Thinking of putting bedding in a ferret’s cage?
Do ferrets need bedding in their cage?
Today’s topic is the best bedding for ferrets and everything around it. What is bedding, which animals use it, are ferrets among those animals, how to pick ferret cage bedding, and many other questions I will answer here.
What Is Bedding For Animals?
Bedding is an organic material used by various pet and other animal owners. It is used by different animals, from livestock to reptiles and rodents. The main purpose of bedding is to create a soft and comfy place for an animal to sleep in. Bedding, besides comfort, offers protection from temperatures, prevents odor from spreading, and substitutes burrows for small animals like some rodents. Most pet owners put it on the bottom of the cage so their pets can dig in and rest.
But, here is a catch. When people are talking about bedding they also talk about hammocks, blankets, etc. It is important to know which bedding is good for a ferret and how to pick it out. Today, I want to focus more on the first bedding type – organic material.
Do Ferrets Need Bedding In Their Cage?
Bedding, in a form of an organic material I described in the paragraph above, is not a necessary item for a ferret cage. You can use it in the cage, but most ferret owners figure out after a while that there are better solutions for the bottom of the cage. One of the first reasons is that a good ferret cage comes with a low bottom part so bedding can easily end up on the floor of your home. It is a messy situation you can prevent by changing from bedding to some alternative. Stay tuned because I will talk about alternatives later in the article. Another thing you have to keep in mind that some bedding is harmful to the ferret respiratory system. This is another topic I will cover later in the article so I suggest you continue reading.
Why Shouldn’t You Use Animal Bedding In Ferret Cage?
Although ferrets are considered small animals, they don’t have that much in common with them. They are the absolute opposite when it comes to rodents, rabbits, and other small animals. Ferrets and rodents shouldn’t be in the same room. Why I am saying that? Well, the same story is with the bedding you put in the cage for rodents. Ferrets don’t like that type of bedding and you shouldn’t put in it their cage for several reasons.
Bedding Cause Mess Around The Cage
As I have already mentioned, most good ferret cages are made with a low bottom. It doesn’t have a plastic bottom with high sides, it is mostly a wired construction with a plastic bottom with shallow sides. So, that means every time your ferret enters or exits the cage you will have bedding all around the cage. Not just then, every time your ferret moves around the cage, bedding will fall out. Bedding makes an unwanted mess all the time and you will have to clean it several times a day.
Ferrets Will Confuse It With Litter
The best ferret litter is very similar to bedding and if you put a litter box on top of bedding, your ferret might get confused. He can then poop in the bedding and not in the litter box which will result in a dirty cage. Ferrets poop a lot so they can accidentally step in their poop and spread it all over the cage. Bedding won’t help much in containing that poop on one platform, but it can probably help with the smell. That is not necessary since you already have a good litter in the litter box that prevents odors from spreading.
Bedding Is Harmful To Ferrets
Ferrets are very sensitive, especially when it comes to their respiratory system. You know you can’t use any litter for them, you have to pick the best ferret litter. To see what approved ferret litters are, read my post about picking the best ferret litter. The same story is with the bedding. You should avoid all ferret bedding that has essential oils in the structure. Some of them are pine bedding for ferrets. Another downside of wood pellet bedding for ferrets is that most bedding turns into dust. Dust can easily enter the ferret’s respiratory system since they sniff every inch around them. That can cause health problems, allergies, or simple irritations that lead to sneezing and coughing.
Only One Type Is Ok For Ferrets
The only bedding ferret owners approve is paper bedding. Paper bedding isn’t like wood shavings and it won’t cause respiratory troubles to your ferret. But, you have to get the one that doesn’t turn into dust, that doesn’t have any smell, it is made of natural materials and that absorbs liquid well. Absorbing characteristic is important because ferrets love to dig in the water bowls causing a mess. You can prevent that mess by picking a good water bowl. If you want to see what is the best one, read my post about food and water bowls.
What Kind Of Bedding Do Ferrets Need?
Should you put anything on the bottom of the cage now or not? The answer to that question depends on a few factors, one of them is the construction of the cage. If you have a cage with a wired floor, ramps, or platforms (or everything) then you should definitely put something on the bottom. Wired floors can irritate ferrets’ paws which can eventually lead to injuries. That is something you want to avoid at all costs. So, what can you put on the bottom of the cage to keep your ferret’s paws safe? Let’s find out!
Linoleum is cheap enough for you to buy it without breaking your budget. Also, it is easy to cut and shape so you can put it in the cage without too much trouble. It is also thick enough to cover the wire and keep ferret paws safe. The best part is probably the fact that it is easy to maintain. You can simply wipe it with a cleaning solution you use to clean the entire cage. If you want to replace it with a new one, simply pull it out and replace it.
Ferret Cage Liners
Another pretty good alternative to bedding is ferret cage liner. A cage liner is a piece of fabric you put on the floor, ramps, and platform to keep the cage clean at all times. It can be any fabric, but I would recommend a fabric that can absorb water. Also, it is a good idea to get a durable fabric because your ferret will try to dig through it. The good thing about cage liners is that you can do them yourself or you can buy them. If you are handy, you can measure the floor and platforms and sew them yourself. If you aren’t interested in that, check out the market. You can order custom-made liners or you can get universal ones. But, there aren’t many universal liners on the market since every cage has its own dimensions, but there are a few liners made for specific cages.
Hammocks And Blankets
Now that we covered what you can put on the bottom of the cage, there is one more thing we have to cover and that is a place to sleep. That is actually a pretty simple question and we can easily answer it with hammocks and blankets. There are numerous different hammock designs on the market and it is hard to tell which is more popular. That depends on the ferret. But, there are a few things you can consider when picking a ferret hammock. For example, the size, material used, where you want to put it, etc. You can read more about ferret hammocks in my post picking the best ferret hammock.
Although bedding seems like a logical solution to small animals like rodents or rabbits, it is not a good option for ferrets. If you want to prevent the mess in the cage and your ferret health problems, consider other alternatives for the ferret cage. What do you prefer? Linoleum, cage liners, or none of the above? Share your opinion with us and subscribe to our newsletter for more ferret-related news and posts!