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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys! I have a pretty big question.
The breeder I got my baby [hedgie] from asked me what kind of cage & bedding I used because she was just making sure I was taking care of my little guy.
I informed her that he was in a cozy, safe home and I use fleece liners because it's cleaner/easier & I thought it seemed safer and healthier than other beddings.

I know lottsss of people use fleece liners but she told me that I should switch to another type of bedding because she claims the fleece is bad for them just like how pine bedding is. Like when they breath in whatever from it or something.
I don't know.. she was vague with her explanation.

So, can you please help? Is fleece really bad for their health or what?
 

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I have read that dryer sheets are toxic, but not fleece. I'll google it!
 

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Didn't see anything on google... everyone on here seems to recommend fleece bedding! I bet she was confusing it with something else--dryer sheets, maybe!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
yeah, she must've been. well I'm glad they're fine because I already bought a ton of fleece from the fabric store. haha.

thanks for your help.
& we have the same name. :]
 

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Yeah, and you even spell "Lindsay" correctly! We have a special Scottish plaid called Lindsay Plaid, you know!

My hedgehogs all prefer the fleece over anything else, anyway. Convenient that it is also the healthiest for them, too!
 

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I agree and don't think there is anything toxic about fleece. One time I heard someone say there was studies being done to see if fleece causes cancer in humans but I really feel that it doesn't and haven't found anything in writing that the trials are taking place. From wearing it myself I have never had any reaction on my skin from it or smelled anything from it. I've made dog cloths, beds and blankets from it and all of my animals have passed away at an old age from natural causes. The only thing I can think of where this would come from is that fleece is made from plastic fibers and they are thinking that plastic gives off gas. If they determine it is toxic years down the line I don't think the amount could be compared with the everyday toxins we are exposed to. I think its one of the most safest options out there :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
rainbowcookie said:
Yeah, and you even spell "Lindsay" correctly! We have a special Scottish plaid called Lindsay Plaid, you know!

My hedgehogs all prefer the fleece over anything else, anyway. Convenient that it is also the healthiest for them, too!
That's awesome! And I like plaid. I'm going to look that up now. And I'm definitely sticking with fleece.

Hedgieonboard, thanks for your input and I agree. I really didn't think it would be harmful but when she said that I was like 'wow'. It worried me for a minute.

I feel much better now though.

Thanks guys! :D
 

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Fleece is made from polyethylene terephthalate which is plastic #1. Some research has indicated that it may be harmful like those plastics that contain BPAs, but for now we are to assume it's safe.

I would just wash it first since it could have been treated with formaldehyde like some clothes are.
 

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I haven't heard anything about fleece being dangerous to be kept on, or even ingested (according to rodent people). I'd say the benefits of fleece over any particulate bedding far outweigh the potential risk, whatever it is. :lol:

I know mouse people consider fleece to be safe for the mice to have in their cages, and they have to worry about chewing/ingesting. Rat people also use fleece liners and have ratties that chew up their hammocks and such all the time, without problems that I know of. I know hedgies and rodents are not the same, but you'd think that since those communities are so serious about the health of their animals, that they would have considered that if there was a reasonable risk?
 

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What worries me is that, unlike the traditional "fleece" made of wool, polar fleece is made of plastics and other synthetic material. Some people may recall the ban imposed on bisphenol-A (BPA) in baby bottles by the Canadian Government last year grabbing a headline. BPA is a common building block of hard polycarbonate plastics such as drinking bottles, eye glasses, toys, etc. The good news is that not all plastics are toxic as others and good-qaulity polar fleece should be made of Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) which is, at least for the moment, considered to be stable enough to be non-toxic for humans.;)

However, like all things plastics/fossil fuel-based, one can't help but being anxious about the possible health issues. In fact, a number of studies suggest that PET contains hormone-disrupting chemicals (the contaminants from PET are leaching into bottled water and mimicking estrogen’s effects). Other studies also show PVC emits low-level toxic compounds, low enough to be “safe” for humans, but is it low enough for small animals like our pet hedgehogs? We don’t know for sure. :? :? :?

