guinea pigs? Keep reading to learn what bedding you should provide your guinea pig.

What do guinea pigs like to sleep on?

Guinea pigs like to sleep on ultra-soft, cushioned, and absorbent beddings. The primary role of absorbent bedding is to absorb feces, urine, and odor. Also, the absorbent bedding ensures that your guinea pig has a safe environment free from bacteria.

Research shows that bacterial infection is one of the causes of gastrointestinal and respiratory diseases in guinea pigs. Therefore, as a guinea pig owner, you should aim to provide an absorbent and soft begging in the cage.

What is the best bedding for guinea pigs?

The best bedding for your guinea pigs is one where they can sleep comfortably and remain healthy. Here are some of the types you can consider for your pet:

Fleece bedding

guinea pig fleece

The guinea pig fleece bedding is currently the most popular bedding option. Even though it is more expensive than paper or aspen bedding, it accrues several benefits. The fleece bedding is dust-free, environmentally friendly, and reusable, ensuring it is cost-effective in the long run.

In addition, it is incredibly absorbent, odorless, and soft. If you have the necessary patience, consider the Paw-Inspired Guinea Pig Fleece Cage Liner. It is washable, waterproof, and dust-free. The only downside to this bedding type is that it needs frequent washings.

Aspen bedding for guinea pigs

guinea pig bedding

Aspen bedding for guinea pigs is another excellent option. It is the only wood-based bedding that you can safely use. One main benefit of using aspen bedding is that it is odorless. Also, it provides guinea pigs with similar bedding to that of the natural wild.

One downside of the Aspen bedding is its low volumetric absorbency rate. However, if you combine it with paper bedding, you will increase the overall absorbency rate. Popular brands such as Kaytee Aspen Small Animal Bedding provide aspen bedding that is non-allergenic, non-toxic, safe, and well-cleaned to remove debris and dust.

Paper bedding for guinea pigs

guinea pig


Paper bedding for guinea pigs is the most affordable bedding available. Most guinea pig owners prefer natural paper, such as Carefresh natural paper bedding, because of their exceptional absorbency, high odor control, dust-free, and soft nature.

Furthermore, many guinea pigs prefer paper bedding, so it is an easy option. One of the main things to watch out for when using paper bedding is its cleanliness. Make sure to clean the bedding regularly to avoid waste build-up and excessive smell. Regular cleaning protects your guinea pig from respiratory infections or health complications.

What bedding should guinea pigs not use?

Guinea pigs are very delicate creatures, so the wrong type of bedding can make your animal fall ill. As stated above, unsuitable bedding can lead to gastrointestinal and respiratory diseases, which may contribute to your pet’s death.

Therefore, you should be careful with the type of bedding you provide your lovely companion. Here are some of the beddings that you should not use:

1. Wood shaving that isn’t dust extracted

Wood shavings are among the top popular beddings most people prefer for guinea pigs. However, not all are good for your pet. Make sure to avoid using wood shavings that are not dust extracted. There may be fine dust present which can cause infection and irritation in the lungs of your guinea pig.

2. Mesh or wire flooring

Mesh or wire flooring is completely unsuitable for guinea pigs. This type of bedding can cause inflammation on your pet’s foot pads, which may lead to serious health concerns, such as bumblefoot.

3. Sawdust

Sawdust consists of small particles which are unsuitable for guinea pigs. Your pet may inhale the sawdust, which is bad for their health. It can lead to serious respiratory issues, which can cause death if untreated.

4. Clumping cat litter and silica gel

Generally, guinea pigs are curious and, in most cases, will try to eat objects in their environment. Therefore, it would help if you were always careful with what you offer them. Clumping cat litter and silica gel are not safe for your pet to eat. If guinea pigs consume clumping cat litter and silica gel, they can suffer from intestinal blockages.

What do you put on the bottom of a guinea pig cage?

Guinea pigs require flooring that is smooth and flat. The smooth and flat flooring will ensure they can run and walk easily around the cage without having to struggle. Thus, you will need to put a liner and suitable bedding at the bottom of the cage.

A proper liner is the first thing that you should place at the bottom of the cage. The best liner options include; newspapers, coroplast sheets, linoleum sheets, PVC canvas bottoms, shower curtains, or plastic tablecloths. Once you have your liner in place, add absorbent bedding. For an ideal bottom, you can consider having newspapers as the liner and fleece bedding as the absorbent material.

Do guinea pigs really need bedding?

Yes, guinea pigs require bedding. The bedding facilitates a comfortable and hygienic environment in which your pet can thrive. Your pet’s coat may be smelly, dirty, and damp without proper bedding. Therefore, suitable guinea pig bedding is necessary for the survival of your guinea pig.

In addition, guinea pigs need a layer where they can comfortably run around. The pets are very active in nature but have delicate feet, so a soft and flat bottom is a necessity for these pets.

Bottom Line

Suitable bedding for your guinea pig is ideal for optimal health. The fleece, paper, and aspen bedding provides one of the safest substrates for your pet’s bedding. They offer high absorbency rates, affordability, dust-free, and odor-control benefits.

About the Author

Guinea pigs on a blanket bed

Moses Mwangi

Moses is a committed, seasoned content creator who turns ideas into valuable website content and offers quality, fluff-free information across various niches. His area of specialization is writing about pets and animals, and he has passionately been creating content on the niche for over four years. Being a pet lover and having raised and traine[...] Author Details

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