Experimenting with Bedding: Recs?

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Post   » Sun May 05, 2019 1:32 pm

I've had pigs for over 13 years and and was a dedicated fleece/towels user for the first decade. I switched to disposable bedding a few years ago (the combination of more pigs, larger cages, and expensive cost of paying for laundry in an apartment building have moved me away from fleece).

I've been using a mix of Oxbow's paper bedding and pig-safe wood bedding but it's expensive (and tedious to buy multiple bags and mix the two together).

I've done some searching of past posts in this forum and it looks like some people have been having luck with pellet bedding. Anyone have any specific brand recommendations (or brands to avoid), and the best places to buy?

I live in the Twin Cities and have access to stores like Fleet Farm, but I'm thinking it might be cheaper and/or easier to buy online than driving 30 minutes out of the city.



Post   » Sun May 05, 2019 2:03 pm

This person uses wood pellets from Tractor Supply. Anyone use pellets *without* the fleece on top?

And got the T-shirt

Post   » Sun May 05, 2019 2:11 pm

I used fleece over pellets for years, and wouldn't have even considered switching to anything else. I tried it without pellets, but as the pellets turn to sawdust, it adheres to the food as they drag it across the cage, and I was concerned about them ingesting that much sawdust.

I started out using pellets from Tractor Supply, but they changed suppliers and the pellets smelled too strongly of pine and I had to switch. I used TerrAmigo horse stall bedding -- cheap, and didn't smell much. If you can find a local supplier of that brand, I'd highly recommend it. But pellets will NOT be cheaper online because of the weight in shipping.

However, two 40-pound bags of pellets will last you a year, so even if you have to pay shipping, you'll still come out way ahead of any bedding you can buy from a pet store.

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Supporter in 2019

Post   » Tue May 07, 2019 6:02 am

If you have a farm/feed/tractor store in your neck of the woods, you might also see if they carry paper bedding. I was surprised to find that our area Rural King carries Kaytee Ultra (the white bedding), and it's priced significantly less than either Amazon.com or Walmart. It's virtually dust-free and seems to do a good job with odor.

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Party Poop-er

Post   » Tue May 07, 2019 1:50 pm

If you have a Menard's near you, they carry wood stove pellets without additives ($5 for a 40 lb bag).

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Post   » Tue May 07, 2019 8:10 pm

This is my disposable bedding of choice:


I just buy multiple bags at a time to get the free shipping. I love this stuff. It is somewhere along the process of wood becoming paper. (It feels like paper pellets, but I sometimes find sticks in the bag.) It absorbs both pee and odor so well, doesn’t have that same smell to it as Carefresh, and it can be scooped like a litter box.

I scoop out the pee spots once per day with a plastic scoop and have a slotted litter box scoop to get the poops.

Right now my cage is half fleece half disposable, but I used to use this exclusively. Even when the only place to get it was petsmart, for 17 bucks a bag. That’s how much I love it.

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Supporter in 2019

Post   » Tue May 07, 2019 8:24 pm

Do they try to eat much of it, JJGiebz? I can't get that locally, but have been curious about it. Do you put fleece on top, or just use it as-is?


Post   » Wed May 08, 2019 6:49 pm

I clicked the link and noticed that the bag in the photo has a "best by" date on it as if it's somehow perishable, weird!

Make Good Choices

Post   » Wed May 08, 2019 9:47 pm

You’re right!! I see my spare bag is only good until 2021. LOL I have never noticed that before. It’s not even edible, I wonder what about it might degrade.

To your question, Sef, no they don’t eat it. I /think/ my current boar has sampled it from time to time. But he also eats carpet and other fabrics, so I try not to use him as a barometer for anything... I have had 4 pigs live happily in/on it.

I don’t cover it with anything. Right now I’m using it in the “kitchen” area of their 4x2 C&C cage and we’re all pretty happy about it. They usually go out of their way to pee in it rather than on the fleece.

My pigs used to live in a jumbo sized Prevue brand rabbit cage (roughly 4ft x 2 ft) and that cage was just too small for fleece, so I exclusively used disposable bedding. In that cage I did a full clean (with daily spot clean) once every 7-10 days and never had an issue with odor.

The only downsides that come to mind - and I had to dig to think of any - are A) if they get scared and take off running, it can go flying out of the cage; and B) every now and again my boar will have a piece of it stuck in his butt. The pieces vary in size from very fine to pebble sized balls. Sometimes a dragging butt just absorbs the fine ones. They come out with the poops though, unless I notice it first.

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