It took decades to collect a sufficient amount of scientific and medical data to prove cigarette smoking is harmful to our health and nicotine is addictive. There were numerous arguments made by the tobacco companies and scientists on their payrolls to deny the truth that we know today. Unfortunately, we cannot be certain one way or another about PET or PVC at this point in history because the studies will require many years to observe and assess its long-term effects.

I’ve been using polar fleece liners for several years now and have been quite happy with them, but I’m growing uneasy about products including polar fleece liners and blankets, plastic cage bottoms, PVC tubes, as well as Vaseline, especially the cheap ones imported from countries like China. I’ve already switched to beeswax from Vaseline, and I’ve been toying with the idea of switching to organic cotton liners - just to be safe.

When a cynic reads this post, he would probably roll his eyes and lament, “Everything nowadays is carcinogenic. Quit being so paranoid!” But the problem is I’m not 100% sure if I am just being paranoid... :?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks everyone for all of the help! Lol.. so much information! I love learning more. :]

I really have reason to believe the breeder that sold me my [lovely <3] hedgie has no idea what she's talking about. She and her husband seem to have a somewhat decent website that is VERY convincing and they're good with the CONCEPT of breeding in general; but as for hedgehogs, they BARELY KNOW THE BASICS! They're just obviously very new to breeding and the only reason i wouldn't take back having to deal with them is because I couldn't ask for a better baby! But they don't get credit for his personality... that's his own charm.

The breeders tried to give me advice just to 'throw it out there' and they've said things that I KNEW weren't right... but when she [the wife] said this one, i really wasn't sure and it worried me that I might be harming my hedgie by lining his cage with fleece. But at this point, I'm convinced she just wants to really seem like she knows a lot about hedgehogs so I'll think highly of them [for the benefit of getting publicity to make more money].

Although, they already ruined that image of themselves because when i came to pick up my hedgie they actually sent me home with the WRONG ONE! They put a different color on each ones' quills [near the butt]... and the one i'd originally picked out had orange and they even wrote it down. When i picked him up and headed home, i noticed that one had purple!!! When I'd gone over there weeks before to pick one out, I told them I wanted a boy, so they handed me two of them. One had red and one had orange.... I DIDN'T EVEN SEE THE PURPLE ONE! They handed me a boy and a girl because somehow they didn't know or realize it [and i didn't check bc i figured they knew them by color]. Anywayyy... I called and explained that she gave me the wrong one [i should've checked before leaving... but she seemed so sure of what was going on], and when i called and asked about what happened she said that they wrote down purple for me and that someone else reserved the orange after me...
I was furious but I'm not good at being forward and whatnot... so I let it slide and just said "don't worry about it, i'll just keep this one". I drove home and realized she didn't even give me the papers that I paid an extra $45 for!!!
Ugghhhhh... I still haven't called and confronted her about that. I'll probably call tomorrow.
It's just one big mess.

Honestly, though... I'm glad they made the mistake of sending me home with the hedgie I ended up with. I wouldn't give him up for the world!

Sorry, that was a lot...
and not about fleece at all. lol.
 

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itslindsay: That breeder sounds pretty darn terrible! I'd be really furious.



hedgieMate: I wish you were on the sugar glider forums when I made a discussion about PVC dangers on there. I didn't want to go in depth about plastics on here because people tend to blow you off if you provide too much evidence that can burst their little plastic happy bubble. haha!

It is however true that everything is poisonous and you can't avoid it.
- For instance, many of those sterillite tubs people use are made from polypropylene which is plastic #5. Although it is considered safe by today's standards, it has also been found to leach estrogen and some other unpleasant things.
- The alternative to plastic tubs is those cavy cages, however the coroplast is also made from polypropylene!
- Another alternative is metal bar cages, but they are often coated with either PVC (dangerous plastic #3) or epoxy (which contain harmful BPAs).

So the moral of the story is that you can't win! Pick your poison people.


Edit: Rubbermaid roughneck plastic bins are made from linear low density polyethylene (plastic #4) which some sources say leach measurable levels of BHT and other chemicals (plastic #2 also does this). So.... all plastics are bad in varying ways.



I don't use fleece liners not because it's made from plastic #1, but because I think they are a pain in the behind to wash and they collect in my laundry basket making the place super stinky.

