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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
It seems like hedgies are absolutely no different then horses with a million answers to the same question!

I just got my hedie, and he's living in a very large dog kennel. I flipped it so that the small row of vertical bars are along the bottom so he can look out and see the world, as well as the front door being thick wire mesh. However, to properly clean it, the entire thing has to be taken apart.

I don't have access to liners, so he's currently bedding on a piece of folded yellow thin imitation fleece type blanket. However, it gets mussed up, his poop falls underneath it, and the smell just isn't nice as the pee is obviously soaking into the fleece and acting as one big living room hedgie pee storage and distributer. I don't have anything else to use as a "liner" right now, I was told I could use a towel while I cleaned it, but now have read that towels can be very dangerous to little nails.

I could probably go out and buy more fleece squares, but I'd have to load up as I'll be required to change it daily due to the smell.

I am really interested in using the Aspen shavings everyone is talking about, as I find shavings the best bedding to manage. And everything seems to say they're not as good as liners, but acceptable. However, I've also heard now that the shavings can get caught in their special areas?? Is there ANY right answer? Is Carefresh better? Does it soak up the urine and poop "properly"?

Any advice would be great, in the future liners are definately an option, but not now as I'd have to internet order them.
 

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Wal-Mart has TONS of fleece you can use and even has cheaper remnants sometimes. All you need to do is measure and cut to the size of your cage. And even if changed daily are more cost effective in the long run. Liners are MUCH more environmentally friendly as you aren't tossing out some sort of bedding to fill a land fill somewhere. Just some things to keep in mind.
 
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We used Petco brand shavings, kiln-dried pine type. They did fine in that, although it seemed to get everywhere no matter how careful you are.

We bought polar fleece type throw blankets and cut them up for liners and bedding. Much neater, but they do get smelly quickly compared to shavings. I pretty much change bedding liners daily and wash them when I do wheel detail.

I've read of impactions in hedgies from using Carefresh, so that is something to consider when thinking about loose bedding. Not overly common, but still good to know.

So, the odor control of shavings is nice, but messy. And the neatness of liners is nice, but smelly... LOL. Pick your poison... :lol:
 
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Yeah, that yarn edge stitching will come out really easily if you pull the right end on it. If you pull one end and it tightens the stitch, try the other end, it should ravel right out nice and easy. :cool:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Basically, I'm REALLY wanting to use shavings. I just want to make sure they're safe. I don't mind shavings everywhere, they have been my whole life, it's kind of par for the course in loving small animals/rodents so much :lol: I find them easy to clean and I love the smell.

And the way that dumb cage is designed, I had a heck of a time cleaning it today. It's so big and heavy, it's almost impossible for me to manage to dump the scrap poop and food into a garbage bag by myself, save picking out every piece with my fingers. And his poop sticks to that stupid fleecy blanket so bad, I just end up getting hedgie poop and food all over anyway. If I'm going to have a mess, I'd rather it be shavings!

I'm definately going to look into liners, but I'd rather not spend money on anything but PROPER liners.
 

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What type of cage do you have? I've modified numerous cages to make them more user friendly. Could you post a picture or email me a picture and maybe I can help. [email protected]

I will tell you that poop sticks to fleece far more than it sticks to other fabrics such as flannel, cotton, corduroy or denim. It's the fuzziness of the fleece that makes it stick. When I am removing liners, I fold them before removing so the poop is on the inside of the folds and doesn't fall on the floor as much. :)
 
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I second the suggestion you consider a different home, something easier to work with and clean. We keep ours in large rubbermaid tubs, and those are really easy to clean and move around. Walter's parents were raised in aquariums. Kassandra's mom and dad lived in large ferret-style, solid-bottom, wire-top cages. But their littles ones adjusted easily to rubbermaid life. :cool:
 

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Rubbermaid tubs or Sterilite tubs are fantastic homes. They are inexpensive, as you probably won't spend more than $15 on one, and are very easy to clean.
And whatever bedding you end up using will work in a storage container.
 

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If you don't mind my asking, hedgie lover, what kind of bedding were you using when your hedgehog got an infection?

I ask because I'm torn between worry over the bedding safety issues several people have brought up on this site, and the fact that cloth liners would not be very practical for me. I live in an apartment building with one washer and one dryer. They guzzle quarters, are nearly always in use, and I don't think my neighbors would appreciate my filling up the washer with feces- and urine-contaminated fabric on a regular basis.

The apartment complex knows I have a hedgehog and they're fine with it, but a complaint or two could change that.

I've had hedgehogs for the better part of 11 years, and they've all done fine on aspen or paper bedding, within an open-sided cage. However, I did just have an older hedgehog die from what appeared to be a million-to-one accident, so I'm jumpy. Did your hedgehog suffer respiratory problems even with relatively low-dust bedding and a ventilated cage?

