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Old 01-26-2011, 12:53 AM   #1

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Cheap guinea pig bedding ideas?

I currently spend about $60/month on bedding for my GPs. I have been using Care Fresh Ultra for 2 years and it's so expensive. Their enclosure is 2ft x 4ft so bedding is pricey. I don't want pine shavings or hay. Anyone use anything they recommend?

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Old 01-26-2011, 01:35 AM   #2
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Go to a local co-op, feed store or farm & garden shop. I used to have a guinea pig and was able to buy a 1 cubic yard bag of wood shavings for about $15. It lasted months and months and months. They were large shavings, not the tiny/messy shavings that you buy in the stores. Actually they are the big ones that are generally used for horse stalls and they smelled nice. But even if you don't like the wood shavings, they might have other types of bedding in large amounts for cheaper prices.

If you live in the city, try to find one in the outskirts of the suburbs. Areas where you see people that have a few acres and horses will generally have feed stores.

You can usually buy bulk feed for them also at a price much cheaper then in the stores.
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Old 01-26-2011, 01:55 AM   #3
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When I had guinea pigs I found they could be sensitive to quite a lot of the common beddings. Petco sells 150 liters of the Carefresh Ultra for $56.99 and they are currently offering free shipping on it. Use code "Fit10" to save 10% more to bring it down to $51.29 plus tax, shipped. Perhaps if you have a paper shredder or know someone who does you can blend a little bit of that in to the Carefresh everytime you change the bedding to help "stretch" it a bit further.
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Old 01-26-2011, 06:34 AM   #4
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I have heard of people using a few layers of fleece and then just washing it. To me, that sounds stinky though. I have also heard to go somewhere like Tractor Supply and look around because they have bedding in large quantities for thinks like stalls.
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Old 01-26-2011, 07:17 AM   #5
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I use oxbow pellets. Don't think it is any cheaper though.
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Old 01-26-2011, 07:25 AM   #6
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We had Guinea Pigs while we were living overseas. The bedding wasnt available very often, so we used shredded paper. We put down a thick layer of folded newspaper and topped with shredded paper. We shredded the kids homework, junk mail, etc.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:35 AM   #7
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I know you said you do not want pine shavings but thats what we always used. Buy a big bag from a feed store or tractor supply. The big kind of bag designed for horse stalls.

You can also buy the pelleted bedding. It's just like the fuel pellets but is just pine. Also available at Tractor Supply and a lot of feed stores and packaged for horses. I know some people who use it in litter boxes as well.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:39 AM   #8
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Just use pine shavings. I know you said you don't want to use them, but really they will be fine!! I get a big bag from tractor supply and it's about $6 for a huge bag. It's not the bag in the pet section, but the pine shavings for horses. Not only are they chep but they are best for odors. I have used everything and have always come back to pine shavings. You save so much money and they are safe for them.
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Old 01-26-2011, 09:19 AM   #9

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Thanks everyone! I was told by the people who sold us the GPs(Petco) not to use pine shavings...something about the oil bothering their respiratory systems. Oddly, the GPs' cage had pine shavings when I bought them, from Petco. The sales lady said, "I know we use pine shavings here but you shouldn't use them at home." Hmmm....maybe she was trying to boost Carefresh sales since it's expensive.
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Old 01-26-2011, 09:35 AM   #10
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Pine bedding is a bit controversial so you need to weigh the risks / benefits of it. Supposedly kiln-dried pine has more of the aromatic oils removed from it than air-dried pine.

Personally, if I were you, I'd try stretching the Carefresh with shredded paper or a cheaper commercial product. I know that pine is so common and back in the day when we used to have GP's it's all that we used and as far as I could tell our little dudes were fine.

However, knowing now that it can cause problems would make me hesitant to use it. I'd be worried that the constant exposure would make them uncomfortable with no way to complain or get away from it. While they may survive just fine, would it be keeping them from thriving and being in optimal health? Probably more thought than most would give it but the little stinkers are too dang cute not to worry about.

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Old 01-26-2011, 09:49 AM   #11
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Yeah, I forgot to mention..get the kiln dried ones..all the pine shavings that I got for horses were the kiln dried pine shavings anyway...
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Old 01-26-2011, 09:50 AM   #12
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Old 01-26-2011, 10:03 AM   #13
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The guinea pigs that we would keep for my son's preschool just used newpaper.

We buy that darn expensive pellet-like stuff for our rabbit.
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Old 01-26-2011, 10:43 AM   #14
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we use the fleece. we have 2 sets and just alternate It only smells if you dont clean it like every other bedding. if you google fleece and guinnea pigs it will explain exactly wat you need to do.
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Old 01-26-2011, 10:44 AM   #15
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A girl I worked with used to take the paper from the shredder and use it.
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