For practical sakes, there probably isn't a great deal to worry about or much anyone can do about coming in contact with plastics. As long as you and your pets aren't drinking or eating food from plastic containers then it should be mostly ok. I always use stainless steel bowls and glass water bottles for mine. The best anyone can do is minimize exposure, especially from the most dangerous plastics (#3,#6,#7).



Also if anyone cares, don't heat plastic! I don't know what plastic snugglesafe disks are made from, but when I contacted one of their representatives they stated, "We use a standard plastic and have for a decade". Make your own decision about it.
 

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hihihi****e said:
I don't use fleece liners not because it's made from plastic #1, but because I think they are a pain in the behind to wash and they collect in my laundry basket making the place super stinky.
I've been using fleece for my herd for 10 months or so and i've never had this problem not even once.
 

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LarryT said:
I've been using fleece for my herd for 10 months or so and i've never had this problem not even once.
I know numerous people use them without problem, but I guess my nose is too sensitive. I'm always smelling things other people can't. The poop also tends to get stuck on them. Picking poop off is not fun. I think I may have clogged my washer from all the debris left on it. I thought it was broken, and several hundred dollars in replaced parts later, I realized the tube that senses the water level was clogged.

I may sound a bit paranoid, but I am merely educating myself since I've been experiencing some health issues due to estrogen excess. I just don't want my beloved pets to go through the same experience.
 

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Everyone made some great points on here about the fleece. I just thought I'd add my 2 cents as well. :)

I wanted to say is that if you really want the benefits of using a fleece liner, but don't like the idea of the synthetics used, you can buy it in many different forms including several organic materials. Fleece can be made from cotton, hemp, wool and bamboo to name a few (and many times a combination) that will work wonderfully. I personally don't have any problems with things sticking to my fleece (thankfully she uses her litter box!), but I do go outside and shake them out before washing. This gets rid of any bits of food, litter or quills that sat on top. I just thought I'd throw that out there because there are so many options.

Hihi,
My sister did a ton of research while she was pregnant with my niece and found similar things about water bottles and limited her use of them (among many other things!), so I completely understand your concern. Were you able to find a suitable replacement for your hedgie(s) cage?

~Melissa and Miss Muffet
 

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mel:
I didn't know they made organic fleece. I will have to look into it for pouches. Do they sell it at fabric stores such as JoAnn's and is it expensive?

I have yet to find a suitable replacement for my plastic bin. It's too bad glass has such poor ventilation and stainless steel is so ridiculously expensive. Any one have any suggestions?
 

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I go to a local fabric store by me, so they have a different variety than what's at Jo-Ann's stores. I did check Jo-Ann's website and it looks like that they sell only a cotton/poly blend for fleece, in addition to the all poly fleece. however, I believe all of their stores carry different products, so your local store may have something not listed on the website. You can always do a search for "organic fleece" and you'll find A MILLION places. Google is your friend! :lol: It is a little more costly than traditional fleece, but I think it would be a great investment since you'll only need to buy a few yards and you'll be set~just wash and re-use!

Here are a few links for you:
http://www.bamboofabricstore.com/index. ... ducts_id=4
They have bamboo and organic cotton fleece!
"This manufacturer received USDA and OCIA organic certifications on their bamboo. This is big exciting news for the world of eco-fabrics, as bamboo had previously not had criteria for organic certification.
* Fiber content 70% viscose from organic bamboo
* 30% organic cotton"
http://www.hempfabricshop.com/index.php ... ucts_id=29
They sell hemp/cotton blend fleece!
http://www.jandofabrics.com/products.asp?id=321
They sell all sorts of organics as well.

There really are a ton of places that you can go through so I'd probably research a few until you find one you like. The other cool thing is that many will sell you a swatch or sample so you don't need to commit to anything until you try it out! :D

Also, have you tried looking for one of the wire top, plastic bottom ones or do you want to avoid that as well? While more expensive than a plastic bin, you can often times find them on Craigslist for cheaper. You can even post an ad looking for one as well.

I hope that helps.
~Melissa

 

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you could also just make snuggle sacks out of flannel or felted wool. just make sure there are no exposed stitches or unfinished edges. someone made me a hat out of felted wool and it didn't fit and became a snuggle bag for hammie who loved it. it had to be hand washed though.
 
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