Best Hamster Bedding

By September 9, 2018Hamsters

As your pet hamster will spend a lot of its time in its cage, then choosing the best hamster bedding possible for your pet’s safety and comfort is essential.

You would think it is an easy choice to make, but the truth is that there are such a wide range of bedding types available, different materials, different options, and different levels of suitability, that it can be tough to make a decision you’re comfortable with.



In this buyer guide to the best hamster bedding options out there, we’re going to cover the key topics around what to look out for when choosing bedding for your pet hamster. On top of that, we’ll give you our top recommendations for high-quality hamster bedding products on the market today that most people consider when making their buying decision.

Hamster Bedding Buyers Guide

In their natural habitat, hamsters like to burrow and build a nest, so that they feel safe, and ultimately can produce babies with more safety.

It’s important to remember that hamsters are most likely to be comfortable with bedding that matches their natural environment. So for example, a Syrian hamster who is used to a hot desert environment might be happier in a bedding and cage lining that they can burrow in, whereas a Russian hamster used to living on grass plains might prefer some sort of grass or sheep wool that they can move around in.

You should also distinguish between the lining of the cage and the bedding that they actually burrow into and sleep within, as you can vary your hamster’s environment by providing general cage lining, and something else they can actually sleep in.

The classic set up is a sawdust cage lining, and a wall, or artificial woolen area they can burrow into to sleep. However that’s not always the best setup, and a lining that also continues into a sleeping area, giving you a single type of material throughout their habitat, is a good alternative.

Materials we recommend you DON’T use as hamster lining or bedding:

  • The artificial wool sold in pet shops, as this can be difficult to digest if swallowed
  • Abrasive, sharp pine and cedar wood chippings
  • Cat litter
  • Newspaper/paper

The best hamster bedding will contain the following key characteristics:

  • Free from harsh scents
  • Not contain inks and dyes (this can be a problem from reclaimed paper)
  • High absorbency to keep the cage dry and prevent “clumping”
  • Be treated so that it is free from parasites and eggs
  • Have a consistency that allows it to be burrowed into

Best Hamster Bedding

1. Carefresh Complete Pet Bedding

Carefresh Complete Pet Bedding, 30 L, Natural
  • 10-Day odor control
  • 3X more absorbent than shavings
  • 99% dust free for easy clean-up
  • Almost completely dust free
  • 10-day odor control formula
  • Can absorb up to 3 times more liquid than wood shavings
  • Completely free from unnatural substances
  • Light consistency means it can be difficult to burrow in
  • Smaller volume for your money than some other comparable products

For your money, you get a compressed 12.5 L package that expands on opening to produce 30 L of natural paper-based hamster bedding.

It has a highly absorbent, dust free formulation that keeps moisture locked in for a long time. On top of that, because the bedding stays clump free, it allows for easy cleaning.

As it’s made from reclaimed paper pulp it is safe, and has not been processed with chemicals like bleach. Carefresh Complete pet bedding has also been heated to 380° during manufacture to ensure that any dangerous microorganisms are killed.

The only downside is that its consistency can mean it’s difficult to burrow into, because it doesn’t maintain its shape. However, the great combination of it being almost dust free, having a long odor control formula, and being highly absorbent make this a winner in terms of hygiene.

2. Kaytee Clean & Cosy White Small Animal Bedding

Kaytee Clean & Cozy White Small Animal Bedding,...
  • Odor Control Guaranteed
  • 99.9% Dust Free for a Cleaner Cage
  • Absorbs 6x its Weight in Liquid
  • Odor control guarantee a strong incentive
  • Also guaranteed 99% dust free
  • Absorbs twice as much liquid as wood shavings
  • Compacts well in the cage to allow burrowing
  • 2x absorption is lower than some other brands
  • Some people report it can cling to material and be difficult to remove

Kaytee are a well-known brand in the pet products industry, so it’s little surprise that they produce high-quality hamster bedding as well. Their different products offering a wide range of bedding options, at prices that will appeal to different pockets.

Clean & Cosy comes in a 16.4 L compressed package, which expands to almost 60 L of high-quality hamster bedding material. So you are getting quite a lot for a reasonable price, that is ready to use and safe.

It’s a genuinely super soft material, that is absorbent and feels almost luxurious to the touch, so you can imagine how great it’s going to make your pet feel. This makes it especially suitable for bedding, and it’s consistency also allows it to be burrowed into.

It’s practically dust free, and absorbs 99% of all liquids and odors, locking them away up to 10 days. So confident are Kaytee on this point that they offer an odor control guarantee. If you don’t agree it controls odor, you can get your money back.

3. Small Pet Select Premium Soft Paper Bedding

Small Pet Select Jumbo Natural Paper Bedding, 178...
  • Ideal Bedding For Rabbits and Guinea Pigs
  • 100% Safe - Made In The USA Without Any Harmful Chemicals Additives
  • Soft + Comfortable for Your Bunnies and Guinea Pigs, But Still Super Absorbent
  • High-standard 99% dust free construction
  • Made from all-natural, unbleached paper
  • You get a large volume to your money
  • Is highly absorbent
  • Does not control odor, so will require more regular cleaning

Small Pet Select offer a huge quantity of bedding with this product. Compressed into a 50 L package, on cutting it open this massively expands to provide a huge 178 L of high-quality hamster bedding.

It is constructed from un-printed on paper, that has been shaped and compressed to increase its absorbency. It contains no chemicals, hasn’t been bleached, and has been refined and turned into chips of material in a way as to produce a good foundation for both the general cage lining, and a separate bedding area.

Some hamster bedding contains hard granules, whereas this is very soft and can be laid deep into the cage to provide your hamster with an exciting place to explore. It might not hold its shape for burrowing into, but it’s a good all-round cage and bedding liner.

It’s 99% dust free, and the granules themselves don’t stick to clothing and carpeting, making it easy to clean up when it is inevitably kicked out of the cage.

4. Kaytee Clean & Cozy Scented Small Animal Bedding

Kaytee Clean & Cozy Summer Storm Bedding, 500...
  • Odor Control Guaranteed
  • 99.9% Dust Free for a Cleaner Cage
  • Absorbs 6x its Weight in Liquid
  • Up to 99% dust free formula
  • Absorbs 6x its own weight for a dry environment
  • Soft granule composition
  • Slightly more expensive than other brands, but will last longer

Kaytee produce a range of high-quality small animal bedding, some of which definitely rates amongst the best hamster bedding you will find on the market today.

However, this quality comes at a price, and for your money you will only get 26 L of product, which is lower than some other brands.

What it lacks in quantity, this hamster bedding makes up for in quality.

It has guaranteed odor control, and is capable of absorbing up to 6x its own weight in liquid. So it’s far superior to a lot of generic paper or wood-based products.

If scent is your thing, and you don’t think your pet will mind, then this product also is infused with a very gentle “summer storm” smell, which can help to mask the odor from the cage.

5. Kaytee Soft Granule Blend Bedding

Kaytee Soft Granule Blend Lavender Bedding for Pet...
  • Highly absorbent
  • 99.9% Dust-Free
  • Holds 3x its weight in liquid
  • Almost completely dust free
  • Made from high-quality wood fiber, free from chemicals
  • Heated to remove parasites and eggs
  • Very absorbent formula
  • Light and fluffy to the touch making it very easy on your pet
  • Not compacted so you only get 10 L for your money

This Kaytee hamster bedding product is a completely natural, soft granule blend, made from wood fibers that have been converted into a highly absorbent format that is suitable for bedding or general cage lining.

It’s 99% dust free, making it great lining generally for your cage, that will be gentle on your pet’s health and the surrounding environment.

It is capable of holding 3x its own weight in liquid, and is infused with a gentle lavender smell to minimize smells, and also minimize the amount of maintenance required to keep the hamster bedding clean.

It’s light and fluffy to the touch, and even with light soiling, remains a great choice for soft general flooring or bedding for your hamster cage. However, on the downside, it is so light that even with compaction it can be unsatisfactory to burrow into, as it struggles to maintain shape.

6. Carefresh Complete Natural Paper Bedding

carefresh Complete Natural Paper Bedding for Small...
  • 10-Day odor control
  • 3X more absorbent than shavings
  • 99% dust free for easy clean-up
  • A brilliant level of absorbency
  • 99% dust-free formula
  • Users consistently report a good level of odor control
  • Granules are quite compacted, making it less suitable for burrowing

Compacted on arrival, on opening you will get 50 L of some of the best quality natural paper hamster bedding for a very affordable price.

It’s not cheap, with the volume you get being lower than some other brands, but you do get a high quality cage lining for your money.

You get a guaranteed 10-day odor control formula, giving you longevity of the product and ensuring that the smell from the hamster cage doesn’t become overwhelming in a couple of days.

It’s 3x more absorbent than wood chippings, and on top of that it is a pure white color, making it easy to spot and remove spots of soiling, so that generally it’s far easier to maintain, rather than completely removing and replacing the bedding.

It’s heated during manufacture, to remove mites and eggs, and is constructed from wood and paper that has never been previously used, and that has not been treated.

7. Healthy Pet HPCC Natural Bedding

Healthy Pet HPCC Natural Bedding, 30-Liter
  • Absorbs 3X its weight
  • Long lasting odor control
  • Expands to 2X its volume
  • Completely natural formulation and construction
  • Natural ammonia suppression
  • Soft to the touch
  • High volume for your money
  • Consistency is more in line with hamster bedding than with general cage lining, which could be an issue for some pets.

Healthy Pet Critter Care natural bedding is a highly suitable bedding formula for small animals, including hamsters.

It’s one of the best hamster bedding’s out there because it has high absorbency, great odor control and value for money. It delivers 30 L of bedding out of one container compacted to 12 L on arrival.

Healthy Pet Critter Care can absorb up to 3 times its own weight in liquid, keeping your hamsters cage lining and bedding dry and comfortable for longer. On top of that, the high absorbency means that you don’t have to be constantly changing the cage lining material.

Specially formulated to suppress the ammonia smell from hamster urine, it is ideal for anyone who wants a great smell for longer. On top of that it’s virtually dust free, so there will not be any dust floating around. See get the dual bonus of odor control and dust free performance.

It’s made from untreated wood pulp that has been only naturally formulated, and is completely organic, making it great for the environment as well.

8. Kaytee Clean & Cosy Colored Small Animal Bedding

Kaytee Clean and Cozy Bedding, Blue, 500 -Cubic...
  • Odor Control Guaranteed
  • 99.9% Dust Free for a Cleaner Cage
  • Absorbs 6x its Weight in Liquid
  • Blue color could make cleaning out the cage more appealing
  • All natural construction with no artificial additives
  • Built from never used paper and wood
  • Absorbs more than 6x its own weight in liquid
  • Soft construction is easy to burrow in and gentle on the paws
  • Odor control not as good as some of the other hamster bedding products

Another product in the huge range of animal bedding and cage lining material products that Kaytee pet care produce is this colored Small animal bedding, from their Clean & Cosy range.

This has most of the top-quality features that you will find in other products in their hamster bedding range, the key difference is it’s bright blue color

It can absorb more than 6x its own weight in liquid, has built-in odor control, and is virtually dust free.

On top of all that, it’s soft and fluffy construction means that it’s simply great as a general cage lining for hamsters who love to burrow.

The blue color is merely coloring, it offers no other benefits. However, we would guess that children would be more attracted to cleaning out their pet hamster with a fun colored hamster cage lining.

9. Carefresh Complete Natural Paper Bedding

Carefresh Complete Natural Paper Bedding Confetti,...
  • 10-Day odor control
  • 3X more absorbent than shavings
  • 99% dust free for easy clean-up
  • High absorbency
  • Strong odor control up to 10 days
  • Suitable for burrowing
  • More expensive than comparable brands

This is genuinely a very good hamster bedding product, but you don’t get a huge amount of lining for your money, with only double expansion on opening to give you 10 L of material.

Also, don’t be fooled by the name “confetti”, this is re-claimed paper pulp that is delivered in quite firm granules that expand on opening. It’s not like paper confetti, but more like hard rice confetti.

However, what you do get is incredibly high quality, all natural hamster bedding capable of withstanding odor for quite some time. In fact, it’s guaranteed as having the capability to control odor for 10 days.

It’s 99% dust free, and on top of that it has three times absorbency over natural sawdust. So you get a great combination of odor control and absorbency to keep your hamster bedding usable for longer.

Because it’s completely natural, containing no chemicals, it is completely safe even if your hamster was to chew it and use it for bedding. Overall, this is a fantastic product.

The hard consistency, advertised as confetti consistency, actually makes it really good for your pet to burrow into. Because it can be compacted easily, it creates a solid surface that can be burrowed into, and also hard droppings will sit on the surface making them easier to spot.

10. Carefresh Custom Hamster Bedding

carefresh Custom Hamster/Gerbil Pet Bedding, 30 L,...
  • 10-Day odor control
  • 3X more absorbent than shavings
  • 99% dust free for easy clean-up
  • Great consistency to create a deep cage lining for burrowing
  • Highly absorbent
  • Great 10-day odor control
  • Especially designed for hamsters
  • Sometimes advertised as a 23 L pack, leading some people to believe it will double in size on opening. 23 L is the opened size

On opening, the 12.5 L container of Carefresh custom hamster bedding produces 23 L of good quality hamster/gerbil bedding.

In terms of hygiene, you get up to 10 days of odor control, plus it’s three times more absorbent than wood chips, and it maintains dryness so that it doesn’t clinch your pet and get wet and pulped in the cage.

Added to this is the consistency which makes it ideal for burrowing. Three or four inches in the bottom of your tank or cage will create a great environment for your pet to mess around in, allowing them to create burrows that hold their shape.

It’s been specially designed for small animals like hamsters, making it one of the best hamster beddings. This is because it’s 25% smaller than the Carefresh general small animal bedding products.

On the downside, that smaller size comes at a cost of being firmer. If you want a softer bedding material then you will have to complement it with another bedding product. But for small animals like hamsters it can be great for creating solid flooring they can burrow into.