If s/he did, it won't really change my circumstances, but it might spook me enough to consider braving my neighbors' wrath.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
padawanslacker said:
I live in an apartment building with one washer and one dryer. They guzzle quarters, are nearly always in use, and I don't think my neighbors would appreciate my filling up the washer with feces- and urine-contaminated fabric on a regular basis.
That's my exact problem, but I know others have said it can work just as well to scrub them out in your bathtub and hang them up to dry.
 

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I was Laundromat-bound in university. Even after my graduation, I lived in a small apartment without a washer/dryer in the unit for many years, so I understand the concerns some of you have about washing soiled liners in a public or communal laundry facility.

However, as already mentioned, you can always pre-wash your liners in a shower. Just shake well outside or into a garbage can before doing the pre-wash so that no loose poop or food crumbs are left on, toss them in your bath tub, and take a shower as you normally do (a few extra stomping would be helpful), wring, hang dry, and throw them into your laundry load. NOTE: Make sure to use white vinegar in the rinse water as vinegar is what sanitizes and deodorizes the liners. Bleach does not eliminate urine smell even when you soak liners overnight like I did.

I don't know how "soiled" everyone's liners are, but none of the liners I had experience washing for 6 different hedgies so far was anything like a "soiled" human baby diaper. In fact, the liners we use for our own hedgie are virtually poop-free when going into a washer. Urine, yes, but poo bits no. :)

Of course, I've never had the pleasure of raising a baby hedgehog and I know hoglets eliminate a lot more than adults. So if you're dealing with a hedgie under 6 months old, it would be more work. But if you change liners frequently as recommended (e.g. sometimes twice daily for a hoglet) and do spot-cleaning every day as well as shake the liners well before washing, you shouldn't have any trouble. If you follow these tips, washing liners is just like washing your "soiled" underwear, IMO. Your fellow residents would not object anyone washing their own underwear, would they?
 

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Well . . . if my underwear always had a lot of dried urine on it, I think they might. Still, I'll keep all of that in mind. I might try testing liners to see if Spirit likes them. If she doesn't, they could still be used for some out-of-cage activities. The flat fabric is probably comfortable to run on.
 

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padawanslacker said:
Well . . . if my underwear always had a lot of dried urine on it, I think they might.
Hahaha..., true enough! :lol: :lol: :lol: I had never thought of it that way. But that's where pre-washing in a shower comes in handy. I bet your liners would be cleaner than most of human soiled underwear after the pre-wash. ;)
 

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padawanslacker said:
If you don't mind my asking, hedgie lover, what kind of bedding were you using when your hedgehog got an infection?

I ask because I'm torn between worry over the bedding safety issues several people have brought up on this site, and the fact that cloth liners would not be very practical for me. I live in an apartment building with one washer and one dryer. They guzzle quarters, are nearly always in use, and I don't think my neighbors would appreciate my filling up the washer with feces- and urine-contaminated fabric on a regular basis.
I was using CareFresh, my breeder was using Aspen. I hadn't had Herisson very long when I discovered he had an infection so I don't know if the CareFresh or the Aspen caused it.

About the washer thing, I hand wash my liners in the tub. It takes a while but I don't mind all that much. It beats having hedgehog stuff floating around with my clothes.
 

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Well, Spirit's been with me a month now, and I figured it was okay to try some more-significant changes with her. She currently has a fabric liner made of layered "waterproof multi-purpose pads" and thermal receiving blankets--both by Gerber. Pluses include the fact that they're made to be covered in biological waste and then washed repeatedly, and I didn't have to hem them. (Yayy!) She's also got some fleece snippets to use as burrowing material in her "den."

So far, her response has been to freak out, hide, and then slink out later and eat a cricket.

Film at 11.

I'll be looking at several factors: just how much cleaner than bedding is the fabric; how feasible it is to keep the fabric washed properly; whether loose threads appear that could wrap around her legs; and exactly what she thinks of the fabric anyway.

If I find poop all over everything tomorrow, I'll probably take that as her seal of approval.
 

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Yeah, well, she must have liked the fabric, because . . . poo.

Poo
Poo
Poo
Poo
Poo.

Poo.

I had a go at washing the fabric liners by hand with vinegar and detergent in a plastic bin, and they seem clean enough now. The "multi-purpose pads" were especially easy to clean--they wash off almost as easily as sheets of plastic, even though they have the texture of heavy felt. Things meant to be pooed on for the win!!

I don't know what Spirit will think of the lingering vinegar smell, though.

I'll probably try re-introducing a litter box tonight as well. Earlier attempts were cut short after she insisted on eating whatever litter was inside--or at the very least, chewing large amounts of it up and slapping it on her head. >.<

My tentative conclusion thus far is that fabric liners are only a realistic option for a litter-trained hedgehog.
 

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Another option which I am surprised I haven't seen anybody post yet is Yesterdays News bedding. It doesn't seem to get all over the place and when it does, it's easier to pick up then shavings. It also doesn't have much of a scent to it all, and also absorbs "other" odors. I just scoop out the poop and soil parts everyday, and replace with some fresh litter and it's all good! I want the best for my guy, but the idea of liners nauseates me, and I've found Yesterdays News to be a good alternative.
